Sniper Elite V2

I Once Did A Guy From 1000 Yards Out. Rifle Shot In High Winds.

Maybe 8 or 10 guys in the world could make that shot in Sniper Elite V2.
Author: Aram Lecis
Published: June 3, 2012
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Confession time. I have two passions in this world and neither of them are my kids. I'm really into demolition derbies, and I'm really into snipers. I read every Stephen Hunter novel. I can't get enough of "Top Shot". I've seen "Enemy at the Gates" more times than I can count. I'm one of the few people that thought the second half of "Full Metal Jacket" was almost as good as the first part. There is no way I'm walking by one of those shooting gallery things at the amusement park without dropping at least 10 bucks. I'm that dude camped out on a rooftop in Call of Duty. Hell, I'll even watch that shitty "Sniper" movie with Tom Berenger. If it's got a scope I think it's dope.

Yeah, I was pretty excited for Rebellion's Sniper Elite V2 as you may have guessed. The follow up to last generations Sniper Elite that almost no one played, this time around the action has shifted back to World War 2. Yes, it's a genre that has been over saturated in recent years to say the least, but before you sigh and dig out your "Band of Brothers" DVD collection, hold on for just a second.

As any sniper aficionado knows, patience is not just a virtue, it's the key to a successful kill. You'll have to exercise that patience in the game, be it to wait for the patrols to pass, your target to appear, or having to reload a checkpoint for the dozenth time. While there is occasionally a specific target to take out, you'll never kill less than dozens of guys on every mission, so don't expect the game to be this giant setpiece culminating in the ultimate shot, a la Hitman.

Instead you'll guide Karl Fairburne as he progresses through 11 sprawling (but largely linear) levels that encompass plenty of bombed out buildings, terrifying trenches and rickety rooftops trying your hardest to avoid Germans and Russians while rescuing/killing high-profile targets with the ultimate goal of stopping a V-2 rocket launch that threatens to turn the tide of the war. Interestingly, the game purports to be based on a real-life mission known as Operation Paperclip (kind of a lame codename, right?) but obviously takes quite a few liberties.

The star of the action is of course the sniper rifle, or rather any of three real-world era-specific sniper rifles that you find over the course of the campaign. From your perches behind rubble and burned out cars you'll have to take into account important factors like bullet drop and windage trying to line up that perfect headshot for a "one shot, one kill" moment. And when you fire a nice kill shot, you are treated to a slow-motion x-ray view of your bullet tearing through the vital organs of whatever hapless German or Russian who happened to get in the way. You'd think there would get old after you saw it for the 500th time, but it really doesn't!

If you are serious about sniping, then you really should be playing on Sniper Elite difficulty, which is the only one to really take into account those "real" factors. The easiest difficult will just send a bullet into the center of your crosshairs every time, which really isn't much of a challenge. The medium difficulty takes bullet drop into account, but make things a bit easier by giving you a small reticule when you hold your breath and go into "focus mode" (think bullet time for snipers) that points out exactly where your bullet will hit. Once you turn things up to Sniper Elite, you have nothing but the yardage markers in your scope and a small wind gauge to help you guide your shot. This is what separates the men from the boys.

Of course, these high powered rifles can make a LOT of noise, and if you don't want to attract attention from the baddies (who, once they know you are out there, seem to be able to laser focus on you from wherever they are on the map in a matter of seconds) you'll find a way to cover your shot. A convenient noise meter in the corner lets you know when bombs are dropping nearby and your shots will be lost in the background. Time your shots for when the meter is up, and you'll avoid being zeroed in on. Of course, if someone sees your target go down (or you narrowly miss and alert the target themselves), they'll go on alert and you run the risk of being spotted, plus everyone will look for cover. A tank or two might even roll in, and these can only be dispatched by running up to them with dynamite (a suicide mission, just ask Tom Hanks) or sniping the tiny gas caps they all have that are one hit kills.
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