Sniper: Ghost Warrior
Date: Tuesday, August 31 @ 00:47:26 EDT
Topic: [XBOX 360] Action Game Reviews
Ironically, it's the best FPS of this gen
This game has some serious flaws, but at the end of the day it kicks major ass.
The Good: The graphics are amazing. Crysis amazing. It's not as detailed as Crysis (ie break trees, leaves bend, physics engine...) but the jungle is so plush and there are so many banana trees. The environments are also equally awesome. Huts look real, and villages are pretty spread out. Even though you are in the jungle most of the time, it still looks different from level to level. Definitely better than COD. Also the environment effects, like day/night cycle, and rain are very impressive. And it's satisfying to get a head shot, and the camera pans around and you get a slow mo trace of the bullet. At the end of the day, it's the gameplay that really takes the cake. Like in this one mission, you have to sneak to the light house roof, kill the main sniper, take his rifle, mark the other snipers, and then take them out under cover of low flying aircraft to supress your noise. How cool is that? In another level you are supporting your friend, and you tag enemies with the binoculars and he takes him out. Later, you reverse roles, and he fully guides you through a village. The pacing in the combat levels is almost better than in the sniping segments. In fact, I dare say it's the best pacing in any current gen shooter. You go to an indicator on the map, and the combat starts. But this never gets boring. They've done it so well, you can reload and use a med injection to get ready for the next battle. And YES, no more regenerating health! Or you are on a boat and you have to snipe the soldiers on the land, but the driver is smart to not go too fast like in other games, then choppers come, so you hide, then keep going. These are small things, but they make a difference when compared to Kane and Lynch where you just run and gun. And oh ya, ZIP LINE BITCHES! Oh, and the campaign isn't too short, I got a good 8-10 hours out of it.
The Bad: The voice acting can be average at times, and they have this super gay hero shot at the end. A lot of the things looked ripped straight out of COD, like the random laptops laying around. The character animations are a little weak at times, but I honestly don't care. I don't expect developers to spend $1,000,000.00 on mocap to get a shot of a guy jumping onto a helicopter (ya they stole that from COD too). At other times it feels like the developers thought the world wasn't ready for a sniping game, so they cut everything short. Like that level I mentioned where you have to take out snipers under cover of jets, I'd prefer it if there were a dozen snipers to take out. Not two. And after wards, I'm in a fucking tower, let me just decimate the whole town, don't just end the game. And for fucks sake The sniping environment is so small. Give me a radius of 1 square mile to shoot in. They do this over and over, where you kill 4 people, and the level ends. Also, the game is a pain in the beginning b/c you don't know how to play it. For example, it's actually more "stealthy" to run right in front of the enemy, but if you hide in the thick as pubic hair bush right in front of him, he'll see you. There's a stealth meter, but if it goes up, you have to move so, presumably you get out of the guy's FOV and it goes down. How ass backwards is that? You'd think moving would increase your chances of being sighted. God damnit I miss MGS 2. Give me a decent fucking radar. In this day and age where you have nukes which pin point individual buildings in Moscow, all from outer space, is it really such a stretch of the imagination to give me a radar with enemy FOVs?
The Ugly: Holy fuck, if there is a penny on the ground you can't crawl over it. If there is a pebble, you can't crouch over it. And if there is a fence, chances are it was put there so you can't go behind it, regardless of how short it is. This becomes especially painful when a fence serves no purpose than to encircle a perfect sniping area. It's already fucking rendered! Why can't I go there? It could have been a perfect open ended sniping game, but instead these decisions made it more linear. The enemies on the radar are gay too. They come out as the most equilateral triangles I have ever seen on a radar. It's almost impossible to see where they are looking. Fuck that, I don't even know the protocol for them showing up on the radar (which, mind you, looks like any given map from C&C 1). Sometimes, they show up immediately, other times, only when they spot you, other times still, who the fuck knows. You'd think you could just tag them somehow, and snipe them later, but no. And it doesn't help that they are so fucking eagle eyed. That lighthouse jet example I gave, it was miles away from the village, and way up in the mountain, I walked past the window, and one of the fuckers saw me! It's not as bad as Far Cry, though, when the fuckers are eagle eyed AND have pin point accuracy, these guys are more indicitave of malnourished South Americans. And for some reason you can't access the most basic of things, like all the vehicles lying around, most ladders, the other side of the field which is clearly visible, yet somehow there is an invisible wall.
For all it's flaws, it's still much MUCH more fun than any COD game, and infinitely less gay than Kane and Lynch and finally a campaign that isn't over in one sitting. 9/10
Sidenote: I think developers can't figure out a decent way to let you hide in bushes. Which is why you get these jungle games where either the guy sees your shirt collar through all the foliage and comes at you guns blazing.