Sniper Ghost Warrior Contracts 2 (Steam Deck Backlog Review)

Howdy hidey ho!  I’m reviewing this game to own up to a mistake: I thought that the same devs that made Sniper Elite 5 made this one.  I was wrong, so here I am finding out what makes this sniper game different besides being in the modern era.  Or more importantly, is Sniper Ghost Warrior Contracts 2 better?


GAMEPLAY

It is by and large as close as it’s going to get to a proper sniping experience…

If there’s a warning worth giving, I start out with it: you will spend a LOT of time doing recon in this game.  Of course, this is also accurate to your purpose of sniping at a distance.  And here’s the real kicker: this might just be THE most well-done sniping experience in a videogame I’ve ever had.  Not only does it more properly demonstrate the reality of long-range sniping, but it also gives you a more gruesomely accurate depiction of “boom headshot”.  It is by and large as close as it’s going to get to a proper sniping experience as a videogame, hands down.  Unfortunately, and you might have saw this coming, the regular gunplay was not the focus and feels pretty generic.  On the other hand, you really shouldn’t be getting into gunfights as the game not only embraces stealth, but also gives you the necessary tools to get through it without constantly opening fire.  Still, it can happen despite being a bit lackluster along with other similarly lackluster things, too, like platforming or swimming.  The good news is that everything works, even if it pales dramatically in comparison to the sniping (I mean, it’s in the game title!).  But that doesn’t change the fact that when you get to line up those sweet sniping shots, there is no game that does it better, at least not at the moment.  I recommend sneaking your way into your sniping nests, though, for the best overall experience.


CONTENT

…still a bit steep at $40…

The campaign lasts about 8 hours, and while there is a free DLC map, this is also a rather cut-and-dry single playthrough.  While there are different weapons to try out, they really don’t change the flavor much, and while you can decide to take different approaches, it all still boils down to just lackluster things until you get to those oh-so-sweet sniping moments.  The good news is that it’s not a full price game, but it’s still a bit steep at $40.  The better news is that it’s often on sale on Steam, and that’s my recommendation on getting the best snipes-per-dollar.


PRESENTATION

Not bad, even if it’s clearly a last gen game…

Believe it or not, this is one of the better looking AND running games on the Steam Deck.  I recommend 720p on High with an unlocked framerate, as 900p seems to push it a bit too hard and running lower settings does little to alleviate this (unless you want to lock it to 30fps).  Yes, the framerate fluctuates, but I find it averages a health 40-50fps which improves the heavier feel of the game.  In fact, it runs surprisingly well when you realize the textures and foliage are more detailed than you thought on closer inspection.  Not bad, even if it is clearly a last gen game, complete with some occasional visual glitches.  You might also be wondering about what exactly you’re sniping, and the world lore is a bit anti-terrorist boilerplate.  In being a lower budget game, you don’t get cinematics, but just briefing videos that pretty much tell you you’re the good guy getting paid to take down bad guys in the interest of, unfortunately, preventing a fictional place in the middle-east from becoming a terrorist threat to humanity.  Wow, so edgy, much surprise.


CONCLUSION

…does sniping so well that I can’t think of another game that does it better.

Having reviewed Sniper Elite 5, I can make a very easy comparison between these two games.  The lower budget (and price) of this game means no cinematics, but when comparing the sniping mechanics, not only does this game absolutely blow Sniper Elite 5 out of the water, but it also does sniping so well that I can’t even think of another game that does it better.  Outside of that, however, things are about on par with its primary sniping competitor: generic gunplay and janky, lackluster things to do in a one-man-army-against-evil-odds world.  It does pull off being a better-looking game overall, though, even despite me reviewing this on the Steam Deck.  In summary: if you love sniping, this is THE game to get for the most sublime boom-headshot experience; but you might want to get it on sale.

I give Sniper Ghost Warrior Contracts 2

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