Customer Review

30 of 42 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Killzone 2 - 2, February 27, 2011
= Fun:3.0 out of 5 stars 
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This review is from: Killzone 3 - Playstation 3 (Video Game)
I've been on the Killzone bandwagon since the first game came out. I've owned every copy on the release date (with the exception of Liberation, which came out prior to my purchase of a PSP). This said, you can take my review one of two ways: that what I am saying is accurate or my expectations for this game were higher than warranted.

Regarding the single player game, I have always purchased these games to play through them for the story. I know it is kind of bizarre to be into the setting of a first person shooter, but I find the ISA/Helghast relationship interesting. Its refreshing to see that writers can venture into space/sci-fi without having to throw in colorful aliens. Killzone and Killzone 2 both offered a rather lengthy first person shooter experience when it came to the gameplay. I think both of them are pretty reasonably over 20 hours unless you are just brutally efficient.

Killzone offered a somewhat branching story due to your ability to play as four different characters. Your experience in the game was altered by which character you chose to play. This is actually a pretty small thing to offer players, but literally no one does it. It didn't stray too far from being a corridor shooter, but many of the areas did offer you some more options than just run down the hallway and shoot. A great deal of this expansiveness disappeared in Killzone 2, which was perhaps forgivable because what were seeing was new and suitably immersed the player in the story. The problem a lot of people had with the story was very heavy, very dark, pretty depressing. The tone was all doom and gloom. I don't have a problem with that, but some do.

Guerrilla tried to lighten things up with this, but it seems that they're taking notes mostly from John Woo. I'm not trying to take a pot-shot at John Woo. His movies have a certain appeal, but grim, dark, and realistic are not common words used to describe his works. What I mean to say here is that there are a lot of suspension of disbelief issues with the story, and given its continued emphasis on Sev and Rico, it feels even more melodramatic than the last two installments. The length of the story also seems to have been trimmed down and replaced with places where the computer just kills you.

What do I mean by that? Well, some of the 'expanded vehicle play' features you as a gunner on a ship or vehicle with a limited field of fire. It is actually possible (and quite probable) that in at least two places in this game, you will be killed by an enemy you simply never got a chance to shoot at or defend yourself against. Its pretty frustrating. The level of difficulty also does not conform to the norms of modern video game playing, that being that the 'normal' difficulty setting should offer a challenge, but for a competent player, should not result in a great deal of frustration due to random (sometimes unavoidable) deaths.

This game also is incredibly narrow in most places, whether its trenches or corridors within space stations. You can still press the up button and it will show you where you're supposed to go, but there's really very few places where it isn't completely obvious. The developers do not offer you a lot of options regarding which way you want to go, and the level design doesn't even attempt to trick you into at least feeling differently.

In the end, in spite of the fact that the game took two years to create, it still feels unfinished. Attempts to lighten the actual frame, also, create strange halo effects around characters in certain places. Granted, 90% of the game looks gorgeous. The weapon models are top-of-the-line. The grit is still there, and you can tell this is the same engine, but what they've changed doesn't always make it look better. The end result of all of this is a single player experience that doesn't quite live up to prior games, or at the very least, is not a sure step forward for the series.

Once you're done with the single player game, you may be interested to venture online. If you played Killzone 2 online, you've basically played Killzone 3 online. They've changed some things, and there are vehicles and jetpacks in the online multiplayer, but it feels, basically, the same. Online play has always kind of been the Achilles heel of Killzone though, all the way back to the original, and while there are some improvements to level design--prior games were pretty claustrophobic small and they've opened it up in this version a little--this does create other issues. This game is basically a sniper-fest. There seem to be some lag issues that other games simply do not have. Expect to be shot through floors, around corners and so on with some regularity. The multiplayer is something I still really would love to get into, but its playability is still below the curve. With regard t playing online, most people will find this game frustrating. While it may make for a few days enjoyment, the frustration will build quickly.

My final verdict for Killzone 3 is that its really not a great game. Its not bad. In my heart, I wish I could give it 4 stars, because I do love the Killzone brand, but I think the experience is really not what it should be. My recommendation is wait for the price to drop if you're not in the 'must have all Killzone stuff' demographic. I anticipate there will be a lot of second-hand copies of this and pretty quickly.
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Comments


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Showing 1-10 of 11 posts in this discussion
Initial post: Feb 27, 2011 9:31:36 AM PST
anonymous says:
mmm, 4 characters to play, i am not into that either. what caught my eye is you said KZ3 online is almost same as KZ2, that is a bit let down. anyway, just got it on ebay, will play it and hope is not so bad...

In reply to an earlier post on Feb 28, 2011 9:41:45 AM PST
T-Max says:
Nice review.

Posted on Feb 28, 2011 11:43:54 PM PST
Last edited by the author on Feb 28, 2011 11:44:12 PM PST
The Truth says:
Not a bad game. Multiplayer sure does suck though. Many still feel the need to pretend it is entertaining. It's good for simple minds I guess.

Posted on Mar 1, 2011 12:23:26 PM PST
I just completed the single player campaign last night, and agree with the points you make. I was a little shocked at how abrupt the ending was. I didn't check my playthrough time, but it didn't feel long, and that's even with my repeated deaths from acclimating to the Move. Also, donning a jetpack seems to cause your horizontal window to shrink, as I had to adjust my Move window from 20% to 50% whilst wearing it. That's a little annoying, since it interrupts the experience.

In reply to an earlier post on Mar 1, 2011 7:26:45 PM PST
Killzone 3 is awesome online.

Posted on Mar 3, 2011 10:09:18 AM PST
IPhantom says:
I agree with this review entirely. I thought the campaign was pretty good, but short, and the online MP isn't as good as other triple A titles. That's not to say it's bad, but CoD, Halo and BFBC all have better online components, in my opinion.

In reply to an earlier post on Mar 6, 2011 11:45:02 AM PST
J. Brunner says:
I should probably clear some things up. I don't mean to say its a bad game, just that it isn't a great game. My reference to being able to play as 4 different characters has to do with the original Killzone. In 2 and 3, you play exclusively as Sev.

Posted on Mar 6, 2011 9:45:01 PM PST
Good review, game is fun to play, but I'm pretty sure I'll trade back to Amazon by the end of summer. There are too many AAA titles this year to just stick with KZ3, and I only keep AAA titles in my library. :)

In reply to an earlier post on Mar 27, 2011 7:01:57 AM PDT
Is this you?

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FMEe7JqBgvg

You can have an opinion, but don't make troll comments like that. The multiplayer in Killzone 3 is second only to Halo: Reach imo. What multiplayer are you into anyways?

Posted on Mar 27, 2011 7:06:51 AM PDT
Great review, but my experience with the game has been much more positive than yours lol. I really enjoyed the campaign and especially I'm still enjoying the multiplayer, so to each their own :)
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