Tom Clancy's Ghost Recon: Advanced Warfighter
I hate to say it, but this is a hard game to love. At times challenging, and at others simply frustrating, you'll need keen wits and grace under fire to deal with the obstacles presented in this title. This, the latest of the Ghost Recon titles, puts you in control of the elite unit during a time of crisis in Mexico City. Tasked with all manner of important missions, up to and including rescuing the Mexican president after he's caught in an explosion, if there's one thing Ubisoft has done, it's create an exciting backdrop for your missions. Armed with the latest in high tech battlefield gear, you'll also be supported by some of the most advanced technology ever conceived for future war. The crosscom system lets you control the different units under your command, an advanced HUD helps you clearly mark enemies, and you've even got a counter snipe rifle that can shoot through walls to deal with enemies.
Although this is a shooter, make no mistake, it places more emphasis on battlefield awareness and proper use of tactics than most. Conducted entirely in the third person, you won't have as accurate of an ability to shoot as in other titles, save for when you're zoomed in on a scoped rifle. Using the 'hold your breath' sniping method gives you some really accurate fire. Instead of focusing on the shooter part of the game, the bread and butter of this game is the command and control of your battlefield assets.
Knowing where to direct your men and how to take cover is much more important. Unfortunately, and this is part of the frustrating that I was talking about earlier, the AI can sometimes be kinda dumb. I've seen my own backup troopers fail to properly take cover when ordered, expose themselves to enemy fire, and every single support asset (Apache helicopter, Bradley fighting vehicle) I've used has managed to either crash into terrain or freeze in a position that prevents them from actually destroying a piece of enemy armor. There's nothing more annoying than watching your Apache fire rockets straight into the ground because the AI wasn't smart enough to reposition itself. Fortunately, you'll be able to ignore that in multiplayer. There's a great co-op mode and fighting other players tends to minimize these problems.
Finally, and I know I'm going a bit long here, this game is absolutely beautiful. There are small graphical glitches here and there, but the world is truly populated, more than making up for it. Most especially, I love watching the overhead shots of Mexico City when you're being shuttle in on a Blackhawk. In the aural department, there's nothing to complain about. There's great voice acting and sound effects, and since you're fed most of your storyline through radio chatter.
My summary? It's a good game, and with the dearth of Xbox 360 games, this is definitely one of the games worth getting. That said, it has problems. Prepare to be very patient, and put up with a few small glitches, otherwise this game might be a little frustrating for you. Still, this is definitely worth the purchase price.