When it comes to the majority of ‘war games’, they largely depend on a run-and-gun style of play. Activision’s Call of Duty or EA’s Battlefield series’ are good examples of this, especially within multiplayer elements such as Team Deathmatch and so on and so forth. The reality of this though, is largely far from the truth, as in a real-life scenario, this style of combat would pretty much guarantee any war would end early for you. War time scenarios mainly rely on tactics and stealth in order to gain victory and there’s no better example of this than being in the role of a sniper. Long range target acquisitions, spotting and dealing death from unseen positions is usually the call of the day and it’s a premise that we get to experience in Sniper Elite V2 Remastered as it aims a release onto the Nintendo Switch.
Developed by Rebellion and published through RebellionInteract, this World War Two stealth shooter puts you firmly into the muddy boots of Karl Fairburne, an American sniper who finds himself deep behind enemy lines in an attempt to disrupt the German advancements of their V2 rocket programmes. Using a variety of techniques, from spotting, trap laying, surveillance, stealth and long-distance shooting, you travel throughout a war-torn Germany and bombed-out Berlin as you face off against Russian interests and desperate Germans as the end of the Second World War begins to come to a close.
This remaster of the 2012 original, brings a host of graphical improvements with modernised textures and lighting to bring a youthfulness and vibrancy to the ageing game. As well as this, all previous DLC is also included which contains four extra campaign missions including the infamous ‘Assassinate the Fuhrer’, ten extra weapons, an impressive photo mode and a host of extra playable characters. This Switch version of the game also boasts an exclusive control scheme that makes full use of motion controls to add a touch of accuracy to your long-range shots.
Although the game is seven years old, its remastered improvements all add to produce a compelling experience on the Switch. Draw distances are impressive and dynamic lighting brings life to the night missions. The sound qualities also feel as if they’ve received a boost, with more resonating background noise as artillery shells fall around you and aircraft fly overhead. It all adds to bring the settings around you to a vivacity that really brings the war-strewn effects of the time to life. Everything also runs smoothly from a technical point of view, with no apparent slowdowns or screen tears visible, producing a smoother experience that excels on the portability of the Switch.
When compared to later versions within the series, such as Sniper Elite 3, which coincidentally is seeing a release on the Switch too, the game does contain a few mechanics that do show through the cracks of its age. A linearity of level design doesn’t always allow you the freedom for total stealth, limited save points can frustrate at times and cover mechanics don’t always work as planned. However, none of these really detract from the overall experience, as the fun of this game lies within its pleasing gameplay and the thrill of its, now infamous, X-ray visioned, bullet-timed kill cams.
Once you find a suitable position to snipe far-off targets, the bullets trajectory from your gun is mapped through slow-motion, ending with a satisfying crunch through your targets skull, or explosive piercing of a worn grenade, or weak point within a vehicles fuel tank. It’s an element of the game that never tires and thrills with each shot of accuracy; something that is further bolstered with the Switch’s ability to fine-tune your aim with motion-controlling. However, the enemy AI is never an over-easy target, with units often flanking your position as they hunt you out across the rubble-strewn battlefields of each level. This also produces a satisfying element of gameplay, as they fall victim to your defensive traps, tripping wired grenades as they attempt to breach your positional boundaries.
There are also further elements that add to the tension that the game portrays so well. Timing your shots, so that the noise of your firing is masked by announcements over a facilities PA system, or throwing rocks to lure the enemy away from a guarded viewpoint or into the path of your sights, produces a tactical element of the gameplay that forces you to think how to approach each situation. It’s here where the game excels, as a simple run-and-gun technique will always guarantee failure. The need to survey your area, tagging targets through your binoculars, spotting potential sniping points or escape routes are vital to success, forcing you to approach each scenario with a steady pace and skilful planning of your current situation.
As well as its extensive campaign offering and life-prolonging DLC, the game also boasts a series of co-operative modes, as well as a variety of competitive online modes to guarantee the games long-term appeal. These extra game modes produce a whole new experience to the setup, with co-op missions bringing an air of satisfaction with cross-fire kills or backup defensive manoeuvres that covers each others backs as you both work in unison towards your mission objectives. The competitive fields of the online games also bring their own style of tension, as a series of scenarios, from deathmatch to survival-style games forces you to learn the maps in order to get the most out of the stealth mechanics that are needed in order to survive. However, its lobbies can be a bit hit-and-miss at times, but with time and patience, you’ll soon find yourself a game in which to join.
Overall, Sniper Elite V2 Remastered feels suitably at home on the Nintendo Switch with its improved graphics and added control schemes. For its pricing, you get a lot of content and satisfying gameplay that presents a game that will easily keep you going over the long term. However, with the impending release of Sniper Elite 3 on the horizon, it could be a game that is soon out-gunned by its more impressive sequel. In the meantime though, there’s enough quality here to produce a game that genuinely thrills with its tense action, satisfying kills and exciting adventure to keep it aiming high above the army of titles that fight within the library of the Nintendo Switch.
REVIEW CODE: A complimentary Nintendo Switch code was provided to Bonus Stage for this review. Please send all review code enquiries to firstname.lastname@example.org.
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Sniper Elite V2 Remastered Review
Gameplay - 8/10
Graphics - 8/10
Sound - 8/10
Replay Value - 8/10
User Review( votes)
With a host of extra features and quality of life improvements, Sniper Elite V2 Remastered aims high upon the Nintendo Switch.