Rating: T (ESRB) / 16 (PEGI)
The king of the tactical shooter does it again. Zipper Studios, the makers of SOCOM, the highly loved franchise that made its name back in the PS2 era, has brought us Unit 13. Unfortunately, SOCOM has struggled on the PS3 and subsequently got closed down recently by Sony. On a brighter note Zipper has done some really great games on the handheld side with the fire team bravo series on the PSP and continue to do wonders with Unit 13 on the Vita. The game has no campaign but instead is based on missions which is perfect for a handheld since you can pick it up and play a mission or two and put it down. There are four modes in the game: Solo missions, online cooperative, high value targets, and daily challenges. There is six different operatives to choose from each which specializes in different areas from marksman, technician, and gunner to name a couple. The game was released back on March 6 via physical and digital purchase.
First mode is solo missions which are divided into four sub sections. Elite missions which is very challenging since the mission doesn’t offer check points so proceed with caution. Deadline mission are perfect for those gamers that prefer to run and gun and want to finish the mission as fast as possible. Direct Action mission are simple straight to the point get in complete the objective and get out. Covert mission are are more for the patient gamers as it is all about sneaking around and not getting seen or making noise (my personal favorite). Once you finish each of the solo mission you’ll be ranked from one star to five stars based on how fast you finished, your accuracy, non lethal kills and many other stats. As you finish missions the stars get added and are used to unlock High Value Targets which are similar solo missions just with the degree of difficulty raised up a notch. Daily challenges is a mode that get uploaded via wifi/3G and that have been promised to be different every day for the first year of the game even with the unfortunate news that Zipper’s doors have been closed. The challenges incorporate all four different mission types and the main focus is to post the highest score possible on the leaderboard, which can be check by global, regional, near, or friends. Last but definitely not least is cooperative play. This mode by far is the best mode as it is so simple and easy to jump into a match and play with a friend or a stranger and go into battle together. There is time that you might jump in a see there isn’t any match available, no big deal host your own match and within seconds you’ll have some one jump in with you.
Of course what would a Vita game be with out touch controls? Unit 13 does such a great job bridging the transition for gamers not familiar with touch features. The touch options include but not limited to reloading your gun, and throwing grenades. The touch buttons are placed right next to the regular controls that give it the feel that they are just extra controls and feel real good. After playing this game for the past month and a half I must say I am sad to see Zipper close, but they left us with a wonderful, brilliant, phenomenal game that works perfect on the Vita. A must buy for fan of third person tactical shooters.