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I’ll begin my review by letting you know that this was my first time playing a game in the Sniper Elite series. This review may help those of you that were like me. This game may have caught your attention, and you’re wondering if it’s worth your time or hard-earned money. In this Sniper Elite 5 review, I’ll briefly explain what this game is about, and let you know what I enjoyed, and some issues I experienced. I’ll end my review by giving Sniper Elite 5 a rating, which we call the fun factor score on this site.
What is Sniper Elite 5?
In Sniper Elite 5 you’ll play as elite marksman Karl Fairburne. Set during World War II, you are part of a covert operation that must make contact with the French Resistance. As you play through the game you’ll discover a secret Nazi project that threatens to end the war before the allies can invade Europe.
You’ll need to fight your way through the game’s 9 story missions, gather intel, and complete numerous objectives to ultimately achieve your goal. Sniper Elite 5 is available to play solo or via co-op, and is available on Xbox, PS4, PS5, and PC.
You can choose to play this game stealthy or overtly aggressive, or a combination of both. The maps in Sniper Elite 5 are huge, and I often found myself on one mission for a few hours. You will have your main task to complete, but can easily be distracted by discovering intel or small enemy battles. Some intel you pick up during the mission will add new objects for you to complete on the map. You’ll want to do as much of these as you can to earn XP and obtain achievements such as new weapons or upgrades.
Sniper Elite 5 is best when you are doing everything you can to play as covert as possible. This means carefully taking out your targets, and hiding evidence so you are not discovered. If you are discovered, enemies can sound a nearby alarm which will put much of the map on high alert. This can severely hinder your progress, and even make it a challenge to move forward in-game.
What I Liked About Sniper Elite 5
I enjoyed much of Sniper Elite 5’s campaign. Even though there are only 9 levels, there is plenty to do in each one, and new objectives will appear on your map as you complete different tasks and learn more about the target you need to take out. I chose to take the more lethal approach when I played, but if you really like to take your time you may be able to complete your missions without firing a single shot, but what’s the fun in that?
The next aspect I really enjoyed about this game is the visuals. This game is not necessarily a visual spectacle, but there is a ton of attention to detail in the level design. You can really tell that the developer took their time bringing this world to life for you. Many of the mission areas have multiple points of entry… There is a lot of Nazi imagery and propaganda on the walls and on banners. You definitely get the feel as if you are behind enemy lines, and each level is unique enough for you to plan out how you’ll traverse each one depending on your play style and objective.
Sniping and Combat
I cannot review Sniper Elite 5 without talking about the sniping, and combat. Sniping in this game is not too difficult, but it feels rewarding when you hit a target that has been giving you a little bit of trouble. if you’ve ever played any type of shooter where sniping is a huge part then you should be able to jump into Sniper Elite with relative ease, and the slow-mo shot, whenever you nail the perfect snipe, is oh so satisfying.
It’s important to take your time, and try to hit your targets the first time, as you may not get another shot. If you miss, the enemy can be alerted and might even move from its location or sound an alarm for reinforcements. Your ammo is also limited so if too many enemies are alerted you may find yourself in a position where you are easily outgunned.
You are given two secondary weapons, a pistol, and an SMG. I primarily used the pistol to take out opponents with a silencer when I didn’t want to make a lot of noise and I was close to being discovered. When fighting in close quarters the overall combat can feel a bit stiff and even sluggish at times. If you can get close enough, I’d recommend using the option to take down your opponents without firing a shot.
You can use the SMG, but I really didn’t use this too much in-game. With the controls feeling as stiff as they do, the SMG didn’t really feel like it fit into the sandbox as well as the other options. Oddly enough I was able to come across a light machine gun while playing, and if you find it please pick it up. This weapon was an absolute blast to play with it.
One gripe I will add here is when picking up a weapon from the ground like an LMG, sniper, or another gun, your character does this weird thing where if you switch back to your main weapons you drop the one you just picked up. I’m not sure why this is a thing, but this means I had to drop the LMG to switch to the snipe, and then go back to pick up the LMG again. It would be nice to have the option to permanently add something like this to my inventory until I run out of ammo.
My favorite part of Sniper Elite 5 is its Co-op. When playing Co-Op Lord Smiz and I had a blast working together to plan out how we should tackle each objective. This aspect in my opinion is where Sniper Elite 5 really shines. It’s easy to ping items for your teammate, or distract an enemy so your teammate can get an easy stealth takedown. The two of you can stick together or strategically position yourselves in different parts of the map, but if one of you is permanently taken down then you will have to reload the mission.
There are in-game achievements for taking out enemies in a special way. I won’t go into spoiler territory as I want you to play this game for yourself but as an example, we earned a new weapon by disposing of our target in a pool of wet cement. This required stealth, and both of us to work together to down enemies. Either one of us could have done this alone, but having a teammate hear really helps make little moments like this even more enjoyable.
What I Didn’t Like
I don’t have very many complaints about Sniper Elite 5. The gameplay overall is relatively smooth, and visually the game just works. I did come across a few minor glitches, but none of them was relatively game-breaking. During co-op, there was a moment where Smiz’s character was completely stuck in the reload animation, and I experienced a weird glitch where my character was suspended in the air for a few seconds. All of these minor glitches seem like they are part of the territory with new releases nowadays, but none of these should ruin the experience for you as they are extremely minor.
Now I absolutely hate the multiplayer in this game, and there are a few reasons for this. The first is there aren’t a variety of modes to choose from, and for some reason, I was having connection issues. At the time of this review, you’ll have Free-For-All, Survival (which I did like), a mode called ‘No cross’, a basic death match where you can pair up with a team or a squad, and an option for custom games.
In Survival, you can match with other players online or squad up with a few friends. This is your basic horde or survival game type. You will have to hold a position while enemies spawn, and as the rounds increase so does the difficulty. I did enjoy this mode, but not as much as I enjoyed playing through the main story missions. If you’re looking for something to do after you’ve maxed out the main campaign then I highly recommend checking this mode out.
Conclusion and Fun Factor Score
I truly had a blast playing Sniper Elite 5. This game was really an unexpected gem for me, and I can see why the series has such critical acclaim. The campaign, story, and design all make for a great solo and co-op experience, but the weak multiplayer aspect of the game really hurt this game’s fun factor. Based on my experience with Sniper Elite 5, I’ve decided to give it a fun factor score of 8 out of 10.
I do think you will enjoy this game, and I encourage you to check it out, currently, it’s available on Xbox Game Pass so if you have a membership, download it and let me know what you think in the comments section.