|Tom Clancy’s Ghost Recon Breakpoint|
|release date||October 4, 2019|
|Genre||Third Person Shooter, Action RPG|
On October 4, 2019, Ubisoft introduced Tom Clancy’s Ghost Recon Breakpoint, the ideological continuation of the cooperative shooter Ghost Recon Wildlands. The novelty develops the history of the last part and has incorporated elements of almost all the publisher’s games, including The Division and the latest Assassins Creed. Why this did not benefit the project, and whether the plot that appeared helped, read in our review.
The history of Ghost Recon Breakpoint is tied to advanced technology and disillusionment with the government. Four years after the Wildlands finale, near the Auroa archipelago, where the futuristic settlement of billionaire Jaycee Skell is located, a cargo ship explodes and sinks, and the island does not make contact with the earth. To understand the situation, the US authorities send a Ghost Recon special squad for reconnaissance, because military drones and drones are being created for the country on Auroa, which means that the government is interested in restoring contacts with the island.
But something goes wrong, and special forces helicopters flying up to Auroa shoot down drones. The few survivors, led by the leader of the squad, Nomad, are trying to determine the culprit of the attack, and at the same time complete the task of reconnaissance. It turns out that their former partner Cole Walker, played by Hollywood actor Jon Bernthal, was hired to guard Auroa, and when he saw the possibilities of the technology created here, he seized power and is now pursuing some kind of utopian goals. The gamer and his protagonist will have to deal with him.
Perhaps the biggest disadvantage of Ghost Recon Wildlands is the lack of a storyline. And although this is not the main thing in cooperative sandboxes, but the story at least makes it possible to understand what is happening and get used to the game and its mechanics. And only then you can break into joint raids or participate in PVP modes.
In Breakpoint, the story was brought in and there was hope that at least this game would be better than Wildlands. In fact, it is, but with reservations. The proposed story is banal, and its presentation is made beyond the minimum acceptable level of quality.
The plot of Ghost Recon Breakpoint is divided into three parts, and after 20+ hours of play, the story kind of ends, but not quite. The story will continue in February 2020 when the first major DLC is released. They promise a bunch of new content plus five hours of story missions. But that’s not all. Having completed the quests, you will have to wait for June to finally see the full ending.
Now for the submission. And this I do not touch the general paucity of the story, the motives of the characters sucked from the finger and the unnatural sense of the total injustice of the antagonist Cole Walker. This could be dealt with — no one expects deep stories from a co-op shooter — if not for the hack in execution. The dialogues in the game, most likely, were written by a schoolboy or a person with no experience, which is why communication in the plot seems unnatural and simulated, and genre clichés and nonsense constantly fly out of the mouths of the characters.
Another downside is the cutscenes. They obviously filmed without a director. At least that’s the feeling you get while watching them, because literally every Ghost Recon Breakpoint video is shown from two angles. As if the cameras were pre-installed at the same points, and then they didn’t take a steam bath and simply switched from one to another.
There are positive aspects to the story as well. For example, the appearance of the same Jon Bernthal as the main villain of the game. It is immediately clear that this is a charismatic professional who drags a mediocre and flat plot. Therefore, it is worth going through it at least for the sake of the talent of the actor, unless of course you fall asleep from the monotonous tasks in the course of the story.
The dullness of quests did not please in Wildlands either, but there the cooperative saved the game. Here, the story will have to go through alone, because there are no bots. You can, however, join someone’s game or put in your own. The best option would be to go with friends, if they, of course, are. Because the mission in a coop with strangers is still stressful: you can only communicate via voice chat, but often there will be a foreigner on the other side, and here everything depends on the knowledge of languages and the adequacy of the gamer. In extreme cases, the game is played alone, and some difficult places can be completed with someone or pumped on side quests and return as a seasoned warrior.
But the tasks themselves are the same and made according to the same template. First, the gamer is sent to talk to the NPC, and he sends him to another NPC, and that to the third. Then you need to find some information on a computer, smartphone, newspaper, or talk to a civilian. And so in a circle. Apparently, the creators also understood the monotony of missions, so they didn’t come up with anything better than adding base clearings to this chain of conversations. As a result, most of the NPCs on the second or third stage of the mission are usually located in the center of the enemy settlement. And that means just getting to him and talking will not work. It is necessary to cut out the whole village in order to exchange literally two phrases and move on.
RPG elements have been added to Breakpoint, so with increasing levels, the character learns new active and passive skills. It is important to monitor the level of equipment and change to the highest level. Weapons and ammunition in Breakpoint are divided into classic role-playing colors: white, green, blue, purple and orange. And if changing a white helmet to a green or blue cap is not logical at all, but justified by the genre and improved performance.
But the constant change of weapons you like to high-level, but in some places not very convenient guns, is annoying. There are two ways out: accept and get used to the new, which then, perhaps, change to something suitable, or craft the gun you like, but higher level. Naturally, for this you must first obtain a drawing, and then get the necessary materials. There is a third way — to buy everything for real in a local store. But we will discuss this below.
To be fair, hunting down your favorite weapons in Ghost Recon Breakpoint is a lot of fun and often leads to adventure and mass destruction of enemy bases. But in most cases, sorties are not worth it, because on the very next task there is a chance to find a gun that is not only more convenient, but also much higher in level.
The RPG component also touched the main character. Now he has classes or specializations, within which there are dozens of useful and not very skills. What to download everyone chooses for himself, but there is where to turn around the fantasies of gamers. At the same time, some strongly tactical schemes in the spirit of the Ghost Recon series will not work in Breakpoint, but you can still diversify the gameplay.
There are several ways to clear bases. For example, to break into courage with a machine gun and grenades. True, this only works at the beginning and not always. Or release a drone, mark the soldiers with it and figure out where the snipers are. Then remove them from afar, go to the base and quietly remove the mercenaries one by one. Often such a scheme is revealed, and later reinforcements are brought up. But in this case, you can also fight back. The main thing here is to shoot in the head, because even with the local role-playing system, any living opponent in Ghost Recon Breakpoint dies from a standard headshot. If he’s wearing a helmet, then two.
It is also fun to fly to the enemy in a helicopter and shoot opponents from the air. Here, too, attention is required, because reinforcements will be in the form of drones or drones, and then helicopters will come up.
Breakpoint is a pleasure to shoot. Here you can feel even the most uncomfortable gun, which has a unique accuracy, recoil and sound, which means you can get used to anything. Here you also need to understand that each player has a different weapon that is convenient.
But what really infuriates and often interferes with playing is a stupid system of shelters. The character just can’t normally hide behind anything. In theory, the system recognizes when you cling to objects, after which the hero automatically hides behind them. In fact, everything is very inconvenient, because the character himself leaves the shelter or does not hide there on command. As a result, at least a third of the deaths in the game are due to such problems.
Before the release of Tom Clancy’s Ghost Recon Breakpoint, the creators promised that now gamers would not be hunters, as in Wildlands, but driven victims, who were opposed by the island itself and the forces of Cole Walker’s mercenaries. In fact, everything is not so. In the first hours, it really seems that they didn’t lie: your helicopters are destroyed or crashed in different places on the island, the main character is wounded and unarmed, hiding in the mud and running around in search of survivors, and there are crowds of enemies and a lot of equipment around.
But as soon as you get out of the initial location, acquire adequate weapons and shoot, everything falls into place. Further, there is no feeling of any oppression and superiority of the enemy, although there are, of course, a lot of mercenaries, and an impressive map is literally teeming with enemy units: they drive jeeps, buggies and armored cars to patrol the area, fly helicopters, set up camps behind a hillock, establish communication stations or make halt on motorcycles.
The survival system in Breakpoint is represented by wounds, which are easily healed by infinite first-aid kits, disguise in the mud, filling a flask with water to help with fatigue, and creating food in the camp. The latter increases the characteristics of the character for a short time and is useful before clearing the base.
True, you forget all this after a couple of hours of playing, because there is no real need for such elements. Sometimes I’ve used food before big robots or boss fights, and running fatigue and getting hurt is annoying and doesn’t add to the realism.
In addition to clearing enemy camps, Ghost Recon Breakpoint is fun just to explore the world, fly or drive from mission to mission that are scattered at great distances from each other, get into trouble, bump into locals, patrols and drones. Often this is much more interesting than the quests themselves, the disadvantages of which are described above.
Tom Clancy’s Ghost Recon Breakpoint looks nice and modern, but not everywhere and not for everyone. On consoles, the game looks worse than the PC version. But for a cool picture, the project requires super-powerful hardware. Some users of GeForce RTX 2080 Ti video cards complain about severe fps drops. I’m not talking about the owners of simpler models or budget assemblies.
Ghost Recon Breakpoint has an indecent amount of bugs and glitches. Sometimes the weapon in the hands of the hero and other soldiers is not displayed, the NPC does not ride in a car, but, as it were, floats in the air, the character gets stuck in textures or moves in jerks, and tasks cannot be accepted or turned in, because you cannot talk to the right character.
It’s common in Breakpoint for the game to only load nearby terrain or items, and distant items often make eyes bleed, especially when viewed from a sniper rifle.
The game has a hefty and unintuitive menu. At first it looks impressive and beautiful, but it is difficult to understand the local tabs and dozens of submenus even after a couple of hours in the game. First of all, I sinned on myself and my dullness, but then I read dozens of similar comments on the forums and it turned out that the problem was not with me. Ubisoft tried to make an epic menu, but in the end they created a monster that needs to be simplified urgently.
The voice acting and music are also disappointing. If there are almost no complaints about the original part, and the translation of the game in the menu and in text dialogs is adequate, then the Russian translation is done somehow. The antagonist’s voice doesn’t match Bernthal’s appearance, plus the voice actor overacts. But these are flowers compared to the dubbing of secondary characters or NPCs. In every dialogue, you can hear that the Russian dubbing is stupidly read from a piece of paper without the slightest intonation and work with the voice. I haven’t heard such a hack for a long time, so it’s better to play with subtitles.
There are no complaints about the music itself — these are peppy motives that perfectly match the pace of the game, but sometimes the melody breaks off in a cutscene or during a mission. Perhaps in this way the creators tried to let the player focus on an important place, or maybe this is another bug. In any case, abrupt breaks in the music are noticeable and do not seem to be something natural.
Ghost Recon Breakpoint has an in-game store that sells literally everything. By everything, I mean not only cosmetic improvements, but also weapon blueprints, equipment, in-game currency, and even vehicles. The result is not Pay-to-Win, but close.
For example, you can pour more money into an already paid and expensive AAA project and buy a top-end combat helicopter, cool equipment and blueprints for weapons at the first levels. The guns themselves are not sold, but we buy additional consumables, craft a gun at the base and get an epic barrel and this is at the “noob” level. Then we get into the purchased helicopter, stuffed with weapons and voila — we have just started playing, but we are already able to bend enemies of a higher level.
If money is a pity, then everything is mined gradually without any problems. If you play normally, then the donat store does not affect anything. This is just information for everyone — gamers with a bubble will enter it much more comfortably than players without money.
Tom Clancy’s Ghost Recon Breakpoint is a service game where mindless mechanics are mixed. The developers tried to make a multi-layered and long-playing project, but it turned out to be an inedible mess with rare interesting ideas and excellent shooting. The added plot does not save the situation much, and its implementation is at the bottom. But the story is barely pulled by guest actor Jon Bernthal.
There are a lot of technical problems in the new Ubisoft project, besides, the game does not look the same everywhere, but it does not hold beauty. The developers, I’m sure, will eventually catch and remove bugs and errors, but why not do this first? Why is the AAA game for full price released raw and with a full-fledged donation store? Why do gamers have to wait and point their fingers at huge flaws, and the creators let them into the release and seem to notice nothing?
At this stage of the game, if you are a fan of military sandboxes, it is better to spend time on The Division 2 than to buy Ghost Recon Breakpoint. This game is worth taking a closer look at in 2020, when most of the minor and major bugs will be removed, new content will be delivered, and, hopefully, the plot will be finalized. They will also lower the price, because Breakpoint is not worth the money.