The sights and sounds of SOCOM
From the opening of SOCOM: Special Forces on PlayStation 3, it's clear that developer Zipper Interactive means business. With its polished, Hollywood style cutscenes which introduce the special forces team, this third person shooter locks you firmly in its sights and never lets go.
You're immediately greeted with detailed visuals that drop you into a steamy and bullet laden South East Asia. The hot, leafy surroundings and dank industrial backdrops are convincing locations for the intense firefights of SOCOM: Special Forces, made even more incredible if you have a stereoscopic 3D compatible TV to really bring the jungle warfare to life. And while the spectacular cocktail of bullets and explosions impresses, it's the amazing facial modelling of the characters which brings a subtle drama to the story.
Perfect aural accompaniment comes from an edgy string driven soundtrack composed by Bear McCreary, the man behind the music of TV series such as The Walking Dead. His evocative compositions lend a powerful weight to the action, drawing you deeper into the game as your team becomes immersed behind enemy lines.
SOCOM: Special Forces is a well crafted game which makes you feel right at home with its glossy, big screen sensibilities.
SOCOM, so good
SOCOM: Special Forces on PlayStation 3 represents years of refinement in the tactical shooter genre. Taking the squad strategy elements from previous SOCOM titles and mixing these with high impact set pieces, your task as field commander has never been so exhilarating... or so dangerous.
While you directly control the commander of the five-man squad, your teammates act of their own accord until you give them orders, such as taking down a chosen target or moving to a selected waypoint. Areas can swiftly turn into deadly war zones without a good strategy in mind, so it pays to have a plan.
Stealth is encouraged to prevent a grisly demise, something which is emphasised by four covert missions in the 14 level single player mode. Sneaking into an enemy compound is a great change of pace to the heavy action sections of the game.
Want to ramp up the scorching action even more? SOCOM: Special Forces is compatible with the PlayStation Move motion controller and sharp shooter, putting extra precision in your hands. When it comes to taking down the Naga and leading your squad, PS Move puts you firmly in command with its swiftly intuitive controls.
With its well thought out design, such as easily located markers that point out where you need to go and a pause screen which recaps your current mission objective, SOCOM: Special Forces is a game anyone can pick up and play. You don't have to be an expert marksman or a SOCOM veteran to earn your stripes on this field, so make sure you give it a shot.
While the odds are overwhelming and you may be outnumbered, you're never outgunned in SOCOM: Special Forces thanks to an excellent range of multiplayer modes. By bringing some friends you can enjoy a series of special online co-operative missions for up to five players, and a 32 player online multiplayer mode, all via PlayStation Network.
Co-op mode drops you in a customised environment where you have to complete objectives from a selection of six varied maps. You choose the weapons and the range of enemies you'll be fighting against. Co-ordination is the only way to survive, so make sure you pick up a wireless headset to relay strategy with your friends - and don't worry if you don't have a full squad, as computer-controlled teammates can be added to make up the numbers.
If you fancy something a little more competitive, there are four modes in the 32 player romp to get your blood pumping: Suppression, Last Defence, Uplink and Bomb Squad. Each one is full of entertaining and frenzied warfare where the advantage can swing between teams in an instant and, if you don't use your head, you're in danger of losing it.
Both competitive and co-operative modes feature rich environments, with lots of cover and flanking areas, making for some spectacular firefights. The more you play, the more your player level and in-game stats increase, offering plenty of incentive to return for another blast. Make sure your friends are ready, because SOCOM: Special Forces on PlayStation 3 is an explosive multiplayer feast of fun.