Ghost Recon: Wildlands - Catch All

Played a bit last night. Definitely did get a "Mercenaries, but more serious" vibe. I'm not sure if the game is too serious for me or not, but some of the guys I was playing with were definitely taking it more seriously than I was. We were playing on the second-hardest difficulty.

It's funny; I loved the E3 reveal of the team coordinating to take down the bad guy. I love that games like that and Rainbow Six exist. For, me, though, I don't think I want to get that serious with most games. For whatever reason, I'm willing to do so for raiding in games like WoW and Destiny. With a game like this, I just want to hop in and have some fun.

That being the case, I will probably give it another shot, but on Arcade. If I can play this as Mercenaries 3, I could be a very happy guy.

And for anyone who hasn't played Mercenaries - both can be played on a 360. They are absolutely wonderful open-world sandbox games. I believe one was subtitled "Playground of Destruction", which is completely accurate.

I've been playing some more and getting into it. The tougher area is better. It's great to be sneaking in the middle of a more complex base. When I'm in the game I feel like I'm mining for little nuggets of Ghost Recon game play that are scattered amongst the more familiar open world stuff.

I have trouble flying the helicopters. There are times when I'm trying to move forwards and the thing just isn't going in the direction I want it to. I could basically live without them pitching from side to side. Pitching forwards and back is fine.

Higgledy wrote:

I've been playing some more and getting into it. The tougher area is better. It's great to be sneaking in the middle of a more complex base. When I'm in the game I feel like I'm mining for little nuggets of Ghost Recon game play that are scattered amongst the more familiar open world stuff.

I have trouble flying the helicopters. There are times when I'm trying to move forwards and the thing just isn't going in the direction I want it to. I could basically live without them pitching from side to side. Pitching forwards and back is fine.

I played around with the PS4 version, and yeah, the helicopters were not as I expected them to be controlled. I found a tip that explained how to fly them and it helped quite a bit.

The trick that I was missing was to pull the right trigger until you were roughly at the height you wanted, then push forward on the left stick. Your helicopter will pitch down and bobble and start moving at speed, forwards. Once you are going pretty quick and starting to dive, just release the stick and keep holding the right trigger. Your helicopter will level out, but still be traveling forward at speed. Playing around from that starting point made the intent of the controls make more sense to me.

I didn't see any tweaks for the land vehicle controls on the PS4. The response curve from not turning at all to full hard turn is all in the last 5% of the stick. Odd choice that I have to believe will be adjusted in a final build.

I did like some of the controlled chaos in some of the raid missions. The AI teammates were hit or miss whether they helped much or not. I'll have to try the multiplayer soon to see how it goes. I've only solo'ed it so far.

One of my complaints was this game was already done better by other open world games that had better story, environments, and were just more fun. GR: W has co-op going for it as its major selling point for me. BUT if you join someone and they want to do areas that you have already done, there's little incentive for you. Collectibles are a big part of this game and if I'm in an area I've already cleared, I'm not keen on sticking around.

You could solve this by only playing with the same 3 people and agreeing not to progress in the game unless you're all on at the same time. But that's an unrealistic scenario.

Hedinn wrote:

Hehe, seriously? I think you will have to wait a long long time before you see an interesting, complex and compelling story on par with Sicario and Narcos in an open world shooter game. Talk about expectations. Seriously, I am shaking my head right now. :)

Eh, I don't think it's unfair to start asking games to have smarter, better writing. Do they have to be as good as prestige television shows or movies? Of course not. But is what they turned in lazily written pap? Absolutely, and it's disappointing that this is what we get, time after time after time again.

*Legion* wrote:

Game is still completely non-functional with my HOTAS and rudder pedals plugged in. I didn't make it past the gamma setting screen.

Not that I expected much different after the closed beta, but geez. What crap.

I'm starting to think that this is a generic windows problem.

I've had problems with my arcade stick and wired xbone controller plugged in with SFV, The Division, and Forza Horizon 3. In all 3, they pick the wrong controller(gamepad for SFV, stick for the others).

I have no idea why.

Dakhath wrote:

BUT if you join someone and they want to do areas that you have already done, there's little incentive for you. Collectibles are a big part of this game and if I'm in an area I've already cleared, I'm not keen on sticking around.

You could solve this by only playing with the same 3 people and agreeing not to progress in the game unless you're all on at the same time. But that's an unrealistic scenario.

Except for the almighty XP. It's not like it's a wasted trip.

ranalin wrote:
TrashiDawa wrote:

Also, wtf is up with the helicopter controls? Note to Ubi Paris - this is a solved problem, copy Battlefield or ARMA if you must!

?? I have 0 problems flying the helicopter.

It's not hard, just dull, unintuitive and disconnected from the physics I expect from a lifetime of flying video game choppers.

I was so stoked to see a chopper just hanging out in a narco farm in the first exfil mission and I jumped in, took off and was immediately disappointed with how it felt.

Flying a chopper in such a game should be an exhilarating and uplifting experience, not a Zamboni simulator.

Is it possible to fly the airplane? I have seen it flying around, but can't find a landed one. Is it mission tied?

I keep going back and forth on this. A few days ago, I was ready to pre-order for the extra mission bonus. Yesterday, after struggling with the helicopters and a few other quirks, I was ready to wait for the reviews and see if any patches come out.

Now, after playing some more, I'm used to the quirky helicopter handling. The vehicles overall are a basic patch away from being pretty good. The couple night missions I played with were pretty fun to run through. I do get some of the Rainbow Six feel even though there isn't the "Alpha Go" style play that the old games had. There is enough of The Division style, Mission Over Here draw that makes the next thing just over the hill a draw to keep playing.

The fun assault and really pretty environment is a solid draw for me.

cube wrote:

I'm starting to think that this is a generic windows problem.

I play pretty much all of my games on that PC with my gear plugged in. In my experience, games pretty much fall into one of 4 categories:

1) Ignore all gamepad input until I bind specific buttons/axes to input actions (most games)
2) Use either the controller set as the Default controller in Windows (my XBOne gamepad) or defaults to whatever Xinput-compatible device it finds (also my XBOne gamepad)
3) Gives the option to selectively enable/disable which controller devices it pays attention to (ARMA, and what all games should do)
4) Freaks the f*ck out. (Ghost Recon!)

*Legion* wrote:
cube wrote:

I'm starting to think that this is a generic windows problem.

I play pretty much all of my games on that PC with my gear plugged in. In my experience, games pretty much fall into one of 4 categories:

1) Ignore all gamepad input until I bind specific buttons/axes to input actions (most games)
2) Use either the controller set as the Default controller in Windows (my XBOne gamepad) or defaults to whatever Xinput-compatible device it finds (also my XBOne gamepad)
3) Gives the option to selectively enable/disable which controller devices it pays attention to (ARMA, and what all games should do)
4) Freaks the f*ck out. (Ghost Recon!)

I think its partly an ubisoft thing, partly a sh*tty game thing.

Previous Ghost Recon and a bunch of other games made by Ubisoft went crazy when I had my joysticks plugged in. It didn't seem like it was a problem with The Division & For Honor, so I thought they had figured it out.

Motleyai wrote:

I think its partly an ubisoft thing, partly a sh*tty game thing.

Definitely the latter, maybe some of the former. But I've been playing a lot of Rainbow Six and I also just played through FC3: Blood Dragon for SallyNasty's game club, and neither of those had any issues,.

Come to think of it though, I did encounter another game that had an issue with my rudder pedals being in, and it was a UbiSoft game... Rocksmith 2014, of all things. And I *think* it only started happening after their big recent "Remastered" update of the game.

I'll be playing a bit this weekend but, so far, this isn't a must own right now. The driving/flying aspects of games usually don't grab me. The squad based tactics do if they're implemented well and the A.I. is good enough. Basically I'm looking to see what's improved since the closed beta.

Played through the first mission. It made my computer's fans roar - apart from everything else, this is kind of a downer. Basic impressions are that it seems a whole lot like the recent Far Cry games, but with AI squadmates. This... seems like it should be a good idea, but the game felt kind of janky. The bigger problem I had was a problem I also had with the Far Cry games - the meaningful gameworld stops about a hundred yards from the player. In that first mission, I stopped my car about 500 meters from the second objective to surveil it. No enemies were visible, no targets could be marked, nothing could be shot - from a gameplay perspective, it might as well not have existed. In a more interesting game, I would have been able to set up a sniper or a mortar team at that point.

Since it's come up, I would love a true spiritual sequel to the first Mercenaries game. This isn't it, though. Maybe one day ARMA will go full Saint's Row.

polq37 wrote:

Since it's come up, I would love a true spiritual sequel to the first Mercenaries game. This isn't it, though. Maybe one day ARMA will go full Saint's Row.

I love both Mercenaries and Saints Row, so I like where your head is at!

polq37 wrote:

Maybe one day ARMA will go full Saint's Row.

Oh god, don't say that. ARMA is like the last oasis for the tactical shooter fan. I buy ARMA stuff early and at full price in hopes that their numbers never, ever take a hit that makes them question whether or not that sort of game is still viable.

Someone else can make a new Mercenaries!

I really want to like this game and I'm usually the first in line for Tom Clancy games especially GR but all the little issues are adding up to a mess at launch (at least on the PC).

Seriously, who thought it was not a big deal to despawn bodies immediately!?! With the game's sh*t optimization/performance, it's clear that they are bumping into their resource budget but if Horizon Zero Dawn can pull off semi-persistent bodies on the PS4, the least Ubi could have done is given us a slider on the PC and let use up as much RAM as we have to make it not seem like a Nintendo game where koopas vanish in a cloud of smoke.

Now that I think about it, cartel members vanishing in a cloud of smoke would be preferable to the current solution....

polq37 wrote:

The bigger problem I had was a problem I also had with the Far Cry games - the meaningful gameworld stops about a hundred yards from the player. In that first mission, I stopped my car about 500 meters from the second objective to surveil it. No enemies were visible, no targets could be marked, nothing could be shot - from a gameplay perspective, it might as well not have existed. In a more interesting game, I would have been able to set up a sniper or a mortar team at that point.

I tested this out. Game breaking issue.

All right, I'll stop raining on the parade. I'll be back to see how things are doing after a few patches.

Fedaykin98 wrote:
polq37 wrote:

Since it's come up, I would love a true spiritual sequel to the first Mercenaries game. This isn't it, though. Maybe one day ARMA will go full Saint's Row.

I love both Mercenaries and Saints Row, so I like where your head is at! :D

I played a little on Arcade this afternoon and it seemed like a reasonable Mercenaries substitute. I'm going to play a bit more and see what happens.

TrashiDawa wrote:

I'm rolling with 980tis in SLI and I'm bouncing from 5 to 60 fps with all kinds of texture glitches.

Turn off SLI.

I get all kinds of dumb visual behavior with it on with my 1080's. Game runs perfectly on just one card.

Also, this isn't just a GR thing. If you just leave SLI on in general the majority of games actually run worse now with it on than off. Many try to just ignore the second card and only use one and in theory let you not mess with the setting but more and more of them end up with weird hitches and issues. Prepare for this to happen progressively more often with an ever larger percentage of games now that it's game devs responsible for making it work and not Nvidia or AMD.

I'm definitely having fun with the open beta, but I loathe these side missions where they put you on a timer without letting you just restart the mission if you time out (as far as I can tell you have to move away from the area before it resets). ugh.

edit: also I'm 99% sure that when you use sync shot your squadmates are sometimes able to make impossible shots it would never be possible for you to make if you were playing coop. Which, for the record, I'm fine with...it beats your guys always saying 'I don't have a shot' or else running off into an area where they'll get spotted in order to find an angle. It's funny though.

I've enjoyed it quite a bit - brain dead AI and all. Most likely a day one purchase for me.

juv3nal wrote:

also I'm 99% sure that when you use sync shot your squadmates are sometimes able to make impossible shots it would never be possible for you to make if you were playing coop. Which, for the record, I'm fine with...it beats your guys always saying 'I don't have a shot' or else running off into an area where they'll get spotted in order to find an angle. It's funny though.

The sync shot thing definitely seems like the game's 'instant win' button. My very first instinct on seeing the skill tree was to unlock the second sync shot.

Not that there's anything wrong with a 'instant win' button. We all want to be the action hero sometimes. But, for me, those impossible shots contrast with the game's self-serious tone.

thyarcher wrote:

The trick that I was missing was to pull the right trigger until you were roughly at the height you wanted, then push forward on the left stick. Your helicopter will pitch down and bobble and start moving at speed, forwards. Once you are going pretty quick and starting to dive, just release the stick and keep holding the right trigger. Your helicopter will level out, but still be traveling forward at speed. Playing around from that starting point made the intent of the controls make more sense to me.

This helped. Thanks.

It does appear to be the case that you pull the right trigger to go up then tilt forwards and the helicopter will crawl forwards. You then have to pull the right trigger to accelerate up to a decent speed. The problem then is, if you decide you want more height and you pull the right trigger to try to go up, the helicopter can't decide if you want to go forwards quicker or gain height. Possibly there are stick positions or a camera position to let it know which you would prefer but I haven't found either.

It would be so much easier to have right trigger to gain height and then just go forwards at a decent speed by pushing forwards with the right stick without the need to use the right trigger.

I had a weird thing on the last mission of the Beta. It takes place in an area with tunnels and on one attempt I gave my men the 'open fire' command. I subsequently died (the only one 'rez' thing works well to make those encounters more challenging) and started to infiltrate the area again. Unfortunately, with two of my squad mates, the 'open fire' command from the previous run seemed to still persist. I was moving stealthily and definitely hadn't been spotted but they ran on ahead regardless shooting down enemies like two random co-op partners keen to be on the top of the mission leader-board for most kills. Very odd considering the squad mates are usually very good at hanging back or remaining undetected until I break stealth.

I really like the use of radios in enemy bases. It gives local colour, adds a sense of life and activity and gives some nice contrasts between the stealth and the up beat music. One thing I find amusing (and I realise it's because my tagging is ahead of the trigger for squad comments) is when my character or another says, "That's five targets." when a quick count up reveals there are actually six or seven. You probably shouldn't be the team spotter if your maths is that bad.

I've been quite enjoying the beta but I just can't do another open world game at the moment. I suspect I will eventually play this when my open world fatigue has subsided (it may be at the back of the queue behind the rest of Witcher 3 and Horizon:ZD though.)

Edit: It's the left stick that controls movement in the heli. Right stick is the camera.

thyarcher wrote:

Is it possible to fly the airplane? I have seen it flying around, but can't find a landed one. Is it mission tied?

There's at least 2 rebel missions that have you steal a plane.

ranalin wrote:
thyarcher wrote:

Is it possible to fly the airplane? I have seen it flying around, but can't find a landed one. Is it mission tied?

There's at least 2 rebel missions that have you steal a plane.

Thank you. I did end up finding a plane and got to fly it a bit.

I think I am done with this one though. The constant joke banter was pretty annoying, the car's glove box was pretty raw too, but what finally tipped the scales was when I retrieved a recording of the doctor couple for some backstory that I found very distasteful. From my perspective, if the side quests are going to keep throwing that type material at me, it is not for me. I'm looking for a tactical shooter, not some obscure alt. newsgroup.

For those interested, the topic of the tape is spoilered... you've been warned:

Spoiler:

The two doctors were discussing killing their torture subject. The dialog then described exposing and performing fellatio on the corpse.

I'm not trying to rain on the parade as I did like a lot of the gameplay, but I would want others to at least be aware that this type of content is in the game in case they were waiting until release to do some of the side-quests.

thyarcher wrote:

I think I am done with this one though. The constant joke banter was pretty annoying, the car's glove box was pretty raw too, but what finally tipped the scales was when I retrieved a recording of the doctor couple for some backstory that I found very distasteful. From my perspective, if the side quests are going to keep throwing that type material at me, it is not for me. I'm looking for a tactical shooter, not some obscure alt. newsgroup.

For those interested, the topic of the tape is spoilered... you've been warned:

Spoiler:

The two doctors were discussing killing their torture subject. The dialog then described exposing and performing fellatio on the corpse.

I'm not trying to rain on the parade as I did like a lot of the gameplay, but I would want others to at least be aware that this type of content is in the game in case they were waiting until release to do some of the side-quests.

I got a kick out of all the jokes. Since they seemed to add a ton more this time around. Some i have heard already from my family members who were in the marines. With the exception of 'sh*t-balls' i even curse the same way the team does. Which i primarily learned from my own family.

As for the rest... I'd put it on par with the content you find in shows like Strike Back. Nothing that we haven't read/seen/heard before.

The warning is probably a good thing for folks who are sensitive to that type of stuff and might have kids that will play this, but i think the alt.newsgroup description is a bit much.

ranalin wrote:

I got a kick out of all the jokes. Since they seemed to add a ton more this time around. Some i have heard already from my family members who were in the marines. With the exception of 'sh*t-balls' i even curse the same way the team does. Which i primarily learned from my own family.

And that is certainly a fair point. I was not offended or disturbed by the individual jokes. They were mostly crude, but I get the context. I didn't like that the jokes were occurring with such a high frequency and sounded somewhat forced. For perspective, I think The Last of Us was one of the only games where I saw filler conversion done very well with a good pacing.

ranalin wrote:

As for the rest... I'd put it on par with the content you find in shows like Strike Back. Nothing that we haven't read/seen/heard before.

The warning is probably a good thing for folks who are sensitive to that type of stuff and might have kids that will play this, but i think the alt.newsgroup description is a bit much.

I've never seen Strike Back. I concede that the alt. newsgroup observation may be a bit extreme since it was a short vocal description of the scenario, but the subject matter of the recording is what my point was and why I related it to the newsgroups. Given the subject matter, I can't think of any TV broadcasted series that went into graphic dialog about it instead of a third person clinical term and the story moves on with the protagonists continuing to go after the criminals. Granted, I did not watch Breaking Bad after the bathtub scene in the first season, so who knows what I've been missing in the normal mainstream.

If it is more of a one or two time backstory thing, and I happen to hit the worst of the bunch, maybe they get better, others can comment or the reviews hopefully will. If they are trying to show and convey the horrors of psychopaths beyond a dossier tagline, then I think that confuses the tactical shooter theme that I thought this franchise was selling. That is of course fine if that is what you want in a game and know it is what the game is about.

If you are liking it, great as well. I liked a bunch of it, but in this case the story presentation soured my experience.

Played a little bit more, and impressions were more positive.

But until they fix the car and helicopter controls I'm out. In a game which requires tons of driving to and from objectives, you'd think they could have designed something a little better.

I finished the Open Beta just yesterday. We played on the serious difficulty just under Extreme and I admit I had fun most of that time; however I wonder if it the fun will endure over all 21 provinces. If the beta represents the full game minus bugs/glitches(which most likely it does) it just not a $60 game in 2017. There were just too many corners were cut.

Assuming most of the big items (AI, Physics, Vehicle handling) will be resolved eventually, there is a big grocery list of small items as well. While not a full list; here are some that I remember right now that bothered me:

- Rebel Support: Vehicle Drop. The vehicle spawns 10m away out of thin air. Zero attempt to make it feel authentic like an air drop, rebels spawning out of view and driving it to you.

-Vehicle damage models are subpar. Can you shoot out tires? I cannot verify if that works. I had 1-2 pips in Vehicle Damage skill. I shot a standard sedan with a 40mm grenade and it did not blow up. Vehicle damage in GRW isn't robust as the car was still drive-able. It took two 40mm grenades to get it to the "black smoke" burning phase.

- 40mm Grenade Launcher. Doesn't seem worth taking the standard one at all. Seems like the radius and damage is less than hand-fired grenades. Personally I recommend waiting until you find the M203 GL version in the game before putting any points into the skill.

- Smoke Grenades would be great if they were in game and worked.

- Tagging: Each person on a team shouldn't have to tag supplies within a certain range. 100m maybe?

- Difficulty is based on individual players rather than "host".

- Bullet drop: only seems to affect Sniper Rifles. All non-sniper rifles are unaffected and better. Friend sniped a guy from over 100m with his pistol; one shot, one kill.

-Wonky Stealth vs Non-stealth damage model. Needs more testing but it seems like you can shoot a guy not in the head from stealth and kill them with a pistol. Unconfirmed, but I think any part of teh body works. Just strange model.

- No RPGs. Even if it was a skill point accessible item and was 1shot disposable, it would be nice to have the option.

- Need an option to turn off AI chatter option both in Solo and especially Coop.

- Civilian AI response. If you are gonna penalize us for killing civvies (which makes sense), please make them act a lil more realistically to skirmishes (ie running away).

- NVGs not modelled.
- Predator-esque thermal vision.

IMHO, It feels like the game was developed in the wrong order - Map, IP, Gunsmith, DressUp, PR, and maybe Story -then the Devs were pressed for, or ran out of, time/money/creativity. So the dialogue, gameplay, physics, etc were completed in a hurry.

At this point unless I get it free with a GPU or sweepstakes, I am out, unless I hear of some amazing changes when the reviews drop.