The Neck Bone is Disconnected From The Head Bone…
Game studio, Rebellion’s follow up to Sniper Elite V2 is one of the most enjoyably frustrating times you’ll have in gaming this year. While the game isn’t without some hiccups, it’s a very well designed improvement on the game’s own pedigree. A stiff A.I., massive open levels, and a new sniper are some of the features in Sniper Elite 3. Yes, the X-ray obliteration of your enemies is still here and it hasn’t gotten old yet.
Sniper Elite three takes place in the midst of World War II. You’ll play as American badass sniper Karl, who somehow has the ability to take out an entire German brigade single handedly. The story is very simple to follow over the game’s eight campaign missions. You’re out to help the allies win the war and stop the Thrid Reich’s ultimate weapon, a tank the size of a luxury condo. That’s about the jist of it, characterization and story telling are second to the addictiveness of the gameplay.
In fact the gameplay keeps Sniper Elite 3 from being just another World War II shooter. The game’s focus is on stealth and there’s no better way to showcase this than being an elite military sniper. Similar to what a real life soldier in that role would be, players will have to map out every move well in advance by surveying the situation marking traps and enemies on the battlefield in order to reach the objective. Methodical doesn’t even begin to describe the pace of the game, running and gunning in a firefight will surely spell doom on your journey. Instead, you’ll have to use limited shots in creative ways to take down enemies and vehicles. I found myself trying to find anything on the map that would mask the sounds of my shots in order to avoid detection.
Each stage of the game will have linear main objectives alongside optional side objectives, but the non-linear progression lets you handle these in any order you want. Doing the optional objectives gives you a slight advantage when the task is something like destroying radio communications in order to limit reinforcements. There’s enough challenge in this military game of chess to perplex even the most seasoned gamers.
The kill cam, oh the glorious kill cam. Words can’t do justice to the ultra pornographic carnage of watching a bullet from 300 yards away permeate the skull of the enemy. I found myself trying to put shots through eye sockets, chest cavities, and that hole in the back of your skull the spinal chord nerves run through. Bones shatter, organs explode, and at one point a bullet exploded an enemies testicles. There was even a name for that shot, which accomplishing that is worth buying the game for alone.
Sniper Elite 3 also has a multiplayer mode that adds a little value to the overall package. Two stand modes of multiplayer were No Cross and Distance Kings. They reward players based on distance and overall skill, plus the modes are the ones that really force you to take your sniper skills into versus. Downloadable content is planed for both multiplayer and story as you’ll see a piece of content that forces you to find and kill the real Hitler.
With everything the game has going for it there were some technical problems that will frustrate gamers. Auto-saving is very sparse, you’ll find yourself three quarters of the way through an objective when you’re killed then forced to start quite a ways back. Some of the interact controls are spotty, trying to search bodies for ammo and supplies will sometimes force you to move around the body while holding the button to try and get it to work. I also felt that the radar on the characters HUD seemed arbitrary, some enemies would appear from a distance while others I was staring right at wouldn’t. These are minor hiccups that add up to cause a bit of frustration at times, but overall there’s still lots to enjoy.
Ultimately, Sniper Elite 3 is a quality game for the $39-$49 price tag it can be found for online or in-store. You could spend hours trying to put high caliber sniper rounds through parts of the human anatomy you didn’t even know existed. Just like being a real sniper, it’s the most fun you can have on your own.
[Buy it, Used, Rent It, Skip it]
Follow David on twitter to talk about SE3, 21 Jumpstreet, and other times exploding testicles have been present in the media.