independent

Monday 23 October 2017

Expertly crafted gameplay in sniper series

By Chris Hayes - Game Review

Graphically, Sniper Elite 4 is the best the series has ever been.
Graphically, Sniper Elite 4 is the best the series has ever been.

Recent years have seen the Sniper Elite series elevate from the quirky action-stealth curiosity it began life as to a more serious and fully-fledged idea with all the deliciously period trappings of WW2.

While the Sniper Elite games can't claim to have had a bad instalment since their inception in 2012, it is probably safe to say that they haven't enjoyed the critical acclaim they so desperately long for, nor have they realised the potential that has been bubbling just below the surface for the past 5 years. If you haven't yet experienced a Sniper Elite game, then this is the one with which you should get acquainted with.

Sniper Elite 4 sees you take the wheel of Karl Fairburne's destiny during WW2, as a sniper on the Italian front, an unusually bright and frankly beautiful setting. The stunning Italian vistas might bring an entirely new look to Sniper Elite, but Fairburne's mission will conjure familiarity for anyone already up to speed with the series.

A gruff impersonator of Metal Gear's Solid Snake (in both voice and tactics), Fairburne is cast as a 1940s American superhero. From hundreds of yards, your careful and deliberate sniper aim will shatter a man's skull. Your close combat strikes will rupture enemy's internal organs, while snapping the spine of opponents is also possible given the right conditions.

Much of Sniper Elite is spent simply staring down the scope, waiting for your marks to make fatal mistakes, or using thunderstorms and artillery fire to mask the crack of your rifle as you dispense of your targets.

Graphically, Sniper Elite 4 is the best the series has ever been. Console gamers will see a marked improvement over the previous title, while higher-end PC gamers can simply bask in the glory of some of the dazzlingly beautiful set pieces.

While some of the gore and blood splatters may be a little over the top, there can simply be no denying that killing virtual Nazis hasn't really lost its lustre. Granted, the story is a little humdrum at times, but the consistently interesting and expertly crafted gameplay is enough to make me come back to the Sniper Elite games year after year.

9/10

Sniper Elite 4

PC / Xbox One / PS4

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