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Review: Killzone 3

Greg Tito | 17 Feb 2011 13:00
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The entire campaign is built to be played cooperatively. This is reinforced even in the single player campaign by the NPCs running up to you after you die and reviving you. Hearing the characters call out that they are trying to get to your position is an interesting mechanic, allowing you to restart without resorting to the nearest checkpoint, but it gets a little old after waiting a few moments only to hear, "I can't get to you" or "I'm getting shot to hell myself." Still, the coop campaign is a lot of fun to play through with a friend.

Or you can delve straight into the robust multiplayer system in Killzone 3. The default mode is called Warzone and gives random, and often opposing objectives to the teams, such as assassinating one enemy while the other team has to keep him alive. At the end of the time limit, whichever team wins that minigame gets a point, and then another objective is assigned. The multiple objectives are inherently more fun than picking a mechanic such as capture the flag and sticking with that for the whole match.

Each of the multiplayer classes - tactician, engineer, field medic, infiltrator and marksman - play very differently and the amount of customization increases as you level up. The infiltrator (read: spy) is definitely my favorite, allowing you to sneak up on unsuspecting enemies to blast them away with a choice shotgun blast or two. The multiplayer maps are as wonderfully beautiful as the campaign set pieces, with great variety in layout, chokepoints and spawns keeping each match fresh.

I especially like that you can practice loadouts and get a feel for each arena in the botzone, a feature that I've missed in shooters since the days of Perfect Dark. The difficulty level for these AI controlled opponents and teammates was enough to make me feel like I had a sense of what to expect even against more skilled human players, but without feeling like I was completely overmatched.

Killzone 3 is a well-made game that hits all of the right notes for a AAA title. There isn't a twisting plot or engaging character development in the campaign but I was impressed with the scope of the story of the Helghast Empire dealing with the death of their fearless leader and the gritty ISA military folks fighting for survival in a hostile environment. The generally short length of the campaign (5-10 hours) will leave some consumers wanting more for their 60 bucks but the beautiful graphics and balanced multiplayer will be enough to keep most pining for Killzone 4.

Bottom Line: Killzone 3 does everything that it should without providing that extra oomph to make it transcend the genre.

Recommendation: It's worth playing through the campaign of Killzone 3 as a shining example of what a current generation game should look like, so I'd give it rent if you can. If you love shooters and have a PS3, get ready to get sucked into the multiplayer for months to come.

What our review scores mean.

Game: Killzone 3
Genre: Shooter
Developer: Guerrilla Games
Publisher: SCE
Release Date: February 22, 2011
Platform: PS3
Available from: Amazon

Greg Tito kind of wishes that they did get Jake Gyllenhaal and Oates to voice Sevchenko.

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