E3 2011: Tom Clancy's Ghost Recon: Future Soldier Preview Impressions

Ghost Recon: Future Soldier provides both stealth and action for a whole squad of players.

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Tom Clancy's Ghost Recon: Future Soldier is Ubisoft's latest installment in the tactical military shooter series. The demo brought a unit of four soldiers into the swampy jungles of Nigeria. However, the landscape soon changed as the heroes advanced through civilian-populated town streets and into enemy outposts. The mission began with sneaking, performing quiet kills, and using x-ray vision but soon exploded into an action-packed gunfight.

Future Soldier departs from the first-person view of predecessor Advanced Warfighter and once again opts for Advanced Warfighter 2's third-person perspective. This allowed for gameplay akin to Gears of War: zooming in over the shoulder for a more accurate shot, dashing quickly, and ducking behind any small bits of cover to be found. This cover-based shooting also gave enough protection to use staple abilities, including stealth camouflage or remote-controlled drones. There was even enough breathing room to explore the incredibly detailed map that featured highly textured terrains and mission objective markers.

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Players won't be alone in their missions as all four squadmates can be controlled during the campaign's co-op mode. This allowed for some interesting tactical planning and execution that could be timed with quick vocal commands. Two soldiers could separate from the rest of the team and flank two sides of the enemy, all while the other half of the squad bum-rushed from the center. During an escort mission, one player had to carry an injured hostage--decreasing their speed and forcing them to wield only a side arm pistol. However, the three remaining soldiers were able to provide ample suppressant fire and call in an air strike. With a mix of stealth and heavy action, the strategic cooperative multiplayer appears to be a tense and rewarding experience.

Tom Clancy's Ghost Recon: Future Soldier will be released in the first quarter of 2012 on the PC, Xbox 360, and PlayStation 3. Separate versions are also being developed for the Wii, PSP, and DS and may include some features from their high-definition counterparts.

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