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Sniper Elite 4 review

You know the drill: as a lone sniper you are dropped behind enemy lines, stalking the enemy while carefully making your way through the map to the objective without raising the alarm. Rebellion have mixed things up with Sniper Elite 4, with raising the alarm not being such a catastrophe, and huge, open world maps provide plenty of challenge and variety with multiple optional objectives.

Set immediately after the events of Sniper Elite 3, you are placed in the boots of Karl Fairburne, although you’d be forgiven in thinking he is B.J. Blazkowicz. Gritty ink sketches fill in the story of the war in 1943, while full colour cutscenes paint in the events of each chapter of the game. It looks great. Textures and lighting are all convincingly rendered and although Battlefield 1 shouldn’t be too worried, the detail and colour throughout the maps of Sniper Elite 4 should be commended.

The graphic x-ray kill cams that the series is renowned for return, but bring even more brutality. Melee takedowns are treated to the same bonecrunchingly brutal x-ray finesse, while slow motion explosive kills from a mine or a tripwire make for some satisfying x-ray kill cams. You can even delay the effects of these traps – instead of nailing the first soldier a trap can detonate taking out a whole squad. It’s gruesome, brutal and oh so satisfying.

The environment also plays a greater role in Sniper Elite 4. Vegetation and low walls provide excellent cover to stalk unsuspecting enemies, while ledges offer a great escape route should you need it. Often clambering up well-placed wooden poles allows access to hidden vantage points – but it was frustrating that not all buildings and drainpipes could be climbed, even though they looked perfectly suitable. Lighting also needs to be considered carefully. Keeping to the shadows and taking out lights can certainly give you the upper hand, although it’s a shame we weren’t treated to a Thief-esque warning system that details how ‘hidden’ you are.

Each map is expertly crafted, offering interesting layouts and plenty of variety, but not everything can be picked off from the safety of a tall tower. Going in all guns blazing was a sure fire way to get yourself killed in the previous games. In Sniper Elite 4 busting out the Thompson is often a far more viable option. There isn’t always a plane overhead or generator to sabotage in order to mask your gunfire, and with limited suppressed ammo there will be times when the enemy will triangulate your position. This is what makes the secondary weapon a great backup. No longer does being spotted feel like a failure. Often doing so can make for a better tactic than trying to ghost the whole mission.

If you do favour the life of a pure sniper, then the binoculars will be your best friend. They help locate enemy positions and highlight environmental takedown opportunities, but they also detail the rank, attitude and items each soldier is carrying – ideal if you want to collect all the hidden items in each area. Collecting the many letters and notes hidden will not only give you insight into the objectives of each map, but letters paint a more human element to the guy you just slaughtered. Notes from a loved one will make you feel an ounce of guilt over your merciless killing.

If you don’t have the patience for scouting then you needn’t worry. A minimap shows nearby soldiers – although it does make the game a little too easy – and while you might not want to ramp up the difficulty, which makes AI more ruthless and introduces other bullet dynamics, you can adjust the difficulty via a new custom mode. Yes, Sniper Elite has gone and done a Forza. You can pretty much adjust every individual element of the game to give you the perfect challenge. It’s brilliant, every game should offer this!

Once you’ve completed each of the eight campaign areas, a set of challenges is revealed, most of which are quite… challenging. Bringing a co-op partner along for the ride certainly makes for double the fun but also half the burden of trying to best these unique and dastardly challenges.

As great as Sniper Elite 4 is, common complaints still remain. The enemy AI has been overhauled – able to mount flanking attacks and work out where you’re hiding – but they are still pretty stupid on normal difficulty. Often I was able to run headlong into an enemy for an easy knife kill without them so much as uttering “ACTHUNG!”. At times you can really torment the AI and bait enemies by purposely leaving a dead body for them to find, leading them into a choke point or hidden trap.

As with the previous titles, at launch, there is a real lack of competitive and co-op survival maps (six and three) although future maps have been promised, releasing for all owners of the game. Deathmatch always seemed a little odd to me, so I’m glad to see the return of No Cross – a game of counter sniping – with two teams confined to their own area of the map. I also thoroughly enjoyed Control, which was an intense game of sniping, trapping and melee killing in equal measures as two teams via for control over a position on the map.

Sniper Elite has always excited me with its spectacularly brutal x-ray kill cams and stealthy sniping gameplay, but it’s also frustrated me when you get caught out. Sniper Elite 4 has put this problem to rest. While Sniping is the preferred option, if you need to go balls deep, guns blazing, it doesn’t play like you are trying to rectify a mistake. Each level was interesting with map layouts that offered different challenges that make you switch up your tactics, but above all else, it held my interest, something the previous titles failed to do.

With so much freedom to taunt and takedown your enemies while completing objectives in any way you see fit, it’s hard not to draw similarities with Metal Gear Solid V, minus the grandeur over-the-top storytelling and characters, but if you like MGS5 then you’ll thoroughly enjoy Rebellion’s fourth Sniper title.

Thanks to Rebellion and Lick PR for supporting TiX

Sniper Elite 4 details released

The 4th installment in Rebellion’s Sniper Elite series continues with the World War 2 theme. A video has been released entitled “Italy 1943” and shows previously unseen concept arts, environments and story details. The video is the first part of a series of new story related trailers put out ahead of it’s 2017 release.

Narrative Designer Colin Harvey sets the scene for the game’s thrilling World War 2 campaign

“In SNIPER ELITE 4, Karl is plunged into a country that’s been under the yoke of Mussolini’s Fascism for over two decades. Political opposition to the regime was either crushed early on or escaped abroad. Now, though, discontent is growing…”

The E3 2016 gameplay footage certainly had fans of the series excited, including me. If you have yet to see the gameplay footage go HERE.

SNIPER ELITE 4 launches February 14, 2017 on Xbox One and PC

Zombie Army Trilogy review


Okay, so what if I told you that there’s this new game hitting the Xbox One by Rebellion that lets you experience World War 2 if Hitler managed to summon a zombie army? If you haven’t caught on yet, then well… it’s this. Zombie Army Trilogy is here and it brings with it remastered versions of previously released Sniper Elite Nazi Zombie Army that were only available on PC, as well as a whole bunch of other content.

If you happen to be looking for a bargain when it comes to price and game content, look no further than this gory title. Zombie Army Trilogy contains both the Sniper Elite: Nazi Zombie Army titles that were previously released on PC (chapters one and two) as well as the brand new third one which is without a doubt, the best one yet. Each title contains roughly five missions and each of these will take you a good half hour to complete, even on the easiest difficulties but it’ll be notably longer depending on how many people you play with or the difficulty level.

I hope you’re good with a sniper rifle, as without it, you’re completely and utterly screwed. Zombie Army Trilogy’s gameplay is practically identical to the fantastic Sniper Elite series, it’s all about controlling your breathing and shooting zombies in the head, hoping you can chain together shots. The best part about it? The bullet/kill camera. There are very few things more satisfying than watching your bullet travel in slow-motion through a ruined city and piercing a zombies eyeball, going through his brain, then hitting the grenade in the pocket of the zombie behind him. Even after playing the entire series, it never gets old.

Zombie Army Trilogy can be played in solo mode however it’s best experienced in coop with friends or using the super handy matchmaking. The game allows up to four people to tackle any mission in the game or the new horde mode (which will get to later, don’t panic!) and you’ll certainly need it if you plan on having any luck with the harder difficulties. You’ll need to work together placing traps, setting up ambushes and in general, running for your damn life hoping someone will revive you.


It may sound a tad dull knowing you use a sniper rifle throughout, but you have plenty of different variations which can be accessed at any safe house. Almost every notable rifle you’ve heard of from the war (both, auto and semi-auto) are available with a scope, as well as a range of secondary guns like shotguns and sub machine guns, but unfortunately these are practically useless. If that’s not enough, there’s a whole bunch of different equipment that can be used to tackle the zombie hordes such as grenades, trip mines, landmines and dynamite.

Right so, I keep bringing this up; the difficulty. Zombie Army Trilogy is brutally tough and if you aren’t a good shot, you’re not going to have a good time, especially as the sniper rifle is the only viable weapon throughout the game. Every level revolves around the player shooting their way through hundreds of zombies, attempting to reach different parts of the mission to complete objectives. Problem is, those zombies travel in enormous packs and never stop moving. This combined with the harder difficulties which alter things such as bullet gravity and damage dealt, make this a one tough title.

The hordes of zombies are one problem, the bosses battles that occasionally pop up are even tougher! Mostly because of trial and error, trying to finger out just how the player exposes and abuses their weak spots. They may be bullet sponges but it’s damn fun fighting them because of the various mechanics which need to be taken advantage of. Not only will you face bosses, you’ll stumble across stronger variations of regular zombies such as suicide bombers, heavily armoured troops and even giant nemesis-looking mutations that carry light machine guns.

Every time you think you’re doing well, even on the easier modes, you’ll sprint head first into a brick wall difficulty curve which is unbearably frustrating to deal with. It’s disappointing to see this is still a problem, as it was a fairly a notable issue even on the PC versions many years ago. And if you’re playing on your own, it’s even tougher to tackle as you won’t have anyone to revive you, the checkpoints in the game are equally frustrating, some making zero sense.


One thing that has certainly surprised me after sinking tonnes of hours into the PC version of Sniper Elite Nazi Zombie Army is just how well it’s transitioned to the consoles. The game runs unbelievably smoothly, even when the screen is filled to the brim with zombie blood, severed limbs and trip mine explosions. The game looks fantastic too, albeit extremely dark as the vast majority of the game takes place during the night.

A brand new addition to the Nazi Zombie Army series is horde mode which by now, we’re all fairly familiar with as it regularly appears in several video games today. Either in solo or coop, the player is set with the task of holding out against increasingly difficult waves of Nazi zombies in a variety of different locations and equipment. It’s fantastic fun and a bloody tough challenge even with the best strategy, one simple mistake and a zombie will be feasting on your delicious brains… I’ve played this too much.

Zombie Army Trilogy is a must own title for any fan that enjoys slaughtering zombies or playing with friends. It does contain a few frustrating problems such as the ridiculous difficulty spikes and silly little bugs here and there, but it contains an unbelievable amount of enjoyable content and will keep you occupied with friends for a bloody long time.

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Thanks to Rebellion for supplying TiX with a download code

Sniper Elite 3 Xbox One Review

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Rebellion and 505 Games deliver the third instalment in the Sniper Elite series that puts a greater emphasis now on the gore-fest slow motion bullet kills than anything else you’ll see in-game. As a prequel to Sniper Elite V2 from 2012 which in itself was a remake, the mind-set of maybe being third-time-lucky in an attempt to produce a decent solid and satisfying shooter has failed. Sniper Elite 3 is the all dancing, brighter, shinier version of the other Sniper Elite’s with continued distinguishing shit AI and visual pop-ins the franchise could be famous for. You may not be able to polish a turd, but Rebellion has proved you can at least roll it in glitter!

For next-gen consoles the bar was raised in terms of expectations, but unfortunately the game falls flat in its face in being anything remotely exciting as far as WWII shooters are concerned. Starting out with the positives that are most noticeable from the graphical improvements – Sniper Elite III on Xbox One now appears to look exactly how you would have expected it on Xbox 360. With Sniper Elite V2 being completely basic in its visual capacity it is nice to see a more developed and fancier version of Sniper Elite on Xbox One, but still not “all-that” in the way of what you might be expecting. If anything, the best visual display is in the slow motion bullet kills with a much more refined impression of internal body parts that come crashing and smashing out as you perform perfectly timed and aligned shots to head, lungs, heart and other organs. If you are not familiar with Sniper Elite, in slow motion the bullet tears through the air before forcefully impounding itself into the body, and you get to see organs tear and burst, bones shatter and your enemy dies on the ground in pool of his own blood. The downside in this title is that it comes across completely over-done, way too much and with almost every shot. By the time you’ve completed one mission you’ve practically had a biology lesson on every vital organ in the human body.

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Other visual enhancements are the environments themselves; although a dated WWII period you are stealthily wondering around North Africa with rocky deserts and landscapes around three times larger than previous Sniper Elite games, and additionally the greener levels with heavy foliage and trees appear bright and inviting to explore. There are more objects and enemies placed within the levels than in any other Sniper Elite title also making the game seem more difficult in some areas which require tactfully though out processes. On the whole with the visuals it has given the title a cartoon-like appearance due to the brightness and enhanced lighting. Nothing in the way of visual realism, but definite improvements over any other Sniper Elite, albeit still basic for next-gen!

Another positive (yes there is another despite my introduction to the game) comes in the way that gameplay has changed. Likely due to the increased scale of environments, but there now feels like more player choices can be made in your exploration of the levels. It is not entirely open-world feel due to the missions which lead you in the directions set, but you can take far more different routes and paths to your objectives set on screen and interact more with the levels through your decision making. By having more choices that allow you decide how to set up and kill an enemy from a distance or even a whole squad of soldiers marching in your direction enables you to feel as though you’re really setting your own direction. Cook grenades, blow up fuel tanks, and go prone with a selection of weapons at your own leisure. So long as you kill who needs to be killed, travel to where you need to be placed, all the other movements in the middle to clear the way are there for you to have as much fun with as you need. In-between the important tasks – it’s your battleground!

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It’s a no brainer that with a game titled Sniper Elite your obvious choice of primary weapon is a Sniper Rifle, but you do have the option for more close range guns at your disposal that I found were more useful taking out enemies who were on the hunt for you when up close. A range of SMG’s, Silenced Pistols and even a Panzerschrek Rocket Launcher offer the quick get-the-fuck-out-of-here scenarios when targeted at close range.  The further you progress in the game, the more you are able to unlock and customise your weapon load-out.  From the Inventory screen you can additionally set up grenades, Med-Kits, Dynamite and Trip Mines to further aid you in your missions.  Depending on your difficulty level is how realistic the Sniping become as it takes in to account realistic bullet physics, this is somewhat counter-balanced when you have a game that tells you where to aim though, but at the easier settings it is pretty much a clear shot regardless of marksmanship, weather and distance. For a real challenge and exceptional difficulty to get the most out of Sniper Elite III you need to play it on Authentic difficulty (if you can handle it).

The AI in the game just ruin the experience completely with dawdling around on foot, looking in the opposite direction and some just casually walking right past you when on the hunt for your trail following a loud successful kill-shot. It is very easy to be clear of enemies and completely ridiculous how bone-idle they are considering they are elite soldiers.  You can kill one soldier and the guy standing right next to him will give an all clear within seconds – it’s like no one gives a shit that you just killed someone, he’ll just sit right down on the seat and wait to get shot in the kidneys or lungs just like everyone else!

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The campaign itself is a predictable average experience; it is mostly fun but as a next step game into a new console era it is another been and done, tried and tested step in the same old territory.  Expanding the game further, however is a full set of Multiplayer Modes that take advantage of the Xbox One Smart Match where you can just sit back, relax and do other things in-between the game trying to find you a Lobby to join. Five different modes of online gameplay are available from familiar ground with Team Deathmatch, a Free for All Deathmatch, Team Distance King mode where it’s all about Team kill distance, Distance King where it’s all about Solo kill distance – and finally, No Cross which is Team Deathmatch with a twist. The twist is that both teams are separated with no chance of a close quarters fight, so this is the ultimate hide & seek!

Multiplayer with a decent team is extremely fun, but finding matches seems to take quite some time at the time of writing. Sniper Elite over all is desperately crying out for modernisation and innovation.  It really is about time that World War II was put to rest – and despite a rather decent multiplayer across some very large maps, the whole package is rather dull and not quite as exciting as I had initially hoped.

You’ll be trading this in, in next to no time!

Thank you to Xbox for providing the review code.

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First 15 Minutes of Sniper Elite 3 Video


Above is a video of the first 15 minutes of the latest chapter in the Sniper Elite series. Sniper Elite 3, will take players to the unforgiving yet exotic terrain of WWII’s North Africa conflict in a battle against a deadly new foe.

The video is a PS4 version, but since the Xbox One version is not expected to look much different if any – it’s worthy of a viewing on thisisxbox.com

Sniper Elite 3 will be released at retail and digitally on Xbox One from June 27th, 2014.

Sniper Elite III – Multiplayer Trailer

Rebelllion and 505 games today unveil the latest trailer for Sniper Elite 3 covering its unique 12 player Multiplayer and 2 player online Co-Op modes, available for both console and PC from launch.

Play in tense adversarial multiplayer with five unique modes of online competitive action, where stealth, re-location and teamwork is key.

Additionally play the entire campaign in two player online co-op, or put your teamwork to the ultimate test in two dedicated collaborative co-op modes, Overwatch and Survival.

Earn Medals and Ribbons as you play, gain XP across all game modes, customise your character, weapons and loadout.

Sniper Elite 3 Releases on July 1

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The latest chapter in the Sniper Elite series, Sniper Elite 3, will take players to the unforgiving yet exotic terrain of WWII’s North Africa conflict in a battle against a deadly new foe. Sniper Elite 3 will be released at retail and digitally on Xbox One from July 1st, 2014.

Some say Hitler shot himself in a bunker in Berlin in 1945. Others believe he fell to a sniper bullet two years earlier during a secret trip to North Africa. Or was it his double? Decide for yourself when you get your hands on Sniper Elite 3’s pre-order bonus “Hunt The Grey Wolf.”

Hitler, Allied code name “Grey Wolf”, and his double have embarked upon a clandestine trip to the Libyan port town of Tobruk in 1942. In order to prepare for this mission, and that crucial final shot, you must infiltrate the ancient streets and crumbling rooftops of the German-held town using stealth and distraction. Featuring an expansive open environment, and randomized target identities, journals and locations, no two playthroughs will be the same. The question is – can you tell fact from fiction, the real target from the double?

You can pre-order Sniper Elite 3 at participating retailers and a collector’s edition for Xbox One and the PlayStation 4 features a limited edition ammo tin box, dossier, three exclusive ammo and weapon DLC packs, collectible playing cards, sniper shooting range target, dog tag and a bullet-shaped torch pen.

Sniper Elite V2 Review

Sniper Elite V2 developed by Rebellion and published by 505Games, is a complete remake of the 2005 Xbox Original hit ‘Sniper Elite’. Using the same timeframe of events and location during the WWII Battle of Berlin in the Spring of 1945 – in V2 you take on the role of an American Office of Strategic Services officer named, Karl Fairburne who must kill scientists involved in the German V-2 rocket programme, hence the title of Sniper Elite V2. It’s a third person shooter and heavily relies on stealth to complete your main objectives. Continue reading Sniper Elite V2 Review