E3: Ghost Recon Future Soldier Preview

future soldier 1Future Soldier looks to be another stand-out title in a strong year for Ubisoft.

Taking an already established brand and making it something even more special isn’t easy, but that is, quite frankly, Ubisoft’s modus operandi. Ghost Recon has been around for many years now, and has achieved success by taking a popular genre, the third person shooter, making it as realistic as possible, and then continuing to improve the franchise with the subsequent iterations.

It isn’t that the games have changed dramatically, it is that the basic formula continues to be improved. We aren’t just talking visuals here, although Future Soldier is absolutely stunning. What we mean is that the basic gameplay continues to advance as new ideas are dreamed up and as the finer points of gameplay are tightened even further. For instance, not only can you take cover in a Gears of War style now, but your cover can also be shot through and ultimately obliterated.

Advanced Warfighter 1 and 2 took us to the near future of 2013. Our Ghosts had a distinct advantage over enemies without training even being taken into account– they had technology on their side. Future Soldier, taking place 10-15 years from today (in our real world), uses even more advancements. Notably, the biggest addition to gameplay is the stealth suit, based on prototype real world technology. What this allows you to do is basically turn invisible. You’ll still be heard, and your effects on the environment will still be noticed (such as foot prints), but you’re still, well, invisible.

future soldier 2Fortunately, Ubisoft was smart enough to realize that this could be an advantage abused, and limited your use of the suit to compensate. When your gun goes off, even though it doesn’t make much sense, your suit will turn visible. Also, the user will have to recharge the suits battery. He would do this by, presumably, shutting it off for a short while.

Another new feature is the ability to call your shots. In the single player campaign, which will run anywhere between 12-15 hours, the demo shows off the user controlled character sneaking up behind his target to apprehend him, all the while his three buddies are picked off with head shots from your own squad. Simple in single player, but in 4 player co-op, it could be a different story. It may be hard to coordinate this scenario, especially if you are not playing with friends willing to experience the game in a similar style as yourself.

If you were lucky enough to snatch up a copy of Splinter Cell: Conviction earlier this year, you’ll automatically be entered into a beta program for Future Solider, though the release of this beta client has yet to be revealed.

Look for Ghost Recon Future Soldier to hit shelves in download for all major consoles including Wii (though ignoring the PC, for some reason), as well as your DS and PSP in early 2011. Trust me. It will be worth waiting for the polish.

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Written by Adam R.

This author procured a media pass for E3 under false pretences, and no longer writes for Critical Gamer.

One comment

  1. [… by taking a popular genre, the third person shooter,…]

    Err, I’ve played Ghost Recon years for donkeys years, and it’s always seemed to be first person to me.

    Is this some strange use of the phrase “third person”, or is the latest incarnation actually third person, in which case I won’t be getting it?

    CJ

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