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Game Reviewed: Killzone
Publisher: Sony Computer Entertainment
Developer: Guerrilla Games
Reviewer: Paul Stewart
Platform: PS2, PS3 Remastered
Category: First-Person Shooter
ESRB Rating: M
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In 2001, the first Halo game revolutionized the alien sci-fi, first-person shooter industry on Xbox and PC. Three years later, Sony Computer Entertainment released exclusively for PS2 what would become one of Playstation’s most popular gaming series in history. Killzone.
Killzone is a first-person shooter that takes place in the 24th century, which pits the Interplanetary Strategic Alliance (ISA) against the evil Helghan Empire, led by a fascist-like dictator named Scolar Visari. The Helghast are human descendants who settled on the planet Helghan, and began a galactic conquest of planets throughout the galaxy, which sparked the First Extrasolar War. After Visari took power, he imposed the belief that the Helghast were superior to the human race, and sparked another war with the ISA, bent upon genocidal conquest. The game takes place on the human planet, Vekta, where the Helghast invade. You play as one of four soldiers: Captain Templar, Shadow Marshal Luger, Sergeant Rico, and Colonel Hahka, a Helghast defector. Their mission is to help the ISA repel the Helghan invaders, eliminate a traitorous ISA general, and end the Helghast occupation.
Is Killzone all right for your child to play? This review should help you decide.
What Parents Need to Know
The opening cutscene features Helghast soldiers fighting the ISA, which fallen soldiers spurt red mist and tiny pieces of gore when shot. The same cutscene features some Helghast executing some ISA prisoners with a pistol to the head. Some of them writhe in agony as they bleed out. One cutscene shows some Helghast in a hospital struggling to breathe as they attempt to adapt to Helghan's environment, which Scolar Visari says, “Our new world changed our bodies. At first it weakened us, but in fact, we were growing stronger.”
When we’re first introduced to Luger, she stabs a Helghast in the neck with a combat knife.
One cutscene features one character slamming another into a computer terminal, which erupts a fight between the two. Another cutscene has the main antagonist slamming one of his henchmen onto his desk repeatedly until he kills him. Hahka shoots a dying Helghast General after it taunts him. One dying character is killed by falling debris, but we don't see the result.
In-game, enemies and friends spurt gratuitous amounts of blood upon death, screaming in pain. Bodies eventually disappear after death, if you leave an area or kill more Helghast. Players use a variety of weapons, including a combat knife, to dispatch enemies. Melee attacks include bashing an enemy to the ground with your rifle or slashing your knife at him, but no blood is shown.
Blood sprays on the screen when you are hurt, and some blood can be seen splattered on walls or floors. Occasionally, you'll see a dead ISA soldier or two lying around in pools of blood.
Frequent uses of f**k, especially by Rico. Frequent uses of s**t, one or more uses of "s**k on this!", and infrequent misuses of God's name, and other milder profanities. If you play someone other than Rico, you’ll hear him cuss more often.
Once or twice, Templar quips a few innuendos towards Luger, much to her chagrin. Templar attempts to ask her out, and asks her if she made any new friends, which she retorts with, "Are you asking if I got laid?", which he wasn't. Once Templar regains consciousness on top of her after the team has been knocked unconscious by a Helghast attack, which she quips, "This is familiar. You falling asleep on top of me."
Colonel Hakha is half Helghast, half-human, which Rico retorts, "I don't wanna imagine how that works." In-game, Rico may also say, "Hahka, those elites look kind of like your momma." He also cracks a joke about his mother's bra size.
Luger wears a tight-fitting outfit, but her gear pretty much obscures any curvaceous parts.
One villain asks an ISA technician if he believes in God, or if he has replaced him with some all-powerful technical device. He then taunts him to start praying that the ISA General reappears.
Rico and Hahka do not get along well when they first meet, as Rico's entire platoon was slaughtered by the Helghast, which puts strain on their relationship throughout the game.
Spoilers: In the end, Rico risks being left behind on a crashing spaceship, to rescue Hahka from a fallen fuel line. Both make it through okay.
Templar proves to be a great team leader, and more than once keeps Rico and Hahka from killing each other.
Luger is cold and calculating, giving no thought for the value of life and seems to reject Templar's affections for her, probably because of her traumatic childhood and her Shadow Marshal training. Although, she is discreetly upset if a soldier she knew dies, though she constantly conceals her grief. In spite of her coldness, she always stands up for Hahka whenever Rico antagonizes him. Hahka on the other hand applauds her for her 'think, not feel' reputation, citing her as "Almost perfect."
Hahka cracks an evolutionary joke about a monkey writing a Shakespeare.
A Child’s Perspective: The Killzone games, including this one, are not meant for kids, period. Due to the amount of language, innuendos, and violence, I only recommend this game to older teens 17 and over.
Killzone has become one of my favorite first-person shooter franchises next to Call of Duty, Halo, and Half-Life. The gameplay and storyline are very good, especially the design of the Helghast. Rico was probably one of my favorite characters to play, due to his chain gun. Some of the dialogue is a little humorous, despite of the bickering between the team. Little piece of in-game advice: Hold your fire until you see the yellows of their eyes. For fans of first-person shooters and Killzone fans, I recommend this game to them, but please keep in mind that this is a M-rated game before letting your child play it.