The PS2 has a lot of classics but SOCOM games stood out for bringing a different way to play. The popular third-person shooter developed by Zipper Interactive and published by Sony is remembered for being one of the first titles to bring online play to the PS2.
The first game, SOCOM: U.S. Navy SEALs, featured 12 single player missions but that was not the main attraction of the game. The game had online play, which made it stand out from other titles at the time because it used a headset. This was actually the first PS2 game to use a headset on offline missions and online. A year after its release, the game had sold two million copies around the world.
The online gameplay featured three game modes, where you had to take out your opponents, rescue people or take out the opponent’s base. Games today feature many more online game modes, but at the time, this was super fun and unique. Being able to talk to your team through a headset and come up with a strategy to win made the game very popular. The games were far from done and another PS2 classic is next.
We’re talking about SOCOM II, which was released in 2003. The game once again featured 12 single player missions and a number of objectives in them that could be completed for a higher score. But gamers were back for the online play, which now had twelve online maps. The game also brought back ten maps from the first game. The online play also allows players to talk but it now came with a number of improvements. Players were now able to mute players before the game and there was now a clan roster and friend list.
SOCOM II was huge for the series because it received great reviews, with many critics saying that it was close to perfect. The game remained popular even after the release of the PS3, with many players requesting for it to be released on the newer console. SOCOM II is still talked about today and PS4 owners have also asked for the title to be brought back. The online servers for some of the SOCOM games, were shut down a few years ago. The PS4 has added a number of PS2 classics and when gamers get a chance to request a game, it is usually one of the most mentioned.
SOCOM II was not the last of the series for the PS2, SOCOM 3: U.S. Navy SEALs was released in 2005. A year later, it became part of the Greatest Hits lineup, meaning it had sold a lot of copies throughout the year. The third game now had 14 single player missions and the popular online play. The game did not disappoint and continued the success of the first two games, receiving good reviews.
In 2006, SOCOM U.S. Navy SEALs: Combined Assault was released. The PS2 game now featured 18 missions for single player. This game also allowed players to replace the AI team and play the story online. The online play brought all the maps from SOCOM 3 and ten new ones. The game received three map packs.It also received mixed reviews but the bad news for the series didn’t start here.
SOCOM Games For PS3
The next game, SOCOM: U.S. Navy SEALs Confrontation, was developed by Slant Six Games and released for the PS3 in 2008. Fans had the option to buy SOCOM Confrontation with the new official PS3 Bluetooth headset, download it through the PlayStation Network or buy the standalone game. The PS3 title did not feature a campaign and was all about online play. That change wasn’t bad since SOCOM games were popular for its online game modes but the game was released with a number of issues. SOCOM Confrontation was actually delayed for a month because they wanted to deliver the best online experience. But the issues were still there and a few months later, a patch to fix many of them was released. Trophy support was also added to the game. The patch did not fix all of them and some of them actually remained but players who had been disappointed by the release came back to play the game again.
SOCOM Confrontation did not receive the greatest reviews and fans were not happy with the game crashing randomly while playing or looking for a match. Other patches and downloadable content were released but some gamers had already left to play other games. Fans were disappointed with the PS3 release but they had not forgotten about the previous games. The PS2 titles were still popular after the release of the PS3 and fans believed the series would come back with a better game.
The multiplayer servers for SOCOM Confrontation were shut down in 2014.
SOCOM 4: U.S. Navy SEALs was released in 2011. The game developed by Zipper Interactive now had online co-op mode. The game also had a quick match system where players would join a game faster. A Party feature was later added, so players could invite friends to play before looking for a match. SOCOM 4 left out a few game modes from previous games and only brought one back. The game later added a second game mode from previous games with downloadable content.
The game received mixed reviews and the future of the series did not look good a year after the release of SOCOM 4. Zipper Interactive planned to do a lot more with the game but in 2012, that all stopped.
In March of 2012, it was confirmed that the game developer had been closed. Zipper Interactive also developed MAG, a game which stood out in 2010 for online matches of up to 256 players. Almost two years after Zipper Interactive was closed, online servers for SOCOM 4 and MAG were shut down.
The PlayStation Portable also received four SOCOM games. The games were similar to the PS2 titles and they were also very popular. The last game for it was SOCOM: U.S. Navy SEALs Fireteam Bravo 3, which was developed by Slant Six Games.
New Game In The Future?
Most of the SOCOM games received good reviews and were very popular but the future of the series does not look good. Zipper Interactive was closed in 2012 and a year later Slant Six Games was closed. Zipper Interactive released most of the SOCOM games but Slant Six Games released the latest PSP Game as well as SOCOM Confrontation. With the two game developers now closed, it seems like fans will have to wait for a while before a PS4 game is released. Back in December of last year, it was reported by many sites that a SOCOM game for PS4 would not be coming anytime soon. There are plenty of petitions and requests from fans asking to bring back SOCOM II but nothing has been confirmed. We’re hoping that Sony surprises us with a remastered SOCOM II on the PS4.
Did you play SOCOM games? What is your favorite in the series? Let us know in the comments.