I’ve been skeptical before going into shooters similar to Ghost Recon: Wildlands (GRW) because of the surrounded hype behind games like these. I was disappointed with Ubisoft’s Tom Clancy’s The Division and I was initially amped to play with all the cool gadgets while trying to progress through the story. I loved the beta and ended up disliking the whole game. I felt this way with Star Wars Battlefront as well. I hope GRW won’t repeat with this pattern.

GRW follows a group of 4 US commandos belonging to the Army’s Elite Special Missions Unit (SMU) known as “The Ghosts”, think Delta Force. The Ghosts are sent in via helicopter to the South American country Bolivia, where the thriving and ferocious Santa Blanca Drug Cartel is killing, maiming, torturing, and flat-out destroying all those who interfere with their rising drug occupation.

After bombing the US Embassy in Bolivia following with the execution of an evading veteran DEA agent, the US government deems Santa Blanca as a rising threat to both Bolivian citizens and surrounding nations, and Operation Kingslayer is put into action.

It’s up to the Ghost’s to insert, make contact with CIA assets on the ground, link up with allied rebel forces, and dismantle Santa Blanca before they become too strong to control.

Here are some cool features from the gameplay – night vision – and my savage customization of a badass and scary looking Ghost.

(Here is my first YouTube video uploaded straight from my PS4. Thanks to Matt Thompson over at The Triple Option, I now know how to upload videos to both Twitter and YouTube.)

Positives

  • Character Customization is broad and really cool – my Ghost looks like a savage
  • Binoculars/Drones mark enemies well, easy to use
  • Driving is good – have ghosts hang out of windows shooting is badass
  • Flying helicopters – similar to the driving in the aspect that flying with night vision while Ghosts are shooting at cartel members below, won’t get old anytime soon
  • Night vision is actually effective and a MUST at night.
  • Tactics are stressed and a fun approach
  • Picking up Intel from talking to locals is an interesting dynamic
  • Upgrade system is simplistic
  • Cut-scenes and background knowledge of Santa Blanca is interesting
  • Each weapon system is different and more effective than the next. LMG’s shot in bursts, can control the firefight. Snipers are one shot kills to the chest.
  • Optics are recommended for best accuracy
  • Can aim over shoulder or down sights – gives the player the option
  • Rebel support Mortars are effective
  • Playing with good co-op team members is important but not critical for success
  • AI Teammates FIRE ACCURATELY, YES!
  • Synched shots
  • Ordering teammates to targets, taking shots, hold position reminds me of Socom (GOAT)
  • Rebel Support is legit, reminds me of Mafia III with Vito’s Gangsters coming to your teams rescue
  • The lull in action while the player is standing around and the AI teammates start telling jokes

Negatives

  • Flying Helicopters are challenging and annoying
  • When getting on a dirt bike, my teammates don’t follow when not playing Co-Op
  • There is no cover system, the character automatically goes behind cover when near it or doesn’t
  • Room Clearing is challenging in Third-person

Flicking on night vision while not physically having the goggles on the character doesn’t bother me. I’m sure some smart guy will bark out something like, “That’s not realistic!”, it’s a video game for a reason, it’s supposed to be both fun and technical, not just technical. Then I’d be like, “Dude you got shot 3 times every 10 minutes for an hour, is that realistic for survival, didn’t think so…”. Then again, you could be this BADASS

What I’m Hoping to See In the Full-Game

  1. Infrared Lasers attached to guns. If you don’t know what these are, imagine having night vision on, and seeing a light green laser pointed at what the character is aiming at similar to how red lasers are when attached to guns. When you shut off night vision, it can’t be seen by the naked eye, so only those who have night vision can see it. Both you and your teammates. Pretty rad, I know!
  2. Ability to hack phones/communications
  3. Surveillance from Helicopter/Planes using Binoculars instead of just when on the ground
  4. Improved game mechanics in the Negatives section

These are my initial thoughts after playing Day 1 of the Beta. Could see some future updates over the weekend

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