I don't know how long its been up or how long its going but the open beta is available now on the Vita PSN. Jumped in a match in between getting mad at Divekick. Surprisingly its kind of good. Sprint is a little awkward requiring you to double tap the back touchpad and I've only been able to switch weapons by taping the icon on screen, but other than that it exceeded my non-existent expectations. While I don't really know much about the unlocks or the intricacies of everything I still kind of liked it. If anyone has any more detailed impressions please share.
Killzone Mercenary Open Beta
You can sprint by tapping O, hold to crouch or double tap to do a slide into crouch. You can switch weapons with left on the dpad. I'm really enjoying the beta so far, feels much more like smaller Battlefield than a Call of Duty which is great to me. Took a little bit to get used to the controls but now they working fine for me, I found the heaviness of Killzone actually works really well with the smaller thumbsticks. My main complaint is how long it takes to do a melee kill often and grenade throwing is kind of awkward. For me at least it is one of the killer apps the Vita needs, filling the fps role.
Played an hour or two now. Looks great. Plays quite well. However...
- Whoever designed the hacking minigame deserves a kick in the balls. First time I ever did not understand what was wanted from me in a minigame since the dawn of time. Pretty much everyone doesn't get it. Shit design. The fucking worst.
- Acceleration is wrong for my preferences. I'll never understand how most developers don't let their users set acceleration themselves. For me, it stays too slow for too long making the required analogstick movement between finest input and broad strokes too large, which I hate. I use max sensitivity, and I like full acceleration to kick in almost immediately, making the transition from finest inputs to broad strokes as quick and as reactive as possible.
- Melee is wierd as fuck. Worked well enough at first, but then I was in a room with a bunch of people with odd connections, and it sucked hard. A mechanic just too dependent on good networking.
- Don't quite understand the rear touch sprint. Works well enough with the circle button.
- Whoever set the gyro-motion-control Aim Down Sight shooting is a turd. Even highest sensitivity is uselessly slow and unreactive. What a joke. It should feel mouse-cursor-like quick (and it can, as seen in games like Golden Abyss and Gravity Rush), but it's sooo slow - useless. Jeez!
Overall, I don't think the CoD-style quick death quick respawn type of FPS gameplay is the right fit for a handheld. There's a reason why Halo was the first FPS to truely take-off multiplayer-wise on consoles, and that's because of the much higher TTK (time to kill), allowing reactive skilldriven gameplay to flurish better, which needs a tad bit larger timeframe for such a thing to happen, because of the inherently slower and less precise gamepad controls. This is even more true with the even more limited possibilities of a handheld.
...feels much more like smaller Battlefield than a Call of Duty which is great to me.
Wha? It's pretty much a carbon copy of CoD-style design. From the metagame to the maps to how the loadouts work to the guns and *special abilities* to time to kill and respawn times. I don't see an ounce of Battlefield in this, other than both having guys with guns shooting at each other.
It seems competent (although that hacking minigame is horribly designed) but my biggest problem is probably only my own. I built my first gaming rig this past winter and got WAY too used to shooters on the pc. I actually went into the settings on Killzone looking for an FOV setting. Maybe I'll just stick to my pc.
For a portable Fps, it is one of the best I've played. However, it is not without its fair share of problems.
The melee is awkward and takes to long to execute leading into getting killed during the animation thus rendering it useless.
I still don't understand the hacking mini-game at all. Can someone please explain to me how to do it?
I'm excited for the single player experience and I will mess with the multiplayer more when the full game comes out but I don't think I am gonna get super invested into that portion of the game
@seppli: I find the weightier feel of the controls, semi-class choosing via the different types of armours, and the more objective based gameplay give it a bit of a Battlefield feel to me. I haven't played a ton of CoD online but from what I've played I pretty much only see free for all, tdm, and occasionally domination, when at least in the open beta KZ is forcing you to do more objective based stuff with capturing the vanguards and interrogating people(which while it may just be killing them you can't just go in guns blazing). It's also similar XP wise in how you get a many small amounts of XP for doing minor things(picking up ammo, grabbing a fallen teammates valor) and how you earn medals(however not totally sure if those are more similar to BF's ribbons or a onetime challenge thing closer to CoD). Not saying it's a portable Battlefield but to me at least it feels closer to BF than CoD.
For the hacking mini-game you have to pick the two shapes on the outside that go together to make the image on the inside. Touch one first then touch the inside then touch the remaining one then touch the inside. It's not complicated once you know what to do though the game is pretty terrible at telling you how it works.
I'm not all that fond of the Vita's analog sticks. They kinda feel like 360's analog sticks in that they don't feel aligned the right way, instead of up being up, it's seems to be slightly off to the sides, making it really awkward to play. Not a fan of the extreme zoom even when using regular red dot sights either, but, yeah, it does seem to be a really competent Vita FPS apart from those issues, which I think are probably really subjective, considering most people swear that the 360 gamepad is the best thing of all time.
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