• Publisher: SCEA
  • Release Date: Apr 19, 2011
Metascore
67

Mixed or average reviews - based on 64 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 23 out of 64
  2. Negative: 2 out of 64
  1. Apr 12, 2011
    70
    The multiplayer for SOCOM 4 is solid, and I'm having a lot of fun with it. I wish there were more game modes and maps to make my purchase feel worthwhile.
  2. Apr 14, 2011
    75
    A sturdy campaign, challenging cooperative mode, and boisterous online multiplayer help SOCOM 4 make its predecessors proud.
  3. Apr 20, 2011
    50
    The problem with a game like SOCOM is that it can't fully commit to either its tactical roots or the more action-oriented demands of industry trends-the result is less interesting than the sum of its parts.
  4. Apr 12, 2011
    78
    While SOCOM 4 is one of the few "hardcore" titles to implement Sony's PlayStation Move, I wasn't impressed when playing the game with motion controls. The Sharp Shooter peripheral is heavy and cumbersome to use, even if the trigger action is admittedly satisfying.
  5. Apr 18, 2011
    60
    SOCOM 4, like any new game in a series that has a near-and-dear fan base, is going to rub some people the wrong way. But it's really not a bad shooter; its biggest issue is going to be whether there's a there there, to quote Gertrude Stein.
  6. May 25, 2011
    60
    If you want a battle simulator with support roles and a grand tactical battlefield, play MAG. If you want an old-school test of reflexes and headshot-ing skill, SOCOM 4 is just what the grenade spamming sniper doctor ordered.
  7. Apr 12, 2011
    60
    Special Forces is not without its moments of drama and excitement, but ultimately there is an overriding sense that you are simply going through the motions – Move or no Move.
  8. May 16, 2011
    70
    Your enjoyment of SOCOM 4: U.S. Navy SEALs will depend heavily on what you're expecting from the game. Those looking for a great single-player experience won't find it here because of some bad AI and a focus on gunplay as opposed to tactics. Those looking for a strong multiplayer game will be disappointed to find that while the new modes are fun enough, the old modes that made SOCOM unique are gone, making the game stand out less in a rather crowded genre. New players may be fine with what's here, but for fans of the series, it is a disappointing entry that should be relegated to rental status.
  9. May 25, 2011
    75
    Taken as a whole, there's a lot of content in SOCOM 4.
  10. Apr 20, 2011
    75
    For the multiplayer shooter fan, especially for PlayStation 3 owners, there is one solid game to be found in SOCOM 4 and that's with the Competitive mode -- single-player is too generic and Cooperative mode can get old fairly quickly because of limited maps and objectives. It's accessible and easy to get into, but it may grow old far too quickly for most fans of this genre.
  11. May 31, 2011
    91
    I've played less than ten games on my PS3 and reviewed only three and I'm proud to count SOCOM 4 as one of those games. Playing this game solo brought back memories of Full Spectrum Warrior with all the squad-based tactics and ordering options, and playing co-op was like reliving all my best Tom Clancy moments, and the online versus modes had all the fun of MAG with the added bonus of the incredible Bomb Squad mode. And while it may never be able to compete with Call of Duty in sheer popularity, SOCOM 4: U.S. Navy SEALs definitely wins when it comes to reality.
  12. May 6, 2011
    80
    The best SOCOM in years. Doesn't do anything fresh, but it's handsome, polished and fun. [June 2011, p.78]
  13. Apr 20, 2011
    70
    Most of the time, though, it just sort of is, existing as a weirdly generic, blandly acceptable compromise between casual and hardcore that doesn't really go far enough to please either set of fans.
  14. Apr 13, 2011
    74
    A decent game, way better than Confrontation, especially for the multiplayer part. Unfortunately the main campaign is short and it's not so thrilling and challenging as it should be. It works, but is so bland and plain such that only the hardcore fans of the franchise can fully appreciate it.
  15. May 21, 2011
    80
    It is far from the tactic and realism approach of previous games of the series, but it is accesible for more players, and has a robust online component.
  16. May 8, 2011
    60
    After some hit-and-miss experimentation, SOCOM needs refreshing, and this more aggressive approach is aiming in the right direction, even if it isn't a direct hit. [June 2011, p.93]
  17. Apr 25, 2011
    84
    I had a blast playing with friends, yelling at them to take out enemies that had me pinned down. If the minor problems are fixed, the game will be that much more enjoyable. Unfortunately, with a slew of other titles in this genre, it's all too likely that SOCOM 4 will get lost in the crowd.
  18. May 22, 2011
    70
    Successfully plays on the strategy roots of the Socom series with impressive results. [Issue#109, p.96]
  19. Apr 14, 2011
    76
    A good SOCOM game but it rewards teamwork and tactics less than previous iterations. Its abundant contents will keep fans interested for a long time.
  20. Sep 19, 2011
    60
    SOCOM 4 is a light and breezy third-person shooter that's pretty good by genre standards, but perhaps a bit lacking in comparison to SOCOM 2.
  21. Apr 14, 2011
    86
    Where would you be without your team mates? In SOCOM: Special Forces nowhere, because in the higher levels you wouldn't win a medal without carefully planning out your attacks. If you're into tactics, you want to have a look on this one.
  22. Apr 26, 2011
    65
    There is fun to be had here, but by being unable to connect past distinguishing features and moderns sensibilites, SOCOM: Special Forces is unable to do enough to stand out of the crowd.
  23. Apr 12, 2011
    75
    SOCOM: Special Forces seems to answer to those player who where asking for a tactical shooter without giving up on newcomers. We won't find any arcade moments, but the game settings are adjustable to fit nearly any kind of player demands. Technically the game suffers from a lack of personality, but overall the verdict is positive.
  24. Apr 12, 2011
    30
    It's an antiquated shooter that's trying to hang with the new blood and failing at every turn. The fact that it's thoroughly broken serves only to rub salt in an already stinging wound.
  25. Apr 16, 2011
    72
    SOCOM is nothing different from the series. The game has tactical aspects that can "make the day" of the hardcore gamer, single and multiplayer (thanks to the brand new Bomb Squad mode). Some AI problems and poor graphics prevent the game for being a must buy.
  26. May 25, 2011
    70
    SOCOM: Special Forces has left us with mixed feelings. The singleplayer doesn't live up to today's standards but the varied multiplayer and co-op modes save this game from its doom.
  27. Apr 12, 2011
    79
    The game makes several middling attempts to align itself more closely with other successful designs while keeping its identity mostly intact. Despite a few stumbles in engineering its single-player experience and some irregularities with its controls, this is still a unique and solid experience provided you plan to enlist in online multiplayer.
  28. Apr 17, 2011
    30
    Despite the return of Zipper this repeats all the same mistakes of the last game and seems even more old-fashioned and generic as a result.
  29. Apr 22, 2011
    70
    Considering the fast-paced action of the singleplayer campaign and its rich multiplayer, the only ones who might be disappointed of Zipper Interactive's work are those looking for a really hardcore strategic experience. Compared to older iterations of the franchise, Special Forces is in fact much more simple and accessible.
  30. The team-based multiplayer is undeniably good. [June 2011, p.108]
  31. Apr 18, 2011
    80
    And though SOCOM: Special Forces is, at heart, a tactical shooter (and I suppose many will buy this game more for the multiplayer aspect than the campaign itself), I couldn't help thinking that if it had a bit more flexibility in terms of completing missions, there'd be a much greater replayability factor.
  32. Apr 20, 2011
    70
    Zipper Interactive returns to the development of its franchise in order to let us forget about Confrontation. SOCOM: Special Forces offer two different mechanics, tactics, giving orders to the members of our team, and stealth, using the korean soldier "45". A solid gameplay is followed by an amazing multiplayer mode that includes cooperative missions and lots of options for customization of the competitive modes. We wished Zipper Interactive had pushed a little bit more to reach the level of other PS3 exclusives like Uncharted or Killzone, but it is still a very unique and action packed experience.
  33. May 16, 2011
    63
    The campaign is short and pretty uneventful, with a completely ignorable story. [Issue#205, p.84]
  34. May 9, 2011
    73
    SOCOM 4 doesn't make the once-amazing franchise shine. Instead, it stands as just another shooter among others, whether they're tactical or not.
  35. 60
    Seemingly ordinary shooter that does not deviate from the range of other pieces from this genre. Its charm lies in multiplayer. [Issue#204]
  36. Apr 20, 2011
    60
    Quotation forthcoming.
  37. Apr 17, 2011
    75
    Perhaps the best way to describe this game is to say the campaign is worthy of no more than a 7, while the multiplayer is around an 8. But if you're more anal and susceptible to the problems I outlined in this review, you'll find the single-player element even more tiresome, and if you're one of those veteran fans I just mentioned, you may have other reservations.
  38. May 5, 2011
    75
    As a single player experience SOCOM 4 is a decent game. That being said, there is nothing really new here, but if you're craving a tactical shooter experience on the PS3, or are simply a fan of the series, I don't think you can go wrong.
  39. Jun 4, 2011
    50
    Not a terrible game, just a terribly average one - and in the busiest genre around, that makes it as good as pointless. [July 2011, p.95]
  40. Apr 18, 2011
    60
    Zipper Interactive promised one of the most tense and strategic action games ever, but we didn't get any of that. Still it's quite fun in multiplayer.
  41. Apr 19, 2011
    75
    A classic example of a good-not-great game, SOCOM 4 adopts some modern conventions, but gets stuck in a rut between realism and engaging game play. Having the trio of single player, co-op and multi is nice, but none of it is very compelling.
  42. Apr 21, 2011
    74
    SOCOM4 might not be the big player it once was back in the PS2 heyday, but it's definitely worth a confrontation for fans of tactical 3rd person shooters.
  43. Apr 20, 2011
    70
    SOCOM: Special Forces is a game that may cause disappointment to most classical players, but attract those who want a game with more action and spectacle.
  44. It's a stark contrast to the uninspired single-player campaign, but SOCOM 4: U.S. Navy SEALs' online exemplifies everything we love about the series. [June 2011, p.69]
  45. Apr 20, 2011
    80
    SOCOM 4: U.S. Navy SEALs still maintains its hard-nosed action reputation that it has always been known for. While it isn't a huge leap from its predecessors, it's still a fun leap in the right direction.
  46. Aug 5, 2011
    69
    This is a decent online shooter with a fairly bland and mildly repetitive single-player component added on.
  47. May 31, 2011
    85
    With a gripping solo campaign, its depth of online modes and its passionate following of online players, SOCOM 4 has enough ingredients within its makeup to keep its disc firmly locked inside your PS3 console. Even if you are not a fan of the online element I recommend that you still check out its solo campaign. You might even be surprised that after you have beaten the single-player mode you might transfer over to its online side. At least that is what its developers hope you will do.
  48. Apr 19, 2011
    60
    Zipper aims high but fails to make the title stand out. Socom just isn't what it used to be on the PS2.
  49. May 23, 2011
    80
    SOCOM: Special Forces isn't an epic single-player game, but it's not trying to be. The plot is mostly predictable but better told than the same story in other shooters, and the glitches are surprisingly absent when you take the game online. It's very obviously oriented towards the multiplayer experience, so if that's what you're after, this is one of the most enjoyable and complete tactical combat experiences in the current console generation.
  50. If you have all the accessories to play this game as it is meant to be digested (Move, Sharp Shooter, a decent online connection and four non-idiotic mates on standby for co-op) it's one heck of a good game. Lack even two of those prerequisites though and SOCOM: Special Forces will come across like a fairly standard operation that takes a bit too much liberty with the descriptor 'special'. [June 2011 p68]
  51. May 9, 2011
    80
    It's a good game and the Socom franchise is built upon solid multiplayer.
  52. May 24, 2011
    60
    The reintroduction of the campaign in the new SOCOM doesn't manage to offer anything memorable -save for the inclusion of the Korean female character- along with the disappointing absence of the co-op option. Fortunately, the multiplayer portion of the game succeeds in providing well designed maps that deliver intense battles.
  53. Apr 20, 2011
    60
    Unlike his predecessors Socom Special Forces is filled with action. Its strong multiplayer mode makes up for its disapointing campaign.
  54. Apr 22, 2011
    50
    SOCOM: Special Forces was obviously designed to be a more accessible experience than its predcessors, but I suspect this will prove to be a mistake. Long-standing SOCOM fans are likely to protest against the changes to the mechanics, while those new to the series are going to wonder what all the fuss was about.
  55. Apr 12, 2011
    50
    What could have been a return to form for the series ends up suffering an almost total loss of form. If this game didn't carry the SOCOM name it would be just another functional third-person military shooter that you might recognize when you saw it in the markdown bin after a few months.
  56. 50
    As a tactical shooter, it starts out rather well, but quickly goes down hill. The AI is bad, the level design disappoingly linear and overly reliant on scripted events, the story is entirely forgettable. And as for the gameplay, it quickly devolves into a mediocre cover-based shooter rather than tactical variant it claims to be.
  57. 85
    If Zipper Interactive can iron out the various competitive multiplayer bugs, SOCOM 4 could rank among the best 2011 has to offer.
  58. May 5, 2011
    70
    The single player campaign is not the strongest out there, and lacks intelligent AI and an abundance of tactical options. Coop and multiplayer has a satisfying focus on teamwork, which is refreshing in a genre where most players only aim for a high kill/death ratio. Zipper Interactive haven't forgotten their core fans, and the Pro-mode is a good way to please long time SOCOM players.
  59. 70
    When I sat down to write, I was prepared to be more positive about SOCOM 4. Multiplayer and co-op make for a ton of fun and the game is built solid from the ground up, but don't waste your money if you only plan on playing SOCOM 4's single-player campaign.
  60. Jul 9, 2011
    60
    Slightly above-average game with dull campaign and relatively distinctive multiplayer, which is ruined by unpleasant mistakes.
  61. Apr 25, 2011
    79
    The comeback of Zipper Interactive with the SOCOM franchise is a pretty good one. This game does have a decent singleplayer, co-op feature and a good multiplayer. The game is for his largest part good, but it can't give the same feeling that SOCOM II did back in the old days. A good game, but it could have been better.
  62. Apr 26, 2011
    60
    Sony wants SOCOM 4 to be COD in "tactical" clothing, but all they ended up with is an utterly bland amalgam of missions and cutscenes that lacks any soul.
  63. Jun 6, 2011
    55
    Whilst its hordes of mindless, generic, evil kamikaze AI make for great target practice, there isn't much else on offer if you're a veteran third-person gamer.
  64. Apr 27, 2011
    60
    SOCOM: Special Forces is, by some distance, the best SOCOM game yet, although it still lacks polish in comparison with the likes of Call of Duty and Crysis 2.
User Score
6.2

Mixed or average reviews- based on 108 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 25 out of 51
  2. Negative: 21 out of 51
  1. Apr 19, 2011
    10
    Best SOCOM since SOCOM 2. After SOCOM 2 zipper pretty much fell off for me. Then Slant 6 came in and I loved their work on the PSP, but when it came to confrontation it was just as bad as Zipper's last project, but Zipper came back to change all that and as a diehard SOCOM fan I must say they did rather well. Sure their are issues, but playing in classic mode is a nice change of pace for things. Definitely can't play this game like or compare this game to other modern day shooters. This one actually takes time, teamwork, and patience. Overall what I expected. Full Review »
  2. Apr 24, 2011
    0
    One of the greatest playstation franchises has officially died, and socom 4 is the final nail in the coffin. The key features that made this franchise stand out amongst everything else, leave you asking WTF? The single player is no longer a tactical mission, it plays out like any other shooters SP. Where you walk into an area as quietly as possible, yet the enemy some how knows you are there. The cover sysem is a nice addition to the game, but again its nothing innovative since so many other shooters are using it as well. And as for the multiplayer, its a total nightmare. There will be times in classic mode as soon as the match starts, everyone spawns, than about 15-20 seconds later it allows you to respawn. And by the time you even leave your spawn, you are hit with a nade or gun fire. The camera view doesn't do this game any favors either, the over the shoulder view blocks out any peripheral vision that you have. And going around objects makes the camera zoom into the back of your characters head. Lack of weapon customization and character customization really hurt this game as well. All in all socom 4 is a mediocre game, that tries to imitate all the other shooters out there. Not worth my $60 Full Review »
  3. Apr 21, 2011
    4
    If you purchase this game expecting a "SOCOM" title you will be SEVERELY let down. This game has gone away from the true roots of the series and has moved the title to be more casual player friendly. Features found in shooters such as call of duty, uncharted and rainbow six debut for the first time in this "SOCOM" titled game. All aspects of this game are changed for the worse from single player, co-op and online multiplayer as I will now explain to you.

    Singleplayer in SOCOM 4 is an mediocre experience at best. The storyline is extremely cheesy as it is you and your squad versus an entire country's army with generic plot twists.. Rambo would be jealous because I racked up 1000+ kills on hard mode right before the game ended (I know this because I got a trophy for that). The acting is very b-movie like where it shines for a few moments and then drowns miserably for the rest of the show. However the voice acting is a tad bit better during some moments. To beat the games 14 lackluster missions on hard it took me a total of 7 hours and 14 minutes. Your AI teammates range from being useful as bullet sponges to being borderline retarded during the entire length of the campaign. The best part of singleplayer is when it solos you through four stealth missions. Zipper must of made these to piss of the socom community, as they are the only parts of singleplayer that almost resemble the series offline roots.

    Co-op is best played online since your squad ai is already as I mentioned handicapped in every way. There are only 4 missions to play with your friends or random quick matched players. However these missions can be altered with enemy difficult and count. But who the hell doesn't want to play on the hardest settings? Once you beat them all each one time you will never want to return as co-op gets repetitive and boring quick.

    Sigh now lets get into the biggest letdown of the words on the front of the box. SOCOM is all about online multiplayer gameplay no question about it. With that being said this is honestly the worse online SOCOM game you will ever play. Lobbies are now replaced with random call of duty quick matches where little to no communication takes place. There is never a sense of comradery in these rooms as you will find quick you don't give two **** who is in or out of your game nor does anyone else. Consider yourself lucky if you can switch up teams in 15 seconds since you cant talk to the opposing team.

    Do you like playing with your friends on SOCOM? Well you cant for awhile zipper forgot to add a party system there suppose to "patch" it in before the end of april. You can play with friends but you have to join there room and hope its not full while hoping you get on there team... talk about a nightmare. The clan system is the only way to currently play in a "party" at all. Here's how it works; you make a group and challenge clans from any gamemode from a list and hope they accept or even get the invite to war.

    If you want to go solo you can play some ranked respawn and call in some airstrikes from your killstreak reward.... yep hello call of duty! There are classic modes where there is no respawn but they are a slight nod at the series if you want to go that far. Hip fire sucks so you get two dual primary weapons on this "SOCOM" game! Everytime you score a kill you get some fancy experience points to unlock weapon attachments and level up your character to gain access to new weapons. That is assuming if you can get a kill with the clunky character view point that plagues every aspect of the game from online to offline.

    Im going to stop here as I do not want to rant about the thousands of negative changes for multiple paragraphs. Maybe in 3 months from now after multiple patches this game will be better but as it stands right now it is better than Confrontation RELEASE period. See that the keyword was RELEASE... Confrontation TODAY is better than SOCOM 4 without a doubt if you get into a legit room. This game does everything the mainstream market has today but doesn't do one thing right its just a big mess.

    Bottom line... zipper lost touch with its fanbase and you need to avoid this game unless you find it used or on the bargain bin for a decent price.
    Full Review »