Ever since the reveal of the MGSV trailer earlier this year, I've had a crazy desire for some Metal Gear action. At first I thought that reliving the stories of some of the games would satisfy this urge. So, I spent a Sunday afternoon watching a five and a half hour long video on YouTube that was all of the cutscenes and important Codec conversations in MGS2. But that didn't do it, so the following Sunday I watched all of MGS3's cutscenes (about five hours long). Then I watched all of Portable Ops' (that was much shorter, only about an hour and forty minutes).
But then I realized that I needed to actually play one of them, so once I got back from college (oh, I graduated, so yay?) I downloaded Peace Walker HD on my PS3. It was on sale. And, in the time since, I beat it.
I should say that this was not the first time that I had played Peace Walker. I played the game back on the PSP in 2010 when the game was originally released. And including all the side missions, and replaying things, I put about 67 hours into that game. I played a whole lot of that game back then, in spite of its control issues (having to aim with the face buttons).
And when I played the PS3 version, I ended up stopping after putting in about 35 more hours. Now, I know what you're thinking, that I just Transfarred my save over and went with that. Well, you'd be wrong, and that's because you can't get Trophies with a Transfarred save that was created on a PSP or on another PSN account. And I wanted to go through the game again anyway, to prevent it from being too easy because of all my high level gear.
But the game ended up being a lot easier than I expected anyway, at least in the main story stuff. I'm not sure if that's because the game was altered to make it easier (I doubt that), or if it's because of the greatly increased ability to control the game with a proper controller instead of a PSP. That definitely has something to do with it.
So, as you can guess from my putting another 35 hours into a game that I had already played so much, I really like this game. It has that solid (pardon the pun) core stealthing game play, and around that is basically XCOM light. Recruit soldiers, research projects, etc. And the amount of different weapons, different types of gear (again, pun), and other odd items is pretty crazy, though some of the crazier ones are reserved for multiplayer, like a gun that turns someone else invisible, or a cardboard box tank where one player "drives," and the other aims the turret.
I still haven't played any multiplayer, though I do know a guy who says he'll play the PS3 version at some point and that we can play co-op then. Although, while he claims to be a fan of the series, he still hasn't played MGS4, and I'm pretty sure he bought his copy back in 2008. While he'd never admit it, he's a total over-achiever who never manages to get things like that done (he's had my copy of Uncharted 2 on loan for a while, and he still hasn't finished reading the book I wrote). He's also probably reading this, so I'll end this paragraph by saying that I don't hold his lack of having time for these things against him. And that I want my copy of Uncharted 2 back. It's not as good as Uncharted 3, but it's still a great game, and I want my "collection" of PS3 games all back in one place by the time the PS4 comes out.
But I've gotten off topic.
I know, Diddy, I can't believe he hasn't played MGS4 yet either.
Peace Walker! It's still a rad game, though playing the PS3 version makes me wish it had been made as a console game from the very beginning. Even if it was a budget downloadable game, that still would have been better. I don't mind the low res textures and low polygon characters/environments (though they were pretty slick by PSP standards). It's the size of the environments that I wish was different. They're just too small. There aren't ever enough guards in any one area for sneaking through to ever be a real challenge. And it doesn't help that everyone in the game has awful eyesight.
I realize that having enemy guards that behave and act one hundred percent realistically would be hard to do technically (especially on the PSP), and might make the game too hard, but I think Peace Walker veers too far in the other direction. And, so far as I can tell, there's no way to adjust the difficulty. And as a result, I breezed through all of the stealth parts of the game, and never had much trouble in the bosses. At least the ones you have to play.
Because some of the side mission bosses still feel like they are balanced for mutiplayer, and multiplayer only. I did manage to beat most of them (including all of the Monster Hunter bosses) on the PSP version, but that was because I spent 67 hours grinding to get the best rocket launchers. Okay, that's a BIT of an exaggeration, but not much. And as much as I'd like to get that Trophy for hunting all of the Monsters in the game, that last battle against Gear Rex on Mother Base is just too much, and I don't feel like spending another thirty hours with this game. I already did that once, and it's a shame that I can't get Trophies for things I've already done, but I understand why it works that way (preventing Trophy fraud).
But I did Transfar my save over. I had to charge my PSP for a decent chunk of time to get it to stay on long enough for that, and it'll probably be the last time I ever use the darn thing. But I can not think of a better way to send the ole PSP out to pasture.
So that's about it on my thoughts on Peace Walker. If you're a fan of the MGS series, well, then you've probably found a way to play Peace Walker by now. If you're not, well, it might be a decent place to start. Well, no. Don't start with Peace Walker. I don't know what to say to people who aren't MGS fans, but would like to jump into the series. The first few games just aren't much fun to play. Even back in the day, they were really clunky. So, I guess I'd suggest watching all the cutscenes of them on YouTube (starting with Twin Snakes, because as I've said before, if you have never played the PS1 version, Twin Snakes is the way to go, because you have nothing to compare it to, and you won't think the voice acting isn't as good, cutscenes too action-y, etc (also, it looks nicer, even if it is dated by modern standards)). Then play MGS4. Then Peace Walker. Or just don't get involved in the series.
I really hope that MGSV has a lot of the base building type stuff from Peace Walker, especially if you can actually walk around the base and talk with people. As cool as building up Mother Base is in Peace Walker, never having more than that bird's eye view for most of the game was a little disappointing, though understandable given the limitations of the PSP. But really, for MGSV I'll just be satisfied if the "open world" Kojima is claiming it'll have is a fully realized and well used game world. Actually, I'll just be satisfied if it's a quality Metal Gear experience.
In other news, I started playing Ni No Kuni today. I'm about seven and a half hours in, so I shan't talk about that yet. I've also ordered Metal Gear Rising: REVENGEANCE on Amazon, and I have a code for Super Mario RPG that I got on Club Nintendo (if you have the points, go get that game). I'll be writing about all these games once I feel like I've played enough of each to talk on them.
So, that's it. Out of college now, still no job. No job in sight, either. If my book would sell, then I could at least feel like I was contributing slightly to the income of this household (myself and my dad), but complaining here won't get the sales I need. Maybe one or two of you will take pity on me and buy a copy, and I'm grateful if you do, but that's just small potatoes.
Maybe the sequel will sell better. From what a couple of my friends tell me from reading the early parts of it, they say it's better than the first, so there's that. It won't be ready for public consumption for a while though. I'd say several months at the earliest. I'll keep you guys posted.
And, since it's still the Year of Luigi, here's Luigi. The original idea was to go with a picture of Luigi being stealthy (because of MGS), but instead here's John Leguizamo as Luigi, because I think someone on the GB crew was talking about that movie recently. I still think that movie is hilarious. I haven't seen it in about ten years though.