Killzone 3: Helghast Edition Review – How The Mighty Fall

Killzone 3 brings the fear of the Helghast back into the light. Incredible set-pieces, brilliant visuals, and magnanimous gritty shooter action makes Killzone 3 a title that any gamer who enjoys shooting down bad guys down will love. Unfortunately, Killzone 3 has its fair share of issues above Killzone 2, most noticeably problems of pacing in the storyline adventure, obdurate placing of certain mechanics, and finally an uninspirational and unchanged multiplayer that could have accomplished so much more than its predecessor have undoubtedly added a scar to the Helghan adventure that had so many avenues of promise to improve from Killzone 2. Killzone 3 represents a title that is incredible in its own right at the core basics, but when it comes to being the third title of its kind, it finds itself falling off the side of the Helghan theater in terms of offering anything more entertaining.

Killzone 3 continues from the end of the gruesome campaign of Killzone 2. The war of the Helghan is extremely coming alive, with sweat, blood, and tears all adding up for a war that no one will forget. Regardless of whether the players know exactly why the threat has taken place from the Helgan, there is the constant fact that threats are often never understood, but that is the very fear within them. Killzone 3 makes use of narrow corridor actions through unbelievable environments as part of the set-piece battles that define its experience. Players will find themselves in jetpacks, in the middle of jungles stabbing people stealthily, and even further transitions of pacing that can traverse players in the action. Sadly, there are hardly any surprise moments that were prevalent in the second title. There is a level of predictability to the games gameplay and storyline method, which gets sadly tiring.  Despite the new scenery, new mechanics approach Guerrilla Games offers with Killzone 3, there is not really much of a heavy need for the new mechanics. The game ends up feeling like a collective summary of different types of games or storylines in different environments, without sticking to the core of the game: being a first-person shooter. While diversity is always appreciated, there needs to be a strong structure to do so. Instead, Killzone 3 relies on these vastly differing techniques to be different, rather than using the storyline and relying on the storyline to fuel the mechanics altogether.

Killzone 3 is one of the best looking first-person shooters on any console, without the need for cowardly safe phrases such as “the best looking title easily for the PS3”.  It is without a doubt a title that capitalizes on its CG fame from Killzone 2 and delivers an incredible graphical journey through wartorn vistas, deserts, snowy terrain, jungles, and the view of blood- sodden roadways everywhere anyone goes.  Detailed environments are the height of visual elegance, from pipes to gun shots and even grenade explosions.   The level of artistry within Killzone 3 is something to truly marvel at, at least as far as console graphics are concerned. 3D/Stereoscopic technology is something we have been covering at events since 2005 before mainstream ever cared to give 3D a second look. Now, developers are milking this technology to sell their flat-screen TV’s (in this case Sony). Is stereoscopic 3D amazing in Killzone 3 similar to Avatar? Yes and no. There are obviously certain effects which pop out based on the difference/separation settings within the console games, but there is still the extreme lack of making lighting and visuals truly combine to form a cohesive piece of technology. 3D is still developing, and to integrate it at this stage seems a bit premature.

Multiplayer Killzone 3 is where the gameplay takes a sapped turn. It is not terrible multiplayer, but the fact is it is exactly the same with even Killzone community member recommendations ignored. There is still no cooperative campaign mode – there is no true cooperative action. It is 2011, and Guerrilla Games needs to catch up with the times and learn these modes are standard. Warzone is back with multiple game types fused into one. There is definitely pacing intensity within this but that is all there is. Newer maps are excellent in terms of level design and detail, but newer maps hardly justify something of a third title looking to be the best one of the series.

Killzone 3 makes use of the same gameplay action with Killzone 2 to make a single-player campaign exciting to some level regardless of the flaw in the pacing and the disbursed and incoherent mechanics that are nothing short of ordinary. Multiplayer action is identical to Killzone 2 and hardly improves on gameplay while not adding anything newer or more pioneering than its predecessor, which still needed improvement in structure. Killzone 3 is a great first-person shooter that can be enjoyed by anyone who plays video games and does not care for improvement regardless of the developer offering a third title which is expected to be equally good or better than the second title. For those looking for a title that actually justifies the numeric digit after the series title of the video game, there is a reminder every time in the disappointment of the obtuse multiplayer and the lackluster single-player action that quite honestly puts Killzone 2 to shame.

I'm all about one thing: reviews that are easy to understand and make sense of.

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