Sniper Elite V2 Remastered Review — Shoot Hitler’s Balls on the Go
While it doesn't feature the bells and whistles of the other versions, Sniper Elite V2 Remastered for Nintendo Switch is still a competent port.
Sniper Elite V2 Remastered for Nintendo Switch may be the least impressive version of the remaster, but it’s a surprisingly good Nintendo Switch port. After a nearly two year silence since the last major release, the Sniper Elite series from Rebellion is ramping up once again with not only Sniper Elite 2 Remastered, but a Sniper Elite 3 Ultimate Edition Switch port, Sniper Elite VR, and a new mainline entry as well. Curious to see how the series adapted to a new platform, I played through the Nintendo Switch version of the remaster poised to bring the series back into the limelight.
It may lack the larger multiplayer lobbies as well as the 4K and HDR support of the PC, PS4, and Xbox One versions, but the series transitions surprisingly well to the hybrid console. With barely any technical issues, the Nintendo Switch version of Sniper Elite V2 Remastered is definitely worth considering if you don’t mind some of the dated aspects of the game and the lack of features present in other versions.
Sniper Elite V2 is arguably the most popular game in the series, serving as both a remake of the original Sniper Elite and as a successor of sorts. It introduced the famous “x-ray kill cam” that shows various organs shattering with the player’s best shots and cemented the format the Sniper Elite series uses to this day. Revisiting it in 2019, it still holds up pretty well in terms of level, mission, and weapon design. While the simulation aspect of the sniping mechanics became better with later entries, it’s still fairly robust here on the harder difficulties.
All of the open-ended maps are able to not only guide less experienced players through a specific route, but also have enough depth for more experienced players to do their own thing. Conversely, Sniper Elite V2 Remastered shows its age in some of the levels that are more compactly designed. While these are great levels to play on the go, they can often devolve into shooting galleries where the sniper rifle isn’t as useful and players must rely on the other weapons that don’t feel as good to use.
Couple this with the relatively quick time-to-kill for the player character and these levels can get quite frustrating. It’s also worth noting that Sniper Elite V2 Remastered features seven new playable characters who are all from Zombie Army Trilogy. Unfortunately, this change only applies to the character model and scream played upon death, as cutscenes and enemy dialogue devolves back to using Karl Fairburne’s voice, model, and male pronouns, respectively.
If you were not a fan of the original Sniper Elite V2 upon its release, this remaster does not do anything drastic to change your mind in terms of gameplay. What it does so is present some welcome visuals enhancements and a solid port job to Nintendo Switch. Still, Sniper Elite V2 Remastered for Nintendo Switch does lack the better resolution, HDR support, and 60fps mode of the other versions, which does make it the most inferior release of the game on current-gen consoles.
That being said, if you instead look at the Switch release under the lens of being a port with a few visual enhancements, it holds up quite well. In my time with Sniper Elite V2 Remastered, in both docked and handheld mode, I never ran into any noticeable framerate issues, which is impressive considering other games on the platform can struggle with this. I only ever ran into one checkpoint-restarting glitch when a character I was protecting decided not to move after all enemies were killed, but that didn’t seem to be an port-specific fault.
Sniper Elite V2 Remastered actually looks a bit better than its last-gen counterparts as well. It may not support a high resolution or framerate, but it does seem to feature some character model, texture, and lighting improvements boasted in the lead up to launch, giving the included photo mode some worth. If you are playing this remaster for the graphical improvements, the Nintendo Switch version isn’t the best release to go with, but that does not discount it as a solid porting job to a system many realistic looking games can struggle to run on.
While it’s great that the port runs well, this version of Sniper Elite V2 Remastered wouldn’t hold up if it didn’t make the transition to handheld mode well. Fortunately, this isn’t a problem. I actually got more playtime in with handheld mode than docked purely because I enjoyed playing its levels and challenges in a more bite-sized, portable format. After playing this Switch port, I am excited for Sniper Elite 3 Ultimate Edition on Switch.
The smaller screen size may not be preferable to some for a game about precise aiming, but as long as I was using a rifle that could zoom in on its target I never found this to be an issue. Obviously, Sniper Elite V2 Remastered features all content that previously came out for the game, so there is quite a bit to sink your teeth into here. While I wasn’t able to try out its multiplayer pre-launch, it is worth noting that the Switch version of Sniper Elite V2 Remastered only allows up to 8 players instead of 16. This may be a downside if you were hoping to play with a lot of friends.
If you haven’t played this game, or series, since 2012 and want to experience a portable-friendly game in a genre not seen often on these kinds of consoles, the Nintendo Switch version of Sniper Elite V2 Remastered should be in your sights. Even though the game itself may be dated in a few areas and this port may technically be the worst current-gen version to pick up from a visual standpoint, the Switch port of Sniper Elite V2 Remastered is competently put together and stands out from the rest of the hybrid console’s third-party library.