A lot or a little?
The parents' guide to what's in this game.
What parents need to know
Parents need to know that Killzone 3 has plenty of violence, blood, and gore. In addition to traditional and futuristic weapons, players have access to some very vicious melee attacks. Players can sneak up on unsuspecting soldiers to slice their throats, snap their necks, and gouge their eyes out with their character's thumbs. Some non-interactive cut-scene sequences also depict violence and gore, including one in which a person is impaled, with body parts littering the ground. Note, too, that this game supports open online voice communication. Common Sense Media does not recommend non-moderated online communication for pre-teens.
What's it about?
Picking up moments after the final scene in Killzone 2, which left the evil Emperor Visari dead at the feet of protagonists Sev and Rico, KILLZONE 3 introduces a new and more vicious Helghan uprising that takes place in the wake of Visari's death. While the story is more light-hearted than its predecessors (an intentional move, says the company), the game once again stars you as Sev, a member of the ISA (Interplanetary Strategic Alliance) who must survive on the Helghast home world while searching for a way off the planet. Using traditional and futuristic weapons, a number of vehicles, and a handful of new "brutal melee" moves, you'll take down the nasty Helghan armies in alien jungles, abandoned cities, and arctic wastelands, all from an immersive first-person perspective.
Is it any good?
Despite some less interesting characters and a few confusing dialogue and story sequences, Killzone 3 is the best game in the series to date. With much bigger set pieces, more weapons and vehicles, and destructible environments, this sequel delivers the most intense white-knuckle action yet. The enemies are smarter, too, and for those who want to take the fight online, two out of the three modes are playable with up to 24 players. Offline co-op play on the same TV is also offered.
What's more, the game feels tight and responsive on the PS3 controller. Players who prefer motion-enabled controls can opt to use Sony's PlayStation Move controller. And as if the game's lifelike, high-definition graphics aren't enough, those with a 3DTV can play the game with an added sense of depth. Its narrative could do with a little polish, but Killzone 3 certainly won't disappoint fans of the genre.
Online interaction: Killzone 3 offers three types of head-to-head play online with support for voice communication. Players may be exposed to inappropriate topics of conversation and offensive language. Potential exists for players to share identifying information with one another.
Talk to your kids about ...
Families can talk about whether the violence in this game, which is targeted at slightly mutated and clearly malevolent descendants of human colonists, is more acceptable than a game that takes place in contemporary times on Earth and against human soldiers. Should it make a difference?
Families can also discuss the dangers of open online communication. What should players do if they encounter belligerent people online? How can they protect themselves?
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Common Sense Media's unbiased ratings are created by expert reviewers and aren't influenced by the product's creators or by any of our funders, affiliates, or partners.