Dead on arrival

During one of Sniper Ghost Warrior 3‘s early missions, a covert agent refers to lớn protagonist Jonathan North as a “badass killing machine.” It’s meant to be a compliment, one that reaffirms the player’s role as the sole arbiter of change amid the chaos of a war-torn Georgian countryside. But after completing the game’s 26 bộ vi xử lý core missions, I can’t help but feel lượt thích it’s the most insincere piece of dialogue I’ve heard in a đoạn clip game. There’s nothing special about North, just like there’s nothing badass about Sniper Ghost Warrior 3.

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Sniper Ghost Warrior 3 is dull. It’s a boring open-world shooter stitched together with half-baked game play systems & incongruous storytelling. The game sets out khổng lồ explore the concepts of “brotherhood, patriotism, & betrayal,” but instead stumbles for a dozen hours, falling back on by-the-numbers narrative beats and flaccid shooting.

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Sniper Ghost Warrior 3 (PC, PS4 , Xbox One)Developer: CI GamesPublisher: CI GamesRelease Date: April 24, 2017MSRP: $59.99

Most of Sniper Ghost Warrior 3 revolves around North’s efforts to lớn topple a force of Georgian insurgents while searching for his previously captured brother. It’s a threadbare plot lớn begin with, but stilted dialogue, shallow characters, và an insistence on a self-serious approach to storytelling make for a muddled mess of a game that limps forward with reckless và misguided abandon.

Even outside of narrative shortcomings, Sniper Ghost Warrior 3 disappoints. Lượt thích in other open-world shooters, players can approach any given mission in a handful of different ways. North’s training makes him no slouch with a xạ thủ rifle, but he has other proficiencies too. He’s also a capable silent infiltrator và he’s more than equipped to rush into a firefight guns blazing. Performing actions nets experience points, which are then used lớn unlock skills in either the Sniper, Ghost, or Warrior upgrade trees. Both the Ghost và Warrior paths do little lớn elevate the game, as there’s rarely a reason lớn leave a vantage point before picking off any enemies who might get in your way. Playing as a sniper is not only the path of least resistance, it’s the fastest way lớn complete the game.

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There are a smattering of tools at North’s disposal that can spice up what would otherwise be a glorified long-range shooting gallery. Launching a drone skyward affords players a safe way of scouting ahead as it can mark targets và other places of interest on the map. Night vision goggles và grenades function as assets during an assault, but they’re never a necessity. I threw one grenade during my time with the game, simply khổng lồ see what would happen. It bounced off a rock, rolled backward, và killed me. That was the most enjoyable part of the game.

Much lượt thích the unnecessary skill trees and mostly useless equipment, Sniper Ghost Warrior 3‘s open-world structure is a detriment to the game. After starting a mission from one of North’s safe houses, it’s inevitable that players must drive across vast stretches of Georgia. You will never see anything interesting on these drives. Not a car. Not a random NPC. Instead, you’ll listen khổng lồ thirty seconds worth of bland dialogue (“this is American justice!”) or a single tuy nhiên on the radio before the trò chơi falls silent, hoping that its geography is enough to hold your attention. It’s not.

All of this is a roundabout way of saying that Sniper Ghost Warrior 3 is not a good game. Even before mentioning its egregious technical issues, I can’t in good conscience recommend picking it up. At time of publication, Sniper Ghost Warrior 3 is plagued by absurdly long loading times. I averaged around four-and-a-half minutes just lớn load up the map. On vị trí cao nhất of that, it freezes và crashes fairly often, and many of North’s first-person animations result in him clipping through the màn chơi geometry. Developer CI Games has stated that addressing many of these issues are its vị trí cao nhất priority, but I doubt that will make the trò chơi much better. Eliminating long loads doesn’t excuse boring game play and bad writing.

The view from a sniper’s scope has the potential to lớn tell a compelling & meditative story about the nature of armed conflict without the boom & bravado of video clip game warfare. It can also magnify issues & expose glaring flaws. In the case of Sniper Ghost Warrior 3, the later is true. It’s a sloppy, uninspired game at its best. At its worst, it’s — to quote Jonathan North — “one fucking long exercise in triage.”