You may have not noticed it, but I try to keep the Freeware Garden as varied as possible. No, really, and the fact that I haven’t mentioned any multiplayer FPS games yet has been completely coincidental and not at all the result of my being hysterically bored of anything even vaguely resembling Quake.
Besides, here’s the lovely, lovely S.W.A.P.. The S.W.A.P. is very much an FPS, though refreshingly one that doesn’t come with a shoot-to-kill mechanic. Yes, it’s a pacifist’s dream. Should you actually click your left mouse button when an opponent is in sight, you’ll simply exchange bodies.
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How confusing is that? And how very, very cool? The answer is a lot, and things get even better as S.W.A.P. is a weird arena-based futuristic sport resembling a capture the flag match standing on its head; the thing you’ll be capturing will be a virus and you’ll be taking it to the enemy base while avoiding traps.
The frantic swapping of bodies, besides being a refreshing idea in and of itself, makes for some brilliantly frantic and disorientating matches. It can feel particularly satisfying when you swap bodies with someone holding the virus right outside their base, and then use the melee attack on a team mate for the fun of it. The only problem is that, though the game is available and in beta for Mac and Windows, it’s multiplayer only and, truth be said, finding matches to join can be difficult. Maybe you can help.