This new installment into the long running Ghost Recon franchise feels like a combination of Just Cause and Far Cry 3 and 4, and that’s great with me. There were handful of missions to partake in and a handful of side missions that you can do as well, also you can do hideouts to steal Intel which are usual Ubisoft distractions that you usually see in games like Far Cry 4 or Assassin’s Creed. The closed beta was limited to one part of the huge open world map, this section was in a mountainous terrain where driving was a pain regardless of what vehicle you chose, the driving in this game is so sloppy and screechy that I found it frustrating, traveling by air was also a bit sloppy since the controls for the helicopters are weird and frustrating to understand but it was nice to steal airplanes and helicopters from the enemy.
For the duration of the weekend, I fell into the role of “Leader” also helicopter-man and airplane-man. All of these experiences except for the “Leader” part ended up being a disaster, these controls end up being clumsy and most of the vehicles feel weightless and sensitive, the crash and rollover animations are comical and hilarious to witness.The radio is bad, it’s actually downright awful but that’s not because of the songs but because the radio attempts to be satire in the way GTA handles the radio advertisements and the personalities that inhabit those stations, also there is only one radio station. I wish there were multiple.
My takeaway from the beta is that I just want this game in my hands right this second, Ghost Recon: Wildlands isn’t The Divison 2.0 nor is it trying to blend anything from the recent Ubisoft games, it’s just directly takes things that works from The Division, Just Cause, Far Cry 3 and 4 and blends it into the game and all of that results in nothing being “Clancy-ish” at all which is fine. The gameplay is fun, you can sync attacks and tag your enemies and with one button press, you can send all your enemies to hell and it’s cool in co-op as well.
One thing I worry about is character progression and ranking up, how often will I need to find supplies and tag them? The map size in the beta was small but from the in-game map, several other sectors seem very big and to go around and find supplies will get repetitive and boring, I worry that the pace in Ghost Recon: Wildlands will suffer because of the ranking up and the character progression and how much will I need to tag supplies, it will get annoying if I will have to do it numerous times.
Also another thing I worry about that has to do with the ranking up and character progression is I hope that it isn’t easy to level up like how it is in The Division. In The Division, it was easy to level up and by week three or week four you would already hit max rank, I didn’t reach max rank in The Division until the end of the story that month when the game dropped.
The stealth game’s mechanics really works and it sends me back to the days of Jungle Storm where stealth is key to complete the mission and survive. The guns in this installment is lethal, you and your enemies will go down fast if you’re under fire and you will die numerous times, the shooting mechanics is one of Ghost Recon: Wildland’s strongest asset, you have to be cautious and careful wherever you see an enemy and it helps you if you don’t go in like you’re in Call of Duty, you must put a silencer on and move quietly through the tall grass in order to not be spotted.
Ghost Recon: Wildlands performance of the beta was great, it was hitting 40 to 60 FPS but I still encountered freezes, framerate stutters, and crashes. I had to reboot the game numerous times because the game just froze, those things will need to be fixed before the game releases next month.
I hope Ubisoft takes care of the issues that the beta had, so the final game is running smooth and no hiccups. I really had fun with this beta, it wasn’t boring like The Division’s where it was nothing but endless running and running to cover to cover, I suggest that they fix the driving and helicopter controls to make them much tighter and easier to handle. I can’t wait to hop in and see the final game when it releases next month.