SWAT Target Liberty - PSP review

SWAT always get a bad name in movies, but can they redeem themselves here? We get tactical and find out.

SWAT on the PSP follows the original series on the PS2 and sees you tasked with thwarting international terrorist threats in New York City.

Penned by the same script writer that does The Shield - Scott Rosenbaum - player's take on the role of Kurt Wolfe and his New York City SWAT Team in what claims Vivendi is "the only true Tactical Squad-Based Shooter on the PSP".

The methodical gameplay will either appeal or it won't as you slowly work your way through room after room taking out tangos and breech, bang, clearing your way through the missions.

Controls are simple, but extensive with every button utilised to send your two sidekicks on their way.

Because of the tactical nature there is a lengthy tutorial, which you can skip, to get through and in game things aren't much faster.

Controlling a cursor directs your men into the action with extensive options at every level, want to open a door, there are about five options from simply opening it to picking the lock to even just blowing it up.

Movement is equally detailed and one of the limitations is that you can only move your cursor where you can walk, if there is a bench in the way you've got to move around it rather than through it. We can understand from a realism point of view, but it can be frustrating at times.

As with other tactical squad-based shooters on the PSP you can set your teams attitudes to enemy encounters and choose to move the unit in a team or on their own into position.

A multiplayer mode completes the offering complete with the ability to play against others via an ad-hoc network although there is no online play.

Verdict

If you are into titles like Socom, GRAW or Rainbox Six this will appeal however don't expect the same sort of excitement setting off flash bangs when you clear the room.

It's not that SWAT Target Liberty is flawed, the attention to detail is impressive, both graphically and from the audio effects, it's just that the slow methodical gameplay style is just not that exciting.