So in my struggle to get caught up with my backlog of games I am trying to enforce meeting deadlines. The first deadline I am forcing upon my self in the new year is finishing the Metal Gear series before Rising comes out. Rising at least on the surface looks like a completely different playing game than any other in the series but it still looks like a ridiculous good time. My interest in the game basically boils down to “Fuck yea I wanna chop shit up with a sword.” but , I digress. I purchased the MGS HD Collection last year when I purchased my PS3, and it like many other game have been sitting on the shelf. I owned a PS2 but at that point in my game playing career I was very close minded in the games I played and at the time Metal Gear was, I guess too complicated for me is the way to put it.
But this generation my mind has significantly expanded and I want to play most every thing and after hearing how good of a game MGS4 was, I was interested in going back to the older games to get caught up on the very convoluted story line. I did some research and read up on Metal Gear and Metal Gear 2. I really didn't feel like playing a PS1 game again because I feel early polygonal games don’t really hold up at all and MGS2 has a section in the menus that kind of walks you through the events of MGS1 I felt comfortable skipping the actual game. I then started my mission with Sons of Liberty.
It will never be an experience I can compare with someone who played it originally because first of all gameplay standards have changed and second of all I knew about the main plot twist that seemed to make people mad. It was also my first foray into the series so I don’t have the attachment to Snake as other people at the time had. I don’t really understand the hatred for Raiden really because of this. I mean he is sort of a bitch and every time he would go “Why?” or “How do I do that?” I would shake my head slightly but him being a rookie and having to learn the ropes from most everyone he met was an interesting story to be involved with. Whether he was a bitch or not I certainly don’t hate him at this point in the series.
The experience I can share though is that I found the game to be quite good. It holds up surprisingly well aside from some clunkiness with the controls which is to be expected. There just isn't a flow and fluidness to how things work, everything needs to be deliberately done. But at the same time the game was designed around this deliberateness so I never felt like the game was asking too much of me. I was also surprised how much of the game’s story still surprised me. I decided long ago that to get the type of coverage I want on games I need not worry about games being spoiled or I will miss out on things I would rather know about regarding development or speculation that is being discussed. I figured I knew about all the game had to offer surprise wise just from talking to people about games and listening to and reading games media every day but at multiple points during the game I said out loud “Wait, what the fuck just happened?” and by the end of the game I didn't really quite know what completly happened until I asked a friend some questions.
Snake Eater was next, and unlike Sons of Liberty I hadn't really picked up much spoiler wise and was going in mostly cold apart from a couple of easter eggs I heard about. This first thing that surprised me was how good looking the game is, It definitely isn't the greatest looking game ever but for being a remake of a 10 year old game it was surprising. I have played games released in 2012 that looked and performed worse than 3 does. Snake Eater has some welcome Improvements including a better camera that was included in the subsistence release of the original game. Having what would be considered a modern camera system was a big improvement to the fixed camera in 2. The controls were similar to the previous game but I was used to them at this point so I found them less bothersome. The game had some interesting changes display wise as well. There is no automatic radar like there was in the previous game which forced me to keep a line of sight with the enemy that bundled with the environment the enemies blended into made the gameplay slightly more interesting and is what made the new camera so helpful being able to point it where I wanted. There were items that served the same purpose as a radar but using them consumed battery power and after going to any sort of convention with a smartphone you have a new mission in life that revolves around storing as much battery as possible at all times so I never used them really.
The story seemed more straightforward than 2 at the end I wasn’t really unsure about any thing that happened. I do wish it got more convoluted than it did just to be more interesting but overall the story seemed solid and ultimately wasn’t disappointing. The bosses in the game annoyed me quite a bit though. Having them all named after a noun and then having them repeat said noun over and over again reminded me of a weird form of a Pokemon.
After playing both games I feel like the part where you play it was better in Snake Eater but the story of Sons of Liberty kept me entertained more. Both games are also weirdly self aware and self serious at the same time. I enjoy the references that are made to things that are only made possible in a game and how instructions tell you to use the ACTION BUTTON, It gives the series a personality that not many other games pull off very well when they try to be self aware.
The next game on my list to get through is Metal Gear Solid 4: Guns of the Patriots, followed by the last game in the HD collection Peace Walker. I am choosing to skip portable ops because I don’t already own it and for the sake of time alongside the small controversy of whether the game is truly cannon or not I figured I could read up on it or watch the cut scenes on YouTube or something. I am looking forward to 4 because it is the most modern game and I hope its gonna answer some lingering questions that I have. I will be disappointed though if I don’t find out more about Revolver Ocelot. He sort of has this thing about him that makes me feel like there is more to his character that hasn’t come to light yet.