I was given the opportunity to sit in on a preview of the newest entry in the Sniper Ghost Warrior franchise at this year’s E3.
The new game, Sniper Ghost Warrior Contracts, has the player take up the mantle of an assassin of sorts traveling the world and eliminating targets with their sniper rifle, as well as an array of gadgets.
I walked into this preview with very little frame of reference as someone who was not a fan of the series beforehand. Sadly, by the time I walked away from the hands-off preview, I was not convinced to become one.
In fact, I had forgotten most of what I had already seen by the time I walked out of the room. By the time it came for me to pick up the controller and give the game a try on my own, it was as if I was seeing the game for the first time.
Sniper Ghost Warrior Contracts feels much like other sniping games on the market. There were a lot of systems in the game that reminded me of the Sniper Elite series, but tweaked to function in first person.
For example, when you look down your scope and hold your breath, a little red marker will appear on your screen to guide you to where your bullet will land. When you pull the trigger, you will get a killcam showing your target getting hit by the bullet.
Unfortunately, the killcam does not have the same satisfying feeling as a Sniper Elite killcam. Instead of seeing your target get blown away in hilariously gore-y detail, you just see them rag doll and fall over.
Their killcam is so bland that it made me wonder why the developers would even bother putting it in in the first place.
Before every mission you will have the chance to customize your loadout, taking with you gadgets and different types of ammunition that you can swap to in order to complete your mission.
For example, during the hands off preview of the game, the player came up to an outpost that was filled with soldiers and cameras. Rather than shooting every individual camera, he swapped his bullets to EMP bullets and looked around with his sniper until he saw an electrical box.
He then shot the box and was able to shut the lights off in a large part of the camp without alerting anyone to his presence. Afterwards, he swapped to a tracking bullet, which allows him to shoot it into areas and it will automatically tag any hostiles within its reach.
He fired a few shots into the camp and another two into the mountain ridge above the camp, which helped him discover two enemy snipers that were guarding the area.
These ideas are an interesting mechanic and are probably the one thing I do like about Contracts, it is unfortunate that it is in service of a game that was just so bland to play.
Despite the fact that I did not run into any technical issues while playing the game, I also can not say that I was enthusiastic as I left the booth.
Perhaps I am just not the target audience for this upcoming title, but it left very little impression on me at the end of the day. I will come back to Sniper: Ghost Warrior Contracts when it releases to see if the game is better then.