Killzone Shadow Fall is the first next generation I’ve seen the titles roll on, was I impressed? Kind of.
First thing I have to say is this game looked stunning, some of the landscape shots in the earlier levels where truly breathtaking and found myself stood looking at the scenery for what seemed like ages.
Take away the next gen visuals, and you’re left with a mediocre first person shooter. The story for me, was pretty average, and once completed I didn’t really care for the characters I’d met or the relationships I’d built up. Even though I’d followed a responsible enough story arc, I didn’t find myself wanting for more. Personally I felt the game floundered around a little to much, one mission you’d find yourself with a set objective, ‘go here, press this button, and kill whatever you need on the way’, then the next mission you’d find yourself floating around in space blowing up drones, or blowing up canisters to trigger gravity wells to assist you getting around the level. It’s almost like the ten level designs where picked out of a hat at random, and munged into a single game.
I had another niggle wit the game, the waypoint markers. If you want to know where your objective is, press up on the d-pad, however these only last on screen for a few seconds, and are in a dull brown/orange colour which most of the time was hard to see. I found myself on multiple occasions spinning on the spot to see if I could work out where to go next.
There was nothing really new when it came to weaponry, as with most shooters the weapons ranged from pistol right up to the rocket launcher, which is pretty standard these days for a first person shooter. I guess the standard laser rifle was quite interesting, as you could change the modes into a large blast mode if you allowed it time to charge, but found myself rarely using this.
There was quite a cool mechanic in the game, a personal assistant flying bot (Owl), who you could send into battle for you, use to stun enemies, conjure up a zip line to a lower platform, protect you with a shield, and use to hack computer terminals. I mainly used the ‘get in there are clear out that room for me’ mode, as it was a lot less painful than getting shot myself. The Owl also had the ability to bring you back from the dead (if you’d picked up packets of adrenaline along the way), which saved you jumping back to a previous checkpoint.
One nice feature I really did like was the use of the controller, the touchpad would change the functionality for the Owl, which worked really well, and I liked the use of the internal speaker for audio logs you picked up throughout the game, as well as the use of the lightbar on the back which changed from green through the flashing red based on your health.
All in all, the game was average at best, if it hadn’t have looked so visually stunning, I’m not too sure I’d have made it to the end.
Approx Time taken to beat – 10 hours
Difficulty setting – Normal
Score – [Rating:3/5]