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April 19 2010
SOCOM 4: U.S. Navy SEALs - PS3 Preview
Release Date Distributer Publisher Developer
2011SonySonyZipper Interacive
Offline Players Online players Price Anticipation
12-32$TBA

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PS3 exclusive SOCOM 4 from Zipper Interactive.
Back in the PS2 days there was only one online shooter worth considering - Zipper Interactive's SOCOM. Sure, it had a decent single player game but it was the online component that many people, ourselves included, back time and time again. When the PS3 launched people were keen for a sequel and it came in the form of SOCOM Confrontation but was developed by Slant Six Games rather then Zipper Interactive. The results were mixed at best.

In early 2010 Sony suprised by announcing SOCOM 4 and better still original developers Zipper Interactive were handling the development. Given that they had just released the rather successful 256-player online only shooter M.A.G. it bodes well for this sequel.

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Visually SOCOM 4 looks pretty good.
SOCOM 4's story sees control meeting chaos when a SEAL team confronts a no-win situation. Thrown into an international catastrophe, Commander Cullen Gray attacks with expertise and tenacity in the midst of conflict. With only six days, Cullen must lead his team to capture a militant revolutionary aimed at destroying the world's most vital waterway and disrupting the global economy.

Unlike Zipper Interactive's M.A.G. or Slant Six's SOCOM Confrontation this game will indeed include a single player mode which takes place over 14 missions with around 12 hours of gameplay. Gameplay will be a mixture of full-on assault and infiltration missions with the ability to call in air-strikes and strafing runs.

Perhaps the most interesting aspect of this game is simply that the developers have confirmed the entire title will be playable with the new Playstation Move controller and sub-controller. There is still a lot to be unveiled, and the developers are looking at ways to ensure that online games are on a level playing field (with or without the new controller).

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Taking cover behind a wall in SOCOM 4.
So what about multi-player? Well Zipper Interactive have taken the game down a few notches from the 256-player M.A.G. to a much smaller 32-player game. That's not a bad thing though as while we loved M.A.G. it could be a hectic game at times and this smaller scale should allow the developers to refine the gameplay, provide more focused maps, reduce lag, and still provide plenty of thrills. Just remember too that 32-players is still more then the maximum 24 in that other litte shooter so many love Modern Warfare 2.

Visually this game is nothing short of impressive. If the in-game visuals match the surrounding screenshots then we're in for something special. We haven't seen anything much in-game as yet, but we expect that SOCOM 4 will be one of Sony’s big E3 titles at which point we should have a lot more to show at that point.

We have high expectations for this game primarily due to the developer, Zipper Interactive, coming back to their most loved franchise. Expect a release in 2011 around the globe after a delay was confirmed in late July 2010.