It's been labelled as a puppet conflict, serving as a mere cog in the greater Cold War, a blatant invasion in a crude attempt to quell Islamic freedom, and even a trap set up by western powers to lure USSR forces into their own personal Vietnam. The Soviet occupation of Afghanistan in the 1980s has been viewed from many different angles, but it's not often been deemed as suitable material for a heroic war tale.
Not just due to the political ramblings, but because it was a war without victory or resolution. It's not uncommon for war shooters to fall on the dark side of combat (anyone who has sampled any recent Call of Duty will be more than aware of that), but Heroes of War: Sand Storm is neither a realist's nor a romantic's approach. It's a shooting gallery. A modern day, first-person shooting gallery, set in a fairly recent, unresolved and bloody conflict.