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Sniper: Ghost Warrior 3

Posted by GG Goblin On May - 10 - 2017

Sniping your way through an open world setting.

Being a sniper is one of the most fun aspects of video game shooters. Being able to set up a position some distance away from the enemy and take them out with swift precision, all while being relatively safe from reprisal, is something that really appeals. This is perhaps why there are two major franchises that are centered around the pure joy of the long range take down. While both Sniper Elite and Sniper: Ghost Warrior began with a focus on pure sniping fun, both series have had to evolve and try new things to keep with the times. So we come to Sniper: Ghost Warrior 3, the latest installment from CI Games, which tries to keep things fresh with a more Far Cry 3 approach to the action.


Of course, there is a story to give the shooting some context. Players take on the role of tough as nails, yet also sensitive I am sure, Jon North, a Marine who is the only man possible to stop all manner of nasty stuff happening. Set in the country of Georgia, players are not only tasked with preventing civil war, but also to rescue Jon’s brother Robert, who was captured a couple of years earlier. As far as stories go, adding a personal slant to the action is a great idea, but a lack of emotional connection from Jon for his brother, along with some slightly dicey voice work, makes it quite difficult to invest. Fortunately, an engaging story is not the most important aspect of a shooter.

Sniper: Ghost Warrior 3’s most important reveal is the fact that the game is now based in an open world setting, giving players the freedom to explore vast distances and take on all manner of distractions outside of the main story. A fast travel system is in place to get from one area to another quickly, but players are also able to drive. The driving is functional, if not the most enjoyable aspect of the game, but it does allow players to explore. Aside from the story missions, players will find all manner of different side quests, such as assassinations or rescuing hostages, along with finding weapons caches to stock up on instruments of death.


The side quests mostly feel quite uninspired, perhaps just thrown in to fill out the game. Fortunately, the main story missions are far more interesting. They are generally set in a closed off area, with the player able to plan their approach in relative safety before execution. Players can find a good vantage point and send up their drone to tag the enemies that they can find, before taking their time to snipe the most difficult targets without any one being the wiser.

Or at least, that is what is supposed to happen. In an ideal world, players would leave a trail of hidden dead bodies that the other enemies would be none the wiser to. However, the AI in Ghost Warrior 3 can do a quick flip between being strangely oblivious to everything around them and having some kind of superhuman sniper detecting skills. It certainly keeps things interesting, but some consistency would be nice. The same could be said for the drone, which most of the time can easily tag enemies, yet sometimes cannot even see them, even if they are only a few feet away.

Ghost Warrior 3 takes a “play as you want” approach and doesn’t force the player to become an elite sniper. If they so wish, they can take the ghost approach with hidden take downs, or they could go all warrior and run in with guns blazing. To further this, players are awarded experience depending on how they approach a mission, and can then advance through a sniper, ghost or warrior skill tree. However, both the ghost and warrior approach obviously come second fiddle to sniper, and it is as a sniper that the game makes the most sense.


There is a crafting system in the game, allowing players to craft things like bullets, which are in short supply, and silencer repair kits, as silencers only last a certain amount of time. It’s a handy system, but it is made slightly redundant by the fact that players are rewarded in the game with so much money that purchasing items from the players’ safe house is often the easier way to restock.

Unfortunately, Ghost Warrior 3 comes with a fair few issues outside of gameplay design choices. Firstly, the game is quite buggy. The fact that it took four attempts to get the game running when I first booted it up was not a good sign, but add to this the occasional freeze up, a variable frame rate and the sort of glitches where things get caught in the scenery, and it’s fair to say that the game has problems. When you also factor in that Ghost Warrior 3 has what are the longest loading times I think I have ever seen, it does make the game quite difficult to enjoy.


Sniper: Ghost Warrior 3 has tried something new to the series, and in some ways it does pay off. Sure, the side missions are uninspiring and the AI is inconsistent, but there is still a great sense of tension when setting up the perfect snipe, and the open world is quite fun to explore. However, the poor performance and epic loading times taint the experience, leaving Sniper: Ghost Warrior 3 difficult to recommend to all but the most fervent fans of the series.




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