Building (Critical) Consensus: Killzone: Mercenary

killzone-mercenary-box-artIf there’s one thing that the PlayStation Vita’s been missing, it’s that must-own game that isn’t a port of a game already on another platform. Sure, the Vita has some very good games but apart from Persona 4 Golden, almost all of the best Vita games are available on another platform. Once again, Sony tapped one of its big franchises to get people onto the Vita by bringing the Killzone franchise to the portable platform.

Critics tend to agree that it’s the best first-person shooter to make its way onto the Vita but that’s hardly a challenge. What many disagree on is whether it’s the full console experience on a portable console.

The Sixth Axis (100%): While Mercenary might not be the best shooter in the world, in its own field – as a handheld title – it’s almost perfect; there’s no other experience like this on a device as small as this. And, judging the game from that perspective, it’s an experience that will stick with you for a long time, much like GoldenEye, Call of Duty 4 and other revolutionary shooters have managed in the past, and one entirely worthy of its acclaim. This isn’t just a game you need to buy if you own a Vita, this is the game you buy a Vita for.

Gaming Nexus (90%): Uncharted may have been considered the system seller for the platform before, but this is the new measuring stick for the platform… The experience has a great balance of that true-to-console feel and offering you a streamlined path to the action consistent with the most mobile experiences. If you don’t own a Vita, you now have a reason to go out and get one.

Hardcore Gamer (80%): It’s not a game without its faults as friendly artificial intelligence can obstruct progress and I ran into a number of glitches throughout the campaign, but with an addictive multiplayer and some of the most creative ways in using the handheld’s technology, you’ll have a tough time finding another experience like this. Even if it’s a short list, Killzone: Mercenary is by far the best shooter on the PlayStation Vita and should hold the candle for quite some time.

PlayStation LifeStyle (70%): As much as I was hoping (and, quite frankly, expecting) Killzone: Mercenary to be the perfect representation of a first-person shooter on the PlayStation Vita, it just isn’t. A sub-par single player campaign is only saved by the fast-paced and fun multiplayer, which isn’t perfect, but does take this from being a forgettable rental, to something I can recommend buying, even if just for that online multiplayer.

EGM (65%): The crowded control scheme, uninspired campaign, and limited multiplayer options are completely outclassed by most home-console shooters. If, however, you’re truly desperate to fill that gaping genre hole in your Vita’s library, you won’t have a totally miserable time here.


About Steve Murray

Steve is the founder and editor of The Lowdown Blog and et geekera. On The Lowdown Blog, he often writes about motorsports, hockey, politics and pop culture. Over on et geekera, Steve writes about geek interests and lifestyle. Steve is on Twitter at @TheSteveMurray.

Posted on September 12, 2013, in Games and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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