It took Guerrilla Games only two years to deliver an epic successor to Killzone 2. Only two years the Helghast had time to mourn the loss of their great leader Visari and give their big empire a new spine. We fortunately needed a bit less time to get rid of the red-eyed creeps for the third (and last?) time.
Killzone 3 immediately starts with a “what the fuck”-moment. No dark sky, bombarded city or desert stuff. We walk through a clean white building, completely made of glass and metal. We can see some snowy mountain tops in the distane and an ISA soldier who’s begging on his knees. We take a huge machine gun that’s clearly made from some Helghan material. We aim at him, after which he shuts his eyes. Just beore we pull the trigger, we take off our helmet, show our true face and shoot.
With this unorthodox Killzone intro Guerrilla wants to make clear that they haven’t been deaf to the critics. The Dutch have had comments on the grey colors of the series for years and have finally let the colors flow for Killzone 3. Also the writer has given the entire story plot twists, intrigues and plenty of oldfashioned shooting. All sounds like music to the ears, but unfortunately the storytelling and character development still don’t manage to reach the levels of Uncharted or God of War.
Before we talk about the improved gameplay, I would to shortly go over the two big gimmicks, the Playstation Move and stereoscopic 3D. Just like with every first party developer, the pressure was high to make Killzone 3 playable in 3D and with Move support. I have to admit that it does work well with Move and for the first time since the controller’s launch it’s worthwhile to actually use it. The 3D on the other hands doesn’t really impress. Graphically 3D is a trade-off as the PS3 needs to process two images over each other and that makes the textures a lot less detailed. In exchange for lower graphics, you get a nice depth-effect but we certainly wouldn’t buy a new TV for it.
There aren’t any huge changes in Killzone 3 but the more responsive controls do get noticed. Even if it isn’t up to the level of Call of Duty. Nope, you won’t be making a 720° jump while doing two headshots and teabag a third opponent at the same time just yet. It’s now also possible to carry an additional heavy weapon so that you don’t have to choose anymore between an allrounder assault rifle or the more than destructive rocket launcher. And if you’re short on weapons you can also choose for the new melee finisher. Once close to an enemy you can plug the blade in his neck, skull or eye in a very brutal way. Or what do you think about ramming your thumbs up those red eyes?
Where Halo is king of multiplayer on X360, the same goes for Killzone on PS3. For the fans of co-op there’s good and bad news. The good is that Killzone’s campaign is completely playable with a second person. The bad is that that feature is only for offline multiplayer. The competitive multiplayer is as chaotic as before, you start with up to 32 people in different modes going from the well-known Guerrilla Warfare to the new Operations.
The beloved dynamic game-mode system, Warzone, that delivers some variation to the mix is luckily again present. This mode brings together six different objectives so that one moment you’re playing Capture the Flag or Protect the VIP while the next you’re putting explosives somewhere or protecting your HQ. Chaos all around! Add to that some jetpacks, Mech Suits and dynamic maps and you’re off for some sweet hours of fun. Graphically things look equally good as in the singleplayer, making this the best-looking MP of the moment for PS3.
Killzone 3 does everything you expect beforehand from a sequel. The singleplayer still has its flaws but thanks to some added variation and smoother gamplay it’s still enjoyable to fight the Helghast. The only real reason to get this game is of course the multiplayer. Everything is well-balanced, there’s an adjusted levelling system and the new Operations game mode is also fun. Great game and certainly a must buy.