Killzone has always been one of my favourite franchise on the PlayStation 3 (PS3). The saga is synonymous for excellent graphics, an epic saga and intense combat. Killzone is now available on the PS Vita using the same engine from Killzone 3. So, does Killzone Mercenary uphold the legacy of its predecessors?
Story: Money is the name of the game
You are Arran Danner, a merc that works for Phantom Talon Corp. At the start, you are hired to assist the ISA in defending planet Vekta against the Helghast. The story soon evolves, as they always do, with the complexities of war.
The story is a bit thin and I found that it added no value to the Killzone series. Each mission starts with static images and wireframe motion graphics. Money is the name of the game and that is mainly what matters.
You earn currency in both the campaign and multiplayer from each kill or scavenged ammo. Kill streaks and headshots increase the amount earned. This currency can then be used to modify loadouts. Loadouts are available across both the campaign and multiplayer. A new addition to the series is Valor Cards. These cards are used to increases the earn ratio.
Graphics: Simply beautiful
Even though the Killzone 3 engine was used, it must be noted that the graphics has been turned down to suit the Vita. I advise you to download the 1.3GB patch to limit the amount of crashes in the game. The download is well worth it. Game crashing is reduced, but still annoying when having to repeat an entire mission. This is a minor issue as the gameplay makes it worth replaying.
The game is beautiful. It looks like a mix of the dark dusty Killzone 3 environments and Killzone Shadow Fall (PS4) with a mix of bright vivid colours. There are lots of close-up detail and stunning backdrops.
Gameplay: Seamless integration
Killzone Mercenary is the best first-person shooter (FPS) on the Vita. This is the type of FPS game Vita owners have been waiting for. Killzone is very rewarding to play and it never felt repetitive. If you are a Vita owner, then this definitely needs to go on your Christmas shopping list.
The controls are natural and the touch screen is a benefit to the game. Melee requires the appropriate screen swipes. This is much like quick-time events only better. Onscreen ammo switching is a touch away and does not intrude on the screen (which is my gripe with a number of mobile games).
Multiplayer is a bit disappointing as it is currently hard to find available players online. Your patience is rewarded as the multiplayer is just as strong as its campaign. There are 6 maps and 3 game modes available.
Overall: Get this game
Vita owners know that there are tons of games now available for the Vita, but lack in the FPS area. Killzone Mercenary has raised the bar in the handheld genre. The game is rewarding and has great replay value.
What are you waiting for … go buy it now!
Order Killzone Mercenary from kalahar.com here
Score: 8 / 10
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Please note that the opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and not MWEB Connect (Pty) Ltd