Imagine Sniper Elite, only instead of sniping the testicles of German soldiers you’re shooting at skiers. And instead of being able to roam expansive levels, sniping at targets in whatever order you choose, generally at your own pace, instead you’re in a fixed position with only a few seconds to hit a fast moving target.
Congratulations, you’ve just imagined Ski Sniper. Only the game you’ve just imagined is probably way better than the real one.
You’re dropped straight in at the deep end with Ski Sniper; none of the mechanics are explained – nor are the rules; for example, it was only after hitting a skier before he jumped that I realised it counts as a ‘fail’ unless they’re airborne.
With mere seconds to get your hit and longer spent waiting for the jump to happen, you’ll be doing a lot of skipping between missed shots (and if you’re anything like me, you’ll be missing tons more skiers than you hit).
Working your way up to better weapons that marginally improve your chances of hitting a skier is a proper grind – and believe me, it’s really not worth the effort. Visually it’s a mess, with some truly hideous fonts used along with the incredibly basic visuals. Even the X-ray vision that follows a successful shot is completely lacking in any detail – it’s incredibly underwhelming and devoid of impact.
Sound is likewise sparse and even bizarre. There’s zero context for what’s going on – are the crowd there to cheer you or the skiers? It seems they quite enjoy seeing the bizarre death animation and blood splatter following a skier being shot, so perhaps they’re on the side of the sniper.
Who knows? More importantly, who cares? The developers certainly don’t seem to have put much thought or effort into the game. As an idea, it’s an amusingly leftfield one.
Unfortunately, the work seems to have started and ended with the idea itself, given how lacklustre the execution is. Ski Sniper is the kind of game that gives indie titles a bad name. Avoid at all costs.
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