Release Date: 05/03/2006
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Ghost Recon has always been a part of my childhood as it was one of my dad’s favorite games. While we only had the inferior PS2 versions, they were kind of fun to play and really challenging. The slow pace of crawling through enemy territory and deciding the best way to take them all out without dying after 3 shots could sometimes be quite rewarding especially since this is what the series was popular for. GRAW carries this over on the PC version specifically while the Xbox 360 version is faster paced. I personally think this is a much inferior version and the slower pace feels dated and boring.
After so many Ghost Recon games, it was exciting to get a new game in the series on the brink of brand new technology. While the PC version sure looks great, it uses a slightly different engine and is in a first person perspective rather than third like the Xbox 360 version. Everything just feels completely different such as enemies not staying tagged with the orange diamonds and this became a real big problem. You get a drone in this game but it’s tied to a tactical map rather than viewing it in real-time overhead. You can use basic commands to send squad members to an area and take out enemies, but you’re so blind and the angle of the camera for the map is really strange and distorts your perspective. Many times my men died because I didn’t know what was ahead and unless you play at a snail’s pace you’re going to die a lot.
That also goes for your character. Two or three shots and your dead and the checkpoints are so infrequent and spread apart that it leads to many frustrations. The PC version should have a manul quick save feature and it doesn’t. The character walks like a geriatric on a crutch or sprints as fast as a turtle. The maps are bland and void of any type of action or ambiance. Just plain walls, silos, warehouses, and blown up cars. Once I did get a few bad guys tagged I would send my guys out, but stray too far and the tags disappear which is really pointless. Just on the training map alone, I died maybe 6 or 7 times because it’s just so hard to see what’s coming up in a large open map. I need something like, I don’t know, my drone’s tags to stay up and I see where every bad guy is and either skip some or avoid certain areas.
At least giving commands is rather simple as using the mouse wheel or number row tells your guys to stop, follow, attack, or carry out commands set on the map. However, the AI is weird as sometimes my guys would pop people I never even saw and then not engage on tagged targets I told them to attack. They would just stand there and stare and sometimes get shot up and tell me that the target isn’t reachable. With all of this combined, this makes for a buggy and frustrating mess of a game that doesn’t exist on the Xbox 360 version. The snail’s pace alone isn’t fun and is boring and bland and takes away all the character and amazing pace of the console version. Why Ubisoft tried to make the PC slower is beyond me as I wanted the 360 version just with better visuals maybe? Even the art style is completely different despite most of the maps and missions being the same.
Overall, GRAW on PC is a huge let down as Ubisoft thinks we want a slower more boring game? It feels more like Rainbow Six than Ghost Recon and carries with it too many of the issues from past Ghost Recon games. Get rid of the slow pace and animations, make the AI better, and stop making up crawl around a massive map trying to pick off-targets. It’s just not fun at all. Some people may love this, such as those who actually like boring tactical shooters that play at a crawl, but GRAW on PC just doesn’t cut it and shouldn’t exist when a superior version exists on Xbox 360.