WINNING FORMULA: Killzone keeps its players busy hosing down the enemy.
WINNING FORMULA: Killzone keeps its players busy hosing down the enemy.

The new Killzone might just be better than Halo

KILLZONE has in the past been known for solid gameplay and superb graphics, but also suffered from at times linear-level design.

Sony's big-name shooter has often struggled to outshine its direct cross-platform contributor, Microsoft's Halo. Well, the times might be changing, because the latest Killzone could have Halo's measure.

The reasons for this are many. The story has been given a serious injection of personality, the visuals are truly remarkable and the levels are the best to date - and by a substantial margin.

The game starts off a bit poorly though.

You are given a quick rundown on the conflict between the two Killzone adversaries, Vecta and the Helghast. You are also ushered through a short intro level that has you playing as a small boy and losing your father in murderous circumstances.

Next, there are some quick-fire animations that show you rising through the ranks of the military, and the game proper starts with you being one of the best special-forces operators in the Vectan defence force. The intro level, which is obviously a tutorial, is easily the worst part of the game, which is odd really. However, once things settle down everything takes a turn for the better.

Killzone throws you into the deep end as the uneasy co-existence between your Vectan countrymen and the Helghast is punctuated by border clashes and violence.

There are internal terrorists for you to deal with too. In this vein the plot unfolds slowly and you are usually playing the role of "fireman", zooming from one emergency hotspot to another to "hose down" insurgents or Helghast troops with a steady stream of ammunition.

There are stealth elements and you will have to do a bit of demolition work as a bonus, but "lone wolf" combat sorties behind closed lines are at the core of the Killzone's appeal. You have a variety of weapons at your disposal and can engage in some quite spectacular melee kill moves as well.

The game feels a lot like Halo in this regard - the weapons feel similar and it seems like Killzone's developers are a big fan of the "Halo formula".

Shadow Fall does have a neat trick up its sleeve though. You get to control a remote combat drone called an OWL, and this hovering device can perform invaluable functions. If you are wounded, your OWL can come and heal you, assuming you have the medicine in your inventory.

If you want to try a game that really lets the power of the PS4 shine, then this is the one for you to check out.

Killzone: Shadow Fall

  • Format: PS4
  • Distributor: Sony
  • RRP: $99.95
  • Rating: MA
  • Rating: 9/10