Killzone 3 Multiplayer Beta Impressions
As mentioned in a previous post, one of my most anticipated games this year is Killzone 3 and recently, I was able to have my first taste with the open beta.
What first catches your attention is the graphics. In the one map available, snow was blowing around brilliantly and the lighting was incredible. It was clear lots of work had been put in to make sure they was plenty of detail and some of the damaged areas look freakishly realistic.
The fluidity of the game is superb. Never did I feel cornered or blocked, or did the game feel disrupted. On the one map available on the beta, players constantly moving, lending it’s self to run’n’gun type players. I’m sure though that not all the maps will be like this, and snipers and more strategic players will find their place.
The hit detection seemed fine and the gameplay was fast and fun. I only played the team deathmatch style game mode but there are a couple of objective based ones. Everything is more or less as you’d expect in a shooter (minus killstreak rewards) but with some different controls. You can change the button layout though to suit yourself. I did notice that the crouch button (L2) is also the jet pack button. Can’t wait to see what that does. One complaint would be that it takes a fair bit of time to throw the grenade and several times I got killed doing this.
Another thing that I found annoying was the amount of time spent waiting in the menus while the game loaded. While in Call of Duty, there is plenty to do while the game prepares, viewing a brief summary of your game results and the leaderboards is all you can do in Killzone 3. This would be okay if the games went for longer, but they are short and sweet games and the wait between them is frustrating. I hope that this is just the beta and the servers will be improved before release.
Something that I thought was pretty cool was that once you are shot down, you become “Mortally Wounded”. If the action died down, a team mate with the right class can revive you. However, if you have no hope of revival, you can re-spawn after an allotted time period. The are these gruesome melee kills as well, where you zoom up close and usually break their neck or slit their throat. These are cool at first, but then become a bit annoying as they interrupt some of the fluidity.
The rank up system is similar to what you’d expect to find in a Bad Company game. There are a number of different classes that all contain different weapons and equipment. Earning XP gains you unlock points that you can use to purchase primaries, secondaries, skills and equipment as you rank up. Although I mainly used the sub-machine gun, the sniper rifles, shotguns and light-machine guns all seems decent, and even though they’re futuristic, they all resemble modern day weapons.
Once you start moving, you’ll realize how much the camera moves with you. Running causes the camera to shake from side to side and leaping over obstacles makes the camera glide up and down, in a very real way. Because there is so much camera movement, it really adds to the frantic feel of the game.
Sound wise the guns great, the foot steps all sound normal, all the groaning is a bit unnecessary, but doesn’t distract from the gameplay.
All and all, this beta has not put me off the game, but not really given me the “must buy” feeling. For me, I will waiting for this, Crysis 2 and Resistance 3 to be released before I make a decision.