KILLZONE 2

by on March 2, 2009

After sinking into the game I started feeling like a close encounter with Gears of War. I guess PS3 had to have its own exclusive counter attack to Gears of War. From the moment the game starts you get swept into an intro movie. We are introduced to Rico and Sev (Sev being your character).  The character’s facial expressions, interaction and sounds are well developed and synchronized. If you can’t make the difference or you don’t have a reference video, look at Quake 4 for XBOX 360 cut scenes videos, then you’ll understand the difference in acting and the lack of expression in dialogs. The KILLZONE2 intro movie is EXCELLENT, it transcends the gamer smoothly into the action. All the cut scenes and dialogs are well developed and acted troughout the game. This doesn’t necessarily mean that the writing is either perfect, or lacking, it is a matter of taste and I would’ve preffered more cut scenes.  There is some character development in the game but I feel that Rico changes too much from the intro movie. In the intro movie he seemed like a cool guy, but his tone seems to change.  There were a few jokes that made the game somewhat more relaxed and fun. I can’t stop about the quality of the acting, it is esquisite. In Quake 4 for Xbox you could see the unnatural acting immediately.

 

THE GAMEPLAY:

 

On of the most annoying parts of the game was the viewing angle. I am not sure why would they choose a narrow angle but I as if I was wearing blinders. In addition it felt very claustrophobic throughout the game because this viewing narrow angle. It may have been my impression, but it seemed different than most of the 3D shooters I have played. This is strictly on the viewing angle. None of the games experienced before gave that narrow angle feeling. Perhaps the authors wanted to set this claustrophobic mood, but it hindered the game play, at least for me. This is my pure observing view and I did not read any literature on the game engine, therefore take it lightly on the viewing angle.

 

The fast running did not allow the character to turn and it did not make a lot of sense, especially that most of the time the fights are in close narrow streets and corridors with plenty of obstacles where one would need some maneuverability.

 

An addition to the uncomfortable features of the game is the click -to-lock aiming where one has to click and unclik to aim and release instead of holding and releasing the button. Also the knife mode was lacking. The knife mode was better in other games where the hero switches automatically between knife and weapon on the press of a button. The good part of the knife attack is that the player can use it continuously with repetitive blows, with no dead time in between hits. In addition the character’s height was not all there. It seemed that he was shorter than everyone else, if one pays attention will notice that the hero’s line of sight is to all the surrounding people’s chest. It is really bad, it felt like a midget. That was also bad when trying to shoot from high points, because the ledge would be too high and one could not see past it. This game was anticipated to be very real and well thought out, especially after they postponed the release date. But there are a lot of things that really become hindrances. The running and the shaking of the camera is not really cool. I guess they picked the wrong battles to fight when it comes to reality.  Also there was a technological gap. The helgan colonel had that invisibility ability that no one else has, therefore it doesn’t make a lot of sense. When at war for survival, one would use anything to win, Is not like those pretext wars just to make more money, it seems that the Helgans really needed to win, and more soldiers should have been equipped with that invisibility ability. Moreover the Helgans still had firearms at the same time they had a lightning bolt weapons and invisibility? That seems a bit farfetched. Therefore for the technology portrayed in both camps, the weapons should have been at least like the ones in the movie Alien2. Even today we have those prototype weapons that have no recoil (look up metalstorm). For that technological era the guns were a bit disappointing. And by the way the game was extremely short.

 

And now the good part:

 

I guess for a short game like that it means the effort went into details. One of such details are excellent graphics. From the details of the graphics POV, lots kudos to the team, the ending movie, BADASS. Music was also good throughout the game, although I did not pay attention to all of it, but whenever I would surface my attention from the struggles of war I noticed some good tunes. Story line was ok for a short game. I was close to the end in seven hours on moderate level, which is not too long of a game, Uncharted was longer than that.

 

From the technical point of view I can say about the weapon melee attack that is better than most of the games because it is repetitive, one can just continue hitting the enemy if the first blow fails or misses. In addition the way that they made use of the SIXAXIS was pretty nifty. When one uses a sniper rifle he should not move the controller, because it messes up the aiming (like moving your body or breathing). Moreover when placing charges for demolition one needs to use the SIXAXIS to activate them. Another good feature was the lack of weird monsters and other failed genetic experiments or farfetched and unrealistic plots. They kept it simple. The Helgan infantry weaponry was pretty nice. It had all kinds of firearms, and the nicest one was the lightning gun.

As for the online mode I cannot tell too much since I only played it for 10 minutes and I switched back to the single player missions.

Overall was an ok game, the graphics were excellent but then again this is 2009 and the PS3 has an amazing chip inside, moreover PC games now have physics, where to my understanding anything is destroyable. Perhaps the next generation consoles could be equipped with these chips. If it wasn’t for all the above mentioned shortcoming then I would’ve felt differently about it. Or maybe I am just too focused on the shortcoming than the achievements. But I have played games where I really liked the entire game from A to Z. One such game was GUN from Neversoft. Therefore I am not impossible to please.

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