Start of the week is pretty incredible considering I received on Steam Ghost Recon: Future Soldier from Ubisoft. Well it wasn’t a gift from Ubisoft, but was a gift from someone I know not relating to games and stuff of that nature. Anyways, got home on Monday after eating turkey and pie to get down to killing stuff.
So I downloaded it, which took about an hour or two to finish. Not surprising now games are about 6GB and onward (either we’re going to need free internet or smaller games), so a popped that install button and just let her run until I was done. After that, I had to go through the whole process of getting a Ubisoft account. Which I was not amused and not at all surprised, this stupid thing about client-ception has to stop. Sorry Ubisoft, went with this on EA and I’m not at all enthusiastic with the whole “we haz own social thingy” concept. To me, it’s a company self-esteem issue. But back to topic, I got the game, got an account and started it up.
I did play Advanced Warfighter 2 a long time ago and I was pretty happy with some if not all the features in the game at the time, but this really takes the cake. I’m all for weapon attachments so it does make me feel good that I can customize my weapons as I play through the single. No spoilers but you do get more stuff as you do the singleplayer, which is great. I haven’t played through the whole campaign, but I can safely say I have attached myself to several attachments and certain weapons for certain times. Once again no spoilers, but safe to say I have 3 favourite attachments plus a few weapons I already like to keep around just of the way the weapon stats are, you can really have a weapon for anything.
For those people who are into the textures, graphics and pretty colours; graphics are pretty great. Especially if you have the latest DirectX drivers, you can really experience some of the most detailed models I’ve seen so far. To put it simply, the colour palette is a mix of Battlefield 3 for weapons and the environment of a Modern Warfare 3 campaign map. You experience darkness and different weather environments as closely replicated, the mix really does provide a sense of mood and speed to the game at certain parts (once again…no spoilers).
Gameplay does keep it to the original Ghost Recon games I’ve seen and tried. The elite soldier with the most high tech gear sent to kill the baddies. Many tried their way of setting that up for you, but this turns it into a bit of a strategy and less of a juggernaut situation like the last level of Modern Warfare 3. Cover is important, stealth is important, speed and creativity is important. Though I’m on easy mode, I’m still getting shot up pretty hard. Likely the fact that I’m more of an up close and personal kind of person when it comes to assaulting positions. One thing I really found hard to really grasp is the whole coordinating with the team and time. Most of the game allows you to be the best modern ninja but you have to really time it right to avoid those few baddies standing about. Though the levels are fairly linear, it does provide a lot of ways to approach objectives which does change up play one way or another. Ever since I played Battlefield 3, I loved the idea of stealth kill animations. In Future Soldier, there is no shortage of times when I would just approach from behind and whisper sweet death with the back of a rifle, a bullet to the head or a quick snap of the neck. Plays like an RTS version of chess, you have to think of your next move before your opportunity passes. And you are always outnumbered on the board about many to 4. Controls are pretty easy to adjust to after you notice there is no jumping, usually some people hate it but I like the fact you can’t dodge bullets like a bunny. However I did find myself in certain situations where I need the interface to be much more precise. Example #1: Stealth kill behind cover. Example #2: Switching gadgets. First off, it’s really hard to do the whole “ding dong, you dead” move while undercover, I’ve tried many times and only a few times I really pulled it off. Most of the time my guy just jumps out like it was a birthday cake to reveal his position to the guy I’m trying to stealth kill. Just makes it worse when I can get killed in a harder difficulty if it was a harder difficult. The controls are great, no denying it makes my hand happy to the fact that I don’t have to extend or contract my hand too far to reach of things I need. However the whole switching between 3 things with a mouse wheel is difficult especially when it’s an asset that makes noise or a very important asset you don’t want to spend too quickly in a stealth shooter. Too many times I’ve threw grenades when I wanted to throw a sensor down. The game should really reinforce the fact you can use the number keys to switch or just make the HUD a bit better in terms of really telling you’re really using. The HUD is a HUD, styled for the game but very minimal. Outputs just tell you weapons, ammo, gadgets and any mission/control info about the weapon. I like that it doesn’t obstructs the view so I don’t have to move around too much to see what I’m up against. The AI is pretty great on both sides, since they do take cover and do their best to avoid getting shot. Though sometimes they do the darnedest things. In the game, you’re given optical camouflage which you can use to move without being detected but at a certain distance, you can be detect (which is about a good 5 metres in front of the baddy). At certain points of the game I’ve seen my allies literally walk right in front of them without being detected. Either that AI was dumb to notice a blurry crouched man or my camo is way more inferior. Good balance overall even in easy mode to make me die or fail a few missions. In real life if there were Ghosts like these, I would be hitting that “Reset to last Checkpoint” at least five times before the mission ended.
From trailers and previews I’ve seen, the multiplayer is fairly much deathmatch. Kill each other, that’s about it. I really wanted the game for the co-op considering the “Guerrilla Mode” is something that intrigues me. Essentially bottom line it plays like a singleplayer campaign (I think the campaign also has co-op too), but you go through rounds of enemies like any other co-op. Just survive until you have to infiltrate another building and repeat. To me, this is new. Usually you’re given the building and you have to hold it out. With this, you get to do it yourself then to survive more baddies. At a certain point after those baddies are eliminated, you get goodies like sentry guns and stuff (according to the Ubisoft video clips). So far, I want to finish the singleplayer as fast as I can and then move to Guerrilla mode as soon as possible. Which means maybe have a Fun Friday in Ghost Recon, I’m totally okay with that.
So for anyone wanting to get the game, want me to join in on a “let’s play” or want to join in on Fun Friday in Ghost Recon. I’m not sure when I’ll be done the singleplayer. But from the feel of the game, I’m just over halfway. I’m taking names for anyone who are willing to play the co-op campaign or Guerrilla mode. You can find me in-game as “nawkcire”. If you like, leave a comment about the game and/or your screen name below and I’ll get back to you.
Well, back to my diet of cola and games. See you all next week!