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A Developer’s Introduction to Ghost War

09/13/2017 12:00 PM

From September 21 to 25, players will be able to get a glimpse of Ghost War, the new 4v4 team deathmatch PvP update for Tom Clancy’s Ghost Recon Wildlands. After the events that occurred in our fictional version of Bolivia, special operations units have arrived from all around the world and the Ghosts have to work as a team to prevent them from gaining a foothold in the region. Ghost War is the ultimate co-op experience, focusing on teamwork, strategy, and intense tactical firefights. We sat with Bogdan Bridinel, Ghost War’s game design director, to discuss this new game mode and get important intel about Ghost War game design.

Bogdan shares that the team’s goal with Ghost War was to give players something close to the main game’s experience, but in a PvP context. They wanted a mode with a tactical feel, where players have a lot of freedom, so it’s not just about shooting skills but also about positioning, team coordination, and a player’s ability to discover enemies while staying hidden. The team wanted to convey the feeling of a hunter stalking its prey – except that in PvP, of course, you are the hunter and the prey at the same time.

To produce Ghost War, the team selected eight areas of the huge Ghost Recon Wildlands map that would be a good match for PvP. The level designers added some field elements to create intense battle opportunities. For the Ghost War Open Beta, players will be able to play on five of the eight maps that will be available at launch. The team is planning on releasing more maps after release; stay tuned for more information.

In Ghost War, two teams of four players fight against each other. In order to keep a good balance during the matches, a team is composed of four different classes. The game designers wanted to make sure the classes could get stronger abilities, which wouldn’t be possible if a specific ability could be used by all four players simultaneously. This design element also creates better variety in team compositions, so gameplay feels more diverse. (Players can still choose any class they want in private custom games.)

In Ghost War, downed players are never completely out of the game. They can always be revived by a teammate, if the opposing team doesn’t keep a sharp enough eye on them. Given this, the development team discovered a way to include the downed players in the gameplay loop. "As you can revive your teammates at any time, we chose to give the downed players some freedom and the ability to spot enemies for their surviving teammates, so that they continue to be engrossed in the experience,” Bogdan explains. In the game, spectators have to be just as attentive as the players they are watching. Their spotting can make the difference between winning and losing.

Another key gameplay element is the Recon Tower, which allows you to locate the entire enemy team, but makes you extremely vulnerable while doing so. The need for this feature emerged during the prototyping phase, Bogdan reveals. The development team wanted to make each match totally unpredictable, using every square inch of the map as a potential fight location. During a match, tension rises up very quickly, especially when you’re the last man standing – or when there is only one enemy left. Strategic stakes emerge for both teams with the Recon Tower: will you activate it to find your last opponent, even at the risk of putting yourself in a vulnerable position?


The Open Beta for Ghost War will take place September 21–25 on all platforms (Playstation 4 system, Xbox One, and PC). For more on this event, go to the official Open Beta portal and be sure to visit our official forums to share your feedback, or join the Ghost War Open Beta discord channel to find other players to play with.

Also, make sure to share your Open Beta glorious moments with us by sharing them on Twitter using #GhostRecon or posting on the official forum's dedicated thread. The best streams or community creations will be highlighted on our official channels!

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