Ghost Recon Advanced Warfighter 2
Is this the best new-generation shooter to date?
Xbox 360, PS3, PC, PSP
The sequel to last year's award winning and commercial big-hitter G.R.A.W. has landed, inside a year of the original's release. A sequel was obvious, however the fact Ubisoft have pushed it on to market so quickly has been a cause for concern regarding quality control. Fans need not fear however; Ubisoft have put Tom Clancy's Ghost Recon Advanced Warfighter 2 in the garage and fine-tuned every aspect of it to near perfection.
Set immediately after the first game, you reprise your role of squad leader Scott Mitchell as you are taken back to base from your battle with the Latin-American terrorists. No sooner have you touched down than your General lets you know that far from giving up and going home, the terrorists have managed to track down some WMD's and plan to use them on the Land of the Free unless you can stop them. Couple this with a raging civil war in Mexico between democratic and communist factions and you are knee deep in the brown smelly stuff, soldier! God bless American foreign policy.
One short training mission later (which even veterans will want to perfect for achievement points) and you're sent out in a helicopter on your first mission. Your commanders send video footage and objectives in through your HUD as your chopper flies over the beautifully rendered desert. Credits role, theme music stirs over the whirr of the chopper's blades and GRAW 2 shows itself to be a truly cinematic and immersive experience.
"You can now give precision commands to your troops to take cover behind specific objects and select targets."
Indeed, there's an achievement to unlock if you can complete a level without firing your own gun. The right bumper can now also be used when accessing your drone, so you can steer it across the battlefield whilst looking directly below to identify enemy positions, Google Earth-style!
Control of Ghost Leader is much the same as ever, left trigger gives a precise aim and clicking the right stick pulls up your scope for weapons which have it. You automatically enter cover when you press against a wall and can stick your head out to spot enemies before picking them off. A player ignoring cover is likely to get some quick lead acupuncture from their opponents.