Ideas for improvement on historical contents for Brothers in Arms: Hell's Highway

Now it’s time to review my favorite game from the series. Hell’s Highway is easily one of best WW2 FPS I’ve ever played, with surely better gameplay than the previous 2 (Hill30 and EIB) and a continuation of the great and memorable storyline.

But like the first two from this series, there are many historical inaccuracies and other mistakes that could be able to fix and improve in the possibly remastered or reboot version in the future.
So I’d like to point them out, as a little effort to help the series getting more valuable aspect and even more respect from both old and new fans. Also as an educational case for those who really interested in historical contents.

But most importantly, I’m not a native English speaker. So I must apologize for any mistake on that might be found in this article.

Uniforms and models

  • Separated models of the camouflaged helmet and M43 field cap for 3 German units.
    Heer soldiers: Wehrmacht’s Splinter pattern.
    Fallschirmjager (M38 helmet with camo covers): Luftwaffe’s Splinter pattern (majority), and the uncommon Tan and Water pattern.
    Waffen SS: Planetree, and Oakleaf pattern.
    *Note: According to several of war time-photographs, there was no Dot 44 pattern on both helmet covers and field cap.

  • More variation for the German uniforms;
    Fallschirmjager: They only got overcoat with Tan and water camo pattern (which is supposed to be uncommon). Majority of them should have an overcoat with Luftwaffe Splinter camo, and non-camo green jump smock.
    Waffen SS: For SS smock - Plane tree pattern and Oakleaf pattern.
    For SS tunic + trouser version - Dot 44 pattern (both full camo tunic and trouser version, and a normal SS tunic + camo trouser version).

  • Enlisted men insignia of rank for Germans (left arm);
    Heer: Many of them have the Obergrenadier (PFC) and Obergefreiter (Corporal) insignia. Majority of them should be a regular private (no insignia), and appearance of the insignia should be fewer. Also, Lance Corporal (Gefreiter) insignia should be included.
    Waffen SS: Same as Heer, the majority of them should be a regular SS-Schutze (no insignia). And the appearance of insignia should be fewer (on the tunic version, not on smock). Also, Lance Corporal (SS-Sturmann) insignia should be included, and the SS eagle should be on their left arm for the tunic version.
    Fallschirmjager: every model had the Obergefreiter (Cpl.) insignia on tunic’s collar. Majority of them should be replaced by a Flieger (Pvt.) insignia instead. Gefreiter (Lance Cpl.) insignia can be included, but also fewer than Flieger (Pvt.).

  • Insignia on the M43 field cap, tunic, and belt buckle should have been made correctly for all 3 German units (Heers, Waffen SS, and Fallschirmjager).

  • In Veghel and Hell’s Highway mission, all 3 German units could have appeared together. As to represent the 107 Panzer Brigade + Kampfgruppe Walther that were indeed participated in the battle.

  • New OPTIONAL units as an additional for the remastered or reboot version:

    1. Wehrmacht Panzergrenadiers - Heer with a Splinter camo pattern on smock (for similar example: Hauptmann's High-Res Characters skins)
    2. Luftwaffe Flak units - for 88mm crews in Eindhoven (Kampfgruppe Koeppel, from Flak-Brigade 18) and optional for further missions. They should’ve worn Luftwaffe field jacket uniform with red collar tabs.
  • As an optional choice, Waffen SS snipers in Eindhoven missions should be replaced with Heer version of Panzergrenadier instead.

  • During the Eindhoven factory (Operation Garden) intro, Nikolas’s son, Pieter shoot the SS. But when Baker’s squad check on the corpse, it’s turned into Fallschirmjager instead (both of the models should be changed into Heer).

  • Lack of variation among British troops, especially the helmet: Majority of them should have worn a normal Brodie helmet instead of Mk III/IV.

  • More British soldiers should have appeared in the Baptism with Fire mission.

  • There should be remaining of British troops left to defend their columns in the Hell Highway mission (survivors + wounded soldiers along the way). And a group of British reinforcement could be accompanied with the Baker’s squad to repel the counter-attack at the last section of the mission.

  • Dawson got M1A1 Thompson magazine pouches, although his weapon is M1A1 Carbine.

Weapons

  • OPTIONALLY, few more new weapons can be included for German arsenals: Portable MG34, Gewehr43, Panzerfaust, and FG42 (Fallschirmjager).
  • Several German squads were equipped with only a single type of firearm (the whole squad with either STG44 or MP40, for example). My suggestion is mixing other guns like more common Kar98k and a few Gewehr43 among German squads for diversity/variations.
  • This is my personal opinion, some of 88mm Flak since the Eindhoven factory to the last mission should be replaced by Pak40.
  • Damage of M1911 should be increased.
  • Grenade’s blast radius should be slightly increased.
  • The British troops were seen equipped with American weapons, the weapons should be replaced by SMLE Mk III rifle and Sten Mk III.

Vehicles

  • Majority of the Panzer IVs in Veghel and Hell’s Highway mission MUST be replaced by Panthers (107 Panzer Brigade).
  • At least 1-2 Panzers in the Koevering (last) mission MUST be replaced by Jagdpanthers (from Panzerjager Abteilung 559, definitely joined the Kampfgruppe Jungwirth in the battle).
  • The astoundingly small-sized wreckage of Panther tanks in the Koevering mission should be replaced by the wreckage of German trucks or other vehicles.
  • Too many British’s Sherman Firefly in the game (both vehicle and wreckage), and it even appeared in the Bloody Gulch flashback, which MUST be replaced by a normal American Sherman.
    While about half of Firefly in the game should be replaced by normal British Shermans, and optionally, the Cromwells as an additional choice.

Others

  • From the Eindhoven factory (Operation Garden) intro, details of Baker’s map that was shown during the intro should be changed into the city’s industrial complex.
  • The crowd animation in the background during the citizen of Eindhoven celebration (Reunion’s cutscene) should be improved.
  • Some of Eindhoven’s citizen should be appeared as corpses, wounded, and survivors during the Baptism with Fire (bombardment) mission, for realistic sake.
  • In the last section of Veghel mission, the building that was supposed to be hit by the mortar shell looks more like it was blown up inside by a German trap.
    My opinion is, to make the building partially collapsed or just to create a large amount of debris falling upon Baker and his friends, the building should be hit by the artillery shell instead of a mortar round.
  • During the abandoned hospital mission, the sound of a gunshot that mortally wounded Franky should be heard when the player approaching the corridor that leads to the staircase section.
  • After the Building collapse and covered Franky body, somehow his M3 Greasegun still can be seen beside his body (both cutscene and back in the game), it should be removed.
  • Sometimes AIs/characters behave weirdly during the cutscene sequences (seems robotic and less human being).
  • Dialogues for the battle cries are seemed very few and AIs keep repeating them, especially for the US paratroopers.
  • There should be the battle cries for British troops also.

That’s a wrap! If anyone got a question or disagreement, feel free to leave it in the comment section.
Besides, now all I can do now is to wait for the upcoming 4th part of this wonderful series.