I loved Sniper Elite 2 when it came out for the Xbox 360, it was something different for me to get to grips with, and I love stories to do with the World Wars. So when Sniper Elite 3 was announced for not only 360 but Xbox One as well, I was quite excited! The possibilities that could be done with the extra power of the Xbox One made me wonder what type of additions would be made. Well, after playing the game, I can honestly say that I cannot see much of a change from V2 to V3.
Through the Binoculars! Ouch!
The detail in the textures just aren’t there on the Xbox One version, everything looks flat when there should be clearly some shape to it. Such as a pile of rocks on the floor, you should be able to see the roughage in the rocks, but there is just nothing, its flat, shapeless and uninspiring to the setting you’re in. The detail put into items within the distance is completely non existent and to be honest looks rather lazy. It does look like something I would draw, which would be a vague shape and placed into the background, and made to look like something that doesn’t even resemble what it should. Also tire marks in the sand are just brown lines. There is very little to no shading for them and someone who didn’t know what they were, might have a hard time understanding what they were meant to be. After looking through other reviews and websites etc, it seems that the Xbox One version was sacrificed in terms of graphical quality, to be able to achieve the 1080 and 60fps. Based on what I’ve seen, I would have rather it had more time in development to improve on what we have got. Specially as the PS4 version seems to have had the better deal in terms of quality. (I can’t say first hand whether it did or not as I haven’t played it)(This review isn’t all doom and gloom… Stay with me! 😉 )[pullquote]The lighting within the game is rather Marmite for me. There are some parts that look really good, but there’s sometimes it is just downright awful[/pullquote], and is something that shouldn’t have been allowed, this is something that should have been picked up in quality testing. Such as while playing Multiplayer, there were times where I kept thinking that I could see the lens flare from a Snipers Scope, but what I was actually seeing was bad lighting coming through a buildings window. The only way I can describe it, is it looks as though someone is switching a light on and off constantly. (Sorry… More doom and gloom… It does get better!)
The AI aren’t too impressive either. (I know iI said it was going to get better, and it will… I promise) You may slightly miss your opportunity to shoot someone under the cover of another loud noise within the level, whether it be cannon fire, low flying planes etc, and when this happens the AI will take to cover (as you would expect anyone to do when being fired at). But then after 30 seconds to a minute they will carry on like nothing has happened. Same when 2 soldiers are stood together, they will be both be stood there, one has his brains splattered all over the pavement, the other will hide, again for 30 seconds to a minute, then ‘All Clear’ will pop up, and he will just continue what he was doing… Never mind the dead body next to him… But the funnier thing about it, is that when another soldier comes along and sees said dead body, it will pop up saying ‘Body Found’….. Er… Yeah, you might want to ask the guy stood next to it… Not looking good for him is it? You can imagine the conversation they had can’t you.
Soldier: I Didn’t do it, it was a sniper.
Officer: A Sniper did it? And you didn’t say anything, call for help or sound the alarm? You just left the body there and continued on?!
Soldier: Erm…. Ah crap!
Officer: Take him away!
Can you imagine the amount of people you could set up for Murder in this game based on the AI’s reactions!? LOL
Here you can see the comparison between the Xbox One version and the PS4 version.
As always with these games though, the one thing that has impressed me with it, is the X-Ray cam for the awesome shots that you can do! Like this one…
As well as ones like this…
The setting for the game, is beautiful, but as stated above can lack that detail that’s needed, and suffer from bad lighting. Another thing I did enjoy from the game is its many ways to play out a mission. Various different paths that you can follow to achieve your goal. Do you go in all guns blazing? Or are you the stealth master? For me, I tried to be the stealth master, but I usually ended up walking straight in front of a soldier who was stood up against a wall or camouflaged in some way that I didn’t really notice them. Which then kind of has everything kicking off and me having to relocate on numerous occasions. Which is why by mission 3 I had the achievement for 100 relocates. 😀
I liked the more open world feel to this game, I found this a big improvement on the last game, where it was more linear in V2. In SE3 you have your main objectives to go after, but as your playing through the mission, it will offer you optional objectives, such as having to destroy other things, or killing an officer. These objectives you can do anytime before you finish your main objectives. Which I liked, as it means you can get to explore the full area of land before finishing and moving onto the next.
Here is a frame rate test video for the game that I managed to find on YouTube!
All in all, it seems that the Xbox One version hasn’t had the same love and care as other versions have, and I’m afraid to say that this has impacted on the Xbox One versions quality. The game is very playable and if you enjoy the story, and the detail isn’t going to bug you much, this is probably a very enjoyable game. However, if you’re a graphic hound and love a good looking game, then you will probably cry and rock constantly in a corner. [pullquote]I have to admit that this is probably one of those Marmite type games where you will either love it or hate it.[/pullquote]