Navy Field 2 – Battles on the High Seas

Did I already mention I love Free to Play games? No? Well, I say it now. Today we shall talk about Navy Field 2. The first Navy Field was a 2D Arcade-Style Naval warfare game. Two teams would duke it out in the open seas, and the task of the player would be to improve their crew, obtain better ships and survive these challenging naval engagements. As you might imagine, it was not easy. When I joined the game all my opponents were wielding Cruisers, Battleships and Carriers, while I swam around in my small Destroyer, firing my handful of cannons at the Titans in front of me. Eventually I got a hold of Torpedoes and that changed the story somewhat but make no mistake, war at sea was, indeed, a challenge. You could improve certain aspects of your ship, reinforcing those areas of your ship you considered to be important. Each ship had a limit how big a Crew and what thickness of armor it could handle, so you had to be smart about your ship.

Now we have the New Navy Field 2, with fancy 3D graphics. How does it hold up to the original? Let’s find out.

Navy Field 2

“Join the Navy they said, it will be fun they said!”

Navy Field 2 – What is it about?

In Navy Field 2 you control a handful of ships, just like in World of Tanks you would have a number of different tanks. You typically focus on one Nations (British, America, Japanese or “Axis”) and focus on the different ships from that line. The thing is, unlike in the previous Navy Field, here you progress in a non-linear manner. As you gain levels with your Captain (Player Avatar) you unlock more ships and ship variants. Already at the start you have a Destroyer, Light Cruiser and Battleship. It’s a very handy mix of ships, for the beginning.

Unlike in the first Navy Field here you will use three ships at a time, during the battle. The “One Life” World of Tanks system, was traded away from a more mistake friendly “Three Lives and then Some”. What I mean by that is that if you lose your ship at sea you can respawn with one of the two other ones, however, the sunk ship will slowly be repaired at the port, so you can pick it out again, at a later time. However, the ship will never fully recover from the crippling blow, so even if you do decide to bring back the damaged ship it will not be at its full capacity. At the same time you can swap between ships at any base that your team controls. So, you could swim around with an Assault Craft, capture a Base, then quickly swap around for a Battleship.

That is another new addition, capturing bases. Teams fight for control over different locations at sea. These may be Radar Stations or Airports. These are protected by Naval Guns that will fire at the enemy (depending who controls the base). Capturing Radar Stations or Airports can grant your Commander (one player chosen randomly from the team) additonal “powers”. The last time I played there was only an Air Bombardment as well as Recon. They are not game breaking, but can offer useful support for your (and the enemy’s team).

What was also changed is one thing I do not, personally, approve of, the armor/health system. Currently Armor does not act as “protection” in traditional sense. It does not reduce damage, or stop damage altogether. Currently it is a “one use” shield. This “shield” does not regenerate or get repaired. Once you lose your deck or hull armor it is gone for that battle. The choice of armors is also limited, in terms of amount of armor. On top of that the armor is “temporary”. It will only last for a few days (if it’s equipped it counts as being used) so you will have to constantly purchase new armor for your ship. Without that you only have your basic “HP”, which can be drained very quickly under sustained enemy fire. Suma Sumarum, your Armor is at best a “light optional shield”. Unless you consider your ship key for the battle (such as a very high level carrier or battleship) investing in armor will offer some useful benefits.

This is the first flaw of Navy Field. The second Flaw are the different ship variants, at least on lower levels. Ships, regardless of type and size, will have “Variants”. For example, a Stock Destroyer could be upgraded into the AA, Counter-Submarine or Torpedo roles. It sounds nice on paper but many other ships feel much less special. For example, Battleships will typicaly have a few “Weapon Variants” or “Armor Variants”. There will never be a ship variant that will have both improved health and weapons. Even then, you will not have a substantial advantage in either. These ship variants are, just as Armor, optional.

What of the different ship types? Progression? Leveling? Skills? Let’s just say that despite the non-linear progression you will not have access to all the different ship types rapidly. It’s not like in World of Tanks or War Thunder where the progress from “Weaker” Tanks/Planes to something better will happen on your first day. It is a very slow and sometimes painful progression. On top of that I do not find the 3D graphics all that appealing. When I played the 2D Navy Field I was awe struck by the giganta-normous Battleships and Carriers, while I was sailing around in my pathetic little Destroyer. Here, Battleships seems to be the same size as Destroyers (at least at your lower levels, the trailers seem to suggest you can have way bigger ships, much later on). I do not feel any more special using a Battleship than my Destroyer. Of course, in game you can feel the difference, but visually I do not feel “mighty” in my Battleship. It all feels exactly the same (at least when I played for as long as I did).

Aside from your Captain Levels you also have Officers that may progress. Both your Captain and Crew can improve three or four seperate skills, that have a number of possible benefits. Long Story short? You will not be getting anywhere, in a long, long time. If you have the patience to change the 0.035% increase into 1% I salute you, but I honestly grew tired of it. Just like in the case of Ships, getting to a decent level will take ages and it feels almost discouraging. Compared to similar games (War Thunder and World of Tanks) Navy Field is painfuly slow. I know, I am repeating myself, but the only way you can find out about this is by trying it.

Is it a bad game though? No, it’s not bad. The problem is the slow progression and very “Arcade” feel. Since I sat in the “more realistic” games I hoped, at first, that the game would offer similar degrees of fun and realism. I was somewhat disappointed, as you might imagine. Still, until Wargaming.Net and WarThunder have their Naval games released this appears to be the only Free To Play Solution, today.

What of Premium?

There is a Premium currency. With it you can purchase special Mods/Equipment and Benefits for your ship and Crew. You may also be able to recruit special Officers, instead of the “standard” ones. In other words, Premium Currency may be used to buff your ship, in a number of ways, or speed up the slow progression. There are no Premium or Special Ships (yet at least), so you will not have access to anything extra-ordinary or legendary (you can only obtain such ships the “natural” way).

Worth your Time, or Not?

Let us be honest, if you want a Naval Game, with an Arcade feel, but very slow progression, then Navy Field will be suitable for you. As there are no real Free to Play Substitutes yet it’s not a bad choice, but you might find it to be beneath your expectations. You may register and download the client from the official Navy Field 2 Site. You may also find Navy Field 1, although I do not know how active that community is now.

Alex “WriterX” Bielski

About The Author

Aleksander "WriterX" Bielski
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Student of Psychology, he was identified as a Nut-Job even before he started the course. Having done some small work as a Modder for a number of titles, and worked as a Game Designer part-time, Alex now writes in third person. As Co-Owner and Editor of AlterGamer.com he aims high, while being armed only with a sling. In the future, he hopes to become a fully qualified Newspaper Editor, and purchase Google.

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