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Tom Clancy's Ghost Recon Advanced Warfighter

Tom Clancy's Ghost Recon Advanced Warfighter

Tom Clancy's Ghost Recon Advanced Warfighter

Tom Clancy's Ghost Recon Advanced Warfighter is the third installment in the popular Ghost Recon tactical shooter video game series, published by Ubisoft in 2006. As in previous Ghost Recon games, players command their team of Ghosts while neutralizing hostile forces and completing various mission objectives. These objectives can range from escorting friendly units across the map to rescuing hostages or taking out enemy artillery.

Being a tactical shooter, Advanced Warfighter places emphasis on using cover effectively in order to stay alive, together with sound strategic co-ordination to successfully complete mission objectives. A new feature is the Integrated Warfighter System, a system based upon the Future Force Warrior program.

Tom Clancy's Ghost Recon Advanced Warfighter 2, the game's direct sequel, was released a year later, in 2007.

Tom Clancy's Ghost Recon Advanced Warfighter Plot

The game takes place over the course of three days in 2013, beginning in Mexico City. A U.S. spy plane carrying Guardrail IX, a device capable of disrupting wireless communications, is shot down over Nicaragua. Intelligence discovers a plot to transfer the device to rebels in Mexico City and the Ghosts are sent in to retrieve it. One of the rebels is identified as Colonel Carlos Ontiveros, son of Mexican Gen Ontiveros who was a student of Bud, Mitchell's friend and a UH-60 pilot. The mission is aborted when a coup d'état begins in Mexico City and the Ghosts are ordered to the capital immediately, where a summit involving U.S. President Ballantine, Mexican President Ruiz-Peña, and an unnamed Canadian Prime Minister who are signing the North American Joint Security Agreement (NAJSA), is taking place. The summit is attacked by Mexican revolutionaries who kill the Canadian Prime Minister and force the Presidents of the U.S. and Mexico into hiding. Mitchell is sent to extract both leaders.

President Ballantine is safely evacuated to Air Force One but is unable to take off due to the danger of being shot down. President Ruiz-Peña is evacuated to the U.S. Embassy in Mexico City where a bomb destroys the embassy, but the Ghosts fend off a massive onslaught long enough for help to arrive. Ruiz-Peña allows the U.S. forces to fight the rebels and restore order. Mitchell is tasked with destroying artillery to open the road for an assault on Chapultepec, where 50 M1A2 Abrams tanks given to the Mexican government as part of NAJSA lie idle. He is later ordered to rescue the American advisory group who had been training the Mexicans in how to use them and "borrow" a few tanks.

The rebels use Guardrail IX to monitor U.S. communications and a rebel special forces group called the Aguila 7 ambush the Ghosts protecting President Ballantine. Mitchell is ordered to rescue him, which is successful, but the Nuclear Football is stolen by the rebels and with the Guardrail IX, the rebels are able to control U.S. ICBMs, which cause China and Russia to ready their own.

Mitchell is ordered to retrieve the Guardrail IX and the Football, but only disables the Guardrail IX. His team is then ordered to clear several blockades in Mexico City to allow U.S. tanks to pass. While being extracted, Major General Martin's UH-60 Black Hawk helicopter is shot down and Mitchell is ordered to defend him until he can be extracted. U.S. forces then begin a final push towards the Zocalo Plaza where General Ontiveros is held up inside the Palacio Nacional.

Mitchell destroys the last pieces of the Guardrail IX before sneaking into the palace. General Ontiveros is there, captured while attempting to flee. Carlos manages to escape and hijacks Bud's Black Hawk, killing Bud in the process. He flies to the wrecked U.S. embassy and begins transferring the codes for the U.S. nuclear arsenal. Mitchell and his team raid the embassy, recover the football and kill Carlos. A retired U.S. Army general who was opposed to the NAJSA is discovered to be the traitor within the U.S. government that had been assisting Ontiveros and Aguila 7 in their activities.

Tom Clancy's Ghost Recon Advanced Warfighter Gameplay

Ghost Recon: Advanced Warfighter is slightly unusual in that there are three versions of the game for four different platforms, with minor varied storyline/missions. The PS2 and Xbox versions are essentially the same title, while the Xbox 360 and the Windows versions stand on their own.

Early screenshot of Xbox 360 version

Gameplay emphasis is placed upon the player to do the bulk of the fighting while AI teammates tag along. The player controls a single squad of soldiers, but only directly controls the squad leader. However, the player can issue commands to the AI-controlled team members to maneuver them indirectly.

Combat in Ghost Recon: Advanced Warfighter is more forgiving than previous games in the series. Players can often survive several bullet hits before dying, instead of dying after only a couple of shots like in the original Ghost Recon series. However, players are unable to heal their health in the middle of a mission, and a single headshot or a sustained burst of assault rifle fire can kill the player instantly, so the game still relies more on tactical combat rather than arcade run-and-gun shooting.

GRAW features numerous firearms, many based on real weapons, including the Heckler & Koch G36, the Beretta M9, and the FN SCAR. A few, such as the MR-C, are actually hypothetical prototypes. The game also makes use of various other pieces of equipment, including tanks, armored personnel carriers, and remote-controlled unmanned aerial vehicles.

In May 2005, the Xbox 360 edition of Advanced Warfighter was shown to the press in trailer form at the E3 (Electronic Entertainment Expo) convention in Los Angeles.


Aggregate scores

Aggregator Score

GameRankings 80.07% (PC)

50.67% (PS2)

64.57% (Xbox)

90.61% (Xbox 360)

Metacritic 80% (PC)

44% (PS2)

66% (Xbox)

90% (Xbox 360)

Review scores

Publication Score

1UP.com A

Electronic Gaming Monthly A, A, A+

Game Informer 9.5/10

GameSpot 9.2/10

GameSpy 5/5

GameTrailers 9.9/10

IGN 9.2/10

Official Xbox Magazine 9.0/10

TeamXbox 9.3/10

X-Play 4/5

USA Today 9.5/10

A.P.E. Reviews 9.3/10


Publication Award

BAFTA Best Game

BAFTA Best Technical Achievement

The Xbox 360 version of Ghost Recon: Advanced Warfighter was released on March 9, 2006 to multiple rave reviews. Electronic Gaming Monthly praised the game's stunning next-generation presentation and high entertainment value, giving it review scores of 9.0, 9.5 and a perfect 10. The game was noted for its deeply immersive atmosphere, smart A.I. (though flawed for the squad and VIP A.I.), wide variety of weapons, multiple action scenes and believable storyline. The Xbox 360's version was particularly noted for its realistic graphics. Gametrailers gave the game its highest review ever, a 9.9 out of 10, stating that GRAW is a landmark next-gen game that redefines shooters.

The PS2 and original Xbox versions have been mostly panned by critics as watered-down versions of the Xbox 360 version, most noticeably in graphics and content. While the Xbox 360 version received an average of 91% from reviews, the original Xbox and PS2 versions score 66% and 60% in average respectively. The Windows version averages in about 80%.

On October 5, 2006, Ghost Recon: Advanced Warfighter won two out of the eight nominated BAVGA awards including, "Best Technical Achievement" and "Best Game".

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