|System: X360, PC||Review Rating Legend|
|Dev: TimeGate Studios||1.0 - 1.9 = Avoid||4.0 - 4.4 = Great|
|Pub: South Peak Interactive||2.0 - 2.4 = Poor||4.5 - 4.9 = Must Buy|
|Release: Sep. 1, 2009||2.5 - 2.9 = Average||5.0 = The Best|
|Players: 1 (32 Online)||3.0 - 3.4 = Fair|
|ESRB Pending: Teen||3.5 - 3.9 = Good|
The multiplayer is further enhanced by the ability customize loadouts and purchase deployables. While Section 8 provides players with several different class types, players can actually mix and match these classes' arsenals in order to create a few über-builds. Not only can you choose between quality weaponry (pistols, assault rifles, machine guns, shotguns, missile launchers, sniper rifles, etc.), you can also give your loadouts two equipment choices (grenades, sticky detonation packs, a repair tool, a mortar launcher, etc.) and ten passive modules that give your power suit constant buffs. These loadouts can be saved and switched out before spawning.
As you start mastering the game, you'll not only acquire ranks and awards, you'll also accumulate Requisition Points. These can be used to purchase and strategically deploy various turrets, supply/health depots, tanks, and heavy armor mechs. These deployables allow you and your team to control the battlefield, creating a safe haven for future spawning and for protecting important points on the map.
In terms of presentation, Section 8 makes use of the Unreal Engine 3 to great effect. The action is always nicely captured, the cutscenes are crisp, and the textures and particle effects are nicely rendered. While this isn't the best game you've ever seen, it certainly is no slouch either. Sounds don't fair quite as well. The music is forgettable and the voice acting, though professionally presented, adds almost nothing considering the single-player campaign is more of a tack-on. Also, while the in-game orders over the comm. system are informative, it can get a bit cacophonous. The sound effects on the other hand support the action perfectly.
Controls are very familiar to those found in nearly every other FPS out there. However, there are a few abilities that mix things up. For example, your power suit comes equipped with a jet pack to boost you around the battlefield. You can also go into a hyper-sprint if the sprint button is held down for a time. Also, you can even lock-on to targets while zooming. All of these heightened powers are limited - you can only use them as long as their energy meters last. The inclusion of these abilities help to differentiate the title from other FPS and emphasize the fact you're suited up, but they certainly aren't revolutionary.
Section 8 also includes an Instant Action mode from the main menu, but it essentially just allows you to play in bot matches. As such, it's rather inconsequential when compared with the true multiplayer and even single-player experience for that matter. When all is said and done, Section 8 is a quality multiplayer experience a lot of players will get into. Unfortunately, the other aspects of the game, while fine in their own right, don't manage to add much to the formula. As such, this is a game that probably could have been released via the XBLA or Steam for $15 or $20 and would have been a veritable masterpiece. Since it's a full priced title, you may want to download the demo first and buy later.
CCC Editor / News Director