Sniper Elite 5 is the latest installment from the team over at Rebellion. Set in Nazi-occupied France and taking place just before the events of D-Day, you once again play as Karl Fairburne, where he finds himself sneaking past the Atlantic Wall to rendezvous with the French Resistance.
Sniper Elite 5 is just what you’d expect if you’ve played the previous titles, with of course some fancy game mechanic upgrades and updated graphics. Even the maps this time around flow much better and more naturally, even offering more ways to traverse and giving you multiple ways to tackle the map.
There are 2 ways you can go about playing Sniper Elite 5. First, and the most ideal way to play is by using stealth. Equipped with your trusty sniper rifle, a handgun, SMG, and a hand full of equipment, such as medkits, decoys, and grenades, sneaking around picking enemies off one by one from vast distances is the intended way to play. The second way is to go in with all guns blazing like it’s a Michael Bay action movie. What did I do? I went a mixture of both but found myself caught up in the Michael Bay film. Well, at least on my first playthrough.
Enemy guards and AI are far more switched on in Sniper Elite 5 compared to previous titles. If an enemy is alerted of you or thinks they saw something a little suss, they will start walking towards your general area to take a look around. If they do see you they will quickly alert all their nearby friends in which a full-scale manhunt will start, and they DO NOT let up. They will hunt you down until either you or they are dead. Some enemies will run towards an alarm system to warn an even wider range of enemies that they are under attack. So yes, I suggest going the stealthy option if possible.
Of course, a Sniper Elite game wouldn’t be complete without its signature X-ray animations/kill cams, and this time around they are more gruesome than ever before. The X-rays in Sniper Elite 5 have been turned up to 11, clearly showing even more internal damage by a bullet, and now even includes the X-ray system for both sidearm kills and melee takedowns, and to push that gruesomeness a little further, melee kills now have blood that sprays everywhere and hisses out.
As you play, complete objectives, and level up, you’re rewarded skill points. These points can be spent in the game’s Skill Tree, which is broken up into three categories; Combat, Equipment, and Body, allowing you to improve how your character plays with things like extra equipment slots, holding your breath longer, or being able to revive yourself with medkits when you go down, just to name a few.
Guns can also be customised, and I was very surprised at how much I could change. You can modify pretty much anything on your weapon, such as; ammo type, sight, stock, foregrip, muzzle, barrel, magazine, and cosmetics, and these parts are unlocked by finding workbenches hidden around each level.
The campaign can be played solo or in co-op. Playing in co-op can be a lot of fun and does make for an easier playthrough by allowing you and your friend to work together to breeze through each mission. Outside of the campaign are a few more online features such as “Survival” where you need to defend command posts against waves of enemies, and “Multiplayer”, which is played across four modes; Free-for-all, Team Match, Squad Match, and No Cross, all of which are nothing new to the Sniper Elite series.
The other online mode that is new to the series is “Invasion”. Much like Julianna’s invasions in “Deathloop,” you play as a “Jager” sniper that drops into someone’s single or co-op campaign with the sole purpose to take them out. It’s a lot of fun. I think I had too much fun invading other people’s games. Thankfully if you don’t want to have your campaign invaded, there is an option to switch it off, but leaving it on will award you with bonus XP when completing your campaign objectives.
With all that said, Sniper Elite 5 is easily the best entry in the series. Hats off to the team over at Rebellion for sticking to what works and building on an already amazing and fun franchise. If you’re a Sniper Elite fan, this latest entry won’t disappoint.
- Upgraded graphics
- Better flowing maps
- Plenty of customisation
- Invasion mode
- More detailed x-ray animation
- Single player co-op
- Ememies can be unforgiving at times