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So much more than war...
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The recent blog, Peace in the Era of Call of Duty  really made me think about war games that dig deeper than simply a kill streak reward. The first game that came to mind was Spec-Ops: The Line and although I haven’t played it, I began to wonder if it did the war genre as...

Ghost Recon: Advanced Warfighter Member Review for the PC

Sodbuster By:
Sodbuster
05/01/06
PRINTER FRIENDLY VERSION
EMAIL TO A FRIEND
GENRE First-Person Shooter 
PLAYERS 1- 16 
PUBLISHER Ubisoft 
DEVELOPER Ubisoft 
RELEASE DATE Out Now
T What do these ratings mean?

So I just finished playing through the demo for this game. It took a couple of tries, but once I got the hang of sending my soldiers in to take fire while I picked off the enemies, it was a snap. Now my experience with ghost recon is limited to the very first game released for computer, and the first one released for PS2. I enjoyed those games. I did not enjoy this one. I found my teammates A.I. to be astounding dumb, as they would routinely run directly towards the enemy, disobey my orders, and stand still getting shot without attempting to take cover or fire back.

The enemy A.I. was impressive at parts, but they also had problems with stupidity. At one point in the demo, I peaked around a corner and shot a guy in the head. The guy next to him took cover for about three seconds, then stood up and walked to where the first guy had been shot. I killed him. Using the nifty little satellite cam feature, I then looked at where they were, and noticed a couple of other enemies, just standing there. I peaked around the corner, and, lo and behold, they hadn't moved, weren't taking cover or even looking in my general direction. This was on the normal setting, so maybe they get smarter, but I won't play through it again to find out. I guess the only thing to say about the enemy is that they are remarkably good shots, which defenitely makes things more interesting.

Gone is the scariness of being shot at though, because, unlike in the original, I can be shot, and shot again, and shot again, and still fight back as if I wasn't horribly wounded and bleeding to death. This makes stealth not much of an issue. It's still wise to avoid being spotted, but absolutely unnecessary.

The team interface is difficult and buggy. I found it very difficult to instruct my team to attack an enemy jeep, and when I finally got an "Acknowledged" shout, only one of my team members attacked, though I'd told them all to attack. Rather then being able to tell my team to follow me, I have to instruct them to move to different areas at all times. They don't use the same route sometimes, so they will run off on their own and get killed trying to take the long and scenic route to me. By the end of the level I was just leaving my team members behind and doing it myself.

The guns feel real, and it's cool being able to pick the different mods I want for my gun and how adding weight lowers my speed. Also, the explosions look great, and the sound is terrific for every gun as well as the chatter the enemies make. My teammates' constant shouting got old, but is bearable.

As far as moving around goes, nothing feels fluid. To go from crouched to standing, I have to go prone first. When prone, I had a problem with aiming at targets that were far off because my gun's sight wouldn't go low enough to hit them. Moving while prone is nearly impossible, and a roll move would have been a nice addition. The level in the demo is littered with debris, and anytime my guy or my teammates moved over a piece of garbage, for some reason we kick it. It makes noise. You'd think trained soldiers wouldn't soccer kick every can they have to walk over.

My main gripe with this game is that I couldn't switch to my teammates like in the other Ghost games. If I see an enemy on the roof a long ways off and I only have my little machinegun, I can't take over the sniper and get him, I have to rely on the A.I. to follow my orders to attack him. Sometimes it works, but mostly my sniper would just run towards the enemy until he was being shot at and then try to return fire. Why am I not able to switch team members anymore? That was a good feature that should have been left in.

Overall, I just couldn't get into the game. Poor A.I., poor controls, and poor squad commands just ruined it for me. I think fans of the genre will be very disappointed.


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