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#1 Edited by Random45 (1805 posts) -

I wanted to start playing through the Metal Gear Solid franchise, since I've never played any of the games before, so I decided to start right at the beginning.

I now understand how Jeff felt when he said the controls in The Witcher 3 made him quit. I know this is a PS1 game and all, but god damn it's so horrible. The lack of analogue controls and the lack of auto-aim make this a complete slog to get through, I'm at the Sniper Wolf boss fight, and I really just want to give up at this point, since I have to backtrack to the beginning to get a sniper rifle and FUCK I don't want to play anymore.

I want to like this game so much, and I'm digging the story and I like the characters, but the game play is just so bad. I hate how precise you have to be with aiming - Psycho Mantis and Ocelot were torture to fight because of how hard it is to HIT them with the gun if they're not in one of the four cardinal directions. I hate the Gray Fox fight and how you have to position yourself JUST right to have the punch register.

I give up on this game, I'm just going to watch the rest of it on Youtube and move on to the second one. I feel like this is one of those games where if you didn't play it back when it first came out, then you won't enjoy it.

My advice for people wanting to do the same thing I am is to skip the first game. I HOPE the second game's controls are improved, because if it's another clunky stealth game with terrible controls, then I'm giving up on this franchise.

I take it back. This game's actually really good. It took a while for me to get the hang of the controls, since they're nearly 20 years old now, but now that I got them down pat, it's really growing on me.

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#2 Posted by Gaff (2767 posts) -

You do know there is an option on the PS3 to turn on analog controls for PS1 games, right?

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#3 Posted by BetaBand (397 posts) -

Ok.

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#4 Posted by cavemancolton (92 posts) -

@random45: If you're Aiming the gun then you're doing it wrong. Just press Square. It auto-aims.

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#5 Posted by TheVeteran13 (1422 posts) -

Obligatory "git gud scrub"

I played this game for the first time about a year ago and had few issues with the controls, my problems mostly stemmed from the camera. I actually had a lot harder time getting used to the controls in MGS 3 than I did in the first two.

Also there is auto aim and if you're playing on PS3 you can turn on analog controls.

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#6 Posted by Dragon_Puncher (619 posts) -

The game has analog support and auto aim though. Try holding the shot button gently to make Snake draw the gun and see how it auto locks and follows enemies around as they move.

I'm not saying it controls great by any means, but if it could get through it without huge issues at age 10, I have a hard time taking it serious when people make it sound like it's almost unplayable today.

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#7 Posted by Chaser324 (8623 posts) -

As mentioned above, I think you're kinda wrong on both accounts about the lack of analog and auto-aim. That being said though, the controls have always been a bit of a sticking point with this franchise - it's something you're just going to have to contend with if you want to see things through from the beginning. It's only with the release of MGS V (and Peace Walker to some extent) that I think there's finally an MGS game with sensible and effective controls.

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#8 Edited by FinalForm (71 posts) -
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But seriously, I hear all the hate for MGS1-3 controls but, I've never had an issue with them. I played them when I was much younger, but still play them these days and they've always felt pretty good to me. Different from other stuff for sure, but I never had a problem.

Maybe I'm the crazy one.

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#9 Posted by flasaltine (2543 posts) -

Oh yes I agree. MGS1 is plays terrible and has some really shitty design choices like turrets that will shoot your when you first walk into a room. Just power through it man. MGS2 is really good and then the ones after that are better than MGS2.

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#10 Posted by kasaioni (2397 posts) -

MGS1 is a top-down 2D game forced to be 3D. It hasn't aged well.

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#11 Posted by TruthTellah (9821 posts) -

Please don't skip the first game. It's so important. And there is auto-aim and analog.

MGS is a classic. It's a bit clunky, similar to how something like Super Mario 64 is kinda "clunky", but they're still games worth checking out and enjoying for what they are.

@chaser324 Yeah, the controls in the HD version of Peace Walker are definitely good. The original PSP controls were probably only a tad above the original MGS though(if at times even worse). HD version or on an emulator all the way.

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#12 Posted by ripelivejam (13074 posts) -

Git gud

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#13 Posted by Technician (780 posts) -

I replayed the game earlier this year as well, and although I loved the game as a kid it definitely hasn't aged well. Once you get past the Vulcan Raven fight on Disc 2 the rest of the game is a chore to get through. I can totally understand someone who doesn't have any personal attachment to the game playing it for the first time in 2015 and not having a lot of fun. You should stick with the series though. MGS2 is a huge improvement in terms of controls and they keep giving you more options as a player with each successive game.

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#14 Posted by FinalForm (71 posts) -

Consider playing the Gamecube remake? It's slightly ridiculous in terms of cutscenes but, it's not a bad way to play. The controls are basically MGS2 at that point.

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#15 Posted by Fredchuckdave (10824 posts) -

MGS1 is all about memorization and stealth and so forth while mostly being an action game, wasn't really until Subsistence where they got rid of the bad camera, but it works much better in MGS1 than it does in 2 or 3 since the game throws less massive amounts of shit at you. Not to say MGS1 is better than 3 but it's probably middle of the road at this point in the series.

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#16 Posted by Demoskinos (17456 posts) -

I guess sorry you dont like it? I dunno one of my favorite games of all time still.

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#17 Posted by BisonHero (11550 posts) -

Twin Snakes is infinitely more playable at this point, and contains the same story. On the downside, like 80% of the rooms in the game aren't balanced for first person aiming, so it's silenced-headshot city. Also they changed around the cutscenes and animations and rerecorded the VO for some reason, but Twin Snakes feels ahead of the curve because all of its cutscenes are about as goofy as all the Raiden fights in MGS4 ended up being.

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#18 Posted by Humanity (18495 posts) -

I mean it was amazing 17 years ago, what can you do.

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#19 Posted by Spitznock (1197 posts) -

There's some weirdness around moving Snake and him taking an extra step when you let off, but aside from that, MGS1 is, outside of Phantom Pain, the best "controlling" game in the series if you ask me.
Not every game is for every person. If you aren't enjoying it, maybe check out Metal Gear Scanlon to get the story and such instead. S'what I would do.

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#20 Posted by Random45 (1805 posts) -

Wow, I had no idea this game had auto-aim. I noticed it only once during the tank boss fight where the grenades were automatically gliding towards the gunner, and I thought that was the exception and not the rule. I also had no idea that I could switch to analogue controls on the PS3, that would've been nice to know before I gave up on this game.

That being said, the game's still too old for me to really enjoy. It's like Baldur's Gate, another game I really wanted to love but just couldn't get into. Like I said in the opening post though, I'm just going to watch the rest online and move onto the second game. The fact that you guys say the first three games are all similar though is pretty concerning, I'm not digging the game play at all.

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#21 Posted by SloppyDetective (1571 posts) -

@finalform: I think having the experience when you were younger makes them not seem so weird when you are older. I'm the same way and I've always been sympathetic and forewarning to players who have no past experience with the control scheme.

With all of that being said, MGS 1 is the only I haven't played so the controls might be extra fucked compared to Twin Snakes, 2 & 3.

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#22 Posted by mlarrabee (3917 posts) -

I played through it keeping just ahead of Drew. I thought the controls were a little tacky, but the camera felt much more detractive. The boss fights are pretty much bit for bit as bad as Deus Ex: HR's. "Hey, stealth man, use this poorly-controlling Nikita to blow up a magical enemy."

I can't appreciate Kojima's storytelling, because he really does have the mentality of a fourteen-year-old. (See his quote regarding the backlash to Quiet's costume.) But I can absolutely appreciate his attention to detail. He was rendering maggots, breath clouds, scuff marks, and all sorts of pointless minutia just to make the world feel alive, and then putting in ten minutes of codec conversations to explain why that minutia isn't pointless. The ice cubes that are nearer each other melt more slowly! They melt more slowly!

I'm playing through the second game at the moment, and its gameplay is much improved. The action feels so much better, although the button gymnastics are worse. And Kojima's fevered writing has gotten more fevered. "We had a psychic before. Now we need a different psychic, who's friends with a vampire." Sure, man, have it your way. But don't expect me to then take your commentary on warfare seriously.

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#23 Posted by Quantris (1238 posts) -

The game has analog support and auto aim though. Try holding the shot button gently to make Snake draw the gun and see how it auto locks and follows enemies around as they move.

I'm not saying it controls great by any means, but if it could get through it without huge issues at age 10, I have a hard time taking it serious when people make it sound like it's almost unplayable today.

It's these damn millennials. I don't know why but any deviation from a "standard" control scheme is met with claims of "unplayable" nowadays...though it's just asking you to press different buttons...

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#24 Edited by Rotnac (1264 posts) -

@random45: Just watch all the episodes of Metal Gear Scanlon. Problem solved!

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#25 Edited by Mike (17976 posts) -

@rotnac: That's what I did. I played Metal Gear on the NES in the late 80s, then skipped everything Metal Gear related until Revengeance in 2014. Watched Metal Gear Scanlon, and now I'm fully wrapped up in Phantom Pain. I think that was a pretty good way to go about it! I don't feel as if I have missed anything, really.

Moderator
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#26 Posted by Hayt (1641 posts) -

PEBCAC

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#27 Posted by BisonHero (11550 posts) -

@mlarrabee said:

I played through it keeping just ahead of Drew. I thought the controls were a little tacky, but the camera felt much more detractive. The boss fights are pretty much bit for bit as bad as Deus Ex: HR's. "Hey, stealth man, use this poorly-controlling Nikita to blow up a magical enemy."

I can't appreciate Kojima's storytelling, because he really does have the mentality of a fourteen-year-old. (See his quote regarding the backlash to Quiet's costume.) But I can absolutely appreciate his attention to detail. He was rendering maggots, breath clouds, scuff marks, and all sorts of pointless minutia just to make the world feel alive, and then putting in ten minutes of codec conversations to explain why that minutia isn't pointless. The ice cubes that are nearer each other melt more slowly! They melt more slowly!

I'm playing through the second game at the moment, and its gameplay is much improved. The action feels so much better, although the button gymnastics are worse. And Kojima's fevered writing has gotten more fevered. "We had a psychic before. Now we need a different psychic, who's friends with a vampire." Sure, man, have it your way. But don't expect me to then take your commentary on warfare seriously.

Question for you, sir: did you realize within a couple hours that leaning against a wall VASTLY reduces the size of your character's "sight hitbox"? As in, just standing around a corner from a guard he will probably see your shoulder or elbow poking out, but press against said corner and the guards will almost never see you because their peripheral vision is terrible?

It was borderline infuriating that Drew didn't get that leaning against walls is both "cool action guy thing" and "makes stealth incredibly more effective". I'm glad he still liked it, but it felt like he was missing a major mechanic and just blundering his way through the game. And then in MGS3 onward, they deemphasize pressing against walls in favour of basically demanding that you crawl all the time, so it stopped being an issue.

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#28 Edited by mlarrabee (3917 posts) -

@bisonhero: That's one aspect that felt worlds improved. I held against walls quite a bit in MGS, but it seemed like it was intended more as a shimmying position than a viable stealth tactic. I'm watching Drew's playthrough episodes as I finish each section, and playing MGS2, I've noticed I stick to walls a lot more often that Drew did. When I transition into a new area I'll hug each corner. Once the radar is active in each space, it makes wall leaning almost disappointingly unnecessary, since I tend to dispose of even the avoidable guards.

EDIT: Oh, and ooh that Strut 'A' Pump Room music...

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#29 Posted by RavenX302 (328 posts) -

you filthy bastard

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#30 Posted by deactivated-5b43dadb9061b (1649 posts) -
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#31 Edited by rethla (3725 posts) -

I was in the same situation as you and Drew. I had not played any Metal gear game (exept the very start of mgs2) but i decided to do a complete playthrough along the metal gear scanlon. I had no problem with the controlls in any of the games. Sure i died now and then but you are ment to.

Now i have just finished peacewalker and im gonna start mgsv later on. So far MGS is the best game in the series, both in gameplay and in story. The technical achievments on ps1 is impressive.

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#32 Posted by csl316 (14925 posts) -

I dunno, man, I can't understand how people have such a hard time with MGS 1. It's a relatively simple game compared to modern ones. Just the original top-down Metal Gear built into 3D.

MGS2 is when the controls really start to get complex.

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#33 Edited by bondfish (141 posts) -

If you are having trouble with the Sniper Wolf boss fight like I did, watch Drew play it Dan gives a good tip that makes it easy to beat. The controls aren't that bad when you get used to them but stick with it its a blast.

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#34 Posted by bceagles128 (788 posts) -

Once upon a time, people were capable of adapting to different control schemes in video games.

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#35 Posted by CrazyBagMan (1617 posts) -

Give up. Please. I never understood why people force themselves to play through games that they genuinely dislike. And yeah, MGS1 has aged poorly.

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#36 Posted by deactivated-5a46aa62043d1 (2739 posts) -

Once upon a time, people were capable of adapting to different control schemes in video games.

Bullshit. Nobody even played games before Call of Duty 4.

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#37 Posted by Quantris (1238 posts) -

Give up. Please. I never understood why people force themselves to play through games that they genuinely dislike. And yeah, MGS1 has aged poorly.

Definitely silly to play a game if you're not enjoying it (though of course, "enjoy" means something different to different people; masochism is a real thing).

Games "aging" is such a weird concept. The experience stays largely the same (as with any software), the main exception being the transition from CRT to digital displays [which in *most* cases doesn't actually affect gameplay]. The thing that has changed is the player, not the game, especially when it comes to control schemes and expectations of how a game will "play". Nor do I totally buy the argument that "you love the games you grew up with" -- this is true to an extent but I don't have a problem appreciating games from before my time (I grew up with SNES). Not all of them, but the good ones.

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#38 Posted by dekkadekkadekka (902 posts) -
No Caption Provided

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#39 Edited by Random45 (1805 posts) -

So I decided that after putting it down for a day, I'd come back and try it again. I honestly made this as a sort of rant post since I kept dying, but now that I have the controls down, it's pretty good. I'm just not really used to a game that really forces you to use EVERYTHING you can to progress. For instance, I never used stun grenades until the bit where you have to ascend the tower, where they're incredibly useful. Then there's the Thermal vision helps you get pass lasers, and so on with all the other items. Now that I actually know there's auto-aiming, I just hold down the fire button and aim in the general direction of the enemy and let that do its work.

Some parts of the game are pretty mean and unforgiving (the part where you fight the stealth guys in the elevator comes to mind - it happened right after a boss fight where I used up most of my rations), and I think that's where it really shows its age. Game's today would make sure to give you health and ammo before doing something like that, and while I think that's overall a good decision, it is kind of refreshing to play a game that's not holding anything back in terms of difficulty.

I'm glad I listened to the advice in this thread, really helped me pull through.

Edit: Funny thing is that I never switched the movement style to analogue. I'm pretty used to it being D-pad only now.

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#40 Posted by TheHT (15785 posts) -
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#41 Edited by Turtlebird95 (3618 posts) -

I've had a copy sitting on my shelf for ages now. Really want to play it through to see what all the hubbub is about but... I don't know. I always beat the first level and just stop. I kind of wish I could find a copy of Twin Snakes for reasonably cheap and just play that.

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#42 Edited by csl316 (14925 posts) -

What a twist.

You're pretty good!