Dirty bombs, optical camo, sonic warfare, magnets and heartbeat sensors – it sounds like Inspector Gadget’s toolkit, but all the new technology that will appear in Ghost Recon: Future Soldier is as real as a Sherman tank.
The latest instalment in Tom Clancy’s Ghost Recon series is not aiming to create science fiction, though. All of the technology available to players in-game is inspired by real-world technology, scientific prototypes or research projects – which sounds pretty standard, until you see what’s actually in the game.
According to the newest video from Ubisoft, developers have been taking advice from former Navy SEALs and military experts to ensure a higher level of realism for the new game – which is reflected in the scale of the new technology on display.
The introduction of Augmented Reality features means that information like ammo count and targeting is transmitted directly to a monocle over the left eye, and also allows members within a squad to communicate information in a handy Heads up Display (HUD). Just like counting Wumpa Fruit in Crash Bandicoot.
With that comes the useful sensor, which can be thrown and activated to detect hostiles and reveal their positions on the HUD. The same use can be applied to magnetic sensors, which measure metallic resonance to reveal land mines, weaponry and bombs.
Although he never had to dodge a bullet, even Ali knew that an enemy’s hands couldn’t hit what his eyes couldn’t see. Combining several in-development technologies, Optical Camo is the result. With materials that bend light around the wearer, uniforms made with elements of optic-fiber and strands of micro-LED impregnated threads mimic light patterns behind the user, making them very hard to spot.
Another new piece of technology being brought into Ghost Recon is The Warhound. It looks like the demented offspring of a Panzer and a pitbull, and serves as an unmanned artillery delivery service for the Ghosts. Just don’t try sneaking one through customs.
There’s also a whole bunch of scopes to play around with, including a heartbeat sensor and combined night and thermal vision. Perhaps a little more innovative is the ‘backscatter optic’, which essentially lets you see through any surface at a short distance. That’s right – the Ghosts even have x-ray vision. I hate to say it, but they might actually be as cool as Batman.
You might recognise something like the Exacto rounds from Iron Man – there’s a scene where he targets ten bad guys and then takes them all out simultaneously with deadly accurate head shots. That’s exactly what these do.
With all this gear, it’s no wonder the Ghosts are considered the elite soldiers within the US Special Forces.
And although the earlier Recon games were criticised for poor AI, especially from team members, it looks like this has been stepped up with the removal of the micro-management required in previous games.
Excluding expansion games, Future Soldier will be the fourth game in the series and the first set in the future. It’s due for release in May on the Xbox 360, PS3 and PC.
Check out the preview video below and let us know what you think – will all the tech make this the game of the future, or has it taken it all a bit literally?