KILLZONE 3 REVIEW:
POSTED BY ANTHONY OSULLIVAN
DATE : 20.02.2011.
Its seem like ive been waiting a lifetime for this game but finally Killzone 3 is opon us, the wait is over to find out what happened Rico and Sev and what new twists lie in wait in the next chapter.
Picking up from where Killzone 2 left off just after the death of Visari, Killzone 3 is faced with the steep task of going one better than its predecessor. Something in fairness it does with ease. The story flips between events directly after the assassination and events some 6 months later which focus on the internal power struggle within the Helgast government between the private arms corporations and the state military. If you remember at the end of KZ2 Rico had just shot Visari this creates its own problems for the Helgast as they try to replace him. The small crew of ISA stragglers are now trying to regroup and make their escape as the Helgast pile in with a massive military force. The story folds out into one of sacrifice, heroism, redemption and large machines exploding. Just what we want from the franchise.
Everything has been cranked up a notch but the most noticeable difference is to the gameplay, many felt that KZ2 was too heavy and sluggish (although just as many felt it reflected the feel of large men in full body armour carrying heavy weapons perfectly) and while they have still kept this concept the whole experience does flow a lot lighter and smoother. Also rather than the stop start feeling you got from getting to an area and having a big fire fight, then moving on to the next area to another huge fire fight, this time it is one continuous flow from start to finish which makes the game really feel a lot less tiring.
The gameplay is pretty much flawless bar one or two moments with the screen freezing for a second or two or when scoping near walls, where you can’t see the wall in your scope but you fire a few shots and it hits the wall in front of you. This happened twice in the whole game and it was easy to fix by simply moving a little.
The graphics needed to be good and they don’t disappoint, the world is now a lot more interesting this time. Rather than the dull industrialised landscape in KZ2, you now battle across snow, through weird alien jungles and inside the Hellgast buildings and space stations.
In fact on my second play through I had the time to stop and look around, the level of detail gone into some of the locations is insane, area’s that many gamer may never take to time to stop and look at have fully working employees pottering around. This is all done just to create the impression that this is a proper living working world. Not a fully destructible world, but enough of it will blow apart if you hit it, some nice touches such as flags catching fire and burning all the way up, to knocking the side of a building off with a rocket all give the world a feel of destructibility without things getting silly.
The whole production has been poured over by the team at Guerilla and it shows, the story is more impressive, the locations are outstanding, the pace of the game is just right. The music really sets the mood for a futuristic shooter and at times you will be just sitting back with your mouth open in amazement looking at what is unfolding in front of you.
For anyone worried about the 4.5 hours game time rumour, then don’t this took me between 8-10 hours to finish in my first run through. The second run through took around 8 hours as I knew what I was supposed to be doing. My first play through I used the Dual Shock and it is as you would expect and everything is very enjoyable.
My second play through involved the Move controller and it did change the game a lot. It took a little bit of time to get used to it, as you aim and shoot with the right hand but for any of you who have shot a real gun you will know you aim with one hand and pull the trigger with the other. But in saying that it has some very nice features the flick of the wrist to reload being one of my favourites. I did run into more issues using the Move controller especially trying to get into cover and look down the sights but I do think this may be more down to not being familiar enough with it rather than problems with the game. The precision delivered from the Move controller was flawless. No matter how much I moved around it worked perfectly I even left the room at one stage came back and the crosshairs were still spot on.
It will take a little bit of setting up most importantly is the sensitivity do go through the options. Personally I reduced the sensitivity to stop the cross hair jumping due to the shake in my hand from holding it out. I increased the turning speed so I could look around faster and increased the dead zone so I could get more movement in the cross hairs without the whole screen moving around.
I am waiting on the release of the Sharp shooter next week for play through number 3. The story is that good that I am confident a third play through in a week will still be lots of fun.
Multiplayer has you expect is the big selling point for Killzone 3 a lot of work has gone into this to make it more satisfying rather than your standard death matches that can get a bit dull after 200 games. The story concepts give it an extra edge, the cut scenes as the introduction and for the bragging rights at the end are enjoyable but I do worry that after seeing them 200 times they will too become a bit tedious. Included in the multiplayer are two items straight out of the solo campaign with the Ecto skeleton and the jet pack. A lot has been made of the jet pack and they did well to avoid it becoming a gimmick. While they are powerful they are also quite vulnerable too.
You have a wide variety of different classes each with their own specialised weapons and perks. Each perk has its opposite for example some can use a cloaking devise but the others can then use a tracker that shows where they are. One perk is that you can appear as the enemy and infiltrate you way into their midst as long as they don’t put their cross hair on you, you will sneak in.
Overall : Granted if you didn’t like Killzone 2 then I’m sure you will feel the same about KZ3, although a lot of the issues have been address. If like me you loved KZ2 then like me you will love KZ3. It took a technical master piece and turned everything up a notch. I don’t think I’ll see a better looking game this year (but I’ve said that before !!) I loved the story, I loved the gameplay, the guns the visuals the music….. I just loved the whole thing from start to finish. If I had to find fault then the driving/ flying sections do descend into an on rails shooting gallery and got a bit frustrating but this does break up the gunplay enough to keep the game fresh.
As close to the perfect shooter as anyone will get this year.