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Written by  :  re_fold (310)
Written on  :  Sep 28, 2005
Rating  :  4.86 Stars4.86 Stars4.86 Stars4.86 Stars4.86 Stars

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Killzone is a highly enjoyable, epic soldiers-heroes story.

The Good

Killzone's introduction promises an epic war story. The leader of the Helghast speaks to his soldiers, about how they will crush their enemies who drove them off their home-planet. While listening to his speech, we see short scenes that hint at a rich background story, as well as furious firefights between the Helghast and the ISA. These set the mood, and start pumping the blood of the gamer.

Killzone delivers plenty of hard action, with enemies (the Helghast) that take many hits before finally falling to the ground. They look suitably sinister, have rough unhuman voices and brutal-looking vehicles and weaponry. But you never forget that they are humans, somewhat transformed by their planet's environment. We hear them scream when injured, shout rallying cries when rushing to your position et cetera. They are a great foe!

All the while i was playing , the great atmosphere and tough combat really pulled me into the gameworld. Expecially during a mêlée attack, the weight of your punches and kicks is shown with the swaying motion of your vision, truly a joy to watch and play. And the yelps of the poor Helghast that you kick in the nuts! Hilarious and slightly painful to listen to. The sound is also an impressively crafted aspect: crunching snow, howling wind, hot muzzle blasts, deep rumbling explosions. There is excellent music in cutscenes , and these are also of high quality. However, the use of polygon models limits the amount of expression in faces, and they do not show the natural motion of real human bodies. Motion capture has its limits.

The firefights are very memorable, and its so refreshing to see rich tactical opportunities. Being a quarter of a team, they alert you to dangers and function as extra eyes and ears. Cooperating with the other soldiers is a good way to keep the gamer emotionally involved with the firefights: having to protect not only his or her own life , but the lives of others as well. It also discourages reckless behavior with grenades…

You won't be fighting the Helghast in boring corridors that all look alike and only allow one tactic. The environments are awe-inspiring. Beautiful parks with the leaves falling softly from the trees, depressing slums with dirty streets, huge hi-tech structures to enter and shoot your way through, misty swamps to wade in : very varied, detailed and convincing design.

The Bad

The AI is very challenging, and rarely messes up. So when it does mess up, you are painfully reminded that it is a game.

The visuals come with a price. Killzone's graphics are very advanced, and the PS2 can not keep them flowing smoothly all the time. This is annoying because it stresses the eyes.

There is lots of data streaming while playing through levels - the PS2 constantly makes annoying loading sounds. However, this doesn't affect gameplay. It's just annoying to listen to it if I'm not using headphones.

The Bottom Line

I have played many First-Person-Shooter games, both on consoles and PC, and i can say now that Killzone evolved from the history of the FPS, inheriting all the good things, and none of the bad. I started playing this game without expectations, but i found plenty of memorable gaming moments, and i was very much amused throughout the entire trip. It's such a rich experience, i want to recommend it to all who enjoy the virtual hunt.