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February 25, 2009
Killzone 2 - PS3 Review Page 1
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Media HDD Space Resolution Sound Format Tilt Controls OFLC Rating

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Killzone 2 on PS3 looks spectacular.
Back in May 2005 the gaming community was awestruck with a trailer for Killzone on the PS3 which pushed gaming to new heights. Indeed it was later revealed that the trailer was a pre-rendered target video, and as expected all the doubters lined up to shout out that the PS3 could never achieve such high quality visuals (indeed you can see a screenshot here). It has been almost four years since that video was first shown (yes - FOUR years!) and the final product is here in our hot little hands. The result? Not only does this achieve a visual style that matches that trailer, but in many areas actually exceeds it.

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Now that's how you do an explosion in Killzone 2!
Two years after the Helghast assault on Vekta, the ISA is bringing the fight to the enemy's home world of Helghan. Taking the role of Sev, the battle-hardened veteran of the special forces unit known as the Legion, players will embark upon a mission to the planet Helghan to capture the Helghast leader, Emperor Visari, and bring the enemy’s war machine to a halt. For Sev and his squad, the invasion of Helghan is just the beginning. Tasked with securing Pyrrhus, the Capital City, the team quickly discovers that the Helghast are a formidable enemy on their home planet. Not only have they adjusted to the planet's hostile conditions, they have also harnessed a source of power from the environment that can be used against the ISA. Sev and his team soon discover the fight is greater than simply addressing the enemy forces; the Legion must also learn how to handle the effects of the fierce enemy planet.

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Muzzle flashes also look impressive.
So admittedly the storyline is probably one of the weakest aspects of this game. There are some cut-scenes, but they are there more for jaw-dropping goodness, then to actually provide much detail about the campaign you are going through. The story is functional, but that was never going to be Killzone 2's selling point.

Killzone 2 retains the same gameplay of the first title in the series - that being a FPS, rather then the third person top-down style of the PSP title. Developed by a team of 135 people at Guerrilla Games, and apparently even draining the power from the suburbs around the development studio in the final weeks of production, this is a First Person Shooter like no other, or at least like few others.

When you first start this game up you can't help but be amazed by the visuals. The opening cut scenes are fantastic with Emperor Scolar Visari looking absolutely sensational - and with brilliant voice work by Brian Cox. It's not long however before you, as Sergeant Tomas "Sev" Sevchenko, are thrown into the action, and by thrown we mean knee deep. Within seconds you'll be surrounded by enemies, ducking for cover, but still finding time to blow up a bridge with a RPG. It's heart pounding stuff. At first I was a little confused by the controls, but sure enough Guerilla give you the option to change to one of a number of pre-defined settings.

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Check out the real-time lighting.
In terms of the actual gameplay there isn't too much you haven't seen here before. You can carry two weapons at once, as well as some grenades. Reloading seems a little slower then other titles which means you have to plan your attacks, and make sure you are reloaded before charging around a corner. Then again, I don't really recommend you do that either as the enemies are pretty smart and it won't take too long before you're turned into Swiss cheese. One thing I really did love, and we have seen this in other games previously, is how the colour drains out of the screen when you get injured, and red splatters around the edges to signifiy how injured you are.

The PS3's tilt sensing in the controller is also put to use occasionally to arm wall mines and it's also possible on occasion to grab a mounted gun for some extra destruction, while at other points you'll man an anti-aircraft gun in of the airborne mother ships to defend against attack. This game ticks all the right boxes, but doesn't really expand the genre at all which is a bit disappointing.

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