A Zone for Killing Pt. 1

[As Read on GIO.]

Killzone Shadow Fall

In Which I Utterly Ruin the Story

Hey there folks. So, I just recently finished up the excellent Killzone Shadow Fall (aka Killzone 4) and wanted to give you some of my thoughts on the story, which is pretty well-crafted. However, as I am shortly going to release a non-spoiling review, I figured I might as well get all the spoilers out of the way by crafting a two-part story spoilers blog a la my Wolf Among Us series of previous blogs. Hopefully, assuming I am able to post this correctly, that works. If you are thinking of playing the game, and haven’t already- or have only recently started it, then I must ask you to shy away from this blog for fear of spoiling the otherwise excellent experience. However, if I am unable to dissuade you from doing so, I suppose you can go ahead and read through this blog then. It will be in mostly the same format as the rest of the spoiler blogs, albeit with maybe a little less attention to intricate detail for the lack of time- as this is only a two part series, and not a fifty part one, which it would certainly be if I micro-analyzed every small fraction of the game’s story. Also, in semi-related news- I should be able to (hopefully) get a special ‘after-edition’ of my Wolf Among Us spoilers and thoughts up here sometime in the next few days. Anyway, without further ado… let’s get things rolling!

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1. The year 2370 is where the first moments of the game take place, several years after the conclusion of Killzone 3 ended explosively (literally) on the Helghast’s homeworld of Helghan.

2. A la The Cold War of the late forties to early nineties, The Wall has been constructed in the center, or close thereto, in between two cities on the colonial planet Vekta. New Helghan and Vekta City are polar opposites- one housing the now worldless Helghast and the other home to the people that have been fighting them for years.

3. The main story opens with the forced relocation of Vektans from New Helghan, sending them either in secrecy or body bags across The Wall. Michael Kellan and his younger son, protagonist Lucas Kellan, avoid Helghast forces and meet up with Shadow Marshal Sinclair before being spotted and attacked by other Helghast.

4. The trio makes it to The Wall, but not before Michael has been fatally shot and Sinclair angrily dispatches the remaining Helghast. Sinclair promises to watch over the grieving Lucas in his dead father’s absence, and thus begins the story of what is essentially Killzone 4, and one of the strongest offerings in the series to date.

5. Cue a lengthy cutscene, showcasing Lucas Kellan’s ascension through the Shadow Marshal ranks, eventually coming to rest at present day, where he works for his now-mentor Sinclair. Obviously, the bond between these two is one of the major focuses of Shadow Fall’s story.

6. The present time is now the year 2390, twenty years after the beginning of Shadow Fall’s story, and thirty years or so after the end events of Killzone 3’s story. Like any good Cold War, the tension between the Vektan and Helghast is unsettling and nearly to a melting point. Which is not good, not good at all.

7. Kellan has been captured by Helghast, willingly, in order to continue an ongoing investigation in their territory. He is currently en route to being brought across the wall for a trade with the VSA for one of Helghan’s own operatives.

8. In order to build on the already known conflict from previous games a little bit, and the obvious hate and distrust between the two races that were once the same, Anton Saric- head of New Helghan’s security continually expresses disgust twoards Kellan and his “people”, the Vektans, and the shame it causes the Helghast for having to inhabit the same planet as them. These racist overtones only bare the tip of the iceberg though… There is truly a deep resentment towards the people who semi-inadvertently caused the destruction of Helghan.

9. Much like the American Revolution’s ‘shot heard round the world’, a mysterious sniper shot rings out as a trade is about to be made, and a Helghast soldier drops to the ground. The Helghast operative being traded for Kellan grabs a weapon and points it at the protagonist, trying to secure their own safety at least in the madness.

10. Instead of killing Kellan though, the agent thinks better of it and sprints for the other side of The Wall, allowing Kellan to make it to his own side. Shortly after the hubbub dies down and Kellan is safely on his own side of The Wall, his superiors order him to travel back across to New Helghan in order to cover up another VSA operation over there, removing traces of evidence.

11. On his way, Kellan rescues a VSA squad that has been pinned down after crash landing, and recovers some highly classified and important information as well. During their escape, Kellan concentrates his fire on the symbolic statue of Scholar Visari- one of the important figures in the Helghast’s society.

12. Having perused and utilized the highly sensitive data that Kellan successfully recovered from Helghast territory, Shadow Marshal Sinclair sends Kellan off to the ISA Cassandra, which operates as a black site biological research station. Reports of an infection were received, and the lack of communications signals that the crew is most likely dead or dying.

13. Sinclair also warns Lucas that Helghast encryption was discovered in the warning report, and that head scientist Dr. Hilary Massar may have been trying to defect to Helghan. Kellan’s orders are to find and secure the doctor, and to send the research station spiraling into the sun in order to ensure its destruction and halt the spread of the contamination. No small task, that.

14. Upon his arrival at the station, Kellan observes horrific experimentation upon Helghast test subjects, and finds the Cassandra’s crew and subjects in various states of decomposition seemingly as a result of whatever biological weapon Massar has been developing.

15. He powers up the station’s main reactor and plots a direct course for the nearest sun, just in time to discover security footage of Massar being detained by the Helghast operative Kellan encountered in his exchange on The Wall. This operative’s name is found out to be Echo, and she will become very important as the story progresses.

16. Kellan heads for the labs in order to head off Echo and her detainee. In typical Helghast fashion, Echo is disgusted with the Vektans- Massar specifically, for their ill treatment of her people, and the testing that was going on within the Cassandra’s labs. Echo bests Kellan and escapes the station with Massar as her prisoner.

17. Kellan fights his way through wave upon wave of Helghast that are now showing up to make his rainy day even worse, and just barely manages to escape the station before it successfully completes its trip into the star’s upper atmosphere.

18. Now, we flash to Echo and Massar, who has successfully (it seems) guessed that the Helghast operative is in fact a half-breed, of half Vektan and half Helghast. The doctor then ominously and bluntly says that Echo and all of her “people” are going to die, obviously referring to her biological weapon trained against the Helghast in order to ensure their destruction and the end of the neverending war.

19. Kellan now arrives back in Vekta City, arriving at the VSA Headquarters just in time for a massive explosion to tear through the building, killing soldiers and civilians alike, and knocking the protagonist unconscious as well. As he comes to, Helghast forces begin assaulting the building, and he fights his way through several waves of enemies in order to reactivate the building’s security programs.

20. Kellan then runs into Sinclair, and the two manage to escape the building and the surrounding area, as Sinclair confirms his fears that similar attacks are occurring concurrently across the city. Just as they begin to wonder who exactly is at the head of the attacks, a special broadcast from Black Hand terrorist leader Vladko Tyran takes credit for the attacks.

21. Kellan and Sinclair soon realize that the Black Hand ground forces have taken over several passenger trains and are using them as makeshift missiles at different locations across the city. Kellan dispatches the Helghast on each train, and arrives in the last to find it filled with timed explosives, which he does not have enough remaining time to defuse.

22. Utilizing a specialized mini-gun, he manages to derail the train and detonate the bombs safely away from their intended target(s). Later, Vladko Tyran’s location is acquired, and Kellan leads an all-out assault upon his last known location, rescuing many civilian hostages as he goes.

23. Kellan chases Tyran through his hideout, before hijacking an ISA dropship and flying away, unknowingly carrying Kellan with him as well, because he is hanging on for dear life underneath. This success is short-lived however, as Tyran becomes aware of the Shadow Marshal’s presence and kicks him off high over Vekta City as the man escapes over The Wall into New Helghan.

24. Because of the terrorist attacks, all Helghast citizens residing in Vekta City are deported to New Helghan, and brutally excommunicated from their homes on that side of The Wall. Sinclair once more sends Kellan undercover to the opposing side, this time disguised and blending in with the refugees. Kellan’s goal is to make contact with the undercover informant known as Zeus in order to ascertain Tyran’s current location.

25. The informant tells Kellan that Tyran can be found in the New Helghan slums, and the Shadow Marshal works his way through the Helghan city before being discovered by the Black Hand leader himself.

26. Helghast forces and bloodthirsty civilians alike swarm to Kellan’s location, and the operative is forced to go on the offensive in order to find Tyran before it is too late. When he does arrive on-scene, the terrorist is conversing with Jorhan Stahl, the big bad of the Killzone series- who was believed to have perished at the end of Killzone 3.

27. The old and somewhat decrepit Stahl takes Kellan’s presence into account and then begins the cliched and now stereotypical villain “tells all” tact. He informs the Shadow Marshal that Doctor Massar’s biological weapon has been altered to target only Vektans, and he gloats from there on.

28. Kellan engages Tyran in a mano a mano knife fight, ending with him being unceremoniously tossed out of the man’s dwelling as it self-destructs, presumably killing the terrorist cell leader. As we know from the series, especially after the revelation confirming Stahl’s survival however, we should never assume a bad guy is dead.

29. Critically, but not yet fatally wounded, and also unarmed, Kellan is corned by the Helghast and his mentor, Sinclair comes over the comms to let him know that they ‘won’t leave him there to die.” Meaning, of course, that for now at least, they mean to do just that- leave him there.

30. I’ll wrap up this first part of my major Killzone Shadow Fall story overview with that cliff hanger of sorts, and leave those of you who are reading this that haven’t played the game, or are not currently to this point, to wonder in vain what exactly is going to happen until I next post about this… Sorry, but that’s just how the die is cast today. Adios folks.

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