Signal Ops – Review
Follow genre: first person shooter
developer: Space Bullet Dynamics Corporation
Publisher: Space Bullet Dynamics Corporation
Platform: PC

Signal Ops – Review

Site Score
Good: original, funny first person shooter
Bad: pretty hard, doesn't look good
User Score
(4 votes)
Click to vote
VN:F [1.9.22_1171]
Rating: 9.8/10 (4 votes cast)

Signal Ops is a neat little indie game brought to us by Space Bullet Dynamics Corporation, a two man Vancouver based studio. They started out in 2010 and are finally bringing us their first public game. They do so in their own original take on squad command games like the rainbow six and ghost recon series. It’s a nice game with some good ideas behind it, but sadly also with some flaws here and there. Want to know the full story? Then read on!



The concept of Signal Ops is an interesting one. You’re a member of signal operations, a covert intelligence organization, in charge of your own team of special agents. You guide them from mission to mission, doing all manner of unspeakable things, all in the name of the good cause. You know, the sort of thing intelligence agencies are so good at. This make Signal Ops sound like a very heavy game, but quite the opposite is true. Signal Ops takes this classic trope and manages to put a humorous twist on it, mocking things like conspiracy theorists, bureaucracy and how “big brother” is always watching you. The characters aren’t the most creative ones. 90% of the games’ characters are basically walking stereotypes, but you overlook it so easily most of the time because they fit so well in the general picture of the game. The few characters that have some originality to them are your agents. There are six of them and all of them have their unique quirks and skills, making them by far the most interesting characters in the game.



Graphically the game is disappointing. Signal Ops tried to go for an unique style but it ended up looking a bit like a bad looking team fortress 2. It’s not like Signal Ops stole its art style from team fortress 2, but there are certain similarities and it makes it easier to give you an idea of what it looks like this way. It’s easy to see why the developers went for this kind of look though. It gives a silly look to the whole thing, adding to the humor the story creates, and making what you’re doing feel a lot lighter than it is. It’s a good style for the game but the only problem is, it just looks really bad. The textures don’t make it look like a game released in 2013 but more like a game that came out in 2003. Trying to make your game look unique is a good thing, and  a special graphical style is a great way to make your game stand out. Sadly for Signal Ops, it makes it stand out in a bad way.



When it comes to sound Signal Ops is a very mixed game. The game has a very fitting soundtrack that makes it feel like you’re in one of those old spy movies from the 60’s and 70’s. It changes in the right places and always fits what’s happening on screen very well. The sound effects are mixed, with a few things sounding good but stuff like the guns feeling fairly underwhelming. Finally there’s the voice acting, of which the overall quality is about average. Which, for an indie game like this, is not easy. Voice acting is very easy to screw up and although it’s not like Signal Ops has really great voice acting, none of it is bad, which is a hard thing to pull off.




Onto the big part then, how does it play. Let’s start by explaining how the game works: you’re a team leader, controlling your team from Signal Ops base by watching them on monitors and giving them orders. In reality this means you take control of one of the agents directly while using him to give orders to the other agents. You can freely choose which of your agent you control at any time. Even when you’re not controlling them, you can see what they see, on one of the other monitors. The entire game is played from a first person point of view and you control a team of up to four agents. Now this may sound a bit overwhelming and at first, it’s even worse than it sounds. Having to watch four monitors at the same time while controlling the agents is something that really takes a while to get used to, and it makes for a really hard learning curve.

Although the game is a first person shooter, more often than not, shooting is the fastest way to get yourself killed or stuck in Signal Ops. The game really requires a stealth approach to get anything done. Don’t get me wrong there’s plenty of killing to be done in the game, but if at all possible, using a gun to do that killing should not be your first option in most cases.


As mentioned before you control a team of up to four agents at once, but there are six different agents to choose from. This means you’ll have to pick the four that best suit your playstyle or the mission at hand.  The six agents are bolt, wrench, shield, demo, scope and spy. Most of those names pretty much describe what they’re like, but to give a few examples of how they work: Bolt is basically your tech guy, carrying the radio for the rest of your team, finding power for it and using his powerfinder to zap opponents and take them out quietly. Wrench is a specialist at lock picking, demo on the other hand is less of a stealth guy and more of a run in guns blazing, bombs flying kind of guy.  As you can see, different agents for different situations and play styles.

Next to the single player mode the game also offers drop-in/drop-out co-op mode for up to three players. Giving each player control over one of the agents.

Then there’s one thing left to talk about. As good of a game as Signal Ops can be, it has one big problem in the form of bugs. Now the developers have been working hard bringing out a patch that fixed some of the worst ones, but the game still has a few bugs left in it. Characters not moving when they should, the screen that stays black if you boot up the game with a controller plugged in. Small things, but annoying none the less. However, seeing as to how fast the developers worked to bring out the first patch, I’m confident they’ll keep working to fix those things aswel.


Signal Ops is a neat little game that tries to bring some much needed humor and variety to the first person shooter genre. For the larger part, it does a pretty decent job at it. It might not be a good looking game and it might still have a few bugs, but it’s a game worth checking out none the less. Be warned though: if hard games and stealth games aren’t your thing, this probably won’t be the game for you.

VN:F [1.9.22_1171]
Rating: 9.8/10 (4 votes cast)
VN:F [1.9.22_1171]
Rating: +4 (from 4 votes)
Signal Ops - Review, 9.8 out of 10 based on 4 ratings

1 Comment

  1. MC_JP
    April 16, 2013, 00:56

    grafix of the game boy color are even better 😀

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