Review: SOCOM: Fireteam Bravo 3
Review copy provided by the publisher
Slant Six Games and Sony have taken SOCOM Fireteam Bravo 3 for the PSP to a whole new level. With a new campaign and features like the all new online campaign co-op as well as online play which supports for the first time medals, ribbons and leader-boards. See for yourself how you stack up against the best from around the world. There is also a limitless combination of custom missions, weapons, gear, and multiple difficulty levels. You can go online and join a clan or fight for yourself. The title can also support the ability to unlock these weapons and gear. The multi-player team mode focuses on game play that allows new ways for players to interact, expanding on the team orientated, authentic, military experience that made the franchise famous. There is also a compelling narrative story in a cutting edge presentation.
The game begins with you, assuming the role of JaMarcus Wilson (Wraith), for the first time in the series. Your mission, as you find out once you board the aircraft carrier, is to find and interrogate a former Soviet KGB agent, who the government believes has weapons of mass destruction and plans to use them against Western interests. Once on board, you meet the other members of your team, Sandman, and newcomers Toro and Raven. From there you begin training for the mission at hand.
Basic controls and movement tutorials take you through the paces as you practice deploying your team to certain locations to strike, hold, etc. In the tutorial you also learn to use the firearms at your disposal (like any good SEAL should do) which will be your line of defense against the enemy before you. Unlike the past SOCOM titles for PSP, there is no rescue or command in your ear, so what you have at your disposal is all you have. You can pick up weapons dropped by enemies you have taken down, but that’s about it.
Graphics are, for the PSP, not bad for the type of game. Cut scenes are sharp and the actual game play footage is fluid and even. The locations remind you of the look from Navy Seal movies in the early 90’s. It really captures the European look of the cities you encounter. One of the first things I look at when starting a game is whether or not the game matches the location of the story. For SOCOM Fireteam Bravo 3, I believe the developers hit it right on target and you can almost feel the crisp European air.
One of the aspects of the game that bring players in is the team play format that SOCOM takes with this game. It is you who tells the team where to attack, when to rush a room, when to defend. It’s all in your hands as leader of the group and the more you play the more comfortable you get with this type of game play. Press O and the command screen pops up, press the command you want, and there they go.
Difficulty of the game is another story all together. You never really feel challenged even when the odds are against you. 20-4? No contest with this SEAL team. You can pretty much blow through the levels and take your time to make sure all of your tasks are complete. This all could be due to the fact that SOCOM Fireteam Bravo 3 is designed primarily as a multi-player game. The campaign is there for fun and perhaps to get you prepared for the multi-player. Working as a team is the best way to enjoy this game. Via online or link up.
If you do indeed want to play the single player campaign through, Custom missions may be the way to go. You choose the map, number of enemies, and choose between the 3 types of missions: demolition (blow up targets), neutralize (kill target), or disable (sabotage targets). This can add many hours of game play and see just how tough of a SEAL you really are. If you do indeed survive the single player and custom missions you will be rewarded with Command Equity points. The more points you accumulate the more points you earn to unlock multi-player costume parts as well as new weapons and weapon add-ons.
The multi-player mode of SOCOM features not only co-op, but infrastructure and ad-hoc competitive modes as well. The modes of multi-player sound similar to most of the other war games out there. Here is a list of the different modes in multi-player:
SOCOM Fireteam Bravo 3 has a lot of good going for it. It’s one of the better 3rd person shooters for the PSP. The series looks to be on a good roll right now and that can only mean a lot of good for gamers down the road. Some of the things I hope they work on in the future is making the difficulty a bit harder and working on the length of the single player campaign. Not all gamers are multi-player fanatics, so a longer single player campaign would benefit that type of gamer.
Title: SOCOM Fireteam Bravo 3
Developer: Slant Six Games
Platform Reviewed: PSP
Release Date: Available Now
Review Copy Info: A copy of this title was provided by the publisher to DualShockers Inc. for reviewing purposes