Killzone is a hallmark title for Sony’s first party efforts, a serious sci-fi shooter; ten years since its inception and the Helghan are still fighting. The story follows the attempted division of Vekta to share with the now worldless Helghan. A soldier in a war that it seems he does not understand.
The story component lasts about 6 hours of concentrated play, for myself with the half assed effort that I gave, it took 8. Solid graphics to showcase the new system and some utilization of the new controller’s features. The gameplay is fun, fairly fluid and while there is a good variety of weapons I never really felt compelled to stray too far from the fit-out provided at the start.
The drone buddy is a new addition, added for your tactical advantage in the single player game. Control of its functions comes via the touchpad and is simple to master, remembering that it is there is another matter. The game throws in little reminders, like shielded enemies that require disruption using the drones magnetic pulse ability. There are a few fun game-play deviations but not so many as to distract you from the fact that the game is about shooting people and making things go boom.
Story wise I found myself somewhat apathetic. I knew that they were trying to make a point, and perhaps if the characters had a little more humanity in both their facial movements and speech patterns I might have bought into that side of things a little more. I’m not sure if it was an uncanny valley issue or a matter of the lips and facial muscles feeling detached from the jaw, but I didn’t buy any of the emotive speeches that were presented. Fortunately the timing of the release as a launch title, means that the online component is and replay-ability is far more important to me than a incredibly rich immersive single player.
The multi-player provides plenty of opportunity to recoup value for money spent, class based shooters aren’t new these days and I’d say Battlefield has that aspect niche’d out far more than Killzone was ever going to be, but there is something beautiful in the simplicity of the classes and equipment available. Unlocks (to my chagrin) play a large part in outfitting your character, and while the initial guns do not change (to my knowledge) the additions and functionality do. If I were given a soapbox right now I’d probably start to rant but I’ll leave my opinion at that while mentioning that with all things being equal the flow of the game online is very fluid and fun to both watch and participate in.
At the price point available I find it hard to turn this down. If you do take my advice make sure you join us in the forum for some online action as it seems most people online aren’t very interesting in talking or strategizing, which is regrettable as the alternative is the Mickey Mouse Clubhouse sung out of key and off tempo with muddled words courtesy of a young Filipino boy.
Reason: Quality online play with a singleplayer worth the once through if only to familiarize yourself with the controls.