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Drop Like It’s Hot- Section 8: Prejudice Review


Although much of 2008’s Section 8 instinctively followed sci-fi shooter convention, the game delivered one stirring hook. Borrowing Medal of Honor: Airborne‘s paratrooping mechanic, the title allowed players to choose their landing position on a active battlefield. While dropping in a heavily defended position offered the opportunity to kill oblivious foes- it also held risk, as groups of axis soldiers typically surrounded the player. Yet, where EA’s game attempted to recreate the gradual descent of a World War II chute, Section 8 sent players careening through the atmosphere at breakneck speeds, revealing both a macro view of the map, as well as a stunning visual effect.

Alas, Section 8‘s leaps weren’t rousing enough to wrangle $60 from player, as the game’s multiplayer matches were often devoid of combatants. While the recently released sequel doesn’t deviate from its predecessor’s competitive jet-pack based conflicts, Section 8: Prejudice has one mighty weapon in its arsenal: a $15 price tag. Abandoning a disk-based retail launch, the digital download’s frantic firefights rank among the XBLA’s best shooters.


While the original Section 8‘s single player campaign was little more than a warm-up for online competition, Prejudice provides a six-hour, story-based component. Look past the trite, ‘chase the villain across a series of environmentally dissimilar planets’ and players are presented with a set of varied missions. Progress through the operation is marked by obtaining proficiency with the capabilities of your armor suit and loadout, then putting these assets to use in increasingly open-ended stages. While all the terminal hacking and vehicle repair can occasionally seem like another tutorial, when the developers give players the opportunity to plant devices like anti-air and minigun turrets, the game becomes exponentially more gratifying. Regretfully, when the title compels gamers to work along brain-dead AI, Prejudice’s characteristic charms begin to vanish.

Once players journey into the game’s two online arenas, the game’s reins are wholly removed. From being able to drop to anyplace on the battlefield, to building deployables with funds earned from killing antagonists, Section 8’s combat offers a satisfying quantity of strategic diversity. Although veterans of the 8th Armored Infantry will be familiar with the formidable jump-jet, sprinting, and lock-on capabilities of their suit, a number of new nuances solidify Prejudice’s skirmishes. Now, players may utilize a variety of ammunition types, each with a specific strength. Collaboration is the key here, as one player may use armor-penetrating slug rounds, while a teammate finishes off the kill with flesh piercing ammo. Pleasingly, Prejudice allows a highly customization loadout, with weapons unlocked as players progress.


Although the game’s menus foretell additional game types, currently Prejudice offers only two game types. Competitive Conquest mode pits two teams with earning a thousand points through killing enemies, controlling one of four nodes, and completing minor, randomly generated objectives called DCMs. The later tasks teams with completing  mini-mission ranging from the eliminating all hostiles, escorting a VIP, or planting a marker to deploy an offensive airstrike. Alternatively, ‘Swarm’ requires diligent cooperation as teams fight off an onslaught of adversarial forces for fifteen minutes. Although players receive an enemy-annihilating perk every five minutes, expect this variation to offer an concentrated confrontation.

Visually, Prejudice offers a few graphical improvements from its forerunner. Ranging from richer texture maps to an increasingly stabilized framerate, the game visual improvements may not be drastic, but they are welcome. Less rewarding is the diversity of the game’s environments, with Swarm delivering only a few maps. Expectedly, this deficiency will be reminded by downloadable content; let’s hope developer TimeGate Studios follows their economical precedent.


With lackluster shooters such as Breach and Battle: Los Angeles pervading the Xbox Live Arcade, gamers might be understandably skeptical of Section 8: Prejudice. Yet, the title achieves the unlikely virtue of capturing the finesse of a full-priced shooter into a budget-priced gigabyte download. Although the game’s supplements may come piece-meal, the title does offer a substantial bang-per-buck ratio.

About Robert Allen

With over 35 years of gaming experience, Robert ‘DesertEagle’ Allen is Tech-Gaming’s resident worrier/warrior who spends his days teaching at three colleges and his nights devoted to JRPGs.

33 comments

  1. wacksonwacksoff

    I might have to dive-in.

    See what I did there?

    Oh and…

    FIRST!

  2. I’m more likely to give my money to studios that give a full MP demo, like this game.

  3. good game, but the lobbies are shit. I hope they fix them soon.

  4. Arthur Gies doesn’t deserve to suck you off Deagle. great review.

  5. I scored the first one on PS3 and kind of liked it.

    Is this ever coming to the PS3?

  6. Don’t forget the turd that was Blacklight: Tango Down. Worst single-player ‘game’ ever.

  7. Wait- you gave the last one a B and this one is better. What gives?

  8. I still need to play the demo.

    BTW- When is the PS3 release for this? PC was today!

  9. Whoah- where did this come from?

  10. Say this right now:

    Now seems like a good time to make the year’s biggest and best $15 shooter even bigger and better. After an incredibly successful launch on Xbox Live Arcade that exceeded the company’s expectations, and shortly ahead of the game’s May 4 debut on PC, TimeGate Studios is enlisting the aid of gamers around the world to unlock the frenetic, team-based Assault game mode. A kill counter has been launched at http://warisprejudice.com; when the counter reaches 10 million kills – that’s online, in-game kills – TimeGate will unlock the new mode for both XBLA and PC versions of the acclaimed downloadable shooter.

    “We’ve been absolutely blown away by the response to Section 8: Prejudice, and we’re very thankful to everyone who picked up the game,” said Adel Chaveleh, CEO of TimeGate Studios. “But we’re not done yet! When we announced Prejudice, we said we were committed to long-term support of the game, and this is just the beginning. Assault is a really fun, fast-paced game mode, and we can’t wait to give players free DLC. Given the success of the XBLA launch, we thought this would be a great chance to get the community involved and give everyone a chance to unlock Assault early!”

    Assault is a team-versus-team game mode where teams race to capture all Control Points in the fastest time. While in the attack round, players must work together to capture all control points. During the defense round, players defend their bases for as long as possible.

  11. Hosheet- Deagle, thought he had to pay for it.

  12. Anyone need a walk through?

  13. Good review. Now please get rid of that silly Gears of War 3 ad, k?

  14. Geek Squad Killer

    Pretty cool!

  15. Gamepro got it right as well. IGN went to the dogs (like 1up did)

  16. I thought the demo was pretty good. Felt pretty polished.

  17. Kind of looks like a Halo knockoff to me.

  18. That was the push I needed. Free DLC wins me over every time (Portal 2 Im looking at you)

  19. Will you be posting more?

  20. I’m not quite sure if this is a complement or a critique. Who is Arthur Gies and why should we be intimate?

    LOL

  21. Really Deagle?

    For knowing a lot about game and for playing them for a long ass time, sometimes you surprise me.

    Arhur Gies is the cohost of Rebel FM, and writes for IGN. He notoriously cranky, and really hot or cold on games. He reviewed Sec 8 for IGN and basically 6.5ed it, saying it was generic and didn’t have anything interesting to it.

  22. Eternal Grouch

    Anyone comparing this to Halo is a fool. Beyond the look of the game and 2 party health system, the games are nothing alike.

  23. not a damn thing wrong with the demo, but the game just didn’t excite me. Maybe if the jet packs weren’t so controlled.

  24. Good review.

  25. Anyone up for some Swarm right now?

  26. Its not really- it has lock on, sprinting, and crazy ammo types.

  27. Game is worth way more than $15, I’ve already but 15 hours in. SP game took like 7 and MP had a lot of unlocks.

    Your right about the AI tho. Its straight up worthless.

  28. You don’t “drop IT like it’s hot”

  29. When I look through the local classified I see “Section 8 OK”. What does that mean?

  30. Just bought it last night. I like the story so far!

  31. how close to the 10 mil are we?

  32. Score seems fair. This is not an A game.

  33. Very cool, if you ask me. Timegate will get my business.