Hands-on with Killzone Mercenary, PS Vita's first benchmark shooter

  • Posted January 31st, 2013 at 03:09 EDT by Kyle Prahl

(continued from previous page) ...takes the form of a flying drone I control in first-person. It's a brilliant piece of machinery, and with some level of precision, I pilot the drone to a turret nest that's giving me trouble. As I press the R trigger, two ultra-large, ultra-scary blades of death stab my Helghast adversary through the neck. Yep, this is Killzone, and I couldn't be happier with my blade-armed drone friend and its ruthless efficiency.

As I move through tiers of industrial zones and interiors, I take note of the mostly-stable framerate that keeps the action moving despite unprecedented levels of chaos. Guerrilla's attention to environmental detail is stunning, and it's easy to lose myself in the heat of the war-torn moment. My efforts are soon aided by the arms dealer Blackjack, who supplies mercenaries like myself with vending crates where our hard-earned cash can be spent on weapons, equipment, perks, and VAN-GUARD deployables. In Killzone Mercenary, you earn currency for many things (kills, headshots, scavenging ammo, etc.), and that bank of funds is shared between the single- and multi-player experiences. I must not be a good mercenary, as I haven't earned enough money to buy a new rifle, so I continue on with renewed vigor.


Mere minutes later, my demo of Killzone Mercenary ends, and I'm left to ruminate on the experience. My feelings are not wholly positive – without AI partners or much combat dialogue, my time with the game lacked some of the cinematic urgency that shared a part in making its console predecessors so compelling. Marty's Engine also felt a bit overpowered – I easily killed seven or eight Helghast before disconnecting the drone of my own volition, and I seemed to take no damage in the interim. These are both concerns that Guerrilla Cambridge has plenty of time to address before Mercenary's September 17 release date, and I have little reason to doubt a company with such an astounding PlayStation pedigree. Killzone Mercenary looks to be PS Vita's first truly compelling console-quality FPS, and I couldn't be more excited.

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  • Related game: Killzone: Mercenary

    Release date (US):
    September 10th, 2013
    Developer:
    Guerilla Cambridge
    Genre:
    Shooter - First Person
    Rank:
    0 of 2,668 Games
    Up 0 places (in last 7 days)

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