Review: Metal Gear Solid 4

 Pages 1 2 NEXT
 

Review: Metal Gear Solid 4

Metal Gear Solid 4 is easily one of the most highly-anticipated games to be released for the PlayStation 3, but is it a masterpiece or an unintelligible mess?

Read Full Article

An excellent review but... since when does The Escapist review games? Is this going to be a regular thing?

I want see Yahtzee's review above all else. It's easily the best feature on this website (not by a wide margin though, this is an excellent site). But anyway, that was a good review. I don't think it was a really spectacular one, but it does show that one day the Escapist could house some of the best reviews on the 'net.

PedroSteckecilo:
An excellent review but... since when does The Escapist review games? Is this going to be a regular thing?

Absolutely. You can look forward to seeing reviews on a weekly basis from here on out. Any requests?

PedroSteckecilo:
An excellent review but... since when does The Escapist review games?

Since February, 2006

Susan Arendt:

PedroSteckecilo:
An excellent review but... since when does The Escapist review games? Is this going to be a regular thing?

Absolutely. You can look forward to seeing reviews on a weekly basis from here on out. Any requests?

Limbo of the Lost please.

I never knew, guess I'll have to pay better attention.

sammyfreak:

Susan Arendt:

PedroSteckecilo:
An excellent review but... since when does The Escapist review games? Is this going to be a regular thing?

Absolutely. You can look forward to seeing reviews on a weekly basis from here on out. Any requests?

Limbo of the Lost please.

http://uk.gamespot.com/pc/rpg/theelderscrollsivoblivion/review.html?om_act=convert&om_clk=gssummary&tag=summary;review

Same difference, non?

On a serious aside, that was a good read. However, I'm going to stop reading these reviews of MGS4 altogether pretty soon, simply because there's so little prospect of my playing it in the near future.

Decent review. My opinion is that MSG4's greatest strength, is also it's greatest weakness. This game, I whole-heartedly believe was crafted for the fans. Period. It's comparable to never having heard of JRR Tolkien or any of his writings, then sitting down to watch 'Return of the King'. It's an amazing movie on it's own, full of spectacle and a beautifully woven story. But without the knowledge of the previous films(story) you miss out on so much, it will leave you questioning what the hype was about. Don't get me wrong, I absolutely love the game. In ALL aspects. There are points in it, especially the Fourth Act, that literally filled me with heartfelt nostalgia. But for those without a relatively strong familiarity of the prior games, you'll get the gist of what's going on-but you won't have a rich sense of, "OH MY GOD! I GET it now". Game play, I believe feels just slightly off balance, but not enough to hurt the game. I'm on my third play-through, and I think It's just because Kojima throws EVERY possible type of game mechanic into this game so just as you grow comfortable with one way of playing (BAMF!) your playing a rail-shooter (BAMF!) 3rd-Person action (BAMF!) and so on... The loading is present but, once again, for the FANS the initial 8 minute load, if your like me your sitting there staring at what's going on on the screen and salivating at what's to come. The short "now loading" moments never really seemed inexorable to me and I wasn't affected by the between mission load times(3 minutes) mostly because of ALL the game gives you throughout. To close, this game may be one of the greatest pieces of fan service ever. Thanks to Kojima for giving such a stellar ending to those who have followed his work from the beginning.

Of course now reading what I wrote, I could have just wrote, "DITTO". I am an redundant ass. Sorry about that folks.

Interesting choice of movie comparisons.

While most games are content to present a rather straightforward plot in the vein of any Hollywood action flick, Metal Gear Solid, like Kubrick's films, has always been defined by its circuitously branching plot details that almost always border on incomprehensible to those not taking detailed notes and consulting Wikipedia every 20 minutes.

Kubrick's movies are also defined by butchered source material, stilted dialogue, hilarious overacting, Diabolus Ex Machina endings, and snooker-loopy plot twists that no other director in the history of cinema would ever be allowed to get away with by so many film critics.

Of course, I don't know how apt the comparisons are since I haven't played MGS4 yet...

Sylocat:
Interesting choice of movie comparisons.
Kubrick's movies are also defined by butchered source material, stilted dialogue, hilarious overacting, Diabolus Ex Machina endings, and snooker-loopy plot twists that no other director in the history of cinema would ever be allowed to get away with by so many film critics.

Of course, I don't know how apt the comparisons are since I haven't played MGS4 yet...

That's a pretty spot-on analysis of Metal Gear Solid's story.

Susan Arendt:
Absolutely. You can look forward to seeing reviews on a weekly basis from here on out. Any requests?

Does this mean my Soldier of Fortune review will finally be posted?^^

darthzew:
I want see Yahtzee's review above all else. It's easily the best feature on this website (not by a wide margin though, this is an excellent site). But anyway, that was a good review. I don't think it was a really spectacular one, but it does show that one day the Escapist could house some of the best reviews on the 'net.

Me too, i was disapointed to see Yahtzee post a review of Haze this week. Is MGS4 not out yet downunder or what?

It takes TIME to make a video folks...

Robert Plummer:

Does this mean my Soldier of Fortune review will finally be posted?^^

Can't say that we'll be including that one, but we do hope to feature Guest Reviewers plucked straight from the community. More as it develops! :)

I thought the whole reason you had to install during each act was so we didn't have to have a 30 minute install at the beggining, and since each install is just 2-3 minutes you hardly feel it.

Hell, I consider it a blessing in disguise, if I didn't have those "intermissions" then I would have never put down the controller and taken a break, and I'd have to get a new pair of glasses since my eyes took so much damage.

Don't get me wrong I love the MGS series but "it completely obliterates any other digitized attempts at storytelling" to me is a bit laughable. I can agree that is the best storytelling out of all the games to get a decent amount of media attention but best of all time is going too far. The greatest thing about MGS in my mind is it combines a great story and great gameplay while other games that might be better in one category usually sacrifice the other to achieve it.

A good review but I felt that it didn't really scratch the surface of what's in the game.

Also, I felt that the story telling was let down by the fact that some of the voice actors, David Hayter for one, don't stand up to the standards that have since been raised by other games. Bioshock, Heavenly Sword and Uncharted: Drakes Fortune all had much better voice acting which I think MGS4 could have benefited from. In the same breath though, I would have been heart broken if David Hayter hadn't played Snake.

Good review. I've gotta say that MSG4 hasn't motivated me to go out a buy a PS3 though.

Jedted:

Me too, i was disapointed to see Yahtzee post a review of Haze this week. Is MGS4 not out yet downunder or what?

No I dont think it has, plus it only came out here on Monday(?), and Yatzee posts his reviews on Wednesday, as much as he is awsome, I dont think he could play the game then write and produce a review in 3 days.

Rucknar:

No I dont think it has, plus it only came out here on Monday(?), and Yatzee posts his reviews on Wednesday, as much as he is awsome, I dont think he could play the game then write and produce a review in 3 days.

It came out, worldwide, on Thursday of last week so he could have probably reviewed it in time. Still, I'd rather he took his time with it, to be honest, I've yet to hear of someone who had bad first impressions and then didn't go on to like it by the end of the game. He'll like it but he'd never let us know it.

Gigantor:

On a serious aside, that was a good read. However, I'm going to stop reading these reviews of MGS4 altogether pretty soon, simply because there's so little prospect of my playing it in the near future.

Sadly I feel the same way. :-(

Good read; though not having (& never intending to since im sick of next gen consoles in general after my latest overpriced 360 broke) its ultimately irrelavent to me how good this game is.

Game looks good, seems to be the only good game out for the PS3 so far. Not enough to warrant a purchase of the console though.

Very good review, though I did prefer PedroSteckecilo's review in the forum. I think it explored the gameplay further and other things that only someone who has played MGS4 can relate to properly but for those who are still looking forward to this game, this one may be more to your likeing. Very good summary, "steal it" lol and for last time the loading times mark the end of an act and longer more spread out loading times would break momentum too much!!! It isn't fair to mark down MGS4 on system issues!

But well done, I couldn't have put it better myself regardless of my critism.

Definitely looking forward to getting this game, as this review will be the final straw into doing so. Never really played the series, so was a bit hesitant in getting it. But I never played any of the GTA's either just because they weren't my type of game, but love GTAIV, so figure MGS4 can't hurt.

Speaking as one of those crazy people that did take notes in the previous games, write casual essays on the game's themes and plot devices, I'll admit that I really enjoyed Metal Gear Solid 4.

That being said... yes, the game does seem to be tailored to the fans, or at least those that have played the previous 6 (plus expansion packs [Metal Gear, Metal Gear 2: Solid Snake, Metal Gear Solid: Tactical Espionage Action, Metal Gear Solid 2: Sons of Liberty, Metal Gear Solid 3: Snake Eater, Metal Gear Solid: Portable Ops, Metal Gear Solid: Portable Ops Plus), and one semi-AU GBC title (Metal Gear Solid: Ghost Babel)) Metal Gears, this game does go over people's heads.

Arguably, the comment could be made that it would be like reading the final chapter of The Return of the King before starting The Lord of the Rings, as the game is designed to finish the story of Solid Snake. Aside from a couple cop-outs at the end of the story, it does so very well.

Yes, the movies are rather long, and take up more than 50% of the time spent... operating the game (the word "playing" is hard to use in this context), and the "Quick time events" in the game at least won't kill you if you miss them (Dear God, imagine having a QTE at the end of a 45 minute cut scene kill you...). On the other hand, it is what we've come to expect from this brainchild of Kojima, and at Mr. Croshaw has pointed out, it's nice for people to deviate from their norms, but at the same time, don't break something that's working. If you sat through all of Metal Gear Solid and enjoyed the over the top dialogue and cutscenes, and went on to play the others, then absolutely, drop the $60 American on the title. If you didn't... I'd say either rent "Metal Gear Solid: The Essentials" to see what you're missing (or if you like it), or just put that money in a tin for Forced Unleashed to come out in September.

Xwii360:
Game looks good, seems to be the only good game out for the PS3 so far. Not enough to warrant a purchase of the console though.

You can't buy anything else anyway, otherwise you'd have to create a new account to change your name.

The problem with comparing Metal Gear Solid 4 with other games is that it completely obliterates any other digitized attempts at storytelling. It's almost an unfair comparison. Contrasting the hyper-nuanced, politically and spiritually weighted, continually surprising plot of this latest edition of the franchise to even the finest games in recent memory (say, Grand Theft Auto 4) is tantamount to comparisons between Uwe Boll's Postal and the works of Stanley Kubrick.

I'm afraid I'm going to have to post my usual rejoinder:

Torment.
Deus Ex.

-- Alex

SHHHHH, if you complain about Yahtzee not reviewing MGS4 yet then it will feel more like business to him!

I think one major flaw in MGS4 is that it's short. After your first play through, you skip most of the cutscenes and you find out that it's incredibly short. I'm almost finished on my 2nd play through in the 3rd place and i'm only at 3 hours. Plus it can be very easy at times, but i still love the game anyway.

The plot in MGS4 is pretentious, convoluted, and contrived.

But *damn* if it ain't presented amazingly.

this is my review...

IT'S AWESOME!!!

This game far surpassed my hopes for how good it would be, in every aspect.
Graphically, it's stunning,
gameplay wise, brilliant. but better than almost any other area of the game is the story.
I mean they managed to redeem raidan, it's that good.

Hey Earnest, I liked your review, but I think you may have ignored your audience. ;)

In jest, of course. Excellent to see you here.

Well, as someone who's never played an MGS game before, I did not become much wiser after reading this review. Telling me it ties together all of the plots and that there's fan service is a "don't care" for me and what I get is not far from Edderz1989's "IT'S AWESOME".

So either the revewer assumes everybody's already played a MGS incarnation, or they've read more in-depth reviews on other sites. Which is it?

Thanks about the installation warning, in any case.

"Metal Gear Solid, like Kubrick's films, has always been defined by its circuitously branching plot details that almost always border on incomprehensible to those not taking detailed notes and consulting Wikipedia every 20 minutes."

I can't speak for MGS having never played any of the games, but I wrote a dissertation on Stanley Kubrick and I'm not sure where the writer got the above idea. If anything, Kubrick's films have been defined by the simplicity of their narratives, which typically belie complex themes. This is the nature of allegory, and it cannot be appreciated simply by having Wikipedia ready on Alt-Tab.

sharp_as_a_cork:
Well, as someone who's never played an MGS game before, I did not become much wiser after reading this review. Telling me it ties together all of the plots and that there's fan service is a "don't care" for me and what I get is not far from Edderz1989's "IT'S AWESOME".

So either the revewer assumes everybody's already played a MGS incarnation, or they've read more in-depth reviews on other sites. Which is it?

Thanks about the installation warning, in any case.

Unless you're an MGS fan already, I can't guarantee that you'll love it as much as I do. Definitely rent it first and see.

On the other hand, if you did like previous MGS's, I can honestly say this is a must-have.

 Pages 1 2 NEXT

Reply to Thread

Log in or Register to Comment
Have an account? Login below:
With Facebook:Login With Facebook
or
Username:  
Password:  
  
Not registered? To sign up for an account with The Escapist:
Register With Facebook
Register With Facebook
or
Registered for a free account here