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I was addicted to the original MIC mod and to the stand-alone release as well. Many hundreds of hours in each.

The game play was so intense that my gaming group called the game "GodD@mmit" as that was the word that was spoken most frequently during play.

While Sandstorm is a good game, there are elements of the predecessors that make it inferior to them:

  • When using scope or sites, the entire screen did not zoom in. I realize this is probably a limitation in the UE4 engine, but it would be nice to see it come back.

  • Character animations seem a little clunkier in Sandstorm. Hopefully, this is a part of the game that will get smoothed out in coming patches.

  • The sound in Insurgency of 2014 was actually much more realistic and immersive. The gun sounds here have too much at distance. In reality (as was reflected in previous titles), the further away you are from a gun firing, the more you only hear the sonic crack of the bullet. The bass of the gas explosion does not carry very far. This release seems like someone wanted their subwoofer to get a workout and overdid it.

  • The map design is good, but I have to agree with others, it had too much of a corridor to it. In the maps of previous releases, there were ample ways to flank the enemy. That made for much more intense game play because the enemy could, literally, be anywhere. In this one, the options are very limited.

  • I think they should have released the game with at least one of the older maps. This would have given the players two things. #1 Something familiar in which to adjust to the new game with and, #2 something to give the dev's feedback based upon past experience in that environment.

  • I keep noticing lower player counts compared to Insurgency of 2014. Currently, there are far more players in the previous title than Sandstorm. That tells me that the formula used in Insurgency is more unique and appealing than the one that is used in Sandstorm. I understand not wanting to just remake a previous title on a new engine, but low player counts in the new game is not a good sign.

  • The calling in of air support and such makes it feel like the developers were trying to compete with titles like COD. It doesn't work in this game. Insurgency worked because it didn't have AI controlled assets. It was all on the player and the team to make it happen.

Unfortunately, I feel like Sandstorm is going to have less success than the previous two. Instead of refining the formula that made Insurgency a go-to game for those who wanted a hardcore, immersive FPS, they tried to make it appealing to a wider market. That wider market already have their established titles that have stuck to their core formula.


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