Ghost In The Shell: First Assault Slips Into Open Beta

Ghost in the Shell: Stand Alone Complex – First Assault Online [official site] is a long name. Too long, in fact, so I’m going to call it by the more palatable acronym GITS-SAC-FAO for the rest of this article. Anyway, GITS-SAC-FAO has left paid Early Access and is in free-to-play open beta ahead of a full free-to-play launch this week.

First released in December of last year, GITS-SAC-FAO is a squad-based first-person shooter set in the Ghost in the Shell universe where you play cybernetic agents from the movie’s Section 9 as they attempt to thwart cyber-terrorism in all its nasty manifestations. As a free-to-play game, you can absolutely expect all of that to be layered with the usual microtransactional fare and whatnot.

The lovely Rob Zacny wasn’t nearly as fond of the game as he was the television show and movies, however, finding it “a deeply unremarkable [game] at this stage, without many hints that something more ambitious or more intriguing could grow out of it.” That doesn’t sound all that optimistic, does it? It’ll also be interesting to see how the in-game economy of earning unlocks and upgrades shifts with the new free-to-play label, if it does at all.

Well, if you’re keen to try it out yourself, there’s a special promotion that can get you into GITS-SAC-FAO ahead of its open beta with some special in-game prizes like skins if you put in enough time with it before the promotion ends on the 27th. Otherwise you can play it through Steam on July 28 when it goes properly free-to-play.


  1. Capt. Bumchum McMerryweather says:

    Git Sack Fao

    Fus Ro Da

  2. Technotica says:

    Git yer sack and fa* off?

  3. NephilimNexus says:

    Pay-to-win cash grab that will be enjoyed be exactly zero fans of the movie franchise.

    Just think of it as a preview to the white-washed American film that was already doomed before they even started shooting.

    See, what these generic FPS devs who buy big name rights to try to generate sales can’t gronk is that GitS’s selling point was never the action scenes. In complete contrast to American cinema, the action scenes in GitS are just there to keep you from realizing that you’re actually just watching a cyberpunk novel being told with pictures.

    At it’s core, GitS is about psychology, technology, solving crimes and addressing geopolitical issues. The giant robots are just fluff, part of some unwritten law of anime or something. You could seriously take every action scene in GitS out and replace it with an index card that says “Fight Scene” for ten seconds, then skip to the next chunk of dialog, and the story would still be intact.

    This game is an index card.

  4. MrUnimport says:

    Yes yes, fandom credentials established. What about those of us who enjoy the action scenes as well? Or is that too gauche, to enjoy watching an augmented spec ops agent do their thing? Not literary enough? Is it incorrigibly juvenile for a work to have good action scenes these days? I thought we were beyond having to make excuses for anime as art.

  5. The Algerian says:

    I feel the “Ghost in the Shell” name deserved better.

    Something like NeoTokyo with a lot more polish would have been nice.

  6. Raoul Duke says:

    Seems deeply uninspiring. Almost as bad as the Westernised live action movie version they are about to unleash on us…

  7. Nux Walpurgis says:

    Just to let people know, because a lot aren’t very informed, this isn’t a pay to win game. Nothing gameplay affecting can be purchased with real money.

    Game still has issues, but looks like cool stuff is coming…