Even though every British schoolboy knows the SAS are the hardest Special Forces group in the world, market economics dictate that SOCOM allows you to fill only the designer camouflage suits of their US counterparts. The game is a squad-based solider simulator in the vein of Rainbow Six, although because it's been designed specifically for the PS2 it works a lot better than any other similar game with a simple-to-use control interface and excellent graphics.
Unfortunately, where the game doesn't break tradition with other similar titles is in the AI, which is fairly naff and means friendly fire is far more likely to kill you and your team-mates than anything the enemy might do. Of course playing the game online with up to 15 of your friends makes this far less of a problem and is where the game really shines.
The SOCOM package comes complete with a free headset that plugs into your PS2 and lets you hear and talk to anyone you're playing with or against online. However, to actually get online you'll need a Network Adaptor, which is sold separately, and a broadband Internet connection. Getting everything working online is nice and easy though, thanks to the various deals Sony has made with the UK's biggest broadband providers, and you'll be online zapping terrorists, friends and family in no time at all. --David Jenkins