The onslaught of great multiplayer shooters has been seemingly never ending over the past few years, from Call of Duty, to Battlefield, to Halo and many others, it’s not hard to find a great game out there where you can have some fun online. The PlayStation series SOCOM has always bet big on multiplayer, and always fell a bit short of joining the heavyweights of Battlefield and Call of Duty. Does SOCOM 4 finally help the series reach its peak? Read on to find out.
SOCOM 4 is the first real SOCOM game on the PlayStation 3, and the campaign follows a squad of soldiers as they battle their way through the South American jungle fighting a group of militants who are trying to stage a coup. Not the most original storyline, but it’s good enough for a video game. It’s a third person shooter which switches between tense combat and steal missions, neither of which are anything special. They’re not bad by any means, just too generic — nothing stands out, and we don’t get to do anything we haven’t done a million times before. You’ll be jumping in and out of cover a lot, much like Gears of War and the cover system is quite smooth. We did experience a few issues, mostly related to the AI, but overall the campaign was smooth
Multiplayer wise, there’s co-op, and then there’s the main course of the game: SOCOM is known for its multiplayer far more than its singleplayer, and in SOCOM 4, there are plenty of multiplayer modes and plenty of maps to check out. With up to 32 players, multiplayer is quite competent and can get very tense (and that’s a good thing in multiplayer). However, like much of the game, there isn’t anything in SOCOM 4 we haven’t see before. Furthermore, we experienced a lot of lag and glitches in the multiplayer, to the point where it felt like a beta.
Visually, SOCOM looks decent, it’s not the prettiest game by far, but where it excels is during the cut scenes. Facial animations and visuals during cut scenes are stunning, to say the least, and coupled with great voiceover, it’s offers some of the best cut scenes you can have. Too bad the story and characters are too generic for us to care. The rest of the game looks decent, but doesn’t stack up against heavy weights like Uncharted. It is worth noting that SOCOM 4 supports 3D and Move, but we didn’t get to check those features out.
Ultimately, what SOCOM 4 offers has been done many times before, and done better. If you want a great campaign, great visuals and competitive multiplayer, get Killzone 3. Because virtually everything SOCOM 4 offers, you can get better elsewhere. If you’re a die hard SOCOM fan, you’ll probably enjoy it.
Great-looking cut scenes
Good co-op mode
Campaign is too generic
Gameplay is too generic
Multiplayer is laggy and glitchy
Overall score: 6/10