"Isn't this, er, dangerous, sir?"

At first glance, this Spec Ops: The Line multiplayer trailer looks frightfully familiar. We’re not going to deny that the eight-player class-based competitive combat looks fun, but we’ve seen it all before.

Where the game’s online component finds an identity, however, is in its implementation of sand. Like the single-player campaign you’ll need to fight against environmental hazards as much as enemy factions. Sandstorms, avalanches and collapsing buildings are all deadly threats, and give the game a sense of personality beyond its overarching military theme.

The setting definitely remains Spec Ops’ most intriguing asset. For more on the game, divert your attention to our Spec Ops: The Line first impressions.