Topple a cartel empire in ‘Ghost Recon Wildlands’

Player choice and a beautiful open world help “Wildlands” complete its objectives.

The newest entry in the popular Tom Clancy series of shooter games is “Ghost Recon Wildlands.” The “Ghost Recon” series has emphasized tactical gameplay in the form of a small squad of elite soldiers.

“Wildlands” is no different. Players are put in charge of a four man team of elite operators tasked with dismantling a Bolivian-based drug cartel.

What helps make Wildlands different from other shooters is its approach to an open-world concept along with a multiplayer option.

That’s right, the elite four-man squad can be composed of four actual players working together to complete missions. Each player has the same abilities. There are no limitations on what role each person has, although if your team wants to assign roles to each player, that is up to the four of you.

Unlike some past squad games that allowed either a single-player or multiplayer experience, namely “The Division,” “Wildlands” is actually fun, no matter if you play with computer sqaudmates or actual people.

What surprised me was the amount of skill the computer squadmates offered.

The computer-controlled squad stays silent if you choose to methodically eliminate an enemy base.

But if you choose to go loud, your squad will join you in the firefight. Unlocking certain skill points can improve the effectiveness of these squadmates.

Along with allowing players to choose who they play with, “Wildlands” gives players multiple ways to customize their operator.

I like to use a suppressed assault rifle and a sniper rifle to silently take out guards. Some players like to use loud machine guns and explosives.

There is an option for every type of play style. Approaching from the cover of trees? Equip dark green and brown clothes and armor to blend in.

Crawling on some snow-covered hills to take the perfect shot? Use all white gear to become one with the snow.

Players can also unlock skill points to make their operators and squad deadlier as they progress in the game.

It’s all up to the player how they want to spend the skill points that they collect along the way.

Speaking of collecting, there are plenty of collectable weapons scattered across Bolivia. Collecting these weapons and associated attachments will help players grow their arsenal.

This lets players try new ways to play the game or help improve on their set play style. The wide variety of landscapes gives players a nice countryside to fight in.

The Bolivian landscape changes from dense woodland terrain to rolling tundras and snow-capped mountains. Giving players an open world to roam in would have been wasted if the world didn’t have a varying landscape.

The only downside to “Wildlands” would be the slight repetitiveness of the missions.

With each new region entered, the overall objective stays the same. Collect intel, complete a few missions to weaken the region and finally topple the region’s leader.

The redeeming quality of this repetitive gameplay is the different ways players can approach each mission. “Wildlands” kept me coming back day after day to see what new ways I could take on the Santa Blanca cartel.

I found many different ways to approach a battle with various combat tactics with the many weapons and gadgets at my disposal.

Having my squad of friends or computer generated teammates made the experience even better.