Ubisoft's open secret is now finally official: Tom Clancy's Ghost Recon: Wildlands is getting a sequel. Ghost Recon: Breakpoint is a whole new game taking place on a fictional island in the South Pacific. You've crashed behind enemy lines, you're cut off from the outside world, and it's up to you to take down the rogue Ghosts that have captured the island.
'Rogue Ghosts,' you ask? Yes. This time you won't be up against Bolivian Sicarios; rather, your enemy is an old member of Ghost Recon who has had it up to his neck with the limits put on black ops missions. Which is a surprising turn, considering black ops soldiers are essentially left to their own devices and their crimes ignored by their governments. Your enemy is Cole D Walker, the head of a group of ex-soldiers called The Wolves. He's played by Jon Bernthal, who you may know from The Walking Dead and The Punisher.
As rogue Ghosts go, The Wolves are a darn sight more dangerous than Casper The Friendly Ghost's uncles. Armed to the teeth and in command of an army of drones, they'll be hunting you across the island of Aurora, trying their best to put an end to your insurrection.
Much like Ghost Recon: Wildlands, you can play Breakpoint either solo or in four-player co-op. Though this time, in solo mode, you'll be accompanied by three portable drones that come fitted with guns, instead of the AI companions of the last game.
There's a new emphasis on survival abilities in Breakpoint. You can receive injuries that will leave you hobbling slowly, your aim impaired, and becoming a real liability to your squad. You can heal these at a campsite - which you'll find dotted around the landscape. Or, if you've the gear with you, you can heal them on the move. You can also give your teammates a fireman's lift, so if they're injured and slowing you down you can carry them to safety. Or, presumably, throw them off a cliff. We'll need to experiment with this more when Breakpoint comes out.
I'm sure you wouldn't use this new power to grief your friends...
Your camp isn't just for healing up. It's also where you can eat rations (which give you a buff to certain stats, like your health or stamina), pick your gear, and change your class. In Breakpoint you can pick from a set of classes, each of which has a special ability. For instance, the Panther class can deploy a smoke bomb to cover your squad's escape.
You can also hang around in your camp, choosing what time of day you want to break cover and go on your next mission. It's not just the time of day that changes, as there's dynamic weather at play, too. So waiting around in camp for night might also bring with it heavy rain - which, from the preview we were shown, looks impressive.
The whole island of Aurora is a sight to behold, if a tad unbelievable. The island has beaches, fjords, mountain ranges, thick forests, and even a volcano. If I were a betting man (and I am), then I'd say this was a fine set up for a Ghost Recon battle royale mode.
If there's one thing Ghost Recon does well, it's cracking views
The best new skill, and one that's available to all classes, is the ability to lie on the ground and camouflage yourself like Arnie in Predator. You smear mud on your face and blend into the earth, invisible to your enemies. When an enemy walks by you can pop out to shoot them in the back. It's a neat system and one that will be interesting to use in PvP.
Breakpoint is going to launch with PvP modes, though Ubisoft was being quiet about what they would be. It would be exciting to have groups of squads free to explore all the island and hunt each other. Or have a large group of players playing as Wolves and one team of Ghosts trying to escape Aurora.
Breakpoint's campaign sees you trying to take the island back from The Wolves. When you first arrive (via a crashing helicopter), you have no intel and no targets. You were sent to Aurora after all contact was lost with Skell Technology, a drone manufacturer based on the island. Walker and his Wolves have seized control of the island and you'll need to work with the locals to disassemble his operation. This means raiding camps, hacking computers, and building profiles of Walker's operation before unlocking larger missions to take members of his team down.
The Wolves aren't just Spec Ops soldiers, they have access to to high tech gear, too
From what I saw of the campaign it's too early to say if it will be good. It looks like a pretty standard action movie set up, with cutscenes full of cliched dialogue and gruff military-speak.
Ghost Recon: Wildlands wasn't able to deliver on its grand ambitions - the game had a lot of systems which didn't come together, making for a bitty and frustrating game. Maybe Breakpoint will be able to solve those problems.
Featured Image Credit: Ubisoft