BADGP Reviews: Killzone: Mercenary


Killzone: Mercenary (Sony, Guerilla)

Released: September 10, 2013

November 16, 2013

Zach Buzan


The PSVita has been starving for a strong shooter to be released into its library. After the abysmal release of Resistance: Burning Skies and Call of Duty: Declassified onto the system there seemed to be a dark shadow enveloping any first person shooter that might ever come out. When it came down to the release of Killzone: Mercenary I believed that it was going to be another pitiful excuse of a game. Boy, was I dead wrong.


The Presentation

Killzone: Mercenary has some of the best visuals that can be viewed on any handheld system. It easily shows that this game is running on a simpler version of the Killzone 3 software. The game does lag from time to time and there were a few glitches that I did come across when I was playing through the campaign. The campaign is broken into nine different chapters, and in total the story is around five hours in length. The chapters in Mercenary are fairly quick and encourage multiple playthroughs to unlock everything the game has to offer. The Story is based around a mercenary that fights in the war and takes on contracts from both parties. The story is fairly predictable and the writing is very standard but the missions are paced decently well that it’s easy to enjoy. From exploding grenades to brutal melee attacks Killzone: Mercenary is easily one of the best looking handheld games I have played this year.


Game Play

Killzone: Mercenary is a good handheld game in a sense to just play it in short bursts. Unlike the other Killzones this game is very close quartered and focuses mainly on a fast paced environment. Whether you are playing in the campaign or in a multiplayer session you are always running, gunning and gaining money. Money is the main focus in this game. Any action you perform in the game will reward you with money that you can spend to upgrade your character. You can acquire any new inventory pieces through arms dealer shops that are found in campaign missions or in the main menu. The shops are run by a Russian individual named Black Jack. Whether you are looking for new body armor, pistols or van-guard gadgets to equip, this man is the person to see.  Another great feature that this game incorporates very well is the Vita’s touch screen. Mercenary uses the touch screen with great precision and accuracy that I found myself using it more and more as I played it. The main use for the touch screen is for the new Van-guard gadgets that your character can equip. From turning invisible to launching devastating blasts from space, the player only needs to tap the icon located on the game screen. Once the gadget is activated the player can cause destructive mayhem by using the gadget’s special ability. Another main use for the touch screen is the melee combat. At first I thought the use of the touch screen to perform melee attacks would hinder game play, but instead I found it to be quite enjoyable. With the many types of brutal animations that can occur, and the precision that the screen has with it I found it to be one of the best mechanics in the game.



Just like the rest of the game, multiplayer is a rush. The maps are on the small side but are layered very nicely. Each map is made up of three different levels and each of them is detailed quite well. Matches are usually made up of eight people and there are three different types of modes that you can play on. As you play and level up your profile you will eventually unlock more load outs for your profile. More load outs means more diversity in your arsenal. The use of leveling up makes it rewarding and still fair to all players in the matches. Usually in multiplayer matches all of the gear and weapons that are better go to the higher ranked players. In Killzone: Mercenary everyone can choose to buy anything they want at level one. This makes it so you can save and spend the money you have acquired on an arsenal you want and not an arsenal you are stuck with.


The Verdict

Killzone: Mercenary is not a game for everyone. With its short bursts of gameplay, a few players will be angry not to see gigantic maps or a massive campaign. Instead of playing a lengthy drawn out game, Mercenary brings a great game that can be picked up and played on the go. With its money reward system, tight controls and beautiful graphics it is easy to say that this is one of the better games for the PS Vita. If you own a PS Vita I would highly recommend this game.



7.0 out of 10

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