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Gray Zone Warfare Review: Fun Extraction Game But Needs Few Improvements In The Full Release

Seems decent for It's price.


  • Gray Zone Warfare is one of the emerging extraction games which has plenty to offer yet has some flaws.
  • The Tactical FPS has adequate factions, great surival mechanisms, offers hundreds of quests and is extremely fun to play.
  • With the game still on early phase, improvemnts can be done on weapon selection, audio tuning and optimizing graphics.

Madfinger Games has a history of producing games with little to no hype but still surpasses many’s expectations.

However, this time, something unusual happened with Czech Developer’s Gray Zone Warfare, starting from early access to full release on Steam.

The Tactical FPS had over 200k Steam Wishlists amid the Escape From Tarkov Controversy, who emerged as the game’s competitor.

Gray Zone Warfare definitely has room for improvement, but it promises to add extra elements, from quests to battles, compared to its rivals.


Initial Release DateApril 30, 2024
Developer Madfinger Games
PublisherMadfinger Games

An Immersive FPS Shooter

Gray Zone Warfare shares elements of both PVE and PvEvP, where you captivate your journey in over 42 Sq Km open world.

When you progress through, you will encounter multiple PvE scenarios. The game does not share vast mechanics, but you still have plenty of utilities to work with.

Players can carry loot while playing the quests offered by Vendors or attack AI enemies during exploration.

Thankfully, players have transportation: A Helicopter to fly around the bases or air strike the enemies.

However, it comes at a cost, as enemies often camp in the Landing Zones, including India, Lima, or Fox Trot.

When the enemy or the opposition Faction members hear the Helicopter sound, they might ambush you, lowering your survivability rate.

Choosing A Military Faction

At the start of your Gray Zone Warfare Journey, you get multiple Faction choices: Mithras Security System, Lamang Recovery Initiative, and Crimson Shield International.

Picking one Faction over the other will not make much of a difference except in the starting areas, but I went for the Mithras Faction due to its principles and history.

Players can choose any of the three factions. (Source: Screen Plays Mag)

All three factions have their separate base and appear in Triangle Shape on the Map. Once you choose any of the Faction, you can face opposition faction members at any time.

If you plan to co-op with your friends, don’t forget to take the same Faction, or you have to start the game from scratch if you want to change the Faction.

But before you jump into action, you must customize your character; the feature seems quite basic; nonetheless, the options look adequate for the extraction game.

Gray Zone offers limited customization options. (Source: Screen Plays Mag)

If you are someone who prefers to play female characters in games, Gray Zone lacks that feature.

Thankfully, you can still customize basic things, including Appearance, which includes the player’s Archetype, Hair, and Facial Hair.

You can change shirts, gloves, trousers, and boots by jumping to the apparel section, but the options are extremely limited compared to the appearance section.

Vendors For Progression

No matter what Faction you choose at the start, you can play the Vendor quest for progression, even if they have a history with the opposition Faction.

Lab Rat, Handshake, Gunny, Banshee, Turncoat, and Artisan are the Vendors with whom you can trade items and have their own specialization.

My Favorite Vendors are definitely Lab Rat and Handshake, who provide unique rewards from Medical kits to Potent weapons.

Nonetheless, other Vendors are still great for Weapons or other utilities such as rewards, Experience Points, Cash, and Vendor Reputation.

The more Vendor quests you complete, the better the reputation, but there’s a catch: the Reputation is vendor-specific.

When you complete the quest, you will get a Vendor Reputation that gradually increases the Vendor Level.

Climbing the Vendor Levels will help you buy ARs, Sniper Rifles, attachments, and other items to upgrade your inventory.

If you want to get hands-on with multiple powerful utilities to stand a chance against AI enemies and other factions, increasing your Reputation with all Vendors is a better approach.

Hundreds Of Quests To Level Up Faster

You can initiate hundreds of quests, where you find intel, recover items, defeat the boss, or find a dead body.

The quests are not as easy as they seem due to map coordinate complexity and powerful AI enemies.

Even though you have only a few objectives to complete, it might take hours, even days, without Clues In Gray Zone Warfare.

gray zone warfare ar
Some quests are extremely tricky. (Source: Screen Plays Mag)

Some of the vendor quests seem easy due to being less objective, but finding intel can take hours.

For instance, even if you find the exact location of intel, you should have a key to access the door.

Unfortunately, the key drop rate is extremely low, so the only solution is to invest hours or play with a friend who is also a faction member.

By playing each vendor’s mission, you will receive rewards; some rewards can even repeat; for example, you can get m14 for two different missions.

Where the trading becomes tactful, you can exchange your weapon for additional attachments or even a new gun.

Inconsistent AI Enemies

AI enemies in Gray Zone Warfare are not “walk over the park”; they can kill you from long range with just an AR without any attachments from over 100m distance.

But when I chose to fire the enemy with a fully attached weapon, the enemy survived like nothing happened and even backfired me instantly.

However, the bots sometimes struggle to kill even at close range, which may benefit players at a few glances but raises questions about consistency.

ai enemies gray zone
AI enemies can be unpredictable. (Source: SCreen Plays Mag)

Apart from the consistency, the AI enemy fights are quite rewarding, granting you tons of items to progress easily.

But, they are always a threat, no matter if you have just started the early game or at end-tier missions.

PvP Is Unique And Competitive

The PvP in Gray Zone Warfare is extremely fun, especially when you team up with your friends and attack opposition factions, considering it’s an extraction game.

For instance, when initiating the quest, I encountered Crimson and Lamang Faction members while searching for Intelligence.

You can even team up with a Faction member to challenge the opposition Faction but don’t think of killing your Faction members if they are not your squadmates.

First of all, it just kills the fun of games when playing with randoms, and players with higher reports can be thrown to Rogue Faction, which may be added in the future.

Maybe Madfinger games took the wrong step, enabling friendly fire without any consequences.

Apart from a few friendly-firing faction members, you will probably meet some good squad mates as I did, but it entirely depends on luck.

Just Adequate Loot And Weapons

At the end of the day, it’s all about collecting new utilities and upgrading weapons to occupy the inventory.

Even though the Tactical FPS is still in its early phase, the loot, whether from enemy factions or bots, is pretty decent.

loot in gzw
The loot is not enough compared to other competitors. (Source: Screen Plays Mag)

The current weapon selection is quite enough for the tactical FPS that will still go for a few development phases with feedback; it could’ve been much better.

Players will revert back to the same set of weapons now and again with M14 and AK. Madfinger game may have divided into numerous gun groups for AK: AKM, AKMN, and a few more, but it all feels the same.

Unless players have the attachments or upgrades, separating the same set of weapons is difficult.

The options are also quite limited if you decide to jump from the AR to Snipers to play more passive or work around as a sharpshooter.

Mosin (which has two models) and M700 are the only options for Snipers. Mosin definitely takes the top spot due to its easy control and higher damage.

Hopefully, the developers will take that as feedback to bring in more useful loot and weapons, so players will have plenty of options to choose from.

un firearms box
Loots can be found in most of the map locations. (Source: Screen Plays Mag)

Besides the usual weapons, the upgrades and attachments are quite impressive. Sights, Suppressors, Flash Hider, Extended Magazine, Grips, and Handguards are a few ones you can equip for your weapons.

The attachments not only upgrade the performance of your weapons but also affect their appearance, whether it be a side arm of the sniper.

Gray Zone focused more on improvising the customization option on just weapons rather than other utilities, including helmets, gears, and backpacks, which seems quite fair for a player like me, considering the game’s early phase.

Like the normal Battle Royale games, you can kill and loot enemies to upgrade your guns, vests, or even backpacks, which seems useful as you can only get from raising Vendor level instead.

You can find additional loot even in the out world, in abandoned buildings, or even on runways.

Performance And Graphics

If you have played Escape from Tarkov earlier, GZW is not even close to its performance and graphics.

However, from a neutral perspective, the game’s performance should be pretty good if you have a relatively high-tier PC, but you may experience some tweaks once and then.

A minor issue is somewhat understandable because there can be almost 50 players on the Map and tons of AI wandering through different locations.

Unfortunately, bad news is also in store for someone with a mid-to low-end PC, as they may experience continuous lags and stutters that spoil all the fun, especially when they are with friends.

The game works best on relatively high-tier PCs. (Source: Screen Plays Mag)

If you have Nvidia 30 or AMD 6000 series, you may not face any performance issues in either PvE or PvP.

You can always enable the FSR or DLSS to improve performance, avoid minor hiccups, and cap your FPS.

Jumping over the Graphics, most of the locations seem vibrant, but look to have oversaturation and optimization issues a few times.

Even if you cap your FPS at 60 or keep low performance, you won’t notice much of a difference compared to high settings.

Survival Mechanism Depends Upon Medics

The tactical shooter has a great health mechanism that works in combination with the Ballistics system.

Bullets you use can be strong against players without armor but struggle against plate vests.

One of the interesting things about this game is the health system, which can be quite frustrating in the early game, considering the high number of supplements you can find.

The Health System in Gray Zone Warfare is quite vast. (Source: Screen Plays Mag)

Unlike other games, the health kits won’t even work for every wound or condition you suffer.

There’s a separate cure for each condition; for instance, if you suffer from a coma, the teammates can only revive you by spiking your blood levels.

You can also damage your flesh, get fractured, get small wounds, and even suffer from Dizziness.

Hence, You need to constantly monitor your blood level, hydration, radiation effect, and intoxication and use medications according to the hitbox.

Improvements For The Full Release Edition

Madfinger games have a few things to improve and even attract more extraction fans if they want to level up the game.

Even though the game seems quite reasonable for its price, graphics, map pool and sound could have been better.

If the developers focus on improvements, they should sell more copies and complete them with Escape from Tarkov, Dark and Darker, Hunt, and Vigor.

One major improvement I suggest is adding bosses in different map areas with unique and special loot.

Gray Zone should add more useful loots.

This would allow players to explore specific locations, making survival even tougher, considering opposition Faction members will lodge out for loot vendors don’t provide.

As I mentioned before, the variety of guns should also improve; a few guns, including pistols and shotguns, are pretty underwhelming for a “shooter game.”

Besides guns and valuable loot are also missing in the game; the game has provided hundreds of items that are almost not beneficial during combats.

Players will mostly find foods, drinks, and medics during exploration, which is one of the game’s survival mechanisms.

The loop of finding and trading items for a low amount will make the game boring after a while.

If the game adds rare or legendary items through different locations, it will allow a robust fight and encourage players to sell those items for more credits.

Madfinger Games should add rare items throughout the Map.

For instance, Gray Zone Warfare could add guns and attachments only obtainable from loot or exploration, making the game more interesting.

Another factor Madfinger Games should add in the next big update is deploying warning signs, especially on the Landing Zones.

The enemy often camps at the Landing Zones, reducing the chance of survival, which can be quite frustrating sometimes, mostly during the missions.

As you can only track your Faction members through your Map, it would be better to play some kind of red mark icon for enemies on LZ or smokes when you pop out of the Helicopter.

LZ should be revamped. (Source: Screen Plays Mag)

One thing that needs a quick fix is the audio system in Gray Zone Warfare; the gun sounds are quite loud at times, even when enemies are hundreds of meters away.

No matter whether the enemies are in close proximity or stand at a longer distance, you don’t feel safe and know the exact location of enemies.

During the phase, you can’t even place a waypoint or a map icon visible to your squad to make tasks more effective, like in the Battle Royale games.

Anish Koirala
Anish Koirala
Meet Anish, a talented author in the gaming industry. With a passion for storytelling and a deep understanding of game mechanics, Anish weaves captivating narratives that immerse players in unforgettable worlds.


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Gray Zone Warfare is a must-play game if you are a fan of extraction games. The tactical FPS has somewhat created its unique identity with the inclusion of the Faction System as well as PvP and PvE experience. The locations, missions, and customization are great, but to spice things up, Madfinger Games should improvise the LZ camping system, the loot pool, and, most importantly, the addition of weapons. With room for improvement in line, the game should add unique updates and features to overcome the competition and attract more FPS players.Gray Zone Warfare Review: Fun Extraction Game But Needs Few Improvements In The Full Release