Next March 7th Ghost Recon Wildlands will arrive on Xbox One, PlayStation 4 and PC. For this reason Ubisoft has decided to remove all the veils under which its interesting project was hidden and allowed us, during a presentation in Paris, to put the whole region of Bolivia to fire and sword in which the Cartel of Santa Blanca took office.

The United States government, in fact, has decided to give free rein to its best agents, the Ghosts, and to send them to Bolivia to fight in the field the powerful criminal organization which, after having brought local institutions to their knees, has begun to expand. its power. The cartel’s clutches stretched to the US and Canada, importing the merchandise and brutal methods that led Santa Blanca to become a world-class power into these two nations.

A situation that the US government could no longer tolerate and that forced him to organize a secret military operation with the aim of decapitating the head of this snake. At the command of the Santa Blanca Cartel, in fact, there is an ambitious and charismatic character known as El Sueño who behind a religious facade, witnessed by the many and blatant tattoos that he sports on every inch of his body, hides an unscrupulous criminal who its sole objective is to impose absolute control over drug trafficking.

Some targets will need to be eliminated, others will need to be talked about.

A power that can only be maintained through a capillary control of the territory. For this reason, El Sueño is supported by four lieutenants, each responsible for a specific sector of the Cartel’s business. The beautiful Nidia Flores is in charge of the expeditions, Cardinal Gustavo Serrano is in charge of the public image of Santa Blanca, El Yayo manages the entire production of cocaine, while El Muro represents the armed wing of the organization.

In order to take down El Sueño, the Ghosts will first have to disable the Cartel’s gears, eliminating the four lieutenants and then go straight to the supreme leader. A bit like what happened in the recent Mafia III. In this way the developers have managed to give a structure to the vast world of Ghost Recon Wildlands, thanks to which we will be able to progressively expand the spectrum of our operations, without risking breaking the game universe by aiming straight at the heart of the organization.

Similarly to what happened in Far Cry, a series that represents a sort of model for Wildlands, we will in this way be forced to proceed step by step. Initially, we will only be able to reach the small fish, that is, those responsible for the production or sale of drugs that are located in the peripheral areas of the area under the control of Santa Blanca, or those in which the organization’s domination is most opposed by the Resistance.

Thanks to these steps we will be able to establish the first foundations, collect the initial resources through which to enhance our physical abilities and our equipment, as well as find the first clues to discover the next objective or find one of the many secondary activities. Furthermore, not to be underestimated, is the possibility of establishing relations with the local guerrillas, who are very happy to support our every action in order to destabilize the control of the Cartel. The Resistance will provide us with considerable support in the field made up of material means such as vehicles or ammunition, but also with rather direct military interventions, such as the possibility of bombing enemy installations that we will report to them or to send support troops.

At least initially, however, we will only be able to count on the support of the three teammates, no matter they are virtual or real. The entire Ghost Recon Wildlands, in fact, was built around the possibility of moving four agents in a coordinated manner at the same time.

In single player all the weight of the mission will be on our shoulders. In fact, we will have to decide both how to move and what our teammates will have to do. At our disposal we will have a few simple instructions, such as the request to group in one point, to shoot on sight or to kill a single opponent, to be given directly on the screen. Once the order is given, we will be able to admire the efficient brutality of the Ghosts, participating in the fight in a more or less active way.

Freedom is the cornerstone of Wildlands. Freedom to dress as you want and freedom to act as you see fit.

In multiplayer, however, it is a whole other story. This is because the freedom and creativity that developers give to players are double-edged weapons. On the one hand, it is much more complex to keep four human beings in line and coordinate than computer-controlled bots, but on the other hand it is possible to create strategies and synergies that are impossible to obtain with artificial intelligence.

Collaborating with three other colleagues, during our test, we were able to complete several missions, initially in a clumsy way, and then gradually build an increasingly efficient harmony. The beauty is that in Ghost Recon Wildlands there will not be a right way to act, but the extreme freedom of action guaranteed by such a vast open world allows you to improvise to reach the goal, giving everyone the opportunity to make the most of the own inclinations.

During a mission in which we had to extract an enemy soldier with knowledge of different information, while two companions were risking to mess everything up by attacking the enemy openly, the other two, taking advantage of the distraction involuntarily provided by the companions, were able to pass unnoticed behind the soldiers. In doing so, stuning the target, loading it into a car and getting it to safety was a simple operation, apparently impossible in previous attempts. A successful plan? Certainly not, but Ghost Recon Wildlands still gives the possibility to adapt the strategy according to the moment, the unexpected or the madness of the companions.

Bolivia is a vast land, full of diversity and secrets to discover.

On another occasion, we tried a more tactical approach, scanning the fortified area in which important information was hidden, using the binoculars and the precious drone supplied to each player. In this way we were able to highlight all the sentries on the walls, also deciding which of these would be the first to be demolished. Unfortunately, this type of attempt was unsuccessful, as we got caught by a well-hidden enemy who escaped the initial reconnaissance. But the game over has not started.

After the failure of the stealth approach, therefore, the group split to the four sides of the fort and attempted a more direct tactic. A Ghost tried to take possession of an armored vehicle to spread terror, another began to decimate the enemy guards with a sniper rifle, while the third had now headed undisturbed towards the objective, recovering the files sought and completing the mission. And the fourth, you may be wondering? The fourth had stopped to challenge the new attack plan and between a bullshit and the other all the action was lost. But this is also part of Ghost Recon Wildlands.

Each of us, in fact, will be able to enter the games of friends by importing not only their own character, deeply customizable both in terms of aesthetics and equipment, but also their level of difficulty. In this way everyone will find the challenge that best suits their tastes: the veterans will KO with a few hits, while the special agents of the last hour will be able to count on greater resistance to damage, so as not to be (almost) never a burden. even playing with more skilled friends.

In Ghost Recon Wildlands there will not be much room for parliamentary, much better to shoot first.

Furthermore, the vastness of the map and the amount of missions available should allow anyone to find the goal that best suits their tastes, how to reach it and above all whether to reach it. Despite being in a party together, not all players have to participate in the same missions or stick to each other. Indeed, tactically a fragmented approach, with some acting as bait and others acting behind the enemy, is one of the surest methods of achieving victory.

For this the game will allow you to teleport directly near a companion. Too bad that, strangely, the developers have decided not to let us automatically enter the team-led vehicle, as happens in Battlefield, but to make us appear near the colleague. This made several situations quite strange. For example, if the companion is on a helicopter or on a ship it will be virtually impossible to reach him as we will be on foot while he is launched at full speed towards the target. Of course unless the pilot decides to take a detour to pick up those who have just spawned.

In single player you will not have this problem, as the Ghosts will suddenly appear behind us as soon as we need them. The downside is that these will always act as passengers and never drive any vehicles, as happens in Halo.

The premises are those of an adult and raw story.

Another element that must be verified is the variety of missions. During our test, in addition to killing all the enemies on a map in a more or less daring way, nothing else was done and it would be a shame if a region as beautiful, vast and mysterious as Bolivia is not teeming with variety and Things to do.

To hold all the pieces together should come a finally adult plot, in which charismatic and unscrupulous characters will be shown. Unfortunately we were only able to see the initial stages of the story, but the presentation of the antagonists, the charismatic El Sueño above all, bodes well for a dramatic and raw development of the story.

On a technical level, the game impressed with the vastness of the map, the depth of the horizon line and the solidity of the frame rate. There are still some tearing and fluidity problems during the movies in which the graphics engine has to render all the details and customizations of the four Ghosts, but globally Bolivia promises to be a truly evocative land, full of details to discover, of different biomes. to go and breathtaking moments to enjoy, like when we crossed a vast lake aboard a helicopter, raising flocks of birds in flight.

Even on PS4, the game guarantees a respectable graphic impact.

Ultimately we enjoyed putting Bolivia to fire and sword, especially in the cooperative. What Ghost Recon Wildlands seems to be missing at the moment is a real hallmark. As for mechanics and gameplay, in fact, the game fits perfectly into the Ubisoft open world trend. Not that it’s a flaw, but the project looks like a collage of some of the best gameplay elements produced by the transalpine publisher, without a real flicker. Only a more in-depth test will tell us if a four-player cooperative and the merciless reign of terror of the Santa Blanca are enough to make Ubisoft Paris’ latest effort memorable.

Before the release in stores, however, there will be another step that Ghost Recon Wildlands will have to face: the closed beta. The Parisian developer intends to allow a large number of people to try the game before its release. In this way they will be able to begin to verify the solidity of the online infrastructure in view of the launch, as well as to hear the first feedback from fans. The dates for this test have not yet been defined, but we will communicate them to you as soon as we know them. In any case, not much is still missing, as Ghost Recon Wildlands will hit the shelves next March 7th.

Buy Ghost Recon: Wildlands from Amazon