SOCOM: U.S. Navy SEALs Fireteam Bravo
The great game SOCOM is back and this time also on our faithful PSP. The previous SOCOM titles were known for their multiplayer which was the best ever created on PS2. Will this one also be such a hit in multiplay or is it better to stay with the singleplayer experience?
The biggest problem of the PSP is the lack of a second analogue stick and this of course means that the controls need to be completely redesigned to fit this handheld. Here things most of the time go wrong, but luckily SOCOM shows that it can be done correctly.
Previous shooters like Coded Arms use the analogue stick combined with the action buttons. SOCOM does it totally different and utilises an automated aiming system. Contradictory to other games this Lock-On function doesn’t make you invincible. You constantly need to take into account the distance, your weapon, the enemy, etc. If you don’t do this, you’ll no doubt miss and get to ton of hostiles over you. Be sure to see a nice red “Mission Failed” coming up on your screen.
In single player you (Sandman) and your team mate (Lonestar) go through 14 missions with varying surroundings and targets which results in constantly new atmospheres throughout the game. What does get noticed is the fact that there are a lot of dead moments in single player which inbalances the action and stealth sequences, but on the other hand this does add to the realism.
Once you’ve completed single player it’s time to go online and here this game scores even better. The online atmosphere as equally good as in its PS2 brother. 16 players can take on each other in a battle for eternal fame and also here teamwork is extremely important. With the accompanying headset you have a constant connection with your co-players and good communication is necessary to win a game in the higher classes.
True SOCOM lovers can enjoy both games even more now as Fireteam Bravo and SOCOM 3 have a crosstalk function which means you can bring over several bonuses. If you’ve gotten one on the PSP, you can bring it over to the PS2 for extra info or completely new gear.
On graphics, sound and concept this title also scores good. Except for some bugs, you get beautiful images on your psp screen, the surroundings change with each mission so you never get a déjà-vu feeling and also the sound of bullets flying around your head is fantastic.
Fireteam Bravo is a game you just have to have. Aside for some bugs, the game is fantastic. SOCOM gave the start for new and better PSP shooter and prooved it can be different and better! Who will go online with this title will have hours of fun and get addicted to it, but also those that remain with the singleplayer will get value for money. In short: MUST HAVE!