In Section 8, player characters wear powered armor suits which provide damage absorption and augmented mobility. Players can use “overdrive” to move horizontally at superhuman speeds, or activate vertical thrusters to achieve new heights.
Players will be able to "burn-in" by dropping onto the battlefield from orbital dropships hovering at 15,000 feet from the surface, thus eliminating fixed spawn points. “Burning-in” also creates the opportunity for the player to choose where they drop on the map, making the game unpredictable. This process is an interactive experience as players can be shot down upon entry by players and anti-aircraft turrets alike, though these situations can be avoided or mitigated by using the "air-brake" feature which allows the player to make mid-air adjustments.
Players are encouraged to work in teams to achieve objectives and defend one another. Players may deploy defensive structures to protect friendly-controlled objectives, or deploy vehicles which they can operate to assault enemy-controlled objectives.
Players are able to choose their primary and secondary weapons, such as assault rifles, pistols, shotguns, and sniper Rifles, as well as grenades, explosives, knives, mortar launchers and healing units. The player is also able to create their own player class through various stackable modules that determine the player's speed, stealth, or the regeneration of the limited-use jetpack. Excessive damage endured by the player to certain parts of their body, such as their legs, arms, head, or chest, may disable or hinder the use of these enhancements.
Players will be able to deploy a variety of vehicles and equipment, including mechs, tanks, turrets, supply depots, and sensor arrays. Some such devices must be "purchased" within the game using "Requisition Points".
Dynamic Combat Mission (DCMs), a type of mini-game, can be activated mid-combat by the player, and can reward the player with Requisition Points when completed successfully. Some DCMs will include protecting a convoy, destroying a bridge, or assassinating an enemy character.
Section 8 will support X-Server functionality, where players can run their own dedicated servers for Xbox 360 games using a Windows-based PC. An X Server can handle up to 32 players at once. The PC version is to feature a 40-player maximum. Computer-controlled characters (bots) may also be used to fill remaining slots in multiplayer games. Gameplay centers around capturing control points, completing DCMs, and killing enemies to gain he set limit of points needed to win before the enemy.
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Section 8 takes place in the future after the human race has discovered interstellar travel and colonized many planets across the galaxy. At the time of the game, a group called the Arm of Orion has begun to 'disconnect' the outermost frontier planets from the main governing body, the United States Empire. With the communication systems of these frontier worlds cut off, the ARM then conquers these worlds while keeping their presence hidden from the Empire.
In its efforts to combat this threat, the Empire deploys the 8th Armored Infantry Division and accompanying US Imperial troops to investigate, beginning the Outer Rim War.
Beta and demo Edit
An open beta for Section 8 was made available at FilePlanet. Access to the game's beta was originally limited to residents in the U.S and Canada, but the beta was later made public. Attendees of Multiplay UK i37 also got a beta key despite being in the UK. A downloadable demo was released on Xbox Live on August 21.
PlayStation 3 version Edit
There was originally a PlayStation 3 version to release alongside the Xbox 360 and PC versions, but it was unofficially put on hold. It has since been released as a downloadable game on the Playstation Network.
Section 8 has received mostly average to mixed reviews from critics, and currently holds a 71.63% at GameRankings. Metacritic rates the game at a similar 70%. Though the PC version of the game is ranked slightly higher, a complaint common to both console and PC versions is the lack of server population. Since the single player campaign is essentially a tutorial for the multiplayer, the lack of other players severely inhibits game play. IGN praised the game for its multiplayer features, but commented on its problems, saying that 'It's a game that pulls its ideas from a wealth of other titles past, and does so effectively, but not without stumbling over some control and combat speedbumps'. GamePro gave a similar review, saying that its 'Pretty much just a multi-player game. If you're a solo-only player, this one's hardly worth a second glance. GameSpot also gave a positive review of the multiplayer, although criticism was directed towards Section 8's 'Awful vehicles ', with the opinion that 'With a few more weapon types and vehicles that actually worked, Section 8 could have been a lot more exciting'.
The game sold 110,000 copies on the Xbox 360 platform in the first month.
- The name "Section 8" derives from an old United States military discharge regulation for reason of being mentally unfit for service, and also refers to the 8th Armored Infantry Division in the game.