Metal Gear Solid. The Tactical Espionage game that has sucked in fans around the world and has never let go. This may be out 3 years nearly but I recently picked it up again and thought i'd review it. Metal Gear Solid 4 was released 10 years after MGS1 and 20 years after the original Metal Gear which started the franchise. This game is the final in the main franchise and boy did Kojima deliver in giving Solid Snake a heroic send off. Set in the year 2014, Solid Snake has been brought in to assassinate his brother Liquid Snake. Liquid has taken control of the worlds military powers and has sent the world into near 24 hour war. Well here's my review.
Well the first thing that people should know is, Snake isn't a young man anymore and it isn't just because the game secretly advanced decades between the 5 years that MGS2 and MGS4 were separated. This is later explained to be his cells deteriorating seeing as he is just a clone of Big Boss. The game isn't just set in one big area which is just replayed over and over again like the Big Shell in MGS2 and Shadow Moses in MGS1. MGS4 is set in 5 unique areas, The Middle East, Papua New Guinea, Eastern Europe (Based on Czech Republic according to credits), Shadow Moses and Arsenal Gear.
The world has been plunged into eternal war, mainly thanks to Liquid Snake controlling a large amount of the worlds PMC groups and his want to stomp out all resistance. Snake is charged with killing Liquid and heads to the Middle East to kill him however as the game progresses and more and more twists undo, we learn that after years of killing Weapons of Mass Destruction, Snake is turning into one. The Fox Die virus that Naomi Hunter inserted into him in MGS1s receptors are breaking down as he ages, in simple terms, when the receptors go, The virus kills anyone regardless of genetic code. I don't want to say much more about this story but it is truly fantastic. Many characters return for one last pow-wow, Meryl Silverburgh, Johnny Sassaki (The guy who has made some form of appearance in each game and then preceeds to shit himself Johnny), Otacon and Colnel Campbell of course are back. Various boss's return in some form and more. The story truly is gripping and if you've been a fan of the MGS series for a while it's nearly impossible not to crack a tear at the end.
GAME-PLAY: With each installment of the Metal Gear franchise, more and more elements were brought in which revolutionised our tactical espionage experience. In Metal Gear 2, they introduced FPS and area damage (e.g. Radios breaking when shot, kneepcaps being shot, Hold ups). Metal Gear 3 they introduced camouflage and stamina and CQC (Close Quarter Combat) and in Metal Gear 4? They revolutionized what revolutionized means...
All these features return with so much more it's surprising they could even fit it on one Blu Ray with everything else.
One new addition is the "Drebin Shop". Drebin is a gun launderer you meet in the opening minutes of the game who agrees to unlock weapons which have ID locks on them and sell you ammo and buy extra guns back off you. Weapon customization has been all out renovated with about 80% of weapons being able to have customizations such as scopes, laser sites, grenade launchers, lights, masterkeys, grips, silencers and more. Camouflage returns in the 'guise of the Octocamo, a sneaking suit which mimics the terrain around you to make you get the most out of your camouflage. There's so much variation in terrain that I find it nearly impossible how they could've ever done it, it also gives you the opportunity to play as other characters by turning on the face camo and playing as young snake, Raiden, the bosses and more and it's possible to use codes and using your ability to scan levels to unlock extra outfits such as militia outfits, tuxedo and Altairs traditional garb from Assassins Creed 1. There is even more though, if you find some unique camo you can store it for easy access. There are other features like the Solid Eye, which acts as you're radar, NVG and Thermal goggles for this game.
Weapons have more than octupled in this game so you're never stuck for choice whether you want to go primitive with a sawed-off shotgun or high-tech with a rail-gun you can find the gun that's right for you. The Metal Gear brand of Comedy returns and there's a lot of it. For instance when you're in Shadow Moses and arrive at the location where in the middle of MGS1 you had to change discs Otacon calls you up and an amusing conversation starts up (see below)
There is so much more that you can do but i'll let you guys find that for yourselves.
Graphics and Music: It's obvious that the PS3 has better hardware but the Xbox has far better online (Only highlighted by the recent psn outage), but because this is exclusive, Konami was able to pump as much as they can into this Blu-Ray disc and it was mind-blowing. Transition from CGI to normal isn't even noticeable and the textures on things like grass and guns really do look amazing. MGS returns with another OST but this time with an "Ipod" feature where you can play songs from the Classic games, Whether it's MG1 or MGS1 you'll be satisfied with the wide array of songs. The originals though are as always brilliant and done really well for what ever the mood may be.
Other: In the extended edition of Metal Gear Solid 3, Snake Eater (Subsistence) there was a multiplayer option, this has been introduced to MGS4. I don't like it. Metal Gear I think, isn't really a game you CAN make an online with. You may be able to down the line but this part is just a waste of space on my Ps3s hard drive. There are many flaws with it such as making a friendly game with friends being impossible. The community too is a big reason why I hate it, even though it's not necessarily Konamis fault it's just that a lot of people like to report people for abuse if they do better than them, Not all players do this, but a lot of them do. There is one advantage to having this game get an online feature. By typing in passwords in the online menu you can get yourself new shit for single player, such as a free scoped Desert Eagle, a Patriot (The smg with infinite ammo from MGS3) and various camo and weapons with special abilities
Verdict: Well this was the last of the main Metal Gear games and they have given Snake a truly heroic send-off. This isn't just a game to me, it's in fact one of the best games I've ever played and even makes my top 3. It was one of the reasons I chose a ps3 when I was looking to advance in hardware and it was worth it. It was also worth the 12 play-throughs on my main save file.
It truly is amazing and I whole heartedly recommend it. Well done Snake, You've earned your rest :')
- Amazing Story
- Amazing Game-play
- Amazing Graphics and Music
- Retention of original Metal Gear games
- Easter Eggs and character Comebacks.
If this game came with a decent online, it could have done SO much better. But I just can't give this game the 10 it deserves for it's offline play because of it so It' gets a
If you have a PS3 and DON'T buy this then it's safe to assume you're going to hell :P. Until next time,