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Isonzo Review (PS5) – WWI Game Series Lands On PS5 With Its Best, Most Authentic Entry Yet

By on September 13, 2022 0

Isonzo PS5 review. With WW1 first-person tactical shooters Verdun and Tannenberg under their collective belt, it turns out the only way developers M2H and BlackMill Games could take their next entry into the WW1 game series was straight up. and that’s exactly what they’ve done with the franchise’s latest offering, Isonzo.

Encompassing the twelve historic battles fought between Austro-Hungarian and Italian forces that made up the Isonzo Campaign which lasted for months and years from June 1915 to November 1917, it is certainly fair to say that this theater of particular battle of the Great War has been vastly under-represented in movies and video games, to say the least, with the usual hellish landscape of mud and barbed wire that is often synonymous with the Western Front conflict. which usually gets the lion’s share of attention in popular media.

Isonzo PS5 review

A hugely impressive, independently developed WW1 tactical shooter that stands head and shoulders above its predecessors

For the uninitiated, Isonzo is an online multiplayer tactical first-person shooter where battles take place in the Isonzo region of Italy in various historical skirmishes. Designed primarily as an online multiplayer shooter, Isonzo lets players play against an army of CPU-controlled bots, but thanks to the currently generally spotty AI that often sees them charging into your location without the effective implementation of accompanying tactics, Isonzo is ostensibly best experienced when played both with and against other flesh-and-blood players.

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Like previous entries in the WW1 game series, the main meat of Isonzo’s gameplay focuses on momentum-based offensive and defensive phases, in which players attack an enemy by capturing their territory and destroying targets keys, unlock more of the map and therefore advance further in battle, create new objectives to capture and destroy accordingly.

Where Isonzo differs greatly from Verdun and Tannenberg is in his use of the extraordinarily hilly and often mountainous terrain over which you will often fight – a genuine nod to the verticality that was to be understood in nearly every conflict of the Isonzo campaign when it all started in 1915. In practical terms, this means that being on the defensive now has the higher terrain advantage, allowing you a wider degree of oversight to cover the enemy with lead when he Approaching your position while on offense is now a much bigger challenge than ever, as you have to devise complex stratagems in order to mitigate any natural terrain advantages the other team might have over yours. And that’s where Isonzo really shines.

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It is not enough to keep throwing troops at a fortified enemy position hoping they will break, as many commanders have done in vain during the twelve actual battles of the Isonzo campaign. Instead, savvy players can call in artillery bombardments, airstrikes, poison gas attacks (don’t forget to put on your mask if you find yourself on the trading side of any of these) to reduce their enemy’s resolve, while taking over enemy spawn points and using them for their own troops, sabotaging enemy equipment and on can also greatly increase your chances of victory.

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The new class system complements the deeply tactical nature of Isonzo’s gameplay and debuts in Isonzo. While this isn’t a new feature as far as other first-person shooters go, Isonzo makes the most of this longtime staple of the genre, giving each class that players can choose from an objective and a real identities to separate them from their warmongering stable mates.

Isonzo’s class selection includes no less than six different archetypes, including the sniper, officer, engineer, mountaineer, rifleman, and assault classes. Given the often multifaceted nature of Isonzo’s conflicts (more on that in a moment), each role is not only appropriately authentic in terms of use at the time, but the well-rounded composition of a force of Invading or defensive with the right class selections are also functionally crucial for victory.

Further Reading – Verdun PS4 Review

While the Sniper, Rifleman, Assault, and Officer classes are all pretty self-explanatory, it’s really the Mountaineer and Engineer classes that provide much-needed extra depth to the walkthrough. The Mountaineer class, for example, complements the Officer class very well thanks to binoculars that can be used to spot enemies from a long distance, while a draft of a handy canteen temporarily provides the player with unlimited stamina – perfect for when you want to launch an attack on an enemy position. Meanwhile, the Engineer gets the most out of Isonzo’s new building system, as he can cut through barbed wire and build barriers and weapons twice as fast as any other class, while earning a bonus speed for both laying and defusing explosive charges.

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Even with all of these tools, tactics, and classes at your disposal, Isonzo’s battles still feel like they’ve been painstakingly won. Every piece of the battlefield must be bled and fought, and with progress in inches rather than a greater measure of distance or movement, the perilous and gritty battlefields of Isonzo, where a single blow can kill you or cause you to bleed if the wound is not healed quickly enough, pays homage to the real peril of the Isonzo campaign where more than a million soldiers lost their lives.

Continuing to carry the torch of authenticity that was lit with the first game in the WW1 game series, Verdun, Isonzo once again places particular emphasis on making his soldiers, battles, and locations all feel authentic. a palpable authenticity. From the careful reconstruction of the various Italian and Austro-Hungarian uniforms, to the precise modeling of firearms like the Austro-Hungarian Roth-Steyr M1907 and longer-range rifles like the classic Italian Carcano M1891, each unique aspect of Isonzo’s carefully crafted aesthetic feels like a love letter to one of the key (and often overlooked) conflicts of the Great War.

Further Reading – Tannenberg PS4 Review

This quest for realism also extends to the various maps and locations in which Isonzo’s various battles take place. Much more than just a series of barren environments created to loosely mimic the kinds of battlefields that existed during that conflict, each of the maps Isonzo boasts of has been thoroughly researched, with everything from streets littered debris from the many towns on the Isonzo front. to the shattered beauty of the Isonzo vineyards and the various mountainside trenches and fortresses, all obviously resembling the real thing.

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Audiovisually, it must be said that Isonzo far exceeds the previous games of the WW1 Game Series. Unlike Verdun and Tannenberg before it, which only got slight display resolution improvements and an uncapped frame rate on PS5, but still looked a lot like first-gen PS4 titles, Isonzo instead uses better Sony’s current-generation PlayStation console hardware. Boasting a huge increase in character model detail and environment complexity, not to mention a greater variety of building interiors that extend far beyond the square huts seen in the entrance. from the previous series, Tannenberg, Isonzo is easily the most visually impressive game in the series.

That said, it’s also worth remembering that Isonzo is an indie title when it comes to production values. So while the third entry in the WW1 series of games is arguably the most technically accomplished to date, there are still a number of small visual issues such as sometimes spotty performance during busy battles and clunky animations that betray the relatively (to the biggest AAA headlines, at least) budget that serves as the basis for Isonzo’s presentation.

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Likewise, the sound also got a significant and welcome upgrade. Not only did the various rifles, pistols, mounted machine guns, and cannons all sound real meaty, but it was the work on the environmental sound effects that saw the biggest jump. With the sound of earth falling all around your ears after a mortar attack proving particularly palpable as just one example, while the sounds of ricocheting bullets and mortar shells echo all around you like another, the much improved sound work in Isonzo just makes every battle seem much more chaotic than it ever was in Verdun and Tannenberg.

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It’s also worth mentioning that Isonzo also has an incredibly deep progression system. Not only can experience gained from kills, completing objectives, healing allies, and building structures be used to enhance each of the game’s classes, providing specialized perks that allow you to precisely calibrate each class to your own unique style. gameplay, but there are also new unlockable weapons and gear for each class as well, giving players ample incentive to try out each of Isonzo’s six classes.

Finally, players can also modify the cosmetics of the Austro-Hungarian or Italian troops of their choice in the barracks of Isonzo. A hub of sorts that allows players to modify everything from their uniforms to their chosen soldier’s facial hair, it’s not exactly earth-shattering stuff, but when taken in tandem with the class progression system in depth of Isonzo, it’s clear that the latest entry in the WW1 series of games has a lot to offer players looking to make Isonzo their primary online multiplayer fix.

Moving the action from the muddy trenches of the Western Front and the snowy rural expanses of the Eastern Front to the bloody heights of arguably the most sophisticated theater of conflict of the Great War, developers BlackMill Games and M2H have outdone themselves with Isonzo. A deeply thought-out and visceral first-person shooter where tactics and strategy are valued in much the same way as a quick-trigger finger, Isonzo isn’t just the best entry in the WW1 game series to date. , it’s also one of the best full-stop tactical multiplayer shooters.

Isonzo is available now on PS4 and PS5.

Review code kindly provided by PR, BlackMill Games and M2H.