Note: iOS 9 + Facebook users w/ trouble scrolling: #super sorry# we hope to fix it asap. In the meantime Chrome Mobile is a reach around
hot  /  reviews  /  videos  /  cblogs  /  qposts

Unit 13

Hands-on with Zipper's Unit 13 on the PlayStation Vita

7:00 PM on 12.15.2011 // Keith Swiader
  @keithswiader

If there's one misconception that I hate about portable gaming, it's that both gamers and developers (some, not all) feel that a game made for a handheld should have the same bells and whistles of a console game. Not only that, but a handheld game needs to be just as long as a console game, with missions lasting upwards of thirty minutes which then end with a ten minute cinematic.

Well, that is certainly not the case with Unit 13, Zipper Interactive's first venture onto the PlayStation Vita. Coming from the guys that created SOCOM, Unit 13 is a third-person tactical shooter that was designed around being played on a portable system, and because of that, it's damn fun to play.

Unit 13 (PlayStation Vita)
Developer: Zipper Interactive
Publisher: Sony
Release: 2012

Simply put, there's no real story in Unit 13; well, aside from the brief background each unique mission offers, but other than that, it's just you, your gun, and the target. While some may think this is lazy developing and script-writing, it's actually not. With Unit 13, you don't have to worry about learning each character's background, or why you are where you are. There's no history to learn, and odds are, if you're playing a portable game, it's in between classes, lunch breaks, or while on the bowl. Unit 13's 10 to 15 minute mission structure will be perfect for anyone fitting any one of those categories.

Another great aspect about the lack of story and structure is that Unit 13 allows players to unlock any mission as they see fit. So, when you're perusing around the mission grid, you don't have to go numerically down the line. Think mission 23 sounds fun? Boot it up. It's all free-roam here -- not gameplay-wise, of course.

There are four mission-types to pick from in Unit 13: Deadline, which gives you three minutes to complete each objective. Elite, which is for hardcore players who don't care for health-regeneration. Dynamic, which constantly changes where missions and enemies pop up. And then there's Direct Action, the balls-to-the-walls style mission.

When you're ready to play Unit 13 and hop into a mission, you're gonna need a character to play with, and here you have your choice of six, each with their own unique specialties. A particular character can specialize in say, demolition, or have increased accuracy, or be very competent with gadgets. Some will even gain more experience points in certain missions when compared to another character. Again, it all depends on who is ideal for what situation. As you use each soldier, they will start to rank up, and within the 10-level cap you will also increase your attributes. Overall, there's quite a bit to take in here.

Zipper plans on keeping Unit 13 fresh everyday -- and they mean everyday. Each day, a new daily challenge will be active in Unit 13's online suite, and these are unique missions you've yet to see in the main offering, with varied objectives and enemy placement. You also only get one chance to do each mission, and once you get your score at the end, that's it. It will get posted to the online leaderboard where you can compare your stats and time to both your friends and players worldwide.

If you don't like going into battle alone, Unit 13 offers co-operative play over 3G and Wi-Fi. Friends can also share HVTs, or High Value Targets, which are special missions where, of course, a high value target must be taken out. There are multiple throughout the game, and if a friend of yours unlocks one before you, he can share it with you and give you a finite amount of time in which to take the HVT down. It not only offers a ton of replayability, but the chance to brag against your friends.

Unit 13 is one of the few handheld titles I've seen that acts like a handheld title. From the bite-sized mission structure to the new, unique daily challenges, it offers exactly what a portable game should: quick bits of satisfying gameplay. The dual-analog controls work exceptionally well, and while there are some touch-controls, they don't feel tacked-on, nor do you need to use them. If you plan on getting a Vita, this is definitely one you should look out for.

Photo Gallery: (7 images)
Click to zoom - browse by swipe, or use arrow keys



Keith Swiader, Former Contributor
 Follow Blog + disclosure keithswiader Tips
Although Keith considers himself 'Destructoid's Man on the Streets of New York City,' it's actually a lie, as he lives closer to Long Island than anything. more   |   staff directory



 Setup email comments

Unsavory comments? Please report harassment, spam, and hate speech to our community fisters, and flag the user (we will ban users dishing bad karma). Can't see comments? Apps like Avast or browser extensions can cause it. You can fix it by adding *.disqus.com to your whitelists.

destructoid's previous coverage:
Unit 13


View all:powered by:  MM.Elephant

Ads on destructoid may be purchased from:



Please contact Crave Online, thanks!


Journey to Become a Jedi Knight - Jedi Outcast

Waifu Wars - The End

Hindsight Part II: Unreleased Games of the Past

Robbing Kirby of his Greatest Asset

The meaning of The Witness (Part 3 of 3)

Friday Night Fights: War Never Changes Edition

Digimon Story: Cyber Sleuth Review (Vita)

Waifu Wars: Loyalty-Tier

The Wii U's fate is not (entirely) Nintendo's fault

Musings on Firewatch (Spoilers)

 Add your impressions

 Quickposts
Status updates from C-bloggers

CoilWhine avatarCoilWhine
I'm still playing Tearaway Unfolded - 75% of the way to 100%. I'm gonna platnium this sucka and get my first platnium since Sly 2 back in 2012. I wrote a whole cBlog about platnium trophies and stuff a while back. 2 lazy to link it tho
ikiryou avatarikiryou
I've reluctantly sauntered back to Hyperdimensia Neptunia: Rebirth 2 after a lengthy hiatus. I'm really not feeling Broccoli nor Red. Maybe Red a little more since she's a waifu protector.
Virtua Kazama avatarVirtua Kazama
What? We aren't gonna see KaneBlueRiver vs. Filipino Champ in a First to 15 for Ultimate Marvel vs. Capcom 3 at Winter Brawl X? KBR ducking Champ? Say it ain't so!
Dreamweaver avatarDreamweaver
I can't choose simply one waifu for myself, so I've been obsessed with looking up netorare hentai. That way, I know every trick to steal all of your waifus away and keep them all to myself. It's the perfect plan! The only problem: I only have one dick. :(
Parismio avatarParismio
Aw shit, just 100 left to go til the big 9!
lewness avatarlewness
I am so late for the party. Where the hell do I get Fire Emblem Fates Special Edition
Amna Umen avatarAmna Umen
There you go, my season 2 vehicle. You happy Mr. Destructoid?
siddartha85 avatarsiddartha85
Just started Gravity Rush. I'm finally playing this.
Gamemaniac3434 avatarGamemaniac3434
Well friends, its almost time for my blog to exit the large intestine of page one into the cold, dark bowl of page two, to be flushed and forgotten. Why not throw a fap on there to ease the journey, and give it one last look before its gone?
Ckarasu avatarCkarasu
Do not believe Chris' lies. Cyber Sleuth is nothing like Persona. It's all lies, I tell you!
Fuzunga avatarFuzunga
They put season 2 of Young Justice on Netflix finally. Apparently, if lots of people watch it they'll consider a 3rd season. So do it now! [url]http://comicbook.com/2016/02/03/greg-weisman-teases-hope-for-young-justice-season-3/[/url]
bigboss0110 avatarbigboss0110
I heard from a little birdie that a store near my house will be getting Street Fighter V a day early. Will I get banned from PSN if I play it online that day?
SeymourDuncan17 avatarSeymourDuncan17
I try to hold myself to just one waifu, but games like Persona 4 and Overwatch make it so very hard.
Parismio avatarParismio
Woot! I hit 8888 comments!
KnickKnackMyWack avatarKnickKnackMyWack
FEAR and Resident Evil 4 were great action/horror games. It's a shame that nowadays such ideas either go one way or another. I would like to see a resurgence of that style where it's a scary/tense experience but the player has power and control.
ThrillDyl avatarThrillDyl
Hey, Dyltheman here, just telling that it is just me who changed their username. That is all, go about your day.
BaronVonSnakPak avatarBaronVonSnakPak
I just got into a beta (the email didn't mention NDA) for a moba on xbox one. I know what I'm doing tonight.
ikiryou avatarikiryou
I just took the Pewdiepie Undertale Playthrough Challenge - I managed to get through 2mins 29sec before getting a migraine and escaping the page. Where is my trophy or Vicodin reward oddammit???
LinkSlayer64 avatarLinkSlayer64
[img]http://i.imgur.com/5Yz281M.gif[/img]
Amna Umen avatarAmna Umen
Also I can't even see the comments anymore, anyone else having this issue...not that I will be able to see...I'M LOCKED INSIDE A BOX OF MY OWN THOUGHTS WITH NO ROCKET LEAGUE!
more quickposts


Contest!


Seriously

Invert site colors

  Dark Theme
  Light Theme


Destructoid means family.
Living the dream, since 2006

Pssst. konami code + enter

modernmethod logo



Back to Top


We follow moms on   Facebook  and   Twitter
  Light Theme      Dark Theme
Pssst. Konami Code + Enter!
You may remix stuff our site under creative commons w/@
- Destructoid means family. Living the dream, since 2006 -