Hands-Off Preview: Sniper: Ghost Warrior 3
One shot, one kill. I try to channel my inner marksman in my E3 demo of Sniper: Ghost Warrior 3.
Tensions between United States and Russia are slowly rising as to a point where a second Cold War will most likely be a thing unless you stop it. For the demo we needed to track down and kill a general who’s forced the locals of a Georgian village to work in a mine. As a skilled sniper you need to infiltrate the compound, kill the target, and get the hell out of there.
You’ve an interesting skill-set at your disposal like crafting weapons in your safe house and being able to identify threats via footprints in “scout” mode. The way scout mode works is that you can focus in on a track of footprints and it can help figure out a bunch of details of the threat ahead like whether the target is alone, patrolling or even the type of soldier he is. It’s also great for spotting booby traps and other things that could kill you.
There are a few ways we can find the location of the general in the demo we had a chance to play. We could sneak around the compound and pray we get lucky and spot the bastard or we could listen in on the patrols hoping they would reveal something in casual conversation.
What makes SGW3 interesting is the amount of prep work needed to take out your target. We know we have to kill the general, we also have no idea where he is in the compound.
The way we ended up finding the general was the easiest and by far the more awesome of our previous options. After sticking a knife in the neck of a patrolling sentry we began hacking the server banks with our remote control flying pocket drone. From there we were able to cycle through the security camera feeds and found the general getting cozy with a lady friend.
Now that we confirmed the target’s location we needed to figure the best spot to take our shot. We saw a couple of different locations where you can set. One spot was super close where you could take out the general in a more intimate fashion, also it’s tough to miss from that close. Since you’re stuck behind lines trying to escape might be an issue since you’ll have to fight to an extraction point as well. In this demo they opted to pick the furthest point with a clear line of sight to the target but it was over 300 meters away.
Once you find your sniper’s perch is when the real fun begins. Unlike other sniping games, you need deal with real life factors before even considering taking the shot. You have to account for range, temperature, and humidity before pulling the trigger.
Most missions you only have one, two shots max, in order to put down your target. Let’s not forget you have to manually adjust your scope to measure the distance. You screw up and you can bet that you’ll have an entire garrison of troops on your location.
The game’s most impressive feature is, in my opinion, its open world design. You’re given just tiny scraps on intel when you start and it’s up to you to figure out the rest. The day and night cycle opens up a lot of possibilities for stealth approaches. Since being caught more or less means certain death, sneaking past patrolling guards by crawling through tall grass is entertainingly tense.
Sniper: Ghost Warrior 3 is carving a neat little niche for folks really craving a true to life sniper simulator. Intelligent and patient gamers who want to see careful planning play out in some satisfying violence should keep an eye on Sniper: Ghost Warrior 3 when it releases next year on Xbox One, PS4 and PC.