Ghost Recon Advanced Warfighter

posted June 03, 2006 12:00:00 AM CDT | 6 comments

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Ghost Recon Advanced Warfighter is the latest in the series of Ghost Recon games. What's changed as far as what kind of game it is? Nothing but in a sense everything. It's still the squad-based third person army shooter game as always, only now itís more polished and runs smoother than any of the other games in the genre that I have played. The campaign mode is where this game truly breaks out and shines. Your placed in the shoes of one Captain Scott Mitchell with other ghosts to flesh out the rest of your squad. Where are you this time? None other than Mexico City. Your job is to rescue the Mexican President and Vice President while gathering information and suppress the rebels who killed the Canadian Prime Minister to get the ball rolling. What has changed is the way the campaign mode is played out. You have a drone and a cross com that is a must use to get through Mexico City without dying or watching your ghost die. This cross com also feeds you direct info as you play. There is no interruption in the least of game play while receiving the information. The bad thing with this storyline is that itís your typical military operation. The drone you use in the campaign mode is a necessary tool and helps to locate the rebels as your going through the city. You have two choices of difficulty, Normal and Hard. The difficulty between these two is dramatic. Normal mode you can take a couple of shots from a rebel or be a little careless at times, if you tried that on Hard you'd find yourself restarting the mission all over again. The city becomes your own playground for war as you're going through it trying to complete the objectives. Whether it be rescuing the president or protecting the vice president you will find yourself having to use the coverage of the buildings and even blowing up a car to kill a rebel or two. Also in the campaign mode you have a mission in which you fight from the helicopter that carries you in and out of the city using a mounted machine gun.

The improvements of GRAW are what makes the game great. Graphically speaking there is no shortage of beauty in the game. Whether youíre looking at the buildings or watching a car explode the months of delay from the games release was obviously worth it. Control Scheme is not an issue in GRAW either. It's basically the standard control scheme for a shooting game with a few additions such as leaning and use of the cross com and drone which the training level teaches you perfectly. In addition to the awesome campaign mode the multi-player is even better. While it doesn't offer everything that the single player Campaign does it does offer 4 Co-Op missions which are available online and in split screen modes. Whatís impressive about the Co-Op is it's not the same story as the campaign. Instead you are a different team of Ghosts going in different locations to help suppress the rebel reinforcements. The other amazing things that make GRAW great are the multitude of actual weapons you can use. Some are returning or updated weapons from past Ghost Recon games along with a few new entries. Each gun handles well and some have distinct advantages over others such as the camera gun which allows you to look around the corners without exposing anything to the enemy other than your hands. Plus if your one of the many Xbox Live Subscribers who has the game you will have no issue finding a ranked or unranked game to jump into once you have bored yourself of the Campaign mode or beat it on both difficulties. Also it's one of the many games that will be offering downloadable content as Ubisoft has been saying they plan on releasing more Co-Op missions and maps in the not so distant future.

Now as great as this game is, it does have its faults. The Split Screen mode for instance. This is where GRAW gets a lot of heat from me. Instead of being in third person view on split screen it forces you into a first person view. This first person view is a horrid job of first person view. Normally first person views let you see the hands and the weapon you are holding in them. Not GRAW's first person view, no in GRAW all you get is cross hairs on your screen. Some of the other issues with the game are the constant feel of repetitive actions you will feel. It quickly turns into a less strategic game at points where you find yourself in a constant fire fight of kill the rebel and watch another one come into the street till you have cleared them out. Other issues are the shortness of the Co-Op mode which is what most gamers have been complaining about and the reason Ubisoft has mentioned they are working on new Co-Op maps. Then thereís the offer of being able to have 16 players in the game at one time but not having a way to monitor your connection so you know around how many players your connection can actually host. Instead if you try to host more than your connection will allow it lets you start the game and then kicks out as many players as it wants until it gets to a number of players your able to host.

The campaign is fundamentally sound and easily fun not to mention from a graphic stand point beautiful. Multi-Player wise it offers plenty of game modes from objections to just your standard death match to keep you playing it for awhile. Not to mention the options of making it where you can only use certain weapons or remove the drone so that the multi-player is a lot more evened out or difficult. Achievements on the 360 are another thing that makes you want to keep playing it because thereís nothing like knowing you have killed 10,000 enemies in a video game. Overall itís safe to say that GRAW is easily one of the greatest games out to date.

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