Killzone 2 Multiplayer Hands On

We might have been first yesterday with the news that the multiplayer servers had been switched on, but I didn’t actually get much chance to test out Warzone for myself until later in the evening.  It was with great excitement, then, that I selected the online mode from the main menu, and instead of the “Retrieving Universe List” pop-up crashing the PS3 as it had done for weeks, I was straight into the selection screen.  I didn’t know at the time that selecting “EU” meant “France” and not “Europe” but I’d soon learn that nobody was talking tactics, regardless of language, so the headset could go back in the cupboard until we organise some TSA matches.  I don’t care what anyone says, the single worst thing to happen to online gaming is voice chat.

Anyway, that aside, it was then onto the Join Match screen.  From here you can instantly jump into a match with any of your friends, or you can scroll through the list of available games that are already running.  When I say “scroll” I mean “select the one at the top” because you can’t scroll up and down unless you severely limit the number of search results for games by only looking for those playing on a specific map, for example.  I assume there’s a patch coming to fix this bug, and hopefully before Friday, because this is a real issue for anyone that’s used to browsing through games to find one that matches their mood.

Once into a match, however, and with the headset off so you can actually hear yourself think and not just be limited to 10 squeeky renditions of La Marseillaise in your ear, the game is wonderful.  We don’t have a great wi-fi connection here at TSA Towers, but the three games we managed to squeeze in before the servers crashed were lag-free and buttery smooth.  As with most online games like this, no amount of playing against bots can prepare you for the real thing, and Warzone is tense, exciting and much more strategic than the single player would have you think.  The guns are also far more powerful, and more accurate, which makes for much better gunplay than the Campaign mode too.

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But yeah, then the servers crashed.  I exchanged a few confused messages with DolphGB over at PS3Attitude, who confirmed he was having problems too, and went back to Noby Noby Boy for a half hour.  It’s a shame, because I’d just gotten adjusted to the different mechanics required for multiplayer and was beginning to rack up a few points.  The various constantly changes game modes are brilliantly done, the graphics hold up well against the immense single player visuals and the 16 player per side battles ebb and flow violently and realistically.  Sure, without the scripting and pre-set events of the story mode the excitement of multiplayer lies with your teammates and opponents, but even with a server full of Frenchmen this was great fun.

And that’s saying something.

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