Part 9: Chapter 3, Stage 1
[In stage adaptations, this would be the point where the story cuts to the next plot heavy scene. In film and game adaptations, this is the point wherein Captain Templar and Shadow Marshall Luger combat Helghast in a series of tunnels and train stations. Long stretches of action without dialogue are better suited for a television screen as opposed to Shakespeare's threatre.]
And thus our extended prologue continues. Only this time, we have a new character to play as. Luger is our defacto "stealth" character, though frankly, there isn't much cause for stealth in this game. I'll speak more about her abilities further down, but just a quick note on her heat vision:
Very cool looking. Can be turned on with the press of a button. Not really that useful. Really. The Helghast are easy enough to see with their glowing orange eyes, that there's never a point where you really need this. Honestly, you're most likely to play around with the goggles here when you first unlock Luger and then promptly forget about them, cause you'll never need'em. I'm still holding out hope that Guerrilla will further experiment with gameplay like what they did with Killzone: Liberation. It'd be cool to see a proper stealth game set in the Killzone universe. That, or a 4x strategy game, or something. Heck, I'd take a Killzone RPG or RTS. The series certainly has a rich enough lore to support games like that.
I'm a fan of the design of the ISA demolition charges. They've got big glowing green lights to let the user know it's safe to be around one. When it's armed--
--the lights turn orange, start flashing, and the device starts beeping before it explodes. A clear warning of impending danger. A simple but very practical weapon design. It reminds me of real-world claymores:
In the middle of battle, no matter how smart a guy is, it's easy to get caught up the adrenaline rush and make mistakes. Idiot-proof your bombs as much as possible! I appreciate that bit of Vektan design.
Luger also happens to be the only character who can crawl. This allows her to access areas locked out to other characters and let her sneak around enemies to ambush them. It's a mostly trivial addition to her gameplay, and is pretty obvious considering her role as "the stealth character", but it also ties in with the Yin and Yang idea I brought up in the last post. Not only is she a female character, but she works in the shadows, concealing herself and surprising enemies, all elements associated with Yin. This is the opposite of the Yang presented by the male characters--especially Templar.
Some real-world "Earth" advertisement present on Vekta.
Alongside some unique Vekta brands. Kiwi Smoothie is a new one. I like to think it's some sort of fruit frozen yogurt popsicle machine.
Oh, and here's some advertisement from the station. I didn't capture all of them, nor did I bother to get captures of the various graffiti throughout the area. None of it is super interesting, though there is a wide variety of stuff, so I appreciate Guerrilla's attempt at making the world seem real.
I don't know what language this is? Presumably Dutch, because Guerrilla has a studio based out of Amsterdam, but I honestly couldn't say. Does anyone know if this poster actually says anything or if it's gibberish?
After weeks of looking for a second guest commentator, Blind Sally and nine-gear crow's search ended and a deal was made with forums user JamieTheD. As part of the deal, JamieTheD was promised paid transportation out of what he termed the "arse end of Wales". In return, JTheD promised to use his knowledge of game design and coding to help Sally and crow talk about Killzone of all games. It was almost too good a deal, but Jamie wasn't about to look a gift horse in the mouth. If he could LP Rogue Trooper and the entire Wip3out series, he could surely slog it through a couple of Killzone videos.
JamieTheD is still waiting for his end of the bargain. The money has yet to arrive. Calls and messages to Blind Sally and nine-gear crow have gone unanswered.
JamieTheD on YouTube
Alright, time to talk about how Luger handles. She's faster than all the other characters. Sprinting, walking, whatever. She moves quicker. She also had heat vision goggles, which may or may not be absolutely useless. The biggest difference between her and other characters is, again, her mobility. But not just speedwise. She can also access pretty much every aspect of a level. In urban combat, she can climb ropes, crawl under low openings, utilize ventilation shafts, and whatever else is around, all to give her maximum visibility to snipe enemies or to sneak up on them.
Notable, she begins with a scoped and silenced submachine gun/machine pistol as well as a combat knife. If playing her stealthily, you'll honestly never want to use any other weapons. Considering how fragile she is, playing stealthy is the way to go. Unfortunately, there aren't a whole lot of areas where stealth is viable. When using Luger, a lot of the time you're going to find yourself hanging back while your allies do a lot of the shooting. It's not great, but hey, that's what it is.
I mentioned she was fragile. Of the four characters, she takes damage the quickest. Stick to cover always, as a few stray bullets and eradicate her health bar. On the flipside, she regenerates health AND stamina faster than any other character. So it doesn't take her that long to get back into a fight, or to run away to safety. Still, Luger isn't the best choice of characters, especially for new players. Her abilities just aren't suited to this style of game. She would be much more at home in a Splinter Cell-esque title.
HEALTH REGEN - Fast
STAMINA REGEN - Fast
DEFENSE - Low
WEAPONS - M66-SD Machine Pistol, M32 Combat Knife
ABILITIES - Can climb ladders, vault over obstacles, climb ropes/vines, crawl into small spaces (eg., vents, tunnels, shafts, etc.), and has heat vision goggles.
M66-SD Submachine Gun
Aka the M66-SD Machine Pistol. The Vektan ISA manufacture this weapon with a silencer as standard issue. However, though the silencer's allow can muffle bullets in single-shot mode, it cannot muffle automatic fire. Has a 30 round clip. This gun is Luger's starting weapon. It's so close to being great, that it's disappointing. The single-shot function of this gun is devastating and can kill Helghast soldiers, those bullet sponges, with a single body shot. Head shots are, of course, more effective, but the gun has an unfortunate spread to it. Even when firing only a single bullet at a time, it becomes wildly inaccurate at distances, severely weakening it's ability to work as a sniper-type weapon. Still, it's generally more effective at long rang than the Helghast Sniper Rifle or the ISA Assault Rifle--it just sometimes takes a few shots to hit the target (good thing they're silenced). Sometimes referred to as the "silent death" by Shadow Marshalls. Keep it around when using Luger. Heck, pick it up if you find the rare instance of it in the world as other characters too.
M32 Combat Knife
Standard issue Vektan ISA combat knife. One of Luger's starting weapons. It made of a super space alloy that makes it extremely resistant to chipping and wear. Jokingly referred to as the "toothpick" by ISA soldiers. Only Luger gets it in Killzone 1 (and it suffers from being a melee weapon in a game that doesn't do melee very well), but it's default gear in the following two PS3 sequels. Honestly, though it has some rad unique melee deaths, ditch it for another gun as soon as possible.