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Who is your favourite Killzone 1 hero?
This poll is closed.
Templar 7 3.24%
Rico 14 6.48%
Luger 23 10.65%
Hakha 64 29.63%
Don't talk to me about Killzone 1 108 50.00%
Total: 216 votes
[Edit Poll (moderators only)]

 
  • Locked thread
nine-gear crow
Aug 10, 2013

Blind Sally posted:

:psyduck:

I had to look up video of this guy--

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hUdmetykD6o

:psyboom:

I didn't think his name would be pronounced that way.

drat. The GI Joe cartoon was a little bit before my time, but wow I didn't expect it to be that cheesy.

Still, that exchange between Cobra Commander and Serpentor was just great:

"But I still make all the important decisions around here." / "Then you can start by deciding where you want to be BURIED!" Dayum.

Poor Chris Latta, he will never not be Starscream, even on shows where he's the loving main villain. :v:

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Sally
Jan 9, 2007


Don't post Small Dash!
"Don't be so aggressive!!"

SelenicMartian
Sep 14, 2013

Sometimes it's not the bomb that's retarded.

Helgan belongs to Helga!

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OHMWEwFsjnk

I take it from the KZL intro that even the dogs in their army have glowing red goggles. Now I want to see Helghast battle dolphins and Helghast carrier pigeons.

Sally
Jan 9, 2007


Don't post Small Dash!

SelenicMartian posted:

I take it from the KZL intro that even the dogs in their army have glowing red goggles. Now I want to see Helghast battle dolphins and Helghast carrier pigeons.

Yes!



Also, technologically enhanced teeth for extra biting power! But yeah, since dogs are not native to Helghan, the also need "optimization" to function at full capacity. That includes sweet goggles and breathing tanks:



According to Killzone lore, Metrac ordered dogs for his troops because the sentry drones Lente brought--



--were experiencing high rates of malfunction. (Read: they were ineffective and bleeding useless, never posed any threat to Templar and co., and were consistently shot down).

nine-gear crow
Aug 10, 2013

I'll add that to the intro post under Weapons when I get home.

Sally
Jan 9, 2007


Don't post Small Dash!
I was talking to CJacobs, and he reminded me that the dogs in Wolfenstein: The New Order are similarly modified:



Speaking of which, if you haven't watched Lazyfire's LP of Wolfenstein: The New Order, it's really good! The game is a lot of fun, and Lazyfire is a great LPer regardless. Also, there's prequel DLC that is coming out soon which will also, presumably, be covered in it.

chitoryu12
Apr 24, 2014

Blind Sally posted:

Speaking of which, if you haven't watched Lazyfire's LP of Wolfenstein: The New Order, it's really good! The game is a lot of fun, and Lazyfire is a great LPer regardless. Also, there's prequel DLC that is coming out soon which will also, presumably, be covered in it.

He said he plans to do it, probably after he's played through it a bit and can make a good series from it.

Erd
Jun 6, 2011
Looks like the dogs are also bald as the next helghast.

Sally
Jan 9, 2007


Don't post Small Dash!

Erd posted:

Looks like the dogs are also bald as the next helghast.

I never noticed that!

Also, they look like they might once have been Doberman Pincshers, whereas the dogs in Wolfenstein: TNO look like they were once German Shepherds.

Glukeose
Jun 6, 2014

I am SO ready for this LP. KZ2 and 3 are two really fun FPS games, though I do prefer the way Guerrilla "CoD-ified" KZ3.

Sally
Jan 9, 2007


Don't post Small Dash!
Fun fact: there were so many complaints about the "clunky" controls for Killzone 2, that Guerrilla patched in Call Of Duty-style controls!! Make sure your Killzone 2 game is fully updated, and select the "Alternate 2" setting under "Button Mapping" in "Options".

Jobbo_Fett
Mar 7, 2014

Slava Ukrayini

Clapping Larry
The COD-ification was dumb. I preferred the weighty movements that didn't lend to 360 NO SCOPES.

nine-gear crow
Aug 10, 2013

Okay, I've added the dogs to the intro post for Liberation (and stole Sally's summary of their place in Metrac's army wholecloth).

But look! Jan has two votes in his favour :allears: (out of 78) :negative:.

marshmallow creep
Dec 10, 2008

I've been sitting here for 5 mins trying to think of a joke to make but I just realised the animators of Mass Effect already did it for me

Out of 80 now. :clint:

Sally
Jan 9, 2007


Don't post Small Dash!


Time for some actual gameplay! The level divisions for Killzone 2 make a lot more sense than Killzone 1. Rather than having chapters that have anywhere between 2-4 stages that lasted anywhere between 3 - 20 minutes, they do a better job of segmenting them into single stages that generally take between 15 - 20 minutes to complete. So, yeah, it's not quite as erratic. Unlike the first game, there's also a lot of great ambient noise, background music, and dialogue throughout. Therefore, I will be including commentary and no commentary versions of each stage for those who want to hear all the gunfire and yelling in its proper glory--and the sound design and voice acting for this game is phenomenal.



No longer a spectator, the game opens up with us in Tomas Sevchenko's shoes. We're waking up from, hopefully, a restful sleep, about to join to invasion force. Note, we are part of the second invasion wave. The forces we saw in the opening cutscene that were blown to pieces? Yeah, they're not us. In fact, those poor souls didn't even make to ground. ISA High Command keeps it under wraps that they needed to hire a mercenary group, the Phantom Talon Corp, to clear out those initial anti-air arc cannons. Ah, well, such is the nature of war, no? Anyways, the way has been paved for the second wave, Battle Group Mandrake, to take the fight to Visari.



This opening imagery is great. Everything is bright, and clear, and white. It's all hopeful and triumphant. It's great! Truly, the ISA does have some of the most advanced military technology in Alpha Centauri--they're not expecting this war to be a long one. Also, the ISA Cruisers themselves sort of resemble daggers or swords, hovering, waiting to be plunged into their victims.

I love it!

Also, since Garza brought it up, I'll talk about it. Captain Narville is being name-dropped, so he must be important, but I like what they did with the Convoy names here. Knowing what we know about the Vektans already--specifically, their thirst for vengeance considering Earth told them to back off--it's fitting that they give their convoys names like Avenger, and as we'll see later, Punisher and Nemesis. The Vektans really do see what they're doing here as righteous. That doesn't necessarily make it right, or even good. That whole idea of Guerrilla dissecting the concept of the "good guy" and the "hero"? They sort of danced around it in Killzone 1, but they're not going to be shy about it here.

Moving on, remember how these cruisers are nuclear powered and have massive laser cannons? There's some great sci-fi stuff going on within them:



Specifically, big, purple, glowing energy shafts. Killzone has always been a sci-fi action series, but this game does a lot better job at hammering home that point than the first game did.



Anyways, regardless of whether or not you've played Liberation, the game makes it clear right out of the gates that the Helghast have stolen ISA nuclear weapons. Evelyn Batton, a character from Liberation, is here specifically to help track them (she helped develop the weapons). The player is given this moment to know that a) the Helghast have nukes, and b) Rico and Evelyn are characters in this game. Afterwards, Garza encourages you to move on.

HOWEVER

If you hang around, Rico and Evelyn continue to talk. This conversation isn't subtitled, so it's sort of a nice little hint of things to come for those players that stick around. I've transcribed the conversation here:

quote:

Rico: "Ah, Garza, Sev, meet Evelyn, our council scientist who's tracking the nukes the Higs stole."
Evelyn: "Hello."
Rico: "What about the nukes?"
Evelyn: "Right now? We have no idea. The plan is to take Visari alive, and get him to fill us in on his plans."
Rico: "I want tickets to that show."
Evelyn: "You must treat Visari professionally, Sergeant Velasquez. His cooperation will be important to our long-term aims."
Rico: "Spare me the fuckin' the politics, man."
Evelyn: "We have an opportunity to end hundreds of years of antagonism here! A great deal of future history will be decided by how we act on Helghan."
Rico: "History was never my favourite. Let's get to the here and now, huh?"
Evelyn: "Of course. You know Avenger Convoy's on point?"
Rico: "I've read the sit-rep materials, yeah."
Evelyn: "Casualties have been high. Very high. We believe the defense is masterminded by Colonel Radec."
Rico: "What do we know about him?"
Evelyn: "Only what we get from Lente's captured papers from the Vektan invasion. Radec is mentioned as 'Visari's Hound', so expect the defense to be fanatical."
Rico: "Greeeeeat."
Evelyn: "Alpha will be spearheading the convoy along its route. Clearing bridgeheads, securing flanks--Captain Narville will let you know."
Rico: "Understood."
Evelyn: "Your first job will be clearing a route for a reinforcement convoy: Punisher. You'll be inserted onto a beach on the Corinth River."
Rico: "Huh. Let's look at the tactical situation."

So, things to take away from that conversation:
  • The objective is to capture Visari alive, in order to secure the Red Dust nukes.
  • Rico is an rear end in a top hat.
  • Captain Narville is leading Avenger Convoy, is kicking rear end, and we're going to be tasked to him.
  • We need to support Punisher Convoy as they land at the Corinth River.
  • Colonel Radec is leading Visari's defenses, and thus we're in for a world of hurt.
I find it interesting that our PRIMARY OBJECTIVES are set here as window dressing. Why aren't they in the forefront of the game? Why isn't Guerrilla Games shoving them into our face? Simple. We are grunts. We are cogs in the machine. Unlike in the first game, when Captain Templar was privy to privileged information directly from General Vaughton, Sergeant Sevchenko is not so fortunate. Colonel Templar speaks directly to Rico, who then filters down orders to us. The separation between the ground troops and their superiors, though present in the first game, is even more important here. Therefore, most players are going to just run ahead, eager to get to the shooting. After all, that's what we're here to do. Our superiors know what's going on, all we need to know is where to shoot (to paraphrase Pvt. Vasquez, from Aliens).

As an aside, you can eavesdrop on the other little groups of ISA soldiers in this room to catch snippets of their conversations. Nothing terribly interesting, so I haven't transcribed it. Most of it is people talking about the intensity of the Helghast's defense, or some generic space-mechanic jargon. Metrac and Lente get name-dropped in a conversation about their replacement, Radec, and there's conversation around difficulties regarding the new ISA Exo weapon--so there's a couple of hints to come.



Anyways, we are quickly introduced to the squad's dynamics in this cutscene. Rico is Rico. We know him. We love hate him. Garza and Sev appear to be friends, happy to joke around and hang out. Natko appears as an outsider. Making off-colour jokes and generally being a dick-head, but not in a way that endears us to him. Keep this all in mind, because these dynamics will be important to the game's story.



This image I kept purely because I thought it was funny that Jan's hand clipped through Rico when he patted him on the back. Killzone physics :v:



Here's some cool sci-fi imagery. I mentioned how the ISA Cruisers have an automated Intruder deployment system, right? Well hot drat, this is awesome.

(As an aside, FoolyCharged pointed out that the first wave of the Vektan invasion looked surprisingly similar to Starship Trooper's invasion of Klendathu. I don't think they're wrong).



These things look cool. Look at these massive rails that bleed dozens and dozens of Intruders off the cruisers. I'd feel remiss if I didn't again point out the fact that the ISA Intruders don't seem to care too much about the safety of Vektan soldiers. Again, the Helghast dropships are basically flying tanks. They are pretty drat awesome for sci-fi VTOLs. The Intruders are a mess. Seriously, did anyone think about Vektan trooper safety? There aren't even seatbelts!



Thanks, Rico. Add that as another drawback of the Intruder, you get to breathe the exhaust of missile propellant as you are deployed from the cruisers. :psyduck:



Aaaaand, speaking of Vektan troopers flying off of Intruders, :rip: nameless ISA mook.



Sorry to jump around a bit, but I also want to revisit this remark. Almost as a throwaway gag, Killzone 2 does that thing that many bad stories do where they tell and don't show. We don't know what Sorin is. Presumably, another planet. Presumably, Natko saves Garza. Who cares? We don't see it. The moment Natko utters this remark we've already forgotten about it. What I find interesting is that this line is given to Natko to deliver. Natko is introduced with a "your mom" joke. This guys is, if anything, a bigger idiot than Rico. Seriously. We meet Shaun Natko, he makes a "your mom" joke, and does the whole "tell, don't show" thing. Why? Why, indeed. I don't think the player is supposed to like Natko. There seems to be a certain amount of contempt that the characters show towards Natko, and I believe the game is doing its darndest to make the player feel the same way. It's clever, and I like it.



Moving along, welcome to beautiful Helghan. Right away we're introduced to some important aspects of the planet. The fact that it has its own alphabet, for example:



Now, the Helghast speak, read, and write English. Hell, they've got English accents. As far as we're concerned, they're all a bunch of disgruntled Englishmen. That said, when Visari fanned the flames of nationalism, he also pushed for the creation of a specifically Helghast alphabet. It's largely a cipher for the English alphabet, but whatever. Many Helghans can't actually read or write the Helghast alphabet since it's still relatively new. In fact, some of the propaganda posters around Helghan translate to gibberish. Still, it fits the whole nationalistic theme and is reminiscent of America creating its own dictionary after freeing itself from Britain. Webster would be proud.

Marshal Radisic posted:

Well that's interesting...a lot of the new letters seem to be English digraphs that have individual characters in the Slavic languages. Except for the "ng" sound, you can find all those new letters in Russian. Kinda weird that they kept both a "G" and a "J" character instead of dropping one of them.

Also, just thinking of the colors, I've recently started to notice how much the default palette for any oppressive militaristic authoritarian group in fiction is always some combination of red, white, and black. Probably no coincidence those were the colors on the Imperial German flag (and later, of course, on the flag of the Third Reich). as for the architecture, I'd heard that the model the developers used wasn't North Korea so much as the cities rebuilt in Eastern Europe during the days of the Warsaw Pact. Of course, both the North Koreans and the Eastern Europeans were building stuff off of plans developed back in the ol' USSR.

It always comes down to Germans and Russians. That actually might make a good research project: the image of Germany and Russia as enemies of "the West" in fantastic fiction.



Helghan is also home to a lot of brutalist architecture. Note, that brutalist architecture doesn't come from the word 'brutal', but from the fact that concrete is the primary ingredient. Also of note, is that the Helghan buildings, much like the Helghan alphabet, takes a lot of queues from North Korea:



Also, speaking of the ISA Cruisers sort of looking likes swords?



Yeah. Pretty ominous stuff.

Moving along, we start to see what Killzone 2 does really well: make you feel like a part of a bigger force.



Alpha Squad is a group of four highly-trained elite military lifers. As I mentioned in the video, they are finely tuned killing machines, competent in a variety of weapons and explosives, able to drive all sorts of vehicles, ships, and spacecraft, on reserve to handle the most difficult of problems. Does this sound suspiciously like the main character in a FPS video game? I like that Guerrilla sneaks in lore reasons to justify the fact that the player character is going to be the most competent soldier on the battlefield. Anyways, our first task is to secure the beachhead so that the ISA Regulars with Punisher Convoy can land.

I like that the main focus is on the convoy itself. Alpha Squad is there as escort only, and it's up to us to clear the way. While the convoy is working its way in more or less a straight line, Alpha Squad is climbing all over the place, zig-zagging to make sure the road is clear. Take, for example, the abandoned Pyrrhus open-air market:



After clearing out the enemies, we can peer over the edge and see the convoy and its soldiers travelling along the route. Look at the road itself, at the grating--



--only moments later we find ourselves underneath it. Whether we're above or below, or on either side, our task is to make sure the Helghast aren't going to harass that convoy. While it's not that different from most FPSes that require you to go to a location and hit a button or go to a location and shoot a bad guy, the repeated focus on the convoy, over the comlink, and visually in the game, really helps ground you in the action.

Moving on, let's talk about action movie tropes:



Never give a side character a name. Never do this. Not ever. It just means they're going to die tragically/pathetically. In this case, poor Jeffries winds up stamped out under the boot heels of the Helghast.



This image I've pointed out because, although I like Garza and he seems like a decent guy, this idea of wiping out the Helghast is a recurring theme with the ISA. I mean, on one hand, this is a war and hurrah and all that. On the other hand, this invasion is one of vengeance, is against Earth's orders, and has been done in the hopes of making the Helghast more easy to control. These are our 'good guys', folks. It was easier to buy it when the Vektans were the ones being invaded, but the whole black and white morality thing is beginning to get a whole lot greyer.



To cap off this update's analysis, I just want to point out the game's art direction. I hesitate to condemn Killzone 2 as just another muddy sci-fi shooter, because Guerrilla appears to be doing something different here. It'll be more obvious in future games, but it's beginning to occur here. This game is largely black and white. Granted, much of Pyrrhus City is just shades of grey, but really, this game is primarily monochrome. The colour that we do see are just highlights here and there: the red from Helghast eyes, banners, and blood; the blue from ISA uniforms and arc cannon bolts; the green from gun sights; and the orange and yellow from explosions. These are the colours we see. Why? Hard to say. I have some thoughts, but I wont speak on them until we've seen more of the game.



The gameplay in Killzone 2 is much improved. It's a heavy game, in that the character feels very weighted and controls are rather sluggish compared to the twitch shooting style of Call Of Duty, but some people really like that. Some don't, which is why Guerrilla released a patch with Call Of Duty-style controls. For the most part, though, you feel rather weighted, giving the feeling that your character has some substance, helping to connect the player with the world of Killzone 2.

All the basic mechanics of Killzone 1 return, the shooting, aiming, crouching, and so on. Only, they feel a lot better. In addition, we no longer have to wait for prompts to appear to navigate around the game world. Instead, we have a jump button! Ground-breaking, I know. Guerrilla didn't include a jump button in the first game to add that sensation of weight to the player. Under the pressure of popular demand, they add in a jump button, and while it helps improve the experience, they manage to still make playing as Sev feel like it has some substance to it, so go Guerrilla Games!

They also do away with prompted melee attacks, allowing you to melee at will like in Halo or Call Of Duty. This is a very welcome change.

Also, we get this:



Cover and lean mechanics! As far as I can tell, Killzone 2 is one of the earliest FPSes to include such mechanics. When you crouch against cover, such as chest-high walls or corners, Sev will 'snap' against it. Think Gears Of War. From there, you can move against your cover. If you push forward on the control stick, you will lean out of cover and can fire upon enemies. Similarly, if you push towards the furthest side of the corner, you will peer around it. It's a fantastic mechanic simply because it's there. You do not ever have to use cover, but if you choose to, you can, and it's useful. The fact that it's not necessary to beat the game, though, really makes me happy because it means players can play according to their play-style and don't have to be forced into using a mechanic that doesn't work for them.



Guerrilla has also implemented a clever way of dealing with the problems of invisible walls. I mean, having an AI character open a door for you or hack a console to get to the next area isn't new. However, I like that there's such a focus on team-work to overcome physical obstacles. Having Garza gift you a leg up a high wall and then pulling him up? Gameplay-wise, it's just to prevent you from going ahead in the level before dealing with a current problem, but it's a great way of grounding the player in the game and making you rely on your team-mates. Without Garza, we quite literally wouldn't be able to succeed in this level. It helps that we actually see our character's hand reach out to help along our buddy.




Voiced by Ryan McCluskey, who was in the first Resident Evil film, and did bit parts in games such as Crysis 3 and Enslaved: Journey To The West. Also, an animated Dr. Who TV series with David Tennant, I guess?

nine-gear crow posted:

That's Doctor Who, jackass :mad:

Dante Garza is a pretty laid back kind of guy. He's not great with the whole military procedures thing, but he's good at what he does and is loyal to his allies. Garza's skills in Alpha hinge on his abilities with technology and accuracy with a rifle. As a result, he generally does the hacking and sniping. His skills and intelligence come from the fact that Garza came from a wealthier and more privileged background compared to the rest of Alpha--a fact he tries to hide by being purposefully disheveled and carefree.

Since Garza and Sev are old friends and work together so well, they will often be paired up when Alpha Squad needs to divide its forces.


Voiced by Noah Lee Margetts, a fellow who has a number of small roles in films such as Batman Begins, 1408, and Buffalo Soldiers. He has also done voices for the Vietcong series of video games.

Shawn Natko is a tool. I mean, okay, maybe we give him more flak than he deserves. He is also Alpha Squad's most experienced demolitions expert and probably their best hand-to-hand combat guy. That said, his constant "your mom" jokes and overall shite attitude really drags him down. There's not much to his backstory either. He's a military lifer, he has no aspirations to high command, and while he's more than happy to defend himself in combat, he doesn't share the same vitriol for the Helghast that other ISA soldiers have. For him, war is just a job, and he's there to follow orders--often while swearing and complaining about it because oh god shut up Natko.

That aside, Natko is extremely competent at what he does (as evidence by being on Alpha Squad) and occasionally shows acts of empathy and humility that would be otherwise surprising.


No! Don't give him a name! Don't do it! Aw, you offered to buy a main character a beer? You're only signing your own death warrant!




Helghast Tracked APC

No where near as sophisticated as the Hover APCs we saw in Killzone 1, but these tracked variants are still a force to be reckoned with. Their powerful forward armour has earned them the nickname 'The Bull', because the can bulldoze through concrete walls without much trouble to transport their troops--incidentally, it appears as they might have once been mining vehicles that were only fitted for combat due to the looming ISA invasion. We'll be seeing these in and around Helghan quite a bit.

I love the lore reason for why there are no hover APCs on Helghan. Apparently, the Helghast were so sure of their victory on Vekta, that they gave Lente's Third Army all the best and most advanced technology. Whatever was left is what we see on Helghan. What a waste, too, since Lente's Army turned out to be a gang of incompetents.


ISA Amphibious APC

Solid and reliable machines, with a decent amount of armour. They have machine guns to defend them, like their Helghast counterparts, but otherwise they lack the advanced armour that let the Helghast APCs bulldoze through concrete walls. Unlike the Helghast Tracked APC, where troops deploy from a frontward ramp, the troops on the ISA AAPC deploy from a rearward ramp.

Cooked Auto posted:

Regarding the ISA APC that is pretty much a non turreted version of the Marine Corps AAV-P7/A1/Amphibious Assault Vehicle. I also think it's profile it's slightly squatter as well.


ISA Archer Tank

The ISA Lancer tanks from the first game were great for getting around urban terrain, but not much else. The Archer tanks' treads improve their potential mobility over various rough terrains. Also, they're pretty drat powerful anyways, so regardless of terrain, they can get around pretty quick. It can keep up a solid 70kph on paved roads, and nearly 50kph on rough terrain. Not bad, not bad at all. Armed with rocket pods, AA guns, and a mounted machine gun, this tank is really meant more as an anti-personal vehicle. It's high speed and amphibious nature comes at the price of it lacking heavy armour, and against sufficiently armed foes, it doesn't fare well. Fortunately, ISA High Command intelligence revealed to them that they wouldn't be facing the heavy weaponry of Helghan Hover Tanks, so there was nothing to really fear!

Also of note, the Archer tanks have less direct firepower than the Lancer tanks, but are a simple to control two-person rig, which explains why Sev was easily able to handle most of the operations of the tank when the driver died at the end of this first video.


Helghast Tank

Similar to the Helghast APC, this vehicle is also modified mining machinery. The rear of the vehicle is lightly armoured compared to the rest of it, so it is deployed in conjunction with ground forces to make up for its deficiencies. Similar to the ISA Tank, is has twin multi-rocket launchers, a machine gun, and occasionally a mounted machine turret.



Returning weapons:

A quick note on these weapons, since we've seen them before.
  • The Helghast StA-52 is slightly more accurate, but lacks the shotgun secondary fire and has a slightly smaller ammunition capacity. It's no longer the most commonly found gun on the battlefield, and the presence of more ammo for other weapons means it's no longer necessary as a back up, slightly weakening its overall utility.
  • The ISA M82 is more accurate and has an increased rate of fire. However, it also lacks its secondary function. Though whereas the StA-52 doesn't suffer too much from the loss of a single shotgun shell, the lack of the underslung grenade launcher is a big blow to this rifle. That said, it's still a brilliant gun, and remains incredibly useful despite its reduced lethality.
  • The ISA M194 Fragmentation Grenade has a much faster cook time. Oh, thank goodness. Whereas its role in the first game was a bit of a novelty, it's actually a truly important component of our arsenal here.
  • The M32 Combat Knife is the same one we saw Luger use in the first game. However, it's much more useful here, since we also have it as a melee option aside from beating people with the butts of our guns. The big difference here is that is does massive amounts of damage and no longer needs a melee 'prompt' to trigger. Note, that it only damages human targets. You cannot kill a tank with the knife nor can you blow up an explosive barrel with it. That said, this knife is so overpowered that it makes it possible to break certain segments of the game and shatter otherwise difficult battles.
I also enjoy the touch added to assault rifles when they are low on ammunition: as your clip nears empty while you are firing, you will hear a loud clicking noise just before you run dry. This clicking noise signifies that your gun will need to be reloaded soon. I'm not sure if this is a feature in real-world guns, but I love it hear as a nice aural reminder of your weapon's state.

chitoryu12 posted:

Sadly, this is not a real thing. Preferably your gun makes the exact same sound every time it fires. It's a bad thing when it doesn't.


StA-14 Battle Rifle

A classic Stahl Arms weapon that has been around for over 50 years. Long used in the service of Helghan (and also in the service of terrorist groups), it is seen as an honour to carry such a classic firearm into battle. It's accurate, pierces armour, and sports the same stylish helical barrel that is seen on the most iconic of Stahl Arms guns--

--but I don't like it. I don't like the iron sights, I don't like the rate of fire, and I don't like the way it handles. I won't be using this gun, because it doesn't mesh with my playstyle. That's not to say I always dislike it, because I rather like it in Killzone: Mercenary. However, this is not that game. So I do not use it.

Cooked Auto posted:

The StA-14 reminds me either of a Helghan M1 Garand or an M14 with the ring sight and heavier punch but with lower ammo count.
And no Ping of course. Sadly.


VC9 Rocket Launcher

Manufactured by Visari Corporation, this is the Helghast's answer to the ISA's M80 Rocket Launcher that we saw in the first game. However, whereas the M80 will eventually get an upgrade that gives it lock-on capabilities, the VC9 pretty much always remains as a single-shot dumb-fire weapon. Not to knock it, or anything, as it's effective at what it does, but there's just nothing particularly special about it. We'll always have this gun when we need it in the game, but otherwise it's not something to get too excited about.


M4 Revolver

Manufactured by the ISA. It's a six-shot .357 magnum revolver. It deals heavy damage but suffers from a slow rate of fire. This gun is standard issue side-arm for the ISA forces invading Helghan. This gun is okay. I use it in single-player, because the weapon system in Killzone 2 constrains you to one rifle-type gun and your side-arm, rather than the three guns of whatever you want in Killzone 1. However, its slow fire rate drives me up the wall, and I'll swap out for the faster-firing Helghast Pistol whenever I come across it. That said, this gun works well enough and the fact that it has infinite ammo boosts its utility. It's quite devastating in multiplayer, though, as it only takes two or so shots to kill a player.


Emplaced StA-3 Light Machine Gun

The Helghast equivalent of the ISA MOMAG we saw in the first game. As this gun is emplaced, it's more accurate than StA-3s usually are--you may remember the StA-3 as my favourite Helghast LMG in Killzone 1. Anywho, the addition of infinite space bullets and bulky armour plating means it can overheat. However, you can also take cover behind the plating to heal or wait for it to cool down! It's not 100% effective, though, so Helghast can still shoot you if they attack from the right angle.

I'd have more positive things to say about this gun, but it's actually more of a deathtrap than any real benefit in the game. I mean, if you're playing on Recruit or Trooper mode, it's fine. Once you get up to Veteran and Elite difficulty, though, it just makes you a massive target. Also, it's bugged. Seriously. While mounted on the gun, your screen will not turn red or blur as you take damage. Also, since you'll be laying down the gunfire, you won't be able to feel the controller vibrate while you take hits. Therefore, you have no real way to tell if you're taking damage while on the gun, meaning you'll often die before you can identify any danger and dismount.

The more you know!



Alpha Squad concept art:





Also, crow noted that Disney apparently still existed in the far flung future. That comes from Natko's line here:



It's a paraphrase of this particular Disney song: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6bWyhj7siEY

Uh. No further comment.

Sally fucked around with this message at 19:23 on Dec 29, 2015

nine-gear crow
Aug 10, 2013


That's Doctor Who, jackass :mad:

Cooked Auto
Aug 4, 2007

Regarding the ISA APC that is pretty much a non turreted version of the Marine Corps AAV-P7/A1/Amphibious Assault Vehicle. I also think it's profile it's slightly squatter as well.

The StA-14 reminds me either of a Helghan M1 Garand or an M14 with the ring sight and heavier punch but with lower ammo count.
And no Ping of course. Sadly.

Neruz
Jul 23, 2012

A paragon of manliness
I'm really beginning to wonder where the Helghast are getting this seemingly limitless supply of equipment and trained soldiers from; for a barely survivable hell world they sure have a lot of wealth to throw around.

Cythereal
Nov 8, 2009

I love the potoo,
and the potoo loves you.

Neruz posted:

I'm really beginning to wonder where the Helghast are getting this seemingly limitless supply of equipment and trained soldiers from; for a barely survivable hell world they sure have a lot of wealth to throw around.

It's supposed to also be a world with a lot of raw resources, and this invasion probably mobilized the Helghast militias and similar organizations. I wouldn't be at all surprised if most of the Helghan killed in this game aren't professional soldiers but normal civilians who reported for duty when their world was invaded.

marshmallow creep
Dec 10, 2008

I've been sitting here for 5 mins trying to think of a joke to make but I just realised the animators of Mass Effect already did it for me

Zip a Dee Doo Dah is one of those songs that for a long time I didn't realize was from anything in particular because I've heard it since I was a child but I have never seen Song of the South. Hell the first time I remember anything about it was a Far Side cartoon complaining about the "blue bird on my shoulder" leaving poo poo on his shirt. I just thought it was one of those little jingles all Americans know.

marshmallow creep fucked around with this message at 17:06 on Mar 6, 2015

Marshal Radisic
Oct 9, 2012


Blind Sally posted:



Now, the Helghast speak, read, and right English. Hell, they've got English accents. As far as we're concerned, they're all a bunch of disgruntled Englishmen. That said, when Visari fanned the flames of nationalism, he also pushed for the creation of a specifically Helghast alphabet. It's largely a cipher for the English alphabet, but whatever. Many Helghans can't actually read or write the Helghast alphabet since it's still relatively new. In fact, some of the propaganda posters around Helghan translate to gibberish. Still, it fits the whole nationalistic theme and is reminiscent of America creating its own dictionary after freeing itself from Britain. Webster would be proud.
Well that's interesting...a lot of the new letters seem to be English digraphs that have individual characters in the Slavic languages. Except for the "ng" sound, you can find all those new letters in Russian. Kinda weird that they kept both a "G" and a "J" character instead of dropping one of them.

Also, just thinking of the colors, I've recently started to notice how much the default palette for any oppressive militaristic authoritarian group in fiction is always some combination of red, white, and black. Probably no coincidence those were the colors on the Imperial German flag (and later, of course, on the flag of the Third Reich). as for the architecture, I'd heard that the model the developers used wasn't North Korea so much as the cities rebuilt in Eastern Europe during the days of the Warsaw Pact. Of course, both the North Koreans and the Eastern Europeans were building stuff off of plans developed back in the ol' USSR.

It always comes down to Germans and Russians. That actually might make a good research project: the image of Germany and Russia as enemies of "the West" in fantastic fiction.

marshmallow creep
Dec 10, 2008

I've been sitting here for 5 mins trying to think of a joke to make but I just realised the animators of Mass Effect already did it for me

Probably kept the G for the hard "guh" sound and the J for the "dz" sound.

SelenicMartian
Sep 14, 2013

Sometimes it's not the bomb that's retarded.

North Korea in Mercenaries was quite colourful. Especially in the irradiated areas :catdrugs:

chitoryu12
Apr 24, 2014

Cooked Auto posted:

The StA-14 reminds me either of a Helghan M1 Garand or an M14 with the ring sight and heavier punch but with lower ammo count.
And no Ping of course. Sadly.

Yeah, the StA-14 has iron sights and a receiver with a very close resemblance to the M1 and M14 (both rifles, because the M14 is a direct modification of the Garand).

quote:

I also enjoy the touch added to assault rifles when they are low on ammunition. As your clip nears empty while you are firing, you will hear a loud clicking noise just before you run dry. This clicking noise signifies that your gun will need to be reloaded soon. I'm not sure if this is a feature in real-world guns, but I love it hear as a nice aural reminder of your weapon's state.

Sadly, this is not a real thing. Preferably your gun makes the exact same sound every time it fires. It's a bad thing when it doesn't.

Sally
Jan 9, 2007


Don't post Small Dash!

Cythereal posted:

It's supposed to also be a world with a lot of raw resources, and this invasion probably mobilized the Helghast militias and similar organizations. I wouldn't be at all surprised if most of the Helghan killed in this game aren't professional soldiers but normal civilians who reported for duty when their world was invaded.

Yeah, Helghan has enough raw resources on it to power all of Earth's colonial holdings, as well as power a war effort near indefinitely. It's the small things like potable water, arable land, and breathable air that the planet truly lacks.

I can confirm that the soldiers we fight in this game are in fact professional soldiers. We're in the capital of the planet, where Visari himself is stationed, which also happens to be the planet's biggest economic powerhouse. The best soldiers are here defending it. While I'm sure there's some sort of mandatory military service for every citizen, there are still many Helgan civvies about--not necessarily here, since we're on the frontlines and the city has been evacuated--intel found in Killzone: Mercenary reveals that the Helghast's intelligence warned them of Vekta's plans to invade. They were ready and waiting when the ISA arrived.

Also a bit of interesting info from Killzone: Mercenary, since none of the combat takes place on the front lines, you actually bump into a lot of Helghast civilians, particularly while working your way through Helghan's slums.





In other news, I forgot that there were mounted machine guns in the last video, so I went back and added this to the update:

quote:


Emplaced StA-3 Light Machine Gun

The Helghast equivalent of the ISA MOMAG we saw in the first game. As this gun is emplaced, it's more accurate than StA-3s usually are--you may remember the StA-3 as my favourite Helghast LMG in Killzone 1. Anywho, the addition of infinite space bullets and bulky armour plating means it can overheat. However, you can also take cover behind the plating to heal or wait for it to cool down! It's not 100% effective, though, so Helghast can still shoot you if they attack from the right angle.

I'd have more positive things to say about this gun, but it's actually more of a deathtrap than any real benefit in the game. I mean, if you're playing on Recruit or Trooper mode, it's fine. Once you get up to Veteran and Elite difficulty, though, it just makes you a massive target. Also, it's bugged. Seriously. While mounted on the gun, your screen will not turn red or blur as you take damage. Also, since you'll be laying down the gunfire, you won't be able to feel the controller vibrate while you take hits. Therefore, you have no real way to tell if you're taking damage while on the gun, meaning you'll often die before you can identify any danger and dismount.

The more you know!

EDIT:

Almost forgot about the tanks we saw at the end of the vid!

quote:


Helghast Tank

Similar to the Helghast APC, this vehicles is also modified mining machinery. The rear of the vehicle is lightly armour compared to the rest of it, so it is deployed in conjunction with ground forces to make up for its deficiencies. Similar to the ISA Tank, is has twin multi-rocket launchers, a machine gun, and occasionally a mounted machine turret.

Sally fucked around with this message at 02:39 on Mar 7, 2015

nine-gear crow
Aug 10, 2013






We begin Killzone: Liberation proper, immediately thrown into the action with little time to prepare. It's par for the course for a PSP game, really, as they don't have the same amount of resources to set up things with big sweeping cutscenes like the other Killzone games do. The majority of the cutscenes are done in-engine, though Guerrilla takes the care to make sure that Liberation is as close to a fully voiced, story-driven experience as its console cousins.

Liberation is the shortest of all the Killzone games, clocking in at between 2 to 3 hours total, including storyline DLC missions. There's five chapters, though only four of them shipped with the game. Guerrilla added the fifth chapter as free DLC to serve as a proper ending for the game and to tie it directly to the upcoming Killzone 2. Though I'll discuss how and why Chapter 5 came into being once we get to it. In terms of pacing, each chapter has four stages which usually take about 5 to 10 minutes to complete, in addition to 30 skill-testing minigames which can be played independent of the single player campaign.

The game was very much designed to be a mobile-friendly title, allowing you to sit down and play a couple of missions on say a lunch break, or a bus ride and still make decent headway through the game in a relatively short time period.



Before we begin the game proper, we get a series of title cards designed to both catch you up on what you might have missed if you didn't play (or were lost in a boredom-induced haze for most of) Killzone 1, and to set the stage for what is about to unfold here in Killzone: Liberation.















STAGE 1: COUNTER-ATTACK



We begin the game back in the shoes of our hero and all-around "good solider", Captain Jan Templar. Though the other members of our original Killzone 1 quartet will appear in the game (after a fashion), Jan is the only one who is still a playable character, at least in the straight single player mode.



Our over-all objective for this mission is fairly simple: Metrac's forces have cornered a trio of ISA VIPs in the southern Vektan city of Rayhoven. And it's up to Templar and his platoon to fight their way into the captured ISA base and free them before Metrac and Cobar can torture vital intel out of them, or simply execute them.

The three VIPs we're after are ISA General Dwight Stratson, nuclear munitions expert Dr. Evelyn Batton, and Vektan Defense Minister Heff Milcher.

Why Metrac considers them such valuable hostages is something we won't be learning until much later.



Templar is joined directly for this mission by ISA Colonial Intelligence Col. Gregor Hakha, the half-Helghast solider who helped him route Generals Lente and Adams two months ago.

...If you're playing co-op that is; more on that in a little bit.



Also joining us, in spirit, is Shadow Marshall Luger, the ISA Black Ops agent who also helped Jan defeat Lente and Adams' conspiracy in northern Vekta.



Like she says in-game, Luger is going to be our eye in the sky mission control for the majority of Liberation. Our mission objectives and mission-critical updates will be relayed directly to us by Luger. If Killzone: Liberation is the series' take on Metal Gear: Solid, then Luger is going to be our Roy Campbell for the game.



The primary objective of the first stage of Chapter 1 will be to meet up with Rico, who's gone on ahead of us to do what he does best: murder Helghast and swear an ungodly amount.



Liberation also does a curtailed version of the "history of 20th century wars" thing that Killzone 1 also did. Our first stage is very reminiscent of the first stage of Killzone 1, which was the trenches of World War I Europe.



Now before you start going :byodood: OH GOD EVERYTHING'S lovely AND BROWN AGAIN!, just hear us out, the game's colour pallet does even out quite a bit once we clear the first few stages.

Though I will admit, the game is not putting its best foot forward by so forcefully reminding you of the shittier parts of Killzone 1, but take my word for it please, :siren::siren::siren:THIS IS A GOOD KILLZONE GAME!:siren::siren::siren:



Cutscenes in Liberation are done in-engine using the same models that appear in-game, so they're all low-detail and have very limited articulation. The saving grace of things is that cutscenes in Liberation and usually short and to the point.

Though for a PSP game, the in-engine cutscenes don't look that bad. It's not Crisis Core or Birth By Sleep-level stuff, but it's not trying to be.



So at the end of the first stage we reunite with Rico, and just like that, in a very loose sense, the band is back together again.

And true to form for Rico, the first line, nay, the first word he utters in Liberation is a curse word. Welcome back to the fight, Corporal Velasquez. :patriot:

STAGE 2: RETREAT



Templar promptly conscripts Rico to aide him in his new mission, and Rico is more than happy to join him, as after the events of Killzone 1, Rico has come to worship the ground Templar walks on as a fellow solider.

A lot of people on Vekta have, actually, as the ISA has used his triumph over Lente and Adams as a massive PR cudgel, to the point where the general populace has come to regard Templar as the "ultimate ISA solider", according to the Killzone: Liberation manual.



Another thing you will notice in short order when playing co-op is that Hakha will disappear in cutscenes and reappear once gameplay resumes. That means that, canonically, Jan will be doing everything in this game by himself, and Hakha's involvement in the plot of the Killzone franchise officially ends with Killzone 1.

Playing co-op is the only way to get Hakha to appear in the single player campaign. You can unlock Hakha for multiplayer by beating the game (including the Chapter 5 DLC) on any difficulty in co-op mode.



Though, this being Killzone, we can't go that long without Rico loving something up in some way...



So Stage 2 of Chapter 1 ends with Rico and Templar being separated once more by a conveniently closing floogate.



You said it, Rico.



This is ultimately a blessing in disguise for the player, however, because it puts to end the defacto escort mission we've been under for this stage with regard to Rico, which I'll cover momentarily.



So now Rico's gonna go off on his own and look for a place to rendezvous with Templar further down the enemy lines, leaving Templar and Hakha to make his own way to the Helghast stronghold and rescue Stratson, Batton, and Milcher.



In Killzone 2 and Killzone 3, the term "Hig" becomes widely used as a racial slur / military slang designation for Helghast soldiers, such as the terms "Kraut", "Ivan", and "Charlie" were used by US Army soldiers to describe German, Soviet, and Vietcong soldiers. We touch on its use in the Killzone 2 videos, but it has its origins here in Liberation, of all places.

The ISA tactical abbreviation for Helghast army units is HGH, for Helghast, obviously. The inset map which lines the reverse of Liberation's hardcopy cover uses the abbreviation in reference to Helghast troop movements. ISA soldiers subsequently adopted the term as an acronym and phoneticized it into the word "Hig", which they then used as a slur/descriptor for Helghast soldiers in general.

So that's where it comes from. It's still probably racist though.



Killzone: Liberation plays as a top-down shooter similar to the original PlayStation 1 Metal Gear: Solid.



For the purposes of this LP, Sally and I are playing Liberation in co-op mode. As I said before, playing co-op is the only way to to get Hakha to appear in the game. Co-op games can be hosted over the Internet via the PSP's Ad Hoc Wifi mode. Both players will need a copy of the game either in digital or physical format, and will need a copy of the DLC (if one has it and the other doesn't, the games won't connect). One player will act as the Host for the game, sharing their saved game file with the guest, while the second player will act as the co-op partner.

The host of the game will play as Templar, while the guest player will play as Hakha. Blind Sally hosted our playthrough for the LP on his PSP Go, so he is Templar, I recorded the game off my PSP 3000, so that's why the camera is following me as Hakha.

Also, Blind Sally has a PSP Go. :dogbutton:

The name "Ouroboros", which will be appearing throughout the game, is Sally's local PSP nickname. My nickname is blank because I'd recently formatted my PSP to put custom firmware on it :ssh:, otherwise it would normally be "Sparrow".



This probably isn't one of the best screens to be using to show stuff off, but it's not the action on screen I want to highlight, it's the UI portions.

On the bottom of the screen you've got your basic information bar. From left to right, you have: your available syringes, your health bar, current clip ammo, clip:ammo totals, currently equipped weapon, available grenades, and available C4 sticks.

Up at the top of the screen, your co-op partner is highlighted by a green icon over their head which follows them around the level as long as they're on your screen. You will also see both a colour-coded health bar over their head and a numerical representation of their health. It's important you keep an eye on your partner's health, because if they die, you will have to revive them with a syringe, otherwise you run the risk of failing the mission if you both die.



Being a PSP game, Liberation's controls are a little clunky and obtuse by default, but once you get the hang of how it plays compared to Killzone 1, things smooth out considerably.

You maneuver your character around the stage using the analog stick. You also aim with this stick by moving Templar or Hakha around in a circle. Pointing them in the general direction of an enemy will auto-lock on to them. Pressing the square button will fire your equipped weapon. Triangle reloads your weapon. X preforms actions at specific points. Holding the L shoulder button will allow you to strafe in a lateral line. Double tapping L will execute a combat roll. Tapping the R shoulder button will duck you behind cover. And Holding R and Square will allow you to shoot from behind cover.

The direction you're aiming is denoted by a laser sight on each character's weapon. Templar's sight laser is yellow, Hakha's is red.

Enemy health is also denoted by a red bar over their heads on the screen, as seen on the extreme left. Only enemies whom you are directly targeting will have their health bars visible and highlighted.

Enemies at the start of the game will only have about a quarter of their health bars filled in, meaning they usually go down in about one or two shots. Bosses and enemies near the end of the game will have more complete or even full health bars.



These grey-green boxes located all across the game are supply crates. When you walk up to them you'll be given an action prompt, denoted by the grey box icon over Hakha's head here.



Pressing X will open up the crate's menu. Just beware though, THIS DOES NOT PAUSE THE GAME, so you're gonna want to make sure things are relatively calm before you explore a crate's content. In single player mode, the action slows down to about 10% speed while you're looking through a crate to give you time to rifle through its contents, whereas in co-op, the game will not slow down at all while you're examining a crate.

Each crate has three options: Weapons, Items, and Explosives. Though it's very rare that a crate will have all three available, usually only presenting a combination of one or two. This crate in particular only has the Items option available.



Under the Items screen, you can see a pair of items used to heal yourself and your co-op partner. Health will heal about 25% of your health per unit, while Syringes are used to revive a fallen co-op partner or guest NPC like Rico.



The Weapons screen will give you a choice of available weapons, telling you what the weapon is, how much ammo it has on it, and who manufactures it. Here we have the choice of equipping the ISA M82 assault rifle, but since we already have it equipped, selecting it merely takes how ever much ammo we can from it into our current ammo supply.

When you actually choose to swap weaponry, your old weapon will usually be deposited into the chest in the new weapon's place, allowing you to swap back to it if you decide you don't like the new one.

Certain enemies will also drop weapons in the field and you can swap out your current weapon for it by using the appropriate action prompt when over the weapon.

Enemies will also drop boxes of universal ammo denoted on screen as grey boxes. I didn't get any screencaps of them, but we pick up our share of them in the video.



Pressing the O or Circle button will bring up your grenade throwing arc, denoted by an arc of yellow dots in front of your character. Pressing Circle again will throw the grenade, while holding Circle will cook the grenade before throwing it like you can in the console Killzones.

Pressing the Square button will cancel you out of grenade mode.



Approaching an enemy directly will give you a melee attack prompt, denoted by the fist icon over the enemy's head. Pressing the Square button on this prompt will knock the enemy to their feet, allowing you to score an easy kill on them with your gun.



Just be careful when you do this, however, because the enemy WILL hit you back if you mess it and knock you flat on your rear instead. When you're knocked down, you will be stunlocked for a few seconds and then need to press the X button again at the Get Up prompt to get back on your feet.



Liberation also has stage hazards which you can take advantage of at times, like these big red flammable barrels.



Shooting at them will cause them to explode, killing or injuring any nearby Helghast in a massive fireball.



Mountable turrets also make a return appearance... from like that one part of Killzone 1 where we had JamieTheD on for.



When you walk up to one, a turret mount prompt should appear over your head. Pressing the X button will let you climb in the turret's gunner's chair and take control over it. The turret is swiveled left and right with the L and R shoulder bumpers. Pressing Square fires the turret, which has infinite ammo, like all turrets in Killzone games. However, the turret also has a temperature limit, and will overheat and seize up if you lay on the Square button too hard.

The turret's temperature gauge can be seen in the lower right hand part of the screen.



Another recurring element of Killzone: Liberation is its C4 mechanic.



Occasionally, you will come across a wall or obstacle that needs to be cleared with explosive force. The game will usually prompt you with a voiced reminder, and you will need to find a stick of C4 from a nearby crate or use one of the ones you have in your inventory already. C4 points are denoted by a rotating yellow circle on the ground, which you then need to walk up to and press the X button when the prompt appears.



Your character will then take a few seconds to set the charges, and then will have a few seconds to rush to a safe distance, usually only a couple of meters, before the charges automatically detonate.



The result is a now clear path. If you have an NPC like Rico in your squad at the time, they will step up and set the C4 charges for you if you hang back for a moment or two. This is a good mechanic for conserving your own supply of C4 for later stages.



And speaking of Cpl. Shitlord, he is our AI-controlled NPC squadmate for the second stage of the level. Any NPC squadmate will be denoted by the green health bar hovering over their heads. Some NPCs, like Rico, will supplement your firepower, others meanwhile, like Evelyn will tend to be a detriment you have to babysit to make sure they don't die, because if they do you fail the mission and have to start over again from the nearest checkpoint.



At the end of each stage you get a handy summary screen like the ones from the original Killzone, only bereft of Joris De Man's back-patting victory theme, which I have handily edited back into the videos. So you're welcome.



Our returning champions...



This will be the last time we see and hear all four members of our original squad from Killzone 1 together in the same game.

Captain Jan Templar returns as our main hero, now voiced by Nigel Whitmey, who takes over from Kal Webber from Killzone 1. Whitmey has a decently long list of bit parts in movies, TV shows, miniseries, and video games to his name such as Saving Private Ryan, Doctor Who, 24: Live Another Day, The 10th Kingdom, Crysis 3, FarCry 3, Alien: Isolation, and--most ironically--Killzone 2, where he is not voicing Jan Templar. Like Kal Weber before him and Qarie Marshall after him, this is Whitmey's first and last time vocing Templar in the Killzone franchise. In the Chapter 5 DLC for Killzone: Liberation, Templar is yet again voiced by a new, this time uncredited voice actor as well.

There isn't much new to say about Templar for this part of Liberation as a character, at least, other than he's just doing the only thing he knows what to do at this point: be a soldier. Jan is not the kind of guy who retires and takes a promotion or a desk job with the mission half completed. He hops right back into the trenches (literally, in this case) to see the mission completed 100% and the Helghast driven off of Vekta forever. Sure, he takes that promotion in Killzone 2, but only because it allows him to continue playing the role of Captain Hero in a much more expanded capacity.

Colonel Gregor Hakha joins Templar as our co-op character, appearing only in gameplay when Jan is alone with his thoughts on the battlefield, and then disappearing again once he is forced to interact with other live human beings. It is our tongue-in-cheek theory then that the Hakha who appears in Liberation is actually a PTSD hallucination Templar is having which accompanies him throughout the battlefield. The "real" Hakha is probably off somewhere coordinating additional Colonial Intelligence ops, or still being debriefed by EarthGov and the ISA after that extended deep cover mission we essentially extracted him from in Killzone 1. Hakha never appears again in a Killzone game after this point, though he is namechecked and referenced on and off in other games. Hakha is voiced by Robbie Stevens in Liberation (the same actor who voices the Helghast grunts :eng101:), taking over for Sean Pertwee. Pertwee will be returning to the series in another role in Killzone 2, however.

Fish Noise posted:

Now incorporate the co-op leashing and Hakha's only line being "HELP ME" into your PTSD hallucination analysis.

Oh yeah, like Fish Noise points out, PTSD Co-Op Ghost Hakha is tethered to Templar via an invisible leash in-game so he cannot leave him behind for any reason, no doubt symbolizing how Templar is either unable or unwilling to leave the ghosts of his past behind, and the only voiced dialog Hakha has in Liberation are various cries for help when he falls or is near death, symbolizing in Templar's tortured psyche all the cries of anguish of the colleagues he couldn't save, like Sanchez and General Vaughton, echoing through his mind in the hellish throes of battle.

So thanks for that, Fish Noise...

Shadow Marshall Luger (real name unknown) also returns, though she's off the field for the majority of the game, instead fulfilling the role of Mission Control for Jan and Hallucinatory Hakha. Their relationship has stabilized significantly since Killzone 1, now that the shock of Luger being a thing in his life again has worn off of Templar. They're back to being amicable platonic comrades in arms without a hint of romantic awkwardness between them. ...I'm serious, they don't give two shits about each other any more. That said, Luger still values Jan as a friend and ally and will eventually be joining him on the field to supplement his numbers as things turn dire for all involved. Much like Hakha, this is the final outing for Luger and her voice actress Jennifer Taylor Lawrence for the Killzone franchise.

And finally, we also have Sergeant Rico Velasquez back with us. As surly and Helghast-hating as always, Rico would follow Jan straight into the worst of hells with a smile on his face if it meant he could kill Helghast and make Jan proud of him. And he's going to get his chance to do... well... one of those things in Liberation. Again, there's not much to say about Rico at the moment, although as the plot moves on he will be getting some of the heaviest character development of the quartet, setting certain events yet to happen in Killzone 2 up rather obviously. Rico is once again voiced by Tom Clarke Hill in Liberation, and though Rico will be a near-permanent fixture of the squad into Killzones 2 and 3, this is Clarke Hill's last outing as Rico in the series.



Returning weapons:

A quick note on these weapons, since we've seen them before.
  • The Helghast StA-52 LAR is a full-auto light assault rifle specialized for short-to-mid range engagements. Because there is no secondary fire in Liberation, the StA-52 has lost it's underslung Pup shotgun capability.
  • The ISA M82-G is the mainstay of the ISA ground assault forces. While it has greater accuracy over the StA-52, it's rate of fire and ammo capacity are lower. It has also lost the underslung grenade launcher from Killzone 1.
  • The ISA M194 Fragmentation Grenade is still a grenade. :toot:

We're not going to see much in the way of variety of gameplay styles with weaponry until the newer arms start showing up in the coming levels. Be patient. More guns are coming.


M224-A2 Tyrant

The Tyrant is the brand new ISA large machine gun brought in to answer the StA-3 Stova LMG, and is now standard equipment on all ISA heavy forces. Its weight has been decrased and it has lost the underslung rocket launcher of the M224-A1 LMG to improve its portability without sacrificing firepower. Rico will be using this gun as his default weapon throughout his time in Liberation, leaving his trademark M224-A3 HSW from Killzone 1 behind, for better or worse.


C4 Plastic Explosive Block

C4 in Killzone: Liberation is more of a gameplay mechanic than an actual weapon, used to clear out various obstacles from the way of your squad in the game. In Killzone 2, however, C4 is weaponized in multiplayer by both ISA and Helghast Saboteurs.


NOT ACTUALLY EAW-25/4 Chimera Heavy Weapons Platform*

Used by the Helghast as an anti-air superiority weapon, the Chimera AA platorm uses liquid hydrogen circulated through helical channels along the four 25 mm barrels to keep from overheating, allowing the heavy weapons platform to maintain a continuous, high-rate fire without risk of damage to its assembly. They do however have a nasty habit of being commandeered by ISA forces and turned on the ground troops whose job it was to man and maintain them.

* The turrets which are manable in Killzone: Liberation are NOT actually Chimeras, but a different type of turret entirely, which has no article on it on the Killzone Wiki or the in the Liberation manual. Actual Chimeras will be appearing later in-game, however...

And that's it for Chapter 1, Stages 1 & 2 of Killzone: Liberation.



CONCEPT ART

Helghast Shocktrooper

PROPAGANDA

"Rats in the shadows" (Helghast POV)


"Never Surrender!" (ISA POV)

nine-gear crow fucked around with this message at 13:08 on Nov 10, 2015

SelenicMartian
Sep 14, 2013

Sometimes it's not the bomb that's retarded.

nine-gear crow posted:

Liberation is the shortest of all the Killzone games, clocking in at between 2 to 3 hours total, including storyline DLC missions.
So, that KZL + Syphon Filter bundle on PSN is mostly Syphon Filter?

"...best grenade physics and ragdoll animations I've ever seen..."
Two seconds later a dead Helghast jumps and does a mid-air split.

Sally
Jan 9, 2007


Don't post Small Dash!
I said "best", not "realistic". Boy, they sure are a thing of beauty :allears:

SelenicMartian posted:

So, that KZL + Syphon Filter bundle on PSN is mostly Syphon Filter?

That's if you can rush your way through on the easiest difficulty, particularly with a co-op buddy--which is what crow and I do here. Killzone: Liberation can be a challenging tactical shooter. It's fun to play, though, and has collectibles to encourage replays. It also includes a multiplayer mode besides co-op. Not just AdHoc, either, as Guerrilla patched in proper Online support.

Sally fucked around with this message at 17:53 on Mar 7, 2015

nine-gear crow
Aug 10, 2013

SelenicMartian posted:

"...best grenade physics and ragdoll animations I've ever seen..."
Two seconds later a dead Helghast jumps and does a mid-air split.

Most of the time. At least the Killzone engine has the good humour to just drop everything and do the wackiest thing possible whenever it comes to a calculation impasse like that. It at least knows how to put on a show.

Sally
Jan 9, 2007


Don't post Small Dash!
Question:

Since doing the Killzone 1 multiplayer video, crow and I have been pondering how to do a Killzone 2 multiplayer video. The servers are still up and somewhat active, so there's people online to do it with, but it might also be fun to do with goons. So that said, are there any goons who own a copy of KZ2 who might be interested at playing some multiplayer at some undefined point in the future?

Sally
Jan 9, 2007


Don't post Small Dash!


Hey, remember the "Killzone 2 Trailer Controversy" at 2005's E3? A trailer of Killzone 2 was shown. This particular trailer was mindblowing, for the time, and Sony's Jack Tretton claimed it was all real gameplay. Great, right?



Only it wasn't real gameplay. It was a render of what devs thought might be possible on the PS3. Heck, Guerrilla had spent a year working on a Killzone sequel for the PS2, they didn't have time to come up with a PS3 gameplay demo. After that mess, though, Guerrilla really stepped up to the plate. They scrapped their PS2 sequel and focussed on making a game that would live up to that trailer. While Killzone 2 never quite reached those heights, their results were nonetheless impressive.

For comparison, here's said infamous E3 2005 Trailer. Two years later, Guerrilla released real gameplay footage for an actual Killzone sequel in their E3 2007 Trailer. This whole scene, the Vektan soldiers on an intruder high in the clouds, descending to the bleak madness of Helghan, is kept through all iterations of the game up to the final product. The opening scene of the second chapter is that trailer.

(Note: if you want to see that scene without any comparison shots, view the "Chapter 2, no commentary" link in the list above).



Welcome to "Second Verse, Same As The First" The Level.



After an Intruder insertion, Alpha squad fights their way to secure an objective for an ISA convoy. We did that last level, we're doing it here too.

I mean, it's not all the same, as now we're with Avenger Convoy. The first chapter we were working with Punisher Convoy. They're on their way to complete whatever objective in Pyrrhus they're assigned to. Captain Narville, the man in charge of the direct assault on Visari's Palace, is in charge of Avenger Convoy. So we've been tasked to, arguably, the most important front in the entire assault.

Therefore, the fighting is more intense. Also, rather than fighting along the slums and canals by the shores of the Corinth River, we're fighting along the slums and canals by the famed Visari Square, which is further inland from the Corinth River. Minor details, I know, but the scenery is less industrial shipyard, and more poor, run-down Helghan living quarters.



It looks life on Helghan kinda sucks. Well, we already knew that, didn't we. Not that Vekta was perfect, either. There was an entire chapter dedicated to working your way through Vekta City's slums. Still, I appreciate the focussed intensity the game has shown us so far. I mention it in the video, but I'll repeat myself here: Killzone 2 does an excellent job of making you feel like you are truly a part of some larger force that is fighting tooth and nail for every step of ground against a powerful force. The Helghast are a determined foe, and they have no intention of letting you waltz up to the palace. You're going to have to fight them right up to Visari's front door.

Unfortunately, not a tonne else to say about this section of the game, other than it gives more of an opportunity to see how Alpha Squad is treated as the problem-solving force. While the main ISA forces fight against the Helghast's front lines, Alpha Squad gets sent off to the side to search out ways to tip the scales in their favour. Case in point, while Narville and his troops square off with the Helghast in Visari Square, Sev and Garza are tasked with disabling the Mobile Arc Cannons preventing reinforcements from safely dropping.



I do want to just point out this little bit at the end of the video. In the art of combat, Alpha Squad truly are consummate professionals. At this point in the game, Garz and Sev are being chased by Death in the form of a Helghast ATAC. This creepy machine, almost horrifically organic in its movements, is chasing them down raining gunfire upon them. Yet, Garza and Sev still take the time to check their corners when they duck out of a doorway.

Nice touch.



The single biggest mistep Guerrilla made with this game was adding collectibles. Talk about the absolute antithesis of what this game is trying to achieve. You're in the "killzone", you need to fight, constantly, pushing your forward lines closer and closer to Visari's Palace so you can capture him and end the war. Whatever you do in this game, no matter what side-route you might have to take, all leads back to this. Why, oh why distract you with collectibles? Not even Killzone 1 was shameful enough to offer to collectibles.

Anyways, I've collected them all, so you wont see them at all in the LP and after this I won't make mention to them because they're useless. There are two types: intel and icons.



Intel are briefcases scattered about Helghan. They'll be found in corners, on tables, under boxes--where ever. When you get one it'll unlock some item for you on killzone.com. Only problem is, with Shadow Fall and Mercenary out, there's no longer any support for this. Not that I blame, Guerrilla, but I was unable to score any sweet concept art for this LP because back in the day I didn't link my account. So as of now, they are absolutely and effectively useless. Even from a lore standpoint; I can't picture Sev and co. hauling around these briefcases back to command when they spend so little time in the presence of their superiors in the first place.



There are also icons. These are simply Helghast logos you can shoot. They are also all over the place, but are placed on walls, above doorways, or on various Helghan structures. This makes more sense lore-wise, since in breaking the Helghast triad, you are metaphorically smashing their ideals. Garza made a remark about wiping out the Helghast last video. If he meant that, you're not gonna wipe them out by only killing them, but you'll have to kill their ideals too. Ultimately, though, it's pointless and neither of them are worth anything but trophies now.

Pah.

With regards to Liberation, the collectibles make absolute sense because it's a very tactical game. crow and I rush through it because we didn't want slow down the action for LP-sake, but most players will work their way through levels more slowly, planning their attack and defense. Part of that is making sure Templar is well stocked on health, ammo, and explosives. It's necessary here due to how different the nature of the game is compared to the rest of the series. Taking the time to scope out briefcases of Vektan cash to better equip yourself for upcoming missions fits within the framework set by an ISA scrambling to sort itself out in the aftermath of a devastating surprise invasion.

So yeah, they worked there. They also work in Mercenary, again partly due to the narrative of the game: mercenaries want wealth and need intel to do that. Guerrilla realized this and were wise enough to leave collectibles out of Killzone 3 entirely, so good on them.

Hey, let's talk about some good gameplay mechanics!!

We saw this a bit in the first Chapter: Six Axis Controls!



Yes, that's right, Six Axis Controls. Guerrilla made excellent use of the Six Axis by having it work as a supplement or an enhancement to gameplay, rather than a core mechanic. When turning these wheels, for example. Kinda cool. Press either shoulder button to have your hands grip the wheel, and tilt the controller to spin it. Neat!



Twist it back and forth to arm D-Charges, too! The "D" stands for "drat, I really appreciate that Guerrilla added these Six Axis controls in such a novel and harmless way, rather than making them horrible, broken, core components of gameplay, like in Lair, or something".

Cheers, Guerrilla!




Voiced by Mikey O'Conner, who notably did the voice of Travis Grady in Silent Hill: Origins. Otherwise, his work has largely consisted of doing "Additional Voices" in such games as Crysis 3, Haze, The Witcher, Mirror's Edge, and of all possible games, Killzone: Shadow Fall.

One of the Vekta ISA's star soldiers, Captain Narville was on secondment to the UCA on Earth when the Helghast struck his home planet. Angry and ashamed that he wasn't there to defend his home, he has been a strong force in the Helghan invasion, eager to prove his worth and earn a little payback. As such, he is put in charge Avenger Convoy and charged with fighting his way to Visari Palace itself. As one of our guests in a later video points out, he's basically R Lee Ermey from Full Metal Jacket.



A new section! Whoa! We never really bothered with this in Killzone 1, since enemy types didn't really matter. They sometimes wore slightly different armour, but they were all effectively bullet sponges. Guerrilla put more effort into their enemy types, so I'll put more effort into showcasing them. Enemies from the first Chapter will be shown in this particular update.

(Fun Fact: if you melee all fifteen standard enemy types, you get a trophy!)


Assault Infantry

Your standard Helghast soldier. Unlike the ones we encountered in Killzone 1, these guys know how to flank, take cover, and outmaneuver you on the battlefield. They will flush you out with grenade, they will melee you to death, and they will mock you as the world fades to black. Armed with assault rifles.

If you play Killzone 2 on Elite difficulty, you will come to fear these bog standard soldiers just as you would fear any of the more highly trained or better equipped Helghast soldier.


Support Trooper

Standard rocket launcher enemies. What I like about this game is that it isn't afraid to throw them at you. You're getting rockets shot at you within the first dozen enemies you encounter in the first level. I appreciate that. If you get too close for their blast radius, they'll flee in terror since they don't have any sidearms on them. I mean, once they get a safe distance away they'll try to rocket you again, but it's pretty funny standing next to them and seeing the AI panic and struggle to get away.


Rifleman

Not too many of these soldiers. In most mid-ranged encounters, it's against soldiers armed with light machine guns or assault rifles. Occasionally, though, these guys appear. Not super threatening if you keep moving or use cover. If you get too close, they'll switch to pistols to take you down.


Shock Trooper

Armed with sub machine guns, these soldiers are the first to rush into a fight. I mean that, too. They'll run forward, spraying you with bullets, looking for a chance to gut you with a knife. They're fond of the "action roll" to close ground and dodge attacks. Do not underestimate. Do retrieve their gun after killing them.


Helghast Heavy

Aha, the first boss! Super-easy if you know what you're doing. In fact, beating him within a minute nets you the Giant-Slayer Trophy. (There's a mythical theme in boss trophies). Heavies have a massive machine gun with an underslung grenade launcher--I guess they were jealous of what Rico was doing in the first game. They also have nigh-impenetrable armour. There are no visible goggles on their helmets, which leads me to believe they have video screens in there--so, yeah, no potential weakspots.

Except the glowing red explosive tanks on their lower back.

Yup.

Shoot them in the head to disorient them and they'll spin around giving you a clear shot. If you're fast and accurate, it's possible to detonate them within a single spin. Otherwise, you'll have to try it more than once. Super easy once you know the pattern. In fact, like in many JRPGs, these fellas will eventually start appearing as standard enemies.

As a further note, if you don't want to go the whole "shooting the tanks" route, it's possible to kill them with a couple of direct rocket launcher shots.




A.T.A.C. (Agile Tactical Air Component)

What happened to the tiny, non-menacing Sentry Bots from Killzone 1 :stonk:

Quick and lethal. They were originally designed to have a single pilot in them, similar to the Jet Bikes, but the high speeds led to lots of crashes. It was instead decided that they would work better as unmanned drones. So, yeah. Drones. The Helghast have them. Lots of them.

The Helghast were still working on prototypes during the invasion of Vekta. With the threat of Vektan retaliation, they were forced to fast-track them into service to defend their homeplanet. Armed with several rocket launchers and machine guns. These things move like creepy, horrific monsters. They are metal nightmares and I love them as enemies. It's too bad they're used to sparingly--or, perhaps that works in their favour.

Fun Fact: the aircraft seen and shot down at the end of the 2005 E3 demo trailer is the early model ATAC. That's the model that would have had a single Helghast pilot. (I like the new ATAC better--mostly because its acronym makes it sound like a Star Wars weapon).


The People's Car

I'm assuming these depressing vehicles we see about Helghan are some sort of civilian transport? Somehow I can't picture Helgast military using them. I imagine they'd mock them or look down on them. These depressing things will be seen throughout our adventure, in varying states of decay. Heck, we'll even wind up destroying some ourselves.




StA-11 Submachine Gun

A brilliant weapon. Fast firing rate and large ammunition clip. This is a great close-ranged urban combat weapon. In fact, it will more or less replace the shotgun from your inventory. Why? Well, the shotgun has three big issues with it:

1) It's Natko's weapon of choice.
2) It's not much better than its Killzone 1 equivalent, and in fact lost its unique "triple-barrel" function for a decorative flashlight.
3) It's Natko's weapon of choice.

I'd say use this gun all the time, but its range is its biggest draw-back. In close-quarters it's your best friends, but if you find yourself in a distance fight, you'd better find a new gun.

The best part of all is that it's based off of a real-world weapon.

Gargamel Gibson posted:

Speaking of the Helghast SMG, there's some other non-made-up guns in the game. The Helghast machine gun is an MG-42 AKA Hitler's buzzsaw, and Natko's shotgun is a SPAS-12 AKA the shotgun from every video game ever.


Arc Weaponry

Oh man, oh man! Sci-fi weapons! Lighting guns! Yes!!!

So, for whatever reason, the Helghast have lightning guns. Garza surmises it's something to do with the weird atmosphere or something. He's not far off. There's something about the planet that allows the Helghast to create such amazing weapons. Keep this in mind. It's sort of on the backburner right now, as we're more focussed on moving the convoy through the city. This source of power is actually going to become a core plot point as the game progresses!

What we know about the technology so far: it shoots lightning and is super awesome.

Also, that the Helghast have various "calibres" of arc weaponry. There's the massive Arc Batteries which can shoot down ISA Cruisers in a single blast. Then there's the slightly smaller Arc Towers, which can still wreak havoc on Cruisers. Mobile Arc Towers (which we blow up in this mission) and Arc Cannons are smaller still and act as sci-fi AA guns. Not much more to say at the moment, other than they're awesome and highly volatile.


Auto-Mortars

Background decoration, really. These mortars swivel about and occasionally fire artillery in, presumably, the direction of other ISA soldiers. You can ignore them, but if you want to, you can blow them out with enough explosives.



Heavy Canal fight concept art:



Also, I'm so happy this exists:



http://www.desktopaper.com/spectacular-px-killzone-wallpaper/spectacular-px-killzone-wallpaper-high-definition/

Sally fucked around with this message at 04:29 on Jan 1, 2016

Neruz
Jul 23, 2012

A paragon of manliness

Blind Sally posted:

Only it wasn't real gameplay. It was a render of what devs thought might be possible on the PS3. Heck, Guerrilla has spent a year working on a Killzone sequel for the PS2. After that mess, though, Guerrilla really stepped up to the plate. They scrapped their PS2 sequel and focussed on making a game that would live up to that trailer. While Killzone 2 never quite reached those heights, their results were nonetheless impressive.

To be fair they were actually probably right about what was possible on the PS3 with that trailer, if anyone actually knew how to write programs for the PS3's batshit insane internal architecture. Theoretically the PS3 actually has some really serious processing power available to it but it uses the 'Cell' architecture. Cell computing is usually only used for things like render farms or server stacks and afaik has never been used for personal computing so the PS3 devs had to basically start from scratch in an unfamiliar work environment when making games for it whereas Xbawx devs could draw upon prior experience using a system that they already understood.

The PS3 is one of those things that looks amazing on paper but is deeply flawed in reality.

Blind Sally posted:

I do want to just point out this little bit at the end of the video. In the art of combat, Alpha Squad truly are consummate professionals. At this point in the game, Garz and Sev are being chased by Death in the form of a Helghast ATAC. This creepy machine, almost horrifically organic in its movements, is chasing them down raining gunfire upon them. Yet, Garza and Sev still take the time to check their corners when they duck out of a doorway.

Nice touch.

Oh hey that's actually really neat and helps sell the 'these guys are the best' theme they have going because that is the sort of thing real professional soldiers would do.

Neruz fucked around with this message at 07:38 on Mar 11, 2015

SelenicMartian
Sep 14, 2013

Sometimes it's not the bomb that's retarded.

Regarding the "multiple Visari Squares" talk: The USSR left after itself at least one Lenin Street and maybe a Lenin Square in almost every city.

Will the drones get as creepy as this?

nine-gear crow
Aug 10, 2013

SelenicMartian posted:

Regarding the "multiple Visari Squares" talk: The USSR left after itself at least one Lenin Street and maybe a Lenin Square in almost every city.

Will the drones get as creepy as this?

They'll be giant-sized Half-Life 2 Manhacks. With guns.

As for Visari Square(s), to me it seems indicative of the cult of personality that's sprung up around Visari, like you mentioned with Lenin. Everyone wants to claim their own piece of their beloved Autarch, even if its just naming the concrete block with the drain in the middle everyone gathers to piss into after him.

We'll be seeing the actual Visari Square, the one out in front of the Autarchy Palace, a little further down the line. And I can assure you, that Visari Square is not a shithole like this one is.


Seeing Rico that joyous about anything (even killing Helghast) is existentially terrifying to me. :stare:

Sally
Jan 9, 2007


Don't post Small Dash!

SelenicMartian posted:

Will the drones get as creepy as this?

what the gently caress. :stare:

i don't remember those in Terminator

Neruz
Jul 23, 2012

A paragon of manliness

Blind Sally posted:

what the gently caress. :stare:

i don't remember those in Terminator

That's because they only show up in 2 old games from the mid 90's and not any of the movies.

Dr. Tough
Oct 22, 2007

I don't think the city actually has multiple Visari Squares, I'm pretty sure that those areas are just parts of the city that you fight through on the way to Visari Square

Gargamel Gibson
Apr 24, 2014
Speaking of the Helghast SMG, there's some other non-made-up guns in the game. The Helghast machine gun is an MG-42 AKA Hitler's buzzsaw, and Natko's shotgun is a SPAS-12 AKA the shotgun from every video game ever.

chitoryu12
Apr 24, 2014

I haven't looked too much at the ISA soldiers, but the Helghast immediately strike me for the relative realism of their design. Many video games totally eschew load-bearing gear of any kind (so it would be impossible for the enemies to carry even a single spare magazine, let alone all the other necessary pieces of kit like water, grenades, first aid kits, food, etc.) or they go for ridiculous combinations that the designers just think look cool (look at Homefront for the worst example, with Boone carrying a light machine gun but having a single assault rifle magazine on the back of his vest). The Helghast load-bearing gear looks to be based on real kit that worldwide armies use and would easily carry their immediately necessary supplies. They even have different pouches and carrying methods based on their weapons.

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Sally
Jan 9, 2007


Don't post Small Dash!

Dr. Tough posted:

I don't think the city actually has multiple Visari Squares, I'm pretty sure that those areas are just parts of the city that you fight through on the way to Visari Square

I didn't think so either. I asked crow about this, because I was concerned that we were counting the same Visari Square--which we revisit--more than once. He's thinking of the courtyard to Visari's Palace. Which, technically isn't Visari Square, but is merely a lavish courtyard to a lavish palace. It fit the idea of a cult of personality sprung up around Visari, though.

But then I did some more lore research.

It turns out Visari's Palace was originally the old Helghan Administration building, back when it was a colonial superpower and before the First Extrasolar War. The Helghast, not wanting to be wasteful, repurposed it as Visari's seat of power. So, yeah, as far as we know there's only one Visari Square. Visari's Palace is a throwback to the planet's early company days.

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