Game Review: Killzone 3
Release: February 22nd 2011
Developer: Guerrilla Games
Available Platforms: Playstation 3
MSRP: $56.79 (April 11th)
ESRB Rating: M
Killzone 3 sees the ISA returning to do battle with the Helghast on some new locations as well as some which look a little more familiar. But do some new locations, truly exceptional graphics and some control tweaks make a great game or just another also ran?
Ok, let’s not pull any punches here. The graphics are amazing on this game. As a technical tour de force you would be hard pressed to find something better looking on any home console at the moment. The single player campaign is nothing remarkable in terms of content for those who have played through Killzone 2. In fairness there are a lot of nice new places to see compared with the generally gloomy locations in Killzone 2. The graphics overall are excellent. As already stated you would struggle to find anything better on any home console. I wasn’t able to play on a 3-D television or with the Move so I can’t comment on them. I do believe the ability to use these though is a step in the right direction in terms of Playstation 3 being seen as the most cutting edge home console.
So is the multiplayer as good as the hype? Well I think so and I consider myself quite well versed in the FPS genre. Does it do anything exceptional though? Well I don’t remember having jetpacks and giant mechs to run around with in any other FPS so whilst not affecting the game too much (as they don’t appear on every map) they are sufficiently novel to be worth a mention and also a go in/on them if you ever get chance. Map wise I think they are fairly well balanced – I’ve played them all and so far don’t remember getting pinned down in any one area (like my own spawn…) which happened a few times on Killzone 2. I also dropped a few quid to get the retro map pack as I still think Salamun Market is my favourite map on any game. Blood Gracht I can live without though as the six times I’ve played I have been on the team spawning at the highest point of the map and had some less than stellar team-mates resulting in us getting picked off as soon we tried to get away from our spawn.
The guns don’t really introduce anything new (apart from a couple of side arms which are like sawn off shotguns) but the way they unlock is different – and better for my money. As with most modern FPS you get points for kills and game specific actions like planting bombs etc… Once you get promoted you also earn unlock points. Then its up to you in which order you want to unlock the weapons. I do think having to unlock the basic sidearm is a bit poor though – an issue made worse by the fact you have to unlock it five times. Its very frustrating to be in your first few matches and try to switch to sidearm (incidentally it is much better in Killzone 3 as this time you stand a chance of killing someone with it…) to then be cut down as you stare at the controller wondering if you’ve been pressing the correct button only to then remember you’ve not unlocked the side arm… Other than that niggle though the unlock system makes it easy for you to unlock your favourite class straightaway and leave the ones you only play once in a while until later.
As for the actual weapons the two main LMGs are back, rockets are a secondary weapon, and there are some new looking SMGs which all behave fairly similar in my book certainly since the latest couple of patches. I do think the previously best class has been neutered though – the Medic. The medic’s healing range has been shortened (though patch 1.07 came down last night and I haven’t had time to check to see if this has been changed) and the M82 has now got silenced burst fire. Which sucks in my opinion. The Tactician gets the full fat M82 but his other (weaker) abilities still make him less favourable for my money. Briefly on the subject of classes I have noticed considerably more Infiltrators in Killzone 3 compared with the beta and Killzone 2. This may have something to do with the STA52SE now being the best assault rifle in the game and the ability to stay cloaked after you have meleed someone AND the only class with the rocket launcher. Time will tell if this ruins the game.
So to sum up Killzone 3 has class leading graphics (the best outside a decent PC), some new environments to play around with, 3D AND Move support and excellent longevity given the large amount of things there are to do in the multiplayer. If Sci-fi FPS are your bag then 100% you should buy this. Any sort of FPS fan though should play this game – its not quite in the same bracket as Halo but it gets closer every time and stands on its own as a shining example of what the now five year old PS3 can do.
+ Exceptional, truly astounding graphics
+ Bigger multiplayer with more to see and do
– A couple of steps back with the multiplayer
– Not really sufficiently new or different in Single Player to appeal to anyone but die-hard Killzone fans