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Sniper Elite 5 – Initial Thoughts

I’ve been aware of the Sniper Elite series since its inception, I think. It’s always been on my periphery, something I was sure I’d enjoy, but just never got around to.

Seeing it always review well as the series grew, Sniper Elite was always a “I’ll get to that one day” game.

Now, thankfully, I’ve been sent review codes for Sniper Elite 5 and the two season passes. Perfectly timed for the release of the complete edition.

Is it what I expected? Is it objectively good? What works and what doesn’t?

If you’ve followed for long enough, you’ll know that the multi-part reviews examine exactly these questions.

Here we go!

Sniper Elite 5 - River


I never really have thought to the type of game Sniper Elite might be. I’ve seen loads and loads of clips of cool x-ray shots, bullets flying through heads, lungs eyeballs etc. But I guess I just assumed Sniper Elite was a game where you maybe move from point to point and clear-out areas as a sniper.

Kind of like the excellent sniper mode in Hitman, but on a grander scale.

I was wrong!

Yes, sniping and cool x-ray shots are a big part of the game. But actually, Sniper Elite is more of a third-person, stealth action game.

My head needed time to adjust, because I suddenly had a lot more open world space and a lot less security of sniping in a perch.

Once I adjusted my expectations, I’ve found Sniper Elite to be right up my alley. Think Splinter Cell combined with Hitman and Dishonored and you’re somewhere close.

Sniper Elite couldn’t be geared more towards my tastes.

Sniper Elite 5 - Cover

Setting things up

Being a few hours in, I can’t speak to much to the story of Sniper Elite 5. But, we find ourselves in a World War II setting.

As I understand it, that’s part for the course in the series. Different locales, same war.

Sniper Elite 5 opens up nicely with a tutorial on the basics, movement, weapon swapping, ammo swapping, stealth and so on. It’s a lovely way to get you into basically getting some brain-smashing kills straight away.

Then, it opens up into an open map full of objectives and side objectives.

Again, I wasn’t anticipating this, I thought it was all about getting perched and sniping. But actually, you get right into the action and approach everything as you see fit!

I’ve blown-up anti-air turrets, beach defenses, you name it. None of which I expected to do in a game called Sniper Elite. But the cat and mouse gameplay, stealth, booby-trapping bodies to buy more time later. Sniper Elite 5 is way more action than I could have anticipated.

Hitting about 4 hours, I feel like there’s a lot ahead of me, which is great. There’s content and replayability here in spades, so if you find that the gameplay loop works for you, it seems to me that you could get countless hours out of Sniper Elite 5.

We’ll see, this could change, but my initial impressions are very much of awe.

Sniper Elite 5 - Lights out

More to come

We need to talk about Axis invasions……then we’ll go over the audio and visuals. We’ll look at how it runs on the Steam Deck, too. Although that will be a separate piece entirely.

I need to drop into the multiplayer and see how that works as well. The next phase of the review is all about getting to the meat of the game. I can’t review what I haven’t played, although that doesn’t stop some places.

I know there’s much to do, and I’m genuinely excited to get there. Which is always a good sign. I’ve been known to return games after initial hours of gameplay if it doesn’t click.

Sniper Elite 5 feels like it might be a gateway into the wider series for me, and that’s an exciting prospect! Lets see how we go in the coming weeks.

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