Tag Archives: Call of Duty

Review: Sniper: Ghost Warrior 2

Sniper Ghost Warrior 2

Call of Duty Modern Warfare completely redefined the wartime fps. Gamers seeking an orgy of death, mud, blood and bullets were usually catapulted backwards in time to fight as the allies in the second world war because developers were too afraid to put anything in front of your cross hairs other than an Alien, a Demon or a Nazi.

So when Infinity Ward set their bombastic war franchise Call of Duty in the modern day whilst dressing up Hollywood effects as gritty realism, it was like the rules for the fps genre had been completely re-written.

One of the most revered levels of Modern Warfare was All Ghillied Up, this was to be the obligatory stealth level. Just like every single platformer seems to be required to squeeze in an underwater level. With FPS titles developers seem insistent on behaving like angry librarians and ‘shushing’ us for an entire level. Forcing us to undertake laborious tasks as opposed to blowing things up and causing carnage, which we all know are the best bits of games.

Sniper Ghost Warrior 2

‘All Ghillied Up’ was different though, Infinity Ward took away the thinking by giving us a commanding officer to follow. We basically just had to do what the angry soldier told us to and feel like real spec ops officers crawling under lorries, and knifing enemies whose only crime was to have a cheeky cigarette.

Sniper Ghost Warrior 2

Without being forced to look at a radar to check we weren’t encroaching the enemy’s field of vision, or grip the crouch key slowly moving up stairs at a pace that would make a Stenna stair lift look like Concord, players were taken over by a level of tension seldom seen in games. Although Infinity Ward walks players through the level holding them by the hand, it’s a pretty impressive level that drips tension like an M60 spits bullets.

It is abundantly clear that All Ghillied Up had a huge effect on CI games because the Sniper: Ghost Warrior franchise seems to be built entirely around the concept of creating a tense, realistic thrill ride snipe ‘em up.

It is funny how things have changed, I remember when Sniping and Camping were the bane of the online community and how teenage virgins would curse the Sniping Camper for their misfortunes before threatening to locate the Sniper’s home via IP address and do horrible things to their mother.

Sniper Ghost Warrior 2

CI games have cemented what they learnt from their first foray into the sniping action genre when they created the amusing but average game Sniper: Ghost Warrior, and made the just as amusing, yet equally forgettable Sniper: Ghost Warrior 2.

The story is the same sort of nonsense you’d get from one of those action films with a gurning pensioner on the poster. Dolph Lundgren, Arnold Schwarzenegger, or Sylvester Stallone have been duped by their best friend who they shared an illustrious career with and now (enter inferiority complex creating Adonis of your choice here,) wants revenge.

While I type this I can’t help but feel like I am being a tad condescending towards SGW2. Action films are perfect escapism, and some are worth watching for the special effects alone. As Sniper Ghost Warrior 2 uses the CryENGINE 3, the same graphical powerhouse used for Nomad’s adventures in Crysis 3, Ghost Warrior 2 looks absolutely stunning.

Sniper Ghost Warrior 2

CI games have also done a pretty good job in pacing the action of SGW2 and play never feels formulaic, despite most levels following the same, sneak in, get the perfect spot, shoot a bunch of guys when the shit hits the fan pattern. There are certainly some brilliant moments and watching the bullet cam after setting up the perfect shot and seeing the bullet fly a mile in a matter of moments before embedding itself in a shower of ‘realistic gore,’ is disturbingly satisfying.

However, Sniper Ghost Warrior 2 is over incredibly quickly, our Steam account measured a little over 4 hours of play before reaching the end of the game. And that was with a fair amount of tea making. This was probably the major factor in SGW2 not feeling repetitive.

The story whilst not being very original, had managed to take a leaf out of CoD’s book and set itself over a period of time and places, as a result each section of the game had its own distinct, if not slightly clichéd feel. This helped give the game a greater feeling of variation.

Sniper Ghost Warrior 2

What CI games seem to promise from their sales bumph on the steam page is that Sniper Ghost Warrior 2 is a sniping simulation that has taken the best elements from Battlefield and Call of Duty and created a thoughtful shooter heavily based in realism.

What they have actually done is made a shallow thrill ride of a title that looks better than most military shooters, but is ultimately forgettable due to the shallow gameplay, and short play time. If you are a PC FPS fan looking for the next ARMA 3 or just have a masochistic love of simulators, then Sniper Ghost Warrior 2 is not for you. Still, if you have fond memories of Crawling around with Captain Price in the undergrowth then I would recommend adding this to your Steam wish list, if it comes up in a sale for £3.99 its worth all 300 and 99 of those pennies.

6/10

System: PC (AMD 8320 CPU, AMD ATI 7970 GPU, 8GB RAM)

Bought From: Steam £3.99

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DIGESTIVE GAMING NEWS 3RD FEB – 10TH FEB 2014

This week, much to the delight of Nintendo, SEGA announced two new Sonic titles that mark a reboot in the franchise. Nintendo were happy for two reasons, the first was that both titles are Nintendo exclusives, one for the 3DS and one for the Wii U. The second reason is that after revealing the artwork for the game, the internet decided to give Nintendo a break, and like a swarm of hornets began buzzing about how rubbish the redesigned characters look.

Sonic Boom

 

Sonic and chums now have slightly longer limbs, this was probably in an effort to make them look more humanoid and thus easier to relate too. Maybe it would have been easier for us to relate to a cartoon hedgehog who can run at the speed of sound if SEGA included a story line where Sonic had to take a job part time at McDonalds just to come up with his rent money. Knuckles also looks like he has spent quite a lot of time in the gym recently, while he and Sonic both have bandages wrapped around their arms like boxers. Maybe they have been training for appearances in the next Smash Bros? Maybe Marketing just thought it made them look like ‘cool urban boxer type tough guys’. Who Knows.

 

The Internet also claimed another victim this week in the form of Flappy Bird creator Dong Nguyen. The popular free to play title has had many gamers in uproar because they felt the pipes that featured in the title were ripped from the warp pipes in Super Mario. Well at least that’s what they claim, I have a sneaking suspicion that the keyboard warriors weren’t happy that one of their own was successful and able to move out of his mums basement. The gaming purists also probably weren’t chuffed about sharing there past time with a bunch of nonces who use iPhones either.  Nguyen decided to take Flappy Bird out of circulation in response to the wave of bile being projected towards him and as a result the title is no  longer available to download from the Apple app or Google Play store. Some legal analysts have stated this was a shrew move on Nguyen’s part as opposed to an emotional one as he would have no way of defending himself against legal proceedings from Nintendo should they pursue him in court.

Flappybird

 

Hideo Kojima was another game designer being forced to defend himself this week. Its been unveiled that the average completion time for the new Metal Gear Solid title, Ground Zeroes, will only take around 2 hours to complete. In my opinion this seems acceptable as the title is meant to serve as an introduction to Metal Gear Solid V: The Phantom Pain, which is to be launched later on this year. Ground Zeroes is also available for pre-order at £20 here in the UK which is about the price of a brand new Blu Ray. Considering about an hour and a half of Ground Zeroes will be cut scenes the pricing seems about right.

 

Ground Zeroes

 

Activision have also announced that they will be switching the Call of Duty development cycle to three years as opposed to the standard two and thrown Sledgehammer Studios into the mix as a new developer. Activision have done this in response to critics who feel that the franchise is a little stretched out. Obviously increasing the production line and diluting the series even further is the best response to silence them.

CoD Ghosts

 

Not wanting CoD to steal all of the headlines, Battlefield announced that there is to be a new police style spin off from the main Battlefield franchise. To be honest this sounds like a promising thing. Battlefield has always worked well with huge expansive levels allowing a player to feel like they are inhabiting a full-blown warzone. Maybe a SWAT style spin off could add a more enclosed, claustrophobic element to the game where players are forced to use quick reactions to clear buildings as opposed to just demolish them with a Fighter Jet.

Battlefield4