Review: K.O.S. FPS Runs Free on the Source Engine
By Mohammad Abubakr (Abubakr), OnRPG Journalist
K.O.S or Kill on Sight: Secret Operations is a free FPS (first person shooter). What makes this game special is that it runs on the Source engine. This engine was used to power games like Counter Strike and features things like advanced shading and physics. Due to this, you can expect this game to function similar to other games using the Source engine.
Of course this does not mean that all games using the same engine will be exactly the same. K.O.S offers some unique features that will make you wantto give it a try. First of all, let us take a look at how the game plays.
Like most free FPS games you are required to join rooms. The game is not an open world and all rooms run in separate worlds. Kill on Sight does not play very differently from other FPS games. You use your keyboard to control your character and use your mouse to aim and fire. You can communicate with your team using the chat or simply issuing pre-made commands. You should pick it up fast if you are an FPS player. The unique part of this game is that you have the ability to use skills.
Skills can only be used in certain rooms. When someone creates a room they have the option to allow the use of skills. There are three skills at the moment. They can be used to recover health and armor, increase total health for a limited time or to lower the re-spawn time. Currently skills seemed to be disabled because when you create a room the option to allow skills has been disabled and the shop does not sell any skills.
However, the shop does sell weapons and equipment. There are many different types of weapons that can be bought ranging from pistols to sniper rifles. This makes it so there are many ways to play the game. Equipment may also be bought to change the appearance of your character if you want a unique look. If you really like the game you can buy weapons from the cash shop by using real money. At first I was confused why all items could be bought with in game money as that would not give any profit to the publishers. It seems the cash shop is on the website and not in game.
Buying weapons from the shop
Another unique and awesome future in K.O.S is the pro mode. If you think you are really good, you can bet money before starting games. The money or crones get taken away before the match begins. Like they say; Put your money where your mouth is. Finally, the game offers computer-controlled bots. These can be added into rooms to fill in for missing players or just to practice on. There are various difficulties for bots ranging from easy to very hard.
When I started the game, I was able to create a character. There were three different preset characters I was able to pick between. They were the SMG specialist, sniper and rifleman. The SMG specialist specializes in submachine guns for close range combat. They use rapid firing weapons. The sniper uses sniper rifles to eliminate targets from long range. They also use pistols and knives for when they encounter an enemy in close combat. Riflemen use all rifles and fight in mid to short range combat. It does not matter much which class of character you make. I chose a sniper but still received a fast firing weapon if I did not feel like sniping. Additional characters can be made for the cost of 30,000 crones (in game money).
Creating a character
Now that we know how the game plays, let us look at the different game modes that are offered. Unfortunately, there are only two game modes at this moment. These are team deathmatch and search and destroy. Team deathmatch is a game mode you often see in free FPS games. It is a very simple but fun game mode. It consists of two teams that fight each other until a goal is met. In Kill on Sight, room masters have the option to set the goal as number of kills or just a time limit.
Setting the goal to a number of kills is very simple. This basically means that whichever team hits the required number of kills first will win. If no team hits the required amount of kills before the time limit, whichever team has the most kills will win. Alternatively, game masters can just set a time limit and no kill limit. In this scenario, the team with the most kills at the end of the time limit will win.
Playing team deathmatch
In Search and Destroy, two teams try to attack or defend certain points. The attacking team is given a bomb that they must place at any of the bombsites on the map while the defenders must not allow the attackers to do this. Once the bomb has been planted a timer begins to tick. The defenders can defuse the bomb and claim victory. If the defenders allow the bomb to explode, the attackers will win. Alternatively, if your team gets killed you will lose as there is no re-spawning in this mode. In Kill on Sight, the red team attacks while the blue team defends.
Maps are very important for first person shooters. Different maps mean different play styles. It is not possible to use the same strategy on all maps. Some maps require you to play cautiously while others encourage a more aggressive approach. This game offers many different maps that should keep you busy for a while. This is very good for KOS players as you can easily get bored with only two game modes if you do not have many maps. Please keep in mind that not all maps support both game modes. Some maps may only be for deathmatch and some only for Search and Destroy.
Sound and Graphics
The game has great sound. Guns sound realistic, the voice commands give realism that you are really in a battle and sound effects when you get hurt or die are great. Sound is a great addition to any game. The sound in KOS really helps to emphasize that you are in a battle. The in game graphics are very good compared to other free FPS games. The weapons and character models look great. The game does have a lot of blood when you get killed or hurt but it does not transfer onto your weapons like Operation 7.
To conclude, KOS is a good shooter to pass time with. There are better free first person shooters available but this game is worth a try. There does not seem to be many people playing the game as only one channel has a good number of rooms but that amount is not very high. The ping tends to be pretty high for most players including myself. The issue could be that everyone is on the westcoast server while I live in the east coast. Unfortunately, the east coast servers are usually empty. With only two game modes, this game could get repetitive but the various maps can help extend the time you enjoy it.