With the success of the Division entry, Ubisoft is working on another open-world tactical shooter named Tom Clancy’s Ghost Recon Wildlands. This time the player will find himself in a desert rather than a plague-ridden snow. The story unfolds in the Bolivian open plains. The Wildlands is the tenth entry in the Ghost Recon series and the first with a fully-features open-world game.
Ghost Recon Wildlands: Synopsis
Bolivia is the cocaine capital of the world, fueled by the Santa Blanca Drug Cartel with operations spread across the entire country. Society has been twisted into a narcotics fueled wasteland, despite the lovely weather. This is bad news for the United States Government, who respond by dispatching an Elite Operations Unit (that’s you) to deal with the growing drug epidemic.
Bolivia is the world cocaine hub, with Santa Blanca Drug Cartel running business countrywide. Despite good weather conditions, the areas turned into barren lands full of narcotics and corruption. To fight against this “plague”, the US government sends Elite Operations Unit.
The story takes plays in a modern day. Ubisoft has decided to give up on the futuristic setting of previous games and choose more realistic environment. The player being a member of the team will have broad selection of weapons, vehicles and abilities as well as nine unique types of areas to pass. The game will not make the player miss – the number of challenging missions is huge.
Ubisoft truly believes in creating open-world games. While many publishers are careful about new games, the last four years Ubisoft has been stating that the gaming future is an open-world structure. The company mostly abandoned linear narrative titles and bet a lot on emergent gameplay, going “all-in” on new open-world adventures.
With the launch of several different entries, Ubisoft started to make very similar mechanics for which got negative critics – gamers accused the company in mass-production with a level of regularity. However, Ubisoft managed to reassure players by Watch Dogs 2 last year, that they still can create quality product. The player takes a role of the leader of an elite team – covert-ops soldiers called The Ghosts. Drug lords easily took control over the country using cocaine and violence. The Ghosts’ mission is to explore Bolivia’s areas and restore stability in the region.
Wildlands’ setup looks quite promising. The environment is eye-catching, everything looks rich and sharp on PS4 (the game will come to PS4 Pro too). The rendered world creates a feel that there is really stunning but troubled country. At the same time, with the first mission, the player comes back to reality. In fact, Wildlands uses the same drone system as Watch Dogs 2. “After the bullets go flying it soon becomes apparent that neither my teammates’ or the enemy’s AI are really nuanced enough to make tactical combat worth bothering with, and it basically becomes a shootout of chaotic proportions rather than a Splinter Cell-esque operation,” as said Tom Regan in his game preview.
What about Tom Clancy’s multiplayer?
The mode is less detailed than in Watch Dogs 2; the scenery of most missions seems plain and no-show. “Instead of the uniquely Bolivian-feeling cartel I expect to be battling, I find myself driving across beautiful but largely empty countryside only to arrive at dull, vaguely ‘foreign’-looking outposts, shooting generic thugs,” he added. One of positive things to mention is an option to switch between 3-rd and 1-st persons as well as ability to pass the missions on your foot or using vehicle. Nevertheless, comparing with Watch Dogs 2, where the world was spectacular and impressive – the environment was different and depth, missions are exciting and challenging, Wildlands shows that Ghost Recon can become a backslash in open worlds.
Conclusion. Of course, the player can get some fun in the game – variety of vehicles, weapons, Bolivia exploration, but its AI is out-of-date, so worthy challenges hardly can be offered. There are still hopes that Ubisoft use the time left before the release to present good deep world and gameplay manifold that it should have.
Release Date: March 7, 2017 Platforms: PS4, Xbox One, PC Genre: Tactical third-person shooter Developer: Ubisoft Paris Manufacturer: Ubisoft