The cake is the gameplay: now a refined, well-balanced mix of sneaking and sniping set in large, open sandbox levels.Available on Xbox 360, PS3, Xbox One version tested, PS4, PCSniper Elite 3 isnt exactly polished to perfection.If youre not familiar with the series its hardly Call of Duty, after all then were talking about a third-person WWII shooter with stealth elements and the focus on you guessed it sniping. There are occasional weird glitches, and the frame rate in the Xbox One version can sink to appalling lows. Mist-covered lakes, sand-covered ruins and mountains now dominate the scenery, and each environment is huge and packed with alternate paths.
Working at full magnification youll have a tough time making headshots, and need to use a breathing/focus mode to slow time and get a more accurate targeting reticule. Thats reflected in Sniper Elites most famous/notorious feature: an X-Ray kill-cam. Even the knife is really only useful from behind, and theres no Solid Snake style grab from cover. The switch between hunting and guarding modes for the enemy AI can seem really, really odd.
It doesnt look bad, but its not anywhere near the standards set by Killzone: Shadow Fall or Battlefield 4. Every time weve picked up Sniper Elite 3, weve spent every minute of every hour pretty much enthralled, with whole hours passing by in what youd swear was thirty minutes.The sniping itself is great too. Graphically, its a classic between generations effort, slapping next-gen textures and lighting on last-gen characters and scenery, in the hope that it will still look shiny and new.
You have objectives to complete, but often no specific order in which to do them, and the game allows for a variety of approaches.This cant be over-used, and the challenge of making a long-distance shot is part of what makes the gruesome visual pay-off so very satisfying. Your enemies are pretty dumb, and a little ridiculous once they return to their normal routine, but the cat and mouse action still never gets tired. These are good signs that youre having fun.
Draw distances are awesome, but up-close some of the scenery looks terrible.Theyll go on alert and search the area, but while theyre doing that you can be relocating somewhere else. Its not as toy-packed a sandbox as Metal Gear Solid 5: Ground Zeroes, but theres a similar feeling of openness, and of letting you decide the way you want to play. Line up a shot, squeeze the trigger and hit your mark, and youre treated to a glorious slow-motion sequence following the bullet on its trajectory, the enemys flesh rendered semi-transparent so that you can watch the missile shatter bones and ravage vital organs as it makes its way through the body.
There are some interesting features here, like a co-op Overwatch mode where one player snipes while another plays spotter, but we havent had the chance yet to give them a spin with real live players. The Xbox One version has some great, detailed textures, but also some really awful low-res efforts. Sniper Elite 3 is full of that kind of thing. You havent got the huge, refilling health bar of conventional shooters, so attacks from multiple enemies frequently end in death.
Youll see slicker shooters later on this year, but will they be this much funRead more: Xbox One vs PS4. Annoyingly, theres no way to peek over a ledge or balustrade and take our enemies immediately below. Ballistics play a role in all but the easiest difficulty level, and as the difficulty notches up youll have to cope with bullet drop, wind direction and other factors and thats without just holding the rifle steady. Loud noises in the area can mask your shots, but its often smarter to take a shot then leave the area while the enemy is still confused.
Scoot through the ruins, cause mayhem at the motor pool, sneak into a snipers nest and take them from a distance, or get in-close and kill them quick and quiet. Its both gruesome and childishly irresistible. The ragdoll physics sometimes produces the most bizarre effects, while floating guns, jiggling corpses and disappearing foes turn up at least once per level. Well report back once we have.
Within the walls of a fort, open canyons or mountain villages it can be surprisingly hard to watch every angle, and youll often find yourself tripped up by a rogue trooper or an enemy sniper you didnt expect. But why not leave them a present A landmine or a tripwire mine nearly always does the trick. Need to take out three officers Just tackle them in any sequence using whatever means or paths you can find.Its genuinely tense, exciting stuff and youll be glad of the option to save and load whenever you want.
In Sniper Elite 3 its all good. Running around affects your heart rate, and that also affects your accuracy. The real way forward is to pick your spots carefully, scope out the area with your binoculars, tag enemies for later disposal, then deal with them one by one. Mugs of coffee go undrunk.
Theres yet another reason to play things cool and quiet. You have a handy silenced pistol, but its slow to reload and almost useless unless you get a headshot. Personally, if I was a guard investigating a guard tower and I found a corpse draped over the side wall, I might not stand there, chill out, take in the scenery and wait calmly for someone to knife me from behind.Technically this is the most accomplished Sniper Elite yet, but there are still problems.
Plus, as we mentioned, the graphics are inconsistent. Sniper Elite 3 is a little less obsessed with traps than its predecessor, Sniper Elite v2, but they still play their part. But then its not called Sniper Elite for nothing. And, yes, you can still shoot Nazis and Italian fascists in the balls.
Sniper Elite 3 is set during the African campaign, which allows for a wider variety of scenarios than you might think.But heres the thing: none of the above stops Sniper Elite 3 being the most downright enjoyable shooter you can play on a next-gen console today.But then you have to ask yourself: would you rather have that perfect polish, or another bland single-player shooter that youve played through a dozen times before. Its beset by bugs and some really strange AI, yet the core sneak and snipe gameplay is still enthralling, and the open levels and sandbox approach make for a refreshing departure from the shooter norm.
Ouch you grimace, thats just got to hurt. Phone calls go unanswered. But the X-Ray kill game is just the icing on the cake. Close combat encounters are laughably inept, and the AI will leave you smirking too.
After so many orchestrated, single-route shooters, playing Sniper Elite 3 is liberating.VerdictIts too rough around the edges for awards and higher scores, but wed recommend Sniper Elite 3 all the same. Youre constantly kept on your toes.Beyond the campaign, which should take you somewhere between ten to fifteen hours, depend on your skills and style of play, theres a challenge mode where you can tackle waves of enemies, plus co-op and competitive multiplayer options.
Admittedly, up close things can get messy. The lighting effects are sometimes hideously overblown particularly glaring sun through narrow windows and up-close the character models have all the humanity of 1970s Action Man. Trying to hit specific areas becomes a game in itself. End of story. Have a great day guys!