Here's a dangerous fact: I didn't much care for Killzone 2's multiplayer. Try and momentarily contain your frothing bile secretions, and force down those feelings of unbridled hostility for a second, and hear me out. I just couldn't get on board with the control scheme, for a start, and,while I could appreciate that Salamun Market was an exceptional bit of design work, I found the game required a bit more work than I was prepared to put in before dishing out the good classes and abilities.
So, getting down to the brass tacks, it's particularly nice to see the Killzone 3 multiplayer beta sorting most of the things I saw as problematic in Killzone 2, while keeping the game's identity. Oh, and it also adds whooshy jetpacks. Bonus.
The first thing you'll notice is that the controls, which Guerrilla insisted weren't broken, have been fixed. Input delay has been radically reduced, and the overall feel of movement has been attuned to make everything comparable to its contemporaries. The weightiness of everything in the second game might have been a unique offering, but standardisation is probably going to go down better with most people. Guerrilla has also been gracious enough to include an 'Alternate' control scheme (L1 for zoom, R1 to fire) off the bat, which 99.9 per cent of players will immediately switch to straight away.
It's particularly easy to see where inspirations are being drawn. Aiming down the sights is now a huge priority - even in close quarters combat, ironically. Whereas Killzone 2 had you hip-firing three miles across the map with perfect accuracy, now you'll invariably find yourself zooming in. Shooting from the hip feels the same as before, but Guerilla loves scopes so much they've even given the shotgun a reflex sight. Aiming and movement speeds have both been bumped up while looking down your scope, too, which makes the whole game feel like it's sheepishly (but successfully) trying to answer its own call of duty.
The scoring has also been adjusted alongside other shooters. Now you get 100 points (instead of 1) for a kill; 50 for killing a turret/drone and reviving or repairing; and 25 for an assist. Ribbons are awarded for performing certain actions, too, and receiving one gives you a mini-boost for the rest of that match: the Silent Footsteps ribbon, for instance, does exactly what it says on the tin.
All classes are unlocked at the start, so there's no more having to play for three weeks before gaining access to the Saboteur. On the other hand, each class only starts out with basic abilities - each perk must be unlocked, and can be upgraded through three levels. Some other tweaks to the old favourites are soon felt, too: Tacticians can no longer drop spawn points, for instance.
Weapons recoil is nonexistent at the moment. Guerrilla has already stated they're looking into this, but as it stands you can pretty much pew pew away for minutes without your gun kicking up into the air. This means the high-levelled players (and there are already zillions, which is crazy) can consistently headshot you to death without breaking a sweat.