Okay so I know that a lot of these types of topics have been going about and I may be late to the table here so apologies in advance for that. For the most part I will be typing this on the fly so this post won't be llinear in it's presentation either, although I will try my best to keep it linear, again, apologies for the potential headache you're about to read.
So overall thoughts on the DLC? Best yet, the general structure was really well put together and there was SO much content that came with it. Having new types of enemies was (still is) a welcome challenge with new features such as the seekers. While I know a few people are not a fan of the Seekers, Dreadnoughts and Oppressors, I think they are a welcome challenge. While the whole headshot requirement to what their tin pot go flying off their head is generally a gimmick and not really... well, practical. It does make me think about the approach to them, and not in the case of just sending a three round burst to their head and hoping for the best but I liked the fact that these enemies, although heavily armoured, were able to be killed through melee like their less armoured counterparts, and giving me more options when dealing with multiple enemy groups that included these classes.
The Seeker Bodarks are genuinely a very tricky and obviously illusive enemy to deal with. While you generally have no chance of spotting them without Thermal (or infrared if using the Pathfinder Class) Vision, even from a distance, Thermal/Infrared Vision have very little effect to detect the Seekers until they're within a closer more CQB Type Distance. The Icon disappearing from above their head when they do activate the Optical Camoflauge as well is a really nice touch, albeit I personally don't rock much of the HUD such as Icons on two of my three profiles, it adds a twist to active and intense firefights where the battleground is shifting and you're trying to gain an upperhand if you've been caught off guard.
While these three classes of Enemy have generally had a mixed reception and the overall opinion of them not being "realistic", I suppose the "Lore" of the Ghost Recon Background can justify this overall and while I try to go mostly with realism I can accept the gimmicks of these Enemies as legit capabilities.
Especially seeing as we can use Optical Camo also, I can't complain at how well it has been brought into Breakpoint as opposed to how useless it was in Wildlands. For once I actually had a purpose to start raiding random enemy camps again, and take on Behemoth Drones as if they were going out of fashion in I don't know how long..!
Op. Motherland also saw a good few weapons added into the mix too which included, finally, the ACR which I have been enjoying now since Op. Motherland dropped. The SR3M (and Tactical) Variants are some of the few weapons outside of your typical M4A1 Style Rifle that I've actually enjoyed using more than my regular selection of the 516 and G28 Marksman Rifle. However this is where I start with my critiques. One thing that was noticed on the Weapon Customisation was the addition of the Foregrip & Bipod Combo, which was pretty awesome. However..... I can't say I was particularly thrilled to lose the Underslung Grenade Launcher from my MK14 Assault, after I had grinded the Sharpshooter class for so long just to specifically get a Marksman rifle that could operate a UGL on it as opposed to any other Marksman Rifle, this made it worth the grind for it. But during my progress on my other 2 accounts to get the MK14 Assault, I've just plain stopped, just because now, asides from a slight buff on accuracy and range, the MK14 Assault is in my opinion, no better than the normal MK14.
A lot of weapons in Breakpoint, while they look really good after a bit of customisation, lack genuine versatility. For example, while having a loadout of say a simple Assault Rifle for Close/Medium Range Firefights and a DMR/Sniper for Long Range Firefights, being able to then attach a underslung Shotgun to my Assault Rifle and an Underslung Grenade Launcher to my DMR made the Loadout and general gameplay for me, so much more interesting as I had more tools to my belt as such and didn't solely rely on the Rocket Launcher to take down a Helicopter.
While I understand that we still get the UGL on ARs and also I think it's still equipable to the Vector Shorty(?), I still do, and always will argue the point that having a universal system for mounting Optics and other Rail Attachments to our weapons should not depend on, well, limitations put in place for either the sake of it or just because someone says so. If someone wants to add a UGL or USG to a G28 DMR, then so be it I reckon.
As well as this, the IR Illuminator while again, a nice addition to help assist us when clearing super dark buildings in the dead of night, I would highly recommend that some sort of toggle feature is implemented for this feature. As it stands whenever a players NODs are activated, it really does become frustratingly distracting when crouching and manuvering around an enemy base to see, well, the sun shining out my characters [censored], or effects similar to that description. A potential solution to this issue is maybe have a weapon wheel similar to the gadget wheel or orders wheel (why we still have the order wheel this late on when it's been replaced with directional buttons on the D-Pad anyways is beyond me....) where we can preset our attachments such as whether we have IR Illuminators activated, IR Lasers Illuminated, the actual Visible Red (or Green) Lasers Illuminated.... and any other combination of those three illuminated or not. A visible flashlight attachment to the weapons would also be potentially a nice touch as well..? Please, Ubisoft? With a cherry on top? No?
As well as this, any visible Illuminators, such as Lasers or Flashlights should obviously increase the players detection by enemies. I've always found it ridiculous how I can line up a headshot on an enemy while blatantly shining the MAWL-DA's Laser right through their eyeball and subsequently if I wasn't about to kill them, potentially set them up with an appointment to Specsavers by burning the crap out of their retinas with it. I get that detection in Breakpoint is mostly to do with how close the Player is to an enemy rather than obvious factors such as silhouetting themselves in a bright moonlit sky on the top of a ridge line or something like that, but if Optical Camo can be integrated into the game, and actually work and tweak detection settings that the player otherwise wouldn't be able to change in the settings menu, then my god you guys in the Dev Studio can do so much more with this game!
This brings me on swiftly to Enemy Detection of the Player. Now I've not got hard proof of this claim, and as far as I'm aware it is purely rumour which I don't intend to spread if it is false, but allow me to at least speculate on it. There was word that someone managed to play GRBP and modify the game files that tweaked the range of the Enemy Detection against the player. For Example instead of an Enemy NPC starting to detect the player from say 20 meters away, as it stands in the game currently. Said individual was able to tweak the files so that the Enemy could detect the player from 50+ Meters away if they weren't hidden either in a bush, prone camo'ed or Optically Camo'ed. I'm not sure if anyone else can shed some light on this but if this is true then I would recommend really tweaking these settings. I don't really know how to do it myself but even with the Enemy Difficulty set all the way to "Max Crank", I still find the Enemies way way WAY too easy to dispatch through a Wolf Camp and just come out the other end wondering if there's any other camps genuinely harder or able to prove more of a challenge.
Also the triggers to being detected are overall, well set in the game, unless you're out in the open the Enemy generally goes by you, none the wiser. However, if we're dealing with Highly Trained PMCs here, then I would think at least the Wolves and Certainly Bodarks would have a highly trained eye able to detect the player a bit better than say what Sentinel Contractors may do. At the same time, being detected while in cover of a tree trunk and essentially then being subject to the effects of it not being there was an experience.... thankfully turned out to be a one off glitch but still, was quite a laugh.
Getting to the point; I find it a little bit odd that if I am on a roof doing a recce and poke my head out for a mere second that a Sentinel Contractor guarding a door literally directly below me then breaks their neck at a truly "What The Actual F**k" Degree Angle and the detection meter starts ticking away, and truthfully if I am two stories higher than the OPFOR I would think that the detection gauge starting to immediately tick away is a bit far fetched. Whereas if it's a Sniper on the same second story height as me would probably have a more acute sense for someone else being in the immediate vicinity. While I'm not saying that an Enemy Patrol won't occassionally look up to the roofs, the fact that they spot you almost quicker than an enemy on the same level as you is a bit of a nuisance to say the least.
Moving on from this, onto the Mission Structure. Now we all know that Op. Motherlands Mission Structure copied similarities from Ghost Recon Wildland. Split the map up into unique regions and conduct missions to take overall control over the region. Really good formula for some great potential there. This has to be one of my biggest let downs by the DLC. It just fell SO short of what it could have been. There just started to be a noticeable copy and paste pattern to the missions. Rescue Hostages, Free Captured Outcasts, Destroy Vehicles without being detected, or just outright kill everyone in a camp.
Rescue Hostages, two main set ups to these missions, they were either on some sort of weight triggered IED, or just being held at gun point. Both of these missions, obviously you couldn't be detected which is fine. But to attach timers to half of these missions and then leave it at that being the only challenging thing about the mission was, just kind of sad. The enemies were always in positions where you could take them out, near enough being right on top of them without being detected which.... I've covered so I won't get into it again, but general enemy numbers and resistance. I didn't see a point, on top of which for someone holding hostages and who are probably going to expect retaliation either from the Ghosts or even Outcasts, they were very lax and generally didn't seem to take their job seriously. (I say that with some sarcastic humour included in there. It's somewhere in there anyways... I think?)
And coming back to the weight plated IEDs. I just have to hold "X" for a couple of seconds and that's it? They're good to go? What about some sort of little side mission where we have to actually figure out a pattern on the laptop and make sure that we don't mess it up otherwise we all go boom! Like a little side mission to the main objective, keep us interested and thinking. One laptop it's basically figure out a number sequence, the next, why not identify a specific pattern, the next, we have to guide a little icon through a passage without touching the sides, otherwise... well, you guys get the picture.
Coming onto the Destroying or Stealing Vehicles, again while these were generally pretty good, normally you'd at least have one person who was to be right besides the vehicle in question at all times, I would've thought anyway. The Mission at the Auroa Survival Shelter you can near enough attach C4 onto 6 of the vehicles and either a Mk. II C4 charge to the other two or just for a laugh call in an Armaros Drone to Airstrike the living crap out of it, all the while going into the camp, remaining, and leaving, completely undetected. I'm not talking about using Optical Camo either. I near enough ran, full sprint for the most part, around the base lashing out C4 charges like they were going out of fashion! What about having an oppressor or Dreadnought attached to each vehicle as a permanent guard, hell, throw a seeker with Optical Camo activated somewhere in the near vicinity with constant eyes on it also as something to throw you off if you get too lax, or better yet, have multiple soldiers, of all PMCs and Classes, attached to each vehicle as Fireteam or section. Too easy, Ubisoft! Actually give us a challenge here.
Assassination Missions, again, quite fun but barely required any forward thinking nor did it really take any effort to lure any of the Targets out as they seemed to just be wandering about as if they were on their daily stroll. I'll just leave it at that for those missions.
The mission starting a Mount Hodgson Bivuoac where a convoy has to be ambushed on the bridge below. Really good actually, but too quick and much too easy. Not really much point in the time limit either if I'm being picky..? In fact, let me put it into Perspective, the Missions were.... alright. But they lack surprise or intensity I find, baring in mind I am playing the game on as hard difficulty as I possibly can, minimal to no HUD, Setting cranked all the way up to hardest difficulty, etc. etc. But here;s a comparison, while Amber Sky DLC was overall enjoyable, I haven't gone back to it since completing it because, well, there's no replayability there.
However, I'll jog your memory to the Mission "Drastic Remedy". One of the last missions in the DLC (depending on how you played it). You have to Infil into Auroa Airport without being detected until last minute, once you've deactivated all hindrances and splattered a few enemies brains over the walls, floors and other various surfaces of the airport, you have to then change tact, breach the tower and assault the building quickly and fluidly to avoid the Scientist(?) or well, definitely hostage, from being executed by a Sentinel Contractor. Then Escort him to a plane, take off, fly under the radar to avoid SAMs and then proceed with a somewhat challenging landing given your approach to avoid the SAMs, and then, just when you think you're out of the woods, you're welcomed with a fairly fierce and persistent assault from the Wolves. Not only are the Wolves a slightly more aggressive Enemy in their Tactics and Firefights, but this was an encounter where instead of you catching them off guard, they have caught you off guard. Youre all of a sudden , behind limited cover of some crates while taking fire from all angles including repetitive calls for Enemy Air Support by Helicopters, whiile fending of Sniper Fire and managing Wolf Breachers rushing you, ready to fill you, your team and any other poor ba**ard with a load of 12 gauge, and this wasn't just from a fixed position, they were coming at you from multiple angles almost like an extended shallow baseline formation. The fact you had to protect Civilians in the area while just about managing not to go down yourself was a challenge. The point being, Drastic Remedy was a Mission I remember for it's genuine creativity and while there were still some things that could've been done better in the Amber Sky DLC, and like a lot of aspects of this game, Drastic Remedy is a Mission that I remember because for the first time since I got Breakpoint when it released, and after playing the initial Survive, Evade, Resist and Escape Mission at the start, this was the only time I felt hunte and on the back foot. I had to think on the fly, adapt and make split second decisions because I was under so much pressure of potentially being overwhelmed by an OPFOR. There was also another mission in Amber Sky which escapes me but you essentially are navgiating in thick gas while enemies are spawning and attacking you from all angles. Again, a true experience of being hunted and genuinely fun and challenging mission.
Anyways, there are some truly awesome parts of Operation Motherland that I would say have made Operation Motherland, in my opinion one of the best, if not the best DLC released by a long shot. I will say I did hold my breath when Motherland was announced and would continue to do so after it released until I could form an opinion but I have to say, Motherland has made me enjoy Breakpoint in so many ways now that I actually can boot up GRBP without holding any sort of grudge against it anymore. I look forward to playing this game now when I come home from work which is saying something from the sorry state it was in.
I will try to finish off with a Positive here and just say one thing I absolutely LOVE about Motherland, content asides, is the new weather effects. They MAKE the game now and without using some sort of Enahnced Vision Mode, Darker Nights are now even more challenging to navigate, and if heavy rain or fog sets in, my god it certainly makes the atmosphere tense and I love it!
Other than that though, Optical Camo, took you long enough but an truly awesome addition in that it actually has a function and also that I had to work to get the points to upgrade it. Ace!
New Weapons, decent variants, customisation could be something to be admired of, but overall very good customisation already included with them. Ace!
New Cosmetics, further enhance your Ghost, with mostly combat type apparel. Ace!
New Vehicles, different types of weapon functionailty in some, adding new dynamic to Vehicle Ambushes and Encounters. Ace!
New Enemy Classes and Abilities. Ace!
New Enemy Patrols both on Foot and in Vehicles. Tougher Convoys to Ambush, greater numbers and firefights. Ace!
Genuinally, phenomenal update to Breakpoint and although I have had my rants, digs, and occasional despair filled posts on this forum. At the same time, credit where credit is due. This is what Breakpoint should have been at the start but it got there in the end and I suppose that's what matters overall.
To conclude; This post isn't a what should be, but more a what could be. Not a post to make suggestions but more just observations. Thoughts and Opinions on the matter welcomed and encouraged, as always.
Cheers for reading this to the end folks!