SOCOM 4 (working title), also known as SOCOM: Special Forces for PAL regions, is a 2010 third-person tactical shooter video game developed by Zipper Interactive and published by Sony Computer Entertainment exclusively for the PlayStation 3. The game is slated for a Fall 2010 release date, and will be the sixth title and reboot in the SOCOM series and the second for the PlayStation 3. SOCOM 4 is the first SOCOM title released by Zipper for next-gen home consoles.
SOCOM 4 is set at an undisclosed location in Southeast Asia. The player controls a character unofficially called the "Ops Commander," the leader of a 5-man NATO special forces squad deployed near the Strait of Malacca. He is accompanied by two Americans named Schweitzer and Wells, as well as two South Korean operatives, Chung and Forty-Five. One of the first female combatants from the first SOCOM, Forty-Five is reported to be "vital to the story." The plot stretches over a six-day period in two main acts. The special forces squad is said to face an indigenous revolutionary group known as the Naga. Zipper reports the story to be "beyond the typical bounds of military shooters." The commander is Cullen Gray and he gives orders to other 4 soldiers.
Squad gameplay involving cover and suppressing fire in-game
Similar to previous games in the series, SOCOM 4 is a squad-based tactical shooter. Players are able to give various commands to team members real-time such as setting waypoints, issuing squad commands, setting behaviors and commanding the squad to take out multiple targets on the way to their objective. In addition, as the player is the Ops Commander, he will be able to use Command Mode which allows him to see points of tactical interest that cannot be seen in regular mode. In Command Mode, the action will slow down slightly and the screen will become grayish as the player decides his choices though combat will still continue.
At times, the action will be a full-on firefight while other times require the player to infiltrate locations silently and undetected by enemy forces. Players will be receiving intel on the battlefield and will also be able to call in air-strikes and strafing runs on enemy targets in the battlefield. According to Zipper, they want to make SOCOM 4 "the pinnacle of tactical shooters" on the PlayStation 3. The SOCOM 4 single-player campaign is built around 14 missions that unfold over about 12 hours of gameplay. The team says they've focused more on artificial intelligence this time around. They're programmed to use suppressing fire, flanking and bounding maneuvers, cover and enemy commanders are also able to call in airstrikes.
Apart from the single-player mode, the game will also feature an online mode which supports up to 32 players and has been described as "an all new EXPURIENCE" by Zipper. No further details about the multiplayer mode has been given out by Zipper.
On March 10, 2010, at the Sony GDC press conference it was revealed that SOCOM 4 would be playable with the all new PlayStation Move controller. The Move controller allows players to use motion sensor technology to play PlayStation 3 games. With the unveiling of the new Move controller, Sony also showed a demo of SOCOM 4 being played with the controller.
SOCOM 4 was officially announced on the U.S. Playstation Blog on March 4, 2010 by Jeremy Dunham, Sr. Community Manager of Zipper Interactive. With the release of the SOCOM series website, it was announced that the game is scheduled to be released fall 2010.
GameTrailers TV and Spike TV revealed SOCOM 4's debut trailer on March 5, 2010 during its air after 12:30 a.m. EST.