Hi rta, I agree with you with respect to the comments made by some of the ArmA community. Personally I love all of the FPS games that I own including all of the Call of Duty franchise from the first to the latest. If I want to play a what I loosely term a run and gun game where tactics aren't necessarily that important I usually play games like Call of Duty or Medal of Honor (to name just a couple of the most widely known FPS games. If I want some thing with a little more challenge, but still with an element of run and gun it's the turn of games like Crysis or perhaps Bioshock; however, if I want to play a FPS that requires a lot more though w.r.t. Tactics etc then I play ArmA II or the latest two Operation Flashpoint Games. To me they are 'all' brilliant and amazing games.
I really don't understand the mentality of those who call games that don't belong to the particular games that they enjoy playing at the time. I suppose I'm lucky in that I've been able to afford to buy every game I've ever fancied playing; so consequently own a lot of every genre that I like and even a lot of those I don't (though most of those were acquired via beta testing).
With respect to the dialogue, to be honest I can't say I've noticed when playing ArmA II, however, the developers have been working on the dialogue part of the game in ArmA III and I expect that it will be much improved; bearing in mind the developers English is not their first language. It would be interesting to note whether the games dialogue in their native tongue is better or more effective? Even though I've played ArmA II for well over 2000 hours over the three years since the first installment was released back in 2009 (1400+ hours on Steam and the rest via the discs I own) I've spent most of that time playing the various modes in particular the armory mode, which basically means i'm playing as a lone wolf, or when I am playing with friends it's usually the Co-op mode, where in game game dialogue becomes meaningless because I'm using Team Speak to talk to my human squad mates.
Oddly (considering the number of hours I've dedicated to ArmA II and expansions) I've actually hardly touched the campaign mode as I love to save the best bits till I've explored all the other modes in a game. It just happened that the armory mode offered an easy way of playing the game by including an almost countless number of mini missions depending on what weapon, or vehicle I chose to use. The armory mode was a game in itself as the more you played it the more weapons you unlocked from the game. I've almost unlocked 100% of the weapons and vehicles from that mode, but it took a long time because to unlock them you have to complete the mini missions successfully to earn points,. (I know it's a stupid foible as quite often I end up never or rarely returning to a game simply because of the sheer numbers I purchase.) Still that's just me. I am still playing games I purchased almost 20 years ago on and off, so expect that I will complete most of the game play elements of most of the games I've purchased and enjoy playing, (I hope); which of course includes all of the ArmA and COD games).
With respect to the devotion some show towards this game; I think it has something to do with the games realism. That is, you do have to play the game using what could be loosely termed real tactics and when shooting you have to take account of bullet physics etc to actually survive the game (this aspect of the game will be expanded on to take account of wind direction and breathing etc in ArmA III). There's no hiding behind a wall, crates or some other object while your health regenerates. If you get shot you either die immediately (if it's a head shot) or you bleed out if you don't get your wound treated fairly quickly (though that also depends on where you were shot as to how quickly you bleed out; and even if you do get it treated you cannot function as well as if you had full health (personally I like the Operation Flashpoint health system better than ArmA's; it's more intuative). Reduce functioning would be glaringly apparent when for example you tried to make a long shot using a sniper rifle. Aiming, once wounded, in all of the games I mention above (i.e. The ArmA franchise, and the two recent Operation Flashpoint games (Dragon Rising and Red River) leaves you with a permanent disadvantage, that is until you start with a new character, or restart using a previous save.
I do think that a lot of the fanatics who make the comments about Call of Duty are either ex-army or kids.
For me the original Operation Flashpoint released 11 years ago comes under the umbrella of the ArmA franchise, and in fact has been re-released as ArmA: Cold War Assault; the original was called Operation Flashpoint: Cold War Crisis.
b.t.w. hypothetially (and totally off point), if I was told I could only select 10 games to take with me on a one way journey, ArmA II and it's expansions would definitely be one of the games I'd be taking with me together with Operation Flashpoint: Dragon Rising (I think the sequel Red River is too scripted and so loses some of it's appeal for me otherwise it would have been included), Just Cause 2, Battlefield 2, Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim, Fallout New Vegas, Fallout 3, Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion, Grand Theft Auto IV and finally Shogun 2: Total War. Maybe I'd negotiate (or hide within the files of one of the other games) being able to take an extra 'arcade game', which for me would be Ricochet Infinity and all of it's custom made levels that means around 60 000 extra levels)
Of course every game that had custom content would be included as well ......Which basically means every one of them apart from Just Cause 2 and even that may get mods if the petition works - there's a petiton been going on for some time that's trying to get the developer of Just Cause 2 to release an official editor for the game