Killzone 2 - Myview
[I got my copy a day earlier because my local game store, where I had preordered decided to be nice]. This article/review is entirely based on my view of the gaming experience provided by the game.
I should start out by saying this, “I had been waiting for Killzone 2 for a long time”. I had read a lot of the hype, watched gameplay videos, trailers, tried to get into the beta [unsuccessfully] and waited. Finally Sony decided to release a demo on the PlayStation Network in early February [I think]. I played the demo atleast 50 times [it was short only 8-10 mins] and tweaked the controls to my liking [Alternate 2, Zoom Hold, Invert Y] and played it some more, I could not get enough, I could not wait for the game.
The most interesting part about the Demo was, even though it was VERY short, the Helghans reacted differently almost every time, I tried so many different things [Used the rocket launcher when the tanks rolled in, sat back and sniped each of the Helghans, tried to run through with just the pistol, tried to just use melee attacks]. The wait was unbearable, and when I got the copy 1 day earlier I was overjoyed. Enough with the demo.
I started up and watched the intro sequence and the one thing that nagged me immediately was the lip sync, it sort of puts you off. I chose to ignore that, and got into the campaign mode, and completed Corinth Crossing, I was now hooked. Not with the story [I really am not paying much attention] but to the gameplay. I then got online [prematurely] and there were only a few people online so some of the games were a bit boring [esp Phyrrus Rise where if you died you were respawned in one corner and had a lot of walking back to do]. I ignored this, because it was a preliminary look into Warzone mode.
Anyway, over the next few days, I grew more comfortable with the playing mode and slowly ranked up [now a Major], and been loving the online gameplay so much that I have really not bothered much with the campaign mode. There have been some server issues and updates, so during those offline moments I have managed to clear out Visari Square [it was quite rough]. BTW I am playing in Veteran difficulty, since I found the lower ones a bit too easy [Elite might be a bit too difficult for me right now].
In Warzone, I really love the squad based system [as long as the squad leader manages to stay alive long enough], and the ever changing modes which really adds to the dynamic a lot, though, the one thing I am not really very happy about is during “Search and Destroy” the time taken to trigger the bomb or defuse the bomb is a bit too much, which means a lot of the games where the teams are evenly balanced, don’t actually play out, and a lot of the games where the teams are not balanced, it just becomes too easy.
I also love the whole online game selection system, which is a lot like Warhawk [maybe slightly better] and allows you to easily choose a game you want to jump into and more importantly STAY in that game [along with map voting etc]. This is one thing I HATED about Resistance 2 [more about that game later].
In the Radec Academy Level, I JUST LOVE IT when you shoot the cement on the pillars, that is just so awesome. I also love the Phyrrus Rise Level, because of its open layout and the beautiful wind effects, the immersion is so believable. Except for when there is a sniper on one of the roof tops. Another feature I loved, the first time I saw it is the top-down replay on www.killzone.com, I only wish that in the future it can be a proper replay [maybe export to Youtube ?], that would be awesome.
In short, Killzone 2 is a very realistic shooter that gives you an in your face war scenario, the visuals are par excellence, the gameplay and pacing are the best in any first person shooter I have ever played. As a programmer, I tip my hat to the developers who have laboured on this title. I can see the amount of work that has gone on in pure code, art direction, testing and its mind boggling. The PS3 is a beast, architecturally, with 1+7 cores, but I think the titles are coming of age only recently, and I don’t believe any developer has even exploited more than 50% of the potential of the beast.
My recommendation: If there is one game you buy in 2009 its got to be Killzone 2, its a keeper.
Unfortunately its going to eat into the time I play Warhawk or Resistance 2 or LittleBigPlanet.