CO-OP REVIEW: ‘Ghost Recon Breakpoint’ Is an Expansive World that’s at its Best with Friends (Xbox One)

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Ghost Recon Breakpoint

Tom Clancy’s Ghost Recon Breakpoint is an expansive open-world military shooter with plenty of missions to do, plenty of skill trees to manipulate, and it’s all better in co-op mode. With a campaign that supports four-person drop-in-drop-out co-op, Ubisoft has taken the time to craft an experience that hinges on your ability to play tactically, work as a team, and immerse yourself in the world of the Ghosts by allowing you to play in your own squad.

As we’ve done in the past, we thought it best to highlight what it’s like to play Ghost Recon Breakpoint from the co-op perspective. To do this, we all played together, although not necessarily at the same time, to get the most out of the co-op experience.

1. How does playing Ghost Recon Breakpoint solo compare to playing co-op?

Kate: Co-op makes Ghost Recon Breakpoint. While you can play the game solo the world, its enemies, and it’s quests are better when tackling them with a friend. The way the world is set up, it necessitates team play. Whether it’s clearing a building or evading wolves, it’s all easier with other players and almost impossible alone – at least using absolute stealth.

Quinn: Solo gameplay is rather boring. It’s harder and you have to be more careful and methodical because you have no one to back you up. And, honestly, that’s just not my preferred play style. So, co-op is much more fun. Co-op is definitely more forgiving so you also have the leisure to derp around during missions without there being severe consequences. I also just really like playing bumper-cars with helicopters, okay?

Matt: Solo was not as enjoyable to me compared to co-op since I enjoy playing with friends and all the benefits of that. This game clearly made to be played with other people so playing co-op is taking full advantage of what Ghost Recon Breakpoint has to offer. Solo play is nice at times, if you are really looking to play to your own playstyle and not have to hope your teammates don’t mess things up. I play usually very stealth and tactical so when ended up on a team with someone who would just run into each compound guns ablazing it did get annoying at times.

Rashaad: In solo you have no one to really be tactical with. You have to do everything on your own, from recon to action, and with no one to cover you when you’re injured, you have to be very methodical in approach.

2. How tactical is the game?

Kate: The game allows you to play how you want – you can burst in and shotgun your way through a compound but it takes longer and has consequences. There is a benefit to working as a team and stealthily approaching points and clearing them, and the coordination with your team this requires adds a dynamic that allows you facilitates hours of play. That being said, leaving tactics behind is almost impossible alone, with enemies that move around the compounds, reckless entrances will bring nothing but frustration and a lot of respawning.

Quinn: It really depends on your loadout and the mission you’re on. So, at times you can just Rambo through enemies but there are also missions that require you to be tactical and use stealth to complete the objective. So the game allows for a good combination of the two.

Matt: The game does allow for both, but does feel the game caters more towards stealth and tactical side of things. Following the main storyline, this all makes sense as you are stuck on a giant island of people just wanting to kill you. Overall there is a nice balance and I think depending on not only your playstyle, but your teammate’s playstyle will really determine more often than not how you play.

Rashaad: Rambo, only if you’re Assault, as it’s their “Technique Skill” to be able to Rambo down certain enemies.

3.  How does the game’s weapon & combat systems hold up?

Kate: The game features Light Machine Guns, Shotguns, Assault Rifles, DMRs, Sniper Riffles, and of course a handgun. This variety allows you to find the right one that fits your style, although progressing in your chosen class (Medic, Assualt, Panther, or Sharpshooter) is locked to weapons to assign to that class. That said, each gun has a very small learning curve. I typically don’t use Snipers, but in a game where tactics pay off, I’ve been able to adapt and now keep it as a secondary to the shotgun. Additionally, the combat system also allows for up close kills with a stab-animation that changes based on the enemy and their placement.

Quinn: Both hold up well. The weapons are quite realistic and the combat system is rather simplistic so it’s hard to mess it up. There are also enough gun classes to keep the combat dynamic and diverse–you’ve got your sniper rifles and DMRs for long-range and SMGs and shotguns for close quarters. But there aren’t too many gun classes to make things confusing and keeping things more realistic. 

Matt: There are plenty of guns to choose from and this allows for mixing up your playstyle. The overall combat system and even tactical system reminds so much of the recent Assassin’s Creed games, which is another Ubisoft title. The scanning with drones, marking of enemies, movement in and out of cover, and even to an extent the diversity of weapons. This is in no way a bad thing, but you can definitely see and feel the similarities. 

Rashaad: The weapons hold up quite well, there’s adequate realism to firing some of the guns. The combat system isn’t very complex, you simply scan area, move in slowly, shoot until dead. So honestly, they both hold up well.

4. Is there anything you would change to improve the co-op play?

Kate: The respawn system is the largest flaw of the game, especially when playing with others. The issues here are two-fold. The first is the time it takes to be able to respawn. Regardless of squad position or location, you must wait the full time to respawn with no option to end the timer faster. The second is that once that time is up, you’re allowed to respawn to the location of a teammate, but it’s a craps shoot as to how close or far away you’ll spawn to them. 

Quinn: The respawn distance seems rather inconsistent. When a player goes down, they have about a minute for a teammate to come over and heal them. After that time, they can choose to respawn on one of their teammates. However, the distance you respawn from your teammate can range from 100m to 1km. That’s a huge difference in-game and can mean the success or failure of a mission.

Matt: The spawn system could use some reworking. I understand the not allowing someone to spawn directly on top of their teammates while they are within a select area or in battle, but I wish there was another way of spawning in those types of situations instead of just selecting a teammate and you end up sometimes up to a kilometer away. I know spawning on teammates that are not in battle or anything can be interesting as still end up easy 300+ meters away. Also just wish there was like a “give up” and spawn button. There were plenty of times I died out of reach and had to wait about a minute just to be able to spawn again. Outside of the spawning issues, everything else is really well done. The mission selection is smooth and the ability to complete missions that you may have completed, but teammates haven’t is really nice.

Rashaad: Not really.

5. Does the class system impact play? Are some team comps better than others?

Ghost Recon Breakpoint

Kate:  I play the Assault class and quite frankly, it’s an easy class to play. My skills don’t necessarily impact the team at large although my poison grenades to help crowd control. That said, there are multiple times where having a field medic in our squad has saved our mission from failing. That said, I haven’t reached end game raid content yet, which I’m sure will have more of a reliance on the class system. But the best move made in the co-op is not locking out characters from other classes or weapons. Allowing classes to be changed and all weapons to be used allow for the player to truly craft a unique play-style that fits them. 

Quinn: Your class doesn’t lock you into using certain weapons or even abilities. The class tree is quite dynamic so you can pick and choose abilities and change between classes if you want. However, certain play styles may be better for certain classes but you’re never locked into one. It’s also nice to have diversity in classes on your team but it really isn’t required. 

Matt: I only played one class and that was the field medic. It is the class I always tend to play in these types of games, and sadly there are a few minor perks but overall the class system doesn’t seem to be a game changer or anything when comes to impact or team composition. I played with some people that I had no idea what class they were. I think the skill points and how those are allotted and used play a more important role at least so far in the game. I know I still have a few rank ups to go and you can notice some of the bonuses as playing a field medic, but feel skill tree plays more of a role. This is also something that may be too early to tell as I haven’t got towards the way high-end content that may require more of those perks.

Rashaad: I think classes are mostly for your favorite weapon(s). All classes can use all weapons, it’s just that each class has an affinity with the weapon(s) used for their class challenge. As for team composition, I don’t think there’s a “meta” because classes don’t lock you out of using certain weapons, so if you need more damage for a specific task, everyone can switch to that and handle the threats.

Overall, we all recommend picking up Tom Clancy’s Ghost Recon Breakpoint, especially if you’re looking for a game to play with friends. Currently there are many co-op games on the market, from Gears 5 to Borderlands 3 and there are only more to come as we head into game release season. As players with all different styles we definitely say pick this one up.

Tom Clancy’s Ghost Recon Breakpoint is now available for the Xbox One, and PlayStation4.

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