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PS2 SOCOM games - Worth playing today?

Posted: Tue Jul 21, 2015 6:29 pm
by Ziggy587
I never played any of the SOCOM series. Are any of the PS2 games worth playing today? I'm just talking about single player, I know they were heavy (online) multiplayer games. Are they worth playing today just based on their single player modes? If so, is there one that is generally considered to be the best?

Re: PS2 SOCOM games - Worth playing today?

Posted: Wed Jul 22, 2015 5:22 am
by BoringSupreez
I played the first three SOCOM games back in the day, and enjoyed all of them. Haven't touched them since the beginning of last gen, but here's how I remember them:

I get the strong feeling the original SOCOM doesn't hold up in any fashion. The graphics are very early PS2, the online died as soon as SOCOM 2 came out, and the single-player was very difficult. The locales featured were all exotic, yet dull due to the plain graphics. There were no checkpoints, so each level had to be beat in one go. I got very frustrated while playing SOCOM, especially during the Turkey mission where you sneak into a fort. SOCOM is the only one of the original three that I never beat on the highest difficulty setting.

SOCOM 2 was great. It remains the only game besides SOCOM I've played that actually made me put thought into how I utilized squad tactics. If you just ran in and took things as they came, you'd either die quickly or beat the mission with a sense of failure. Sneaking about, taking silenced shots or slitting someone's throat at the right moment, and then hiding the bodies was great fun. Setting up ambushes with the heavier weapons was always a risky challenge, but the rush of pulling it off successfully felt like a great reward. Most maps were relatively open for the era, so there were almost always multiple avenues for approach to each situation.

The bonus objectives could be particularly challenging to complete, but they always paid off in some later mission; a feature that I loved. The sparse checkpoints, low Ghost Recon-style health bars, and inability to increase health all forced the player not to play it as a standard third-person run-and-gun. I've probably sank more time into SOCOM 2 than any other squad game I can think of.

SOCOM 3 had better graphics, more variety, more interesting locales, and a heavier focus on story, but the levels were more corridor-like, and the game was overall much easier. Run-and-gun style was much more viable, and sneaking wasn't as greatly rewarded, which detracted from the core gameplay. Multiple missions had vehicular combat segments, which shouldn't have existed except as an end-of-mission extraction segment in my opinion. I enjoyed SOCOM 3, but other than the Poland missions, not much of the game was particularly memorable.

So, to sum things up: SOCOM was fun over a decade ago, doubt it'd be much fun today. SOCOM 2 is a squad-based tactical shooting classic. SOCOM 3 was fun, but the core SOCOM gameplay was unfortunately eroded.

Re: PS2 SOCOM games - Worth playing today?

Posted: Wed Jul 22, 2015 8:24 am
by Exhuminator
What about SOCOM: U.S. Navy SEALs: Combined Assault, the fourth entry on PS2 that came out in 2006? Anybody play that?

Re: PS2 SOCOM games - Worth playing today?

Posted: Wed Jul 22, 2015 10:40 am
by BoringSupreez
Exhuminator wrote:What about SOCOM: U.S. Navy SEALs: Combined Assault, the fourth entry on PS2 that came out in 2006? Anybody play that?

I sold my PS2 that same year to help fund my 360 purchase, and when I bought another PS2 two years later, I never bothered to buy the fourth game. From what I've heard, it's very similar to SOCOM 3.

Re: PS2 SOCOM games - Worth playing today?

Posted: Wed Jul 22, 2015 11:33 am
by Ziggy587
So it sounds like I could enjoy either 2 or 3, depending what mood I'm in.

Re: PS2 SOCOM games - Worth playing today?

Posted: Wed Jul 22, 2015 3:31 pm
by Metal Jesus
SOCOM 2 still holds up today... Such a brilliant game and definitely one of my favorites!

Also check out SOCOM Fire Team Bravo 1 & 2 on the PSP. They are slightly watered down versions of the main games...but still fun in their own right!

Re: PS2 SOCOM games - Worth playing today?

Posted: Wed Jul 22, 2015 3:36 pm
by Exhuminator
Metal Jesus wrote:Also check out SOCOM Fire Team Bravo 1 & 2 on the PSP.

There is also SOCOM: U.S. Navy SEALs Fireteam Bravo 3 and SOCOM: U.S. Navy SEALs Tactical Strike on PSP as well.

Re: PS2 SOCOM games - Worth playing today?

Posted: Wed Jul 22, 2015 4:28 pm
by Ziggy587
Metal Jesus wrote:SOCOM 2 still holds up today... Such a brilliant game and definitely one of my favorites!


Yes, I remember you saying that in one of your videos.

I think I'll put 2 on my list of PS2 games to play.

Re: PS2 SOCOM games - Worth playing today?

Posted: Tue Jul 26, 2016 1:32 am
by ADingoAteMyBaby
I personally feel they all hold up very well. I own the complete series and they are a blast to play especially if you love stealthy shooters like Ghost Reson & Splinter Cell. The complete control you have over your team hasn't been matched since on consoles. The only downside is your bastard CPU controlled teammates will sometimes ruin your cover. I still love all of them and I never played the online multiplayer once. I was just recently replaying the first one, though not the best, for its time, it was a great start.

I wish they made the new ones in the same vein as the originals :(.