April 13, 2005

[floatleft][/floatleft][i]Halo[/i] killer. [i]Halo[/i] killer. [i]Halo[/i] killer. This is the term used many times by Sony reps to describe [i]Killzone[/i]. This is the true error of the game. While on its own, [i]Killzone[/i] is a beautiful game, definitely the best shooter on the PS2, trying to compare it to [i]Halo[/i] is truly its downfall. Let me explain.

[i]Killzone[/i]’s graphics are by far the most beautiful seen on a shooter on the PS2. The war torn streets of the futuristic city and the dirt and dust of the environment capture the atmosphere of a true battleground. And as far as shooters go, it has good pick-up-and-shoot gameplay. However, when you compare a game to [i]Halo[/i], you have to expect large, open levels and clever AI. [i]Killzone[/i] lacks both.

From the very first mission, [i]Killzone[/i] attempts to establish that this is a large-scale war. Based on the first mission alone, it would seem the goal was accomplished. The constant rush of Helghast enemies and the yells of comrades do a convincing job of holding the atmosphere together. This also serves as one of the best “training” levels I have ever encountered. Unfortunately, the intensity of this initial battle does not hold up throughout the game. Quickly, it begins to feel like there is a massive battle going on, but you’re missing it. There is rubble and semi-destroyed buildings all around, yet no visible artillery barrages or masses of troop movement. And the PS2 hardware limits the size of these well-crafted environments to where you will often find routes blocked by rubble. Occasionally, you may stroll across a tank or a squad of troops, but the firefights never build to anything more but a minor skirmish. The environments simply tend to feel lonesome and abandoned. Even with the occasional assaults on Helghast strongholds, it is just not enough to shed the feeling that you are lagging behind the major battles. As someone who enjoys being in the thick of things, this just doesn’t cut it for me.

[floatright][/floatright]In the firefights, the AIA

Score: 2/5

Questions? Check out our review guide.