Irrational Games did a fantastic job balancing game play with real world SWAT action in making SWAT 4. The single player is well done and fun, but can be frustrating because of the strict use of force policy or by having to hunt around the map for a hostage you didn’t find yet, or a subject you missed.
The multiplayer — especially the cooperative play — is the BOMB. Very well done and some of the most fun I’ve had with my gaming group. Of course with a game like SWAT 4 you need a dedicated, disciplined gaming group. When trying to co-op with strangers there’s always one or two that just don’t get the concept and usually ruin it for all.
Replay value is good. There are plenty of options but no matter how many times you play the same maps with just different locations you still clear it the same way. This can become a problem after extensive time with it. Let’s hope the gaming community will be able to keep the SWAT 4 fires burning with new maps and mods.
Please understand that we seek realism in our games, and though SWAT 4 delivers on the weapons and tactic parts, this is still just a game. When your character goes down you yell, “What the hell?” then click restart. Real officers go through a lot of what you see here in this excellent game. Of course it’s exaggerated for game play, but if they go down they don’t hit restart. What SWAT 4 does best for law enforcement — in my opinion — it shows you, the gamer, how much restraint is needed in this line of work and how quickly you have to make a life or death decision. I hope you get the game and enjoy it as much as I have… and still do.
Just keep in the back of your mind that, as of this writing, 37 police officers have been killed in the United States this year. You can check out their stories here.
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