I'm high on mushrooms and feel compulsed to type. SOCOM was once the flagship online shooter experience for playstation. Much like halo for xbox, SOCOM held the title as the most played multiple player game for much of the PS2's hayday. However how did such a once great and respected franchise become another series in the gamers graveyards? Today I'm looking at the top 5 blunders and decisions, that led the SOCOM series where it is today. Number 8 - Encumbrance What is a good way to take a fast paced, arcadic shooter and make it not that for not one, but the next three main series sequels? Add encumbrance. Fans disliked this move from the start, and for some reason it stayed until the last series title SOCOM 4. From shotty design of the feature, such as keeping the movement restrictions even after using/getting rid of the item, to them making so some of the most popular loadouts made you slower than other loadouts. Number 7 - Not launching with Demolition mode Ok look, some of the other things we can kind of think "this is what they were trying to do". However releasing the next big sequel without the most popular game mode is not one of those things. SOCOM fans were treated to a shock to learn that their beloved mode would not be coming to the sequel, and instead there would be a modified version of the mode on the game. This lead to outcry as many speculated they would try to double dip with a DLC of the mode later on, however it was eventually patched in for free. Number 6 - Technical issues While some fans will remember the technical mess that was launch SOCOM 3, others will immediately think of the series first introduction to the PS3, SOCOM: Confrontation. Not being able to even load up a game turned off a lot of new players to the series, as well as old ones expecting a next gen experience. From randomly dying, game breaking glitches, frustrating gameplay, it would be nearly two years before the game was in a state where it should have been launched. While in the end we got a great game, the technical issues turned many off of the series for good. Number 5 - The great extermination. Coming in at number 5, mostly because this isn't technically a SOCOM game, is the H-hour mass banning and forum shutdown. While this game was not a main series title, it did have the most successful crowdfunding campaign we have seen for this series, bringing in original staff including the SOCOM 1 and 2 creative director David Sears. This was a perfect opportunity for SONY to gauge interest in the series coming to the playstation 4, without investing their own resources. The game at first received massive hype, and fans seemed to have come out of the woodwork for one last chance at a SOCOM game. A year later, David Sears had left, the game wasn't coming together as perfect as hoped, and the community was getting impatient. The founder of the gaming studio created the SOCOM inspired game Tom something, purged the forums by banning some of the most active and vocal members, and then shut down the games forums, killing any discussion going on about the project. The negative PR, loss of interest and supporting members lead to the game becoming irrelevant, and killing any hope fans had of a new game. Number 4 - Making SOCOM 4's main mode respawn based Want to know a good way to kill a classic? Take one of it's core features, throw it out the window, and do the opposite in the name of reaching a broader marker. That's exactly the direction Zipper Interactive took with it's final franchise title SOCOM 4. It worked, they got the attention of the broader market, and the broader market HATED IT. With talks of it being another Call of Duty Title, there was only hope that the original series fans and a few curious casuals would pick up the game, and the last minute addition of a round based game was added to a game designed for a respawn experience. Sour reviews and a lack of original fan interest led this game to be one of the PS3's greatest failures. Number 3 - Don't buy the game if you don't like what you see. Members of the official forum for SOCOM will be familiar will a podcast done by the Studio to answer fan questions, and market progress on the game. One such podcast featured one of the founding members of Zipper Interactive a mere few months before release. It was full damage control. The question was asked regarding the being generous luke warm reception of their game, and he was quick to reply that they were doing something different, and if you didn't like what you saw, to not buy the game. This didn't sit well with a lot of fans, as up to this point Zipper had at least seemed to be listening and changing their game to please the fans. However this put the nail in the coffin for what a lot of people already knew - This game was done, and it wouldn't be changed, so either buy it or don't. Number 2 - Adding the Playstation move to SOCOM 4 Ahh, remember the playstation move? There classic move games such as Everybody Dance, The just dance series, and....SOCOM 4? Yes, for some the appeal of holding on to what felt like a dick for hours on end was a great way to spend their weekends. However for most, especially for a tactical shooter, the fans were not interested and preferred the controller. However difference between the two devices, made for major design decisions such as the crosshair, map design, movement, and aiming/firing to be based around the move, and not the controllers. The move is considered to have contributed to the lack of immersiveness reported by longtime fans. Number 1 - Zipper being bought by Sony For a lot of studios, getting bought by a major publishing force is great. No more trouble securing funding, you have someone to market for you, and you are free to create your games, right? In Zippers case, a lot of design decisions are reported to have stemmed from Sony themselves, including trying to market the game to a broader audience, including the move, and design decisions. If Zipper had been able to create this game freely, who knows how different this would have looked. One thing is for sure though, a lot of us have not been as exciting as the day SOCOM 4 was announced, that is before we seen gameplay footage.