Day 1: We Land On Helghan

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Come on, I thought impatiently to myself as I glanced at the time. The time was 16:00, hastily encroaching the rumored release period. Pressing F5 for the millionth time, my heart then skipped a beat, my throat began to dry up from the overwhelming excitement and disappointed as I read;  ‘Killzone 2 Demo Now Up’. Why were my deadlines now? As time slowly passed by, I submitted my work a full 24 hours before the electronic gates of submission slammed shut, but then it was onwards to my lecture. Sitting through previously learnt knowledge of compression rates and bitmap images my mind began to wander; picturing the glorious visual, remembering nofi and Michael’s epic blogs, immersing myself in my own imagination until the moment came to pass. Fast forward three hours; the download was complete, the install finalised and the menu starting me boldly in the face. Now was the time.

Having read with jealously during the early hours of the evening that some of our readers had already played the demo several times over, I took their advice and increased the x-axis sensitivity to full and bumped up the y also, changed zoom from toggle and choose the alternative 2 control scheme. This all proved a sensible choice as I settled into the controls rather swiftly; something that greatly contrasts your character. You are slow, bulky and very heavy; you walk around feeling like your being weighed down by pounds and pounds of military armour. Somewhat fitting perhaps.

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As my Helghan virginity was brutally stolen from me, we landed in the middle of war. The chaos portrayed by both noise and visuals meant a truly immersive experience, which led me to immediately run for cover, scared of what lays around the corner. Their demon eyes burning through my soul, their coarse voices raping my ears, I knew they were there. The courage to engage was ultimately lacking, as death and destruction surrounded me. Plucking up the guts to leap out of my position on some sort of kamikaze mission, I was expecting to come face to face with my first Helghast beast. What I was presented with was a pile of big bodied corpses and the sound of my Captain yelling at me to try shooting next time.

Enough is enough I thought. It’s time to take the fight to them. Heroism filled my veins as I charged forward, picking of Helghast from a distance; blood spewing like a fountain as they fiercely yet eloquently collapsed to the floor. Then my eyes climaxed; I picked up an RPG as instructed and took out the fulesalodge on top of the bridge and incurred the wraith of the devil himself. Red and orange glistened in the sky, smoke covered the scene to leave a massacred bridge and many more broken soldiers. Just over a year ago, I was awed by the explosions that Crysis brought to my monitor; however the single most impressive things about the detonations on this barren planet, are that they are better. Whether it’s the relatively small blast from a grenade, the whistle and pop from a propane canister or the eruption from the larger canisters, it’s all just stunning and equally vigorous.

Eventually me and my comrades reached the beach, a locale we tried to take by force. Several cover points ensured that a tactical battle was fought. Slamming my body up against the wall, I began peering over trying to scout my foe, picking off soldiers here and there. Under covering fire I moved forward to a more advanced position; one that, in hindsight, was a little too advanced. Crouching behind a concrete wall, my ears ringing to the sound of conflict, a roar inflicted me with fear. “Give me covering fire,” came from a booming voice, before he moved, flanked me and ended my quest for victory. Astounded by my antagonists ability to establish ways to destroy me, (and equally how I was also engaged in battle once more), we managed to conquer the beach and moved on inside.

Glancing around the room, I was amazed at the scene that was before me. The architect was incredible, my surroundings filled with objects, the detail of everything was just mind blowing. The light that glowed through the ceilings was something of dreams, although it affected my scope, blinding me in some instances. Choosing cover points carefully, bullets destroying the wall behind me with the dust clouding my vision, sparks firing off in front of me from ricocheting ammo, my companion and myself were stout and determined. Pushing through the room, eliminating any opponents that stand in my way, we exit the room and my mission was a success. 

Captain said we invade again on the morning of the final Friday of the month. My response was stern and precise. “Bring it on!”

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