With the recent announcement of Platinum games being put in charge of Metal Gear Rising I thought it was high time we took a look at Vanquish again.
So the most important thing for a third person shooter is of course gameplay.
Vanquish is fast and frenetic throwing wave after wave of robot’s in the path of your bullet time assisted… well… bullets. It’s immediately engaging and provided enough of a difficulty curve that kept the game interesting in fact one of its best features is its challenge and survival modes which span 5 waves of enemies with an ever ramping difficulty curve, too this day I have yet to complete those.
You can only carry four weapons on you at any one time, not only this but as the game goes on your chosen weapons will rank up. However in my experience I tended towards using the assault rifle and the heavy machine gun for a predominant portion of the game, this is a shame as these are the starting weapons. I just never found the drive to use the disc launcher or the multi laser and there was no incentive for me to do so.
To match the blistering speed of the game Platinum has employed bullet time to great effect in Vanquish. There can be a great pleasure found in getting head shots or shooting a grenade you just threw so it blows up quicker, all while sliding along the floor on your knees. It’s like every little boys dream when he would find a recently polished floor and just go sliding around the place.
How about the story?
Well it’s typical Japanese melodrama and bad voice dubbing, I’d let Sam go even though he sounds like a 50 a day man. But for what this story is, a tool to push the gameplay forward it serves its purpose. It’s pretty standard to be quite honest big bad Russian takes over space station, uses it to cause massive destruction so you got to stop the bastard, not really much more to say.
Again it’s not going to set the world on fire. The future is very white and grey apparently with helpfully bright red Russian robot hordes and to honest I think there could have been more enemy variety rather than just the same 4 or 5 types of enemy with different weapons.
The art style though is great and really succeeds in capturing that anime, gundam-esk type Japanese robot design. Sam’s character model in particular with all of its constantly moving parts and a really sleek but powerful sort of design is great and really sells you on the speed and power this guy is meant to have.
Sound can really bring a game to life and this game is full of that believe me the sound of gun fire and missiles passing by is a constant back drop to your endeavours. One of the best parts of this game is hearing just the amount of enemies pounding your position with some crazy cannon in a giant dudes chest coming straight for you all while trying to figure out what to do next.
The music on the other hand tends to get a little lost but still does its job of carrying the tempo of the game nicely; with synth, ambient, trance type electro music which suits the rest of the game to a tee.
Overall I had a great time playing Vanquish, it’s a little niche due to its kind of hammy story but to me that’s just part of the charm like and old Kung Fu movie. It’s fast paced with solid game mechanics a decent look and feel with a real challenge available if you’re looking for it.
This to me spells great things for Revengance a situation in which I want Platinum to bring its approach to game play and action and Kojima to bring the story, voice work and character design. Ultimately the styles of a game like Vanquish and the Raiden character mesh quite well… I mean remember this scene…
Thanks for reading.