The Let's Play Archive


by Blind Sally, nine-gear crow, et al.

Part 12: Chapter 4, Stage 1

In this stage, we are, sadly, not joined by crow, whose presence in the LP world will be sorely missed. That's okay, as TravelLog volunteered as tribute. Not much to be said about these levels, and there isn't much analysis as we're still in the extended prologue. We now have 3/4 member of our squadron, but we're not going to get plot and exposition dumps and more entertaining party dynamics until we have our forth. Until then, enjoy watching just how fucking much Rico can wreck a room full of Helghast. It's pretty goddamn amazing!

For posterity: Rico literally spearing a Helghast with the barrel of his gun. If you aren't satisfied with riddling their bodies with hundreds of bullets or dropping a rocket on their heads, you can do this and it's so goddamn satisfying!

Also for posterity: the only sight that truly brings Rico happiness: a room full of dead Helghast. Yeah, don't bring Rico out to parties or home to meet your parents.

Lastly, some graffiti. Not super interesting, but I'd like to compare graffiti on Vekta to graffiti on Helghan when we get to that point--uh, two games from now.


TravelLog once made the mistake of offering to help nine-gear crow and Blind Sally co-commentate on their LPs. He enjoyed crow's masochistic take on White Knight Chronicles, and was sure his knowledge of RPGs and strategy games could be a benefit to the videos. Since then, Blind Sally and crow have had him guest on games as far from those genres as possible, dragging him along for a rail-shooter and now an FPS.

When sought out for comment on his decisions, TravelLog could not be reached. In fact, TravelLog has not been seen for three months and is now considered a missing person. If you have any information regarding his whereabouts, please contact Blind Sally or nine-gear crow and not any sort of legal authority.

Let's talk about Rico for a second.

He's slow. Slower than other characters. He's also super heavy, so that prevents him from using any sort of interactable movement on-screen, such as vaulting over sandbags, climbing ropes, or crawling through vents. This limits his movement in the game environment and forces you to play the levels as straight as possible. It's a clever play on the "shootey man" genre, I think. Other characters try to add new things to shake up the formula a bit, but Rico plays it as simply as you did all the way back in games like Wolfenstein, Doom, and Quake. You just walk around. Walk around and shoot people.

To make things even simpler, Rico starts off with the biggest and best gun in the game. I raved about it in the last post, so I won't go into too much detail, but it's the perfect weapon for a guy whose game experience is so streamlined. You bullets, bombs, and "bayonets" are all in a single package so you don't have to muss about with picking up new guns. You can, but man, why would you? Rico even starts with the ISA handgun and it's even more useless with him than it was with Templar.

Paralleling his slower speed, Rico's health and stamina regenerate the slowest of all the playable characters. Stamina is fine, as you don't need to run to cover that often. You kinda just keep walking forward like the Terminator, or whatever. Health is an issue if it ever get's low, as you're gonna have a hard time running to cover if it ever reaches that point. That said, Rico does have the highest defense. So if you're getting low on health with him and dying a lot, you're probably playing him wrong. All this tallied together, I'd have to say Rico is the easiest character to play. If you're new to FPSes or you were struggling to get through levels as Templar, switch to Rico. The man can take inhuman amounts of punishment and is also a walking fortress.

WEAPONS - M224-A3 Heavy Support Weapon, M4 Semi-Automatic Pistol
ABILITIES - Is basically The Terminator.

IvP-18 Tropov Machine Pistol

Standard issue handgun for the Helghast army. Whoever IvP are, they get bought out by Stahl Arms or something in the next game because this gun falls out of use by the time Killzone 2 rolls around for a gun that is basically identical--only made by Stahl Arms. It has a cylindrical magazine, like most Helghast weapons, but this one is located under the barrel. This baffles me. Is this a real gun thing or is this a sci-fi space shooter thing? Again, my knowledge of guns is lacking, if anyone wants to correct me. That said, this gun isn't super effective. It's increased capacity and burst shot make it potentially more effective than the ISA pistol, but that's not saying much. It also has a single-shot second function if you want the gun to be even less useful as its individual bullets pack less of a punch than its ISA counterpart. Honestly, don't bother picking up this gun. Really. It's the standard weapon for our fourth character, Hakha, so if you play as him, ditch this gun asap.

This gun is so ineffective, that shortly after picking it up in the video I drop it and it's never mentioned. Heh.

The Casualty posted:

Excepting revolvers, virtually every other handgun uses the grip as a well for the magazine. With good reason, too. Placing the source of fresh ammunition further back means the rest of the weapon can be devoted to the best-suited barrel length without keeping the frame at an unmodifiable length. The weight distribution is also largely unaffected, whereas every shot you take with this Helghast thing is changing the handling characteristics. Plus, helical magazines are more elaborate than box magazines, and thus more prone to causing jams, which are the last thing you want in a secondary weapon. So yeah, this weapon is really fucking stupid from a design standpoint.

chitoryu12 posted:

Yeah, I saw this too. Either the gun has a very short barrel length on par with a pocket pistol or it uses a conveyor system of some kind to bring the rounds through the frame to the rear for loading, which is the worst idea for a fully automatic weapon. What I want to see is if the ejection port is further back in a traditional handgun location or if it's moved forward to the helical magazine. If it's further back, either the gun has the aforementioned conveyor system or it has a very long recoil action that pulls the cartridge back a distance greater than its entire length to eject. No matter which way you parse it, this design falls apart as soon as you look at it closely. Helical magazines are used by some guns, and I think the Helghast guns are most closely inspired by the Bizon. The Bizon even appears almost unaltered in Killzone 2 and 3.

Assuming the Killzone wiki is correct, the pistol ammo used by the Helghast is 9.2x20mm. This makes it basically the 9x18mm Makarov round from the Soviet Union stretched out and presumably loaded to 9x19mm Parabellum levels. I think it would give about the same performance as 9x19mm as well.

Edit: I looked at a pic of the StA-18 pistol that replaces the Tropov in 2 and 3, and its ejection port is indeed a good inch behind where the magazine would be feeding rounds. Combine that with the helical magazine and it's bizarrely overengineered for no good reason.