[Review] Special Forces: Team X

2013-03-02_00004

With so many competitive multiplayer games on the market, it’s hard to make a name for yourself. From big budget titles to indie games, the market has become flooded with multiplayer-focused games. There is a lot of competition, companies trying to make the next big game that brings in the “moolah.” I’ve been attempting to play Special Forces: Team X on the PC for a while now. While I’ve found it to be a somewhat unique experience… it doesn’t seem like anyone else agrees.

Special Forces: Team X is a multiplayer third person shooter by Zombie Studios, who were also behind the flipping amazing Blacklight: Retribution.  Featuring a decent cover system, cel-shaded graphics and an awesome map system, Special Forces: Team X should be a title that stands out. You have a persistent character that levels up as you play, giving you access to character customizations and new weapons/loadouts. You have your basic game modes like team deathmatch and capture the flag, but there are two other modes that can be played with multiple teams.

The game is fun. The action is pretty hectic, and you are rewarded for sticking together as a team with an experience boost multiplier. The map system is fantastic. Actually, I think my favorite part of this game IS the map system. Normally in games like this, you are given a smattering of static maps, which gets boring pretty quick once everyone finds the cheapest place to camp. What Team X did was split the map up into thirds. Between rounds, players would vote on the type of environment they wanted to play in each individual section. For example: the left section could be a construction site, the middle section a giant warehouse, and the right section is outside of an office complex. The pieces available are diverse, and it makes for a different experience each round. I think this concept should be embraced in more games.

Probably the game's best feature.

Probably the game’s best feature.

Unfortunately I was not able to play all of the map combinations, nor was I able to play any of the modes that allowed for more than two teams. Honestly, I wasn’t really able to play as much of the game as I would have liked. It’s not that I didn’t have time, or that I was being lazy. The issue is that I literally could not play the game. There wasn’t a technical issue; the game ran smoothly. Think about this: what is the most important aspect of having a successful online multiplayer game? Having a community that actively plays it. It’s an issue that faces the plethora of games like this one. I was practically unable to play the game because the community is dead.

H...Hello? Anybody?

H…Hello? Anybody?

I’m not talking about maybe one or two servers full of people playing. The game is a ghost town. I was trying to get some good screenshots of the action to include in this review, but all of my screenshots are kind of bland because there wasn’t any action going on. The novelty of running around an empty map and shooting at nothing wears off extremely quickly.

Overall, the game itself is fine. I think that is the issue though: it’s just fine. It’s a fine game that works well and has a sweet map select system. Unfortunately it does not do enough to keep the community afloat on PC. I found it interesting that this game actually has a cost associated with it. $14.99 isn’t terribly expensive, but there are so many games in that same price range or cheaper… hell free to play games are some of the most played games out there right now! Zombie Studio’s own Blacklight: Retribution is free to play and it’s one of the best multiplayer games I’ve ever played. Because it’s frequently updated and has no barrier of entry, the community is strong. I feel like if Special Forces: Team X had somehow utilized the free-to-play route and had frequent updates like Blacklight, it could have been more successful on this platform.

At least I have a funky hat...

At least I have a funky hat…

As it stands though, there is no reason to buy this title on PC, unless you enjoy running around empty servers and shooting at nothing. The game DID release on Xbox Live Arcade, so maybe people are playing there?

FINAL BREAKDOWN

[+Awesome Map System] [+Solid Gameplay] [-Community is Dead] [-Why Wasn't This Free to Play?]

lacking

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  • MikeEaton

    Missed opportunity. Too bad.