Metal Gear Solid
If you are a gamer of an… older age.. meaning that you at least know what a Super Nintendo or a Sega Megadrive then I am sure that you have heard of Metal Gear Solid. A games series with quite a bit of history.
It all started in 1987, the first edition of of metal gear was released for the MSX, in those days a rather popular game console. Later it was release on the NES.
This Metal gear was situated in 1995 somewhere in southern Africa. Throughout the entire story (because believe it or not, all the metal gear games are either prequels or sequels) the thread of a nuclear attack is imminent.
In this game there is a group of mercenaries that is occupying a settlement which they call ‘Outer Haven’. A special forces group called ‘Fox Hound’ is called in to check it out.
The second installment of the game is called Metal Gear 2: Solid Snake (who would every have guessed they would put a 2 behind the name). 4 years after the previous game, the relationship between the nuclear superpowers has improved and they have agreed to dismantle their nuclear weapons. To make a long story short, nuclear weapons get stolen and ‘Fox Hound’ is once again called in for help.
Another Metal gear 2 game was released called: Metal Gear 2: Snake’s Revenge. This is more a less an unofficial metal gear game because it was not produced under Hideo Kojima. For that reason we’ll skip it.
The following installment of this game was released on playstation/PC, called Metal Gear Solid (this is probably the game that made the series popular, in my opinion though). Time period of this story is 2005. Again ‘Fox Hound’ is called in for help in disabling the Metal Gear. A sort of a robot which is able to launch nuclear missiles from any kind of terrain. This game had a sort of an expansion called VR missions. It hasn’t got a story but are extra missions you can do.
On the Game Boy Color there was also a Metal Gear Solid game released. Only one though, it was called Metal Gear Solid Babel. And frankly, I had to look it up because I never heard of it. Anyway the story of this game is situated 4 years before the Metal Gear Solid game.
Back to the “main” storyline of Metal Gear we have another Metal Gear 2. This time it is called Metal Gear Solid 2: Sons of Liberty. It contains 2 very big chapters which play over 2 years time. There is news about a new Metal gear that was created and ofcourse it has to be stopped.
On a side note, in all the previous games the character you control is called Snake. This is a code name (because throughout the years there are many Snakes). This is the first game that you can/will also play as another character called Raiden. Only the first, smaller chapter of this game is played as snake. Raiden is a rookie with different skills as Snake. This mission is his very first although he has had a lot of VR training.
This game also had some sort of an expansion called MGS2: Substance.
For gamecube there a remake of Metal Gear Solid was made. It was the MGS version for playstation with the graphics quality of MGS2. Some extra features were also added which were already available in MGS2. Pretty cool I guess although, again, I had to look this up because I honestly never came across it. Strangly enough.
If you think that was the last of it.. You are dearly mistaking ;-). More MGS games were made, like Metal Gear Solid 3: Snake Eater. This game was rather different from the previous MGS games. Since most of the previous games were either indoor or in enclosed spaces. However the third installment of this game is mostly situated in the jungle. Not only that, a new ‘feature’ is added. Besides the normale Health bar, Snake also has a stamina bar. While the stamina bar depletes (by running, fighting, etc) you’re aim becomes less steady, your wounds will not heal as fast (because you will now heal up as you progress, this is also new). In order to replenish the stamina bar you have to eat. And you can eat… basically anything.. Birds, frogs, snakes, mushrooms, rabbits, you name it.
In this game snake can also get wounded, not as in ‘losing bits and pieces of the health bar’, but really wounded. He can get burned, bleed out, poisoned. All these ailments can be cured with medication and tools. But the biggest change is camouflage. You now have a certain percentage that you are camouflaged. Thoughout the game you will find new camo suits which can be used depending on the environment.
The irony of this all is that this game takes place long before all the other MGS games. This is where all the characters are, let’s call it, born.
As with the 2 other playstation games, an expansion became available for this game as well.
After this all there came the playstation 3 and ofcourse what whould a next gen console be without a next gen installment of metal gear solid. So Konami gave us Metal Gear Solid 4: Guns of the Patriots. Snake has grown old, the world has changed just like Snake says in this game:
“War, and it’s consumption of life, has become a well-oiled machine, fueling the war economy”.
This game indicates the conclusion of the Metal Gear series. But as long as people can make a ton of money on stuff, it really never ends.
So for the PSP we also got Metal Gear Solid : Portable Ops. This game is somewhat different from the other games since you play 1 story in several missions in which you have to build your own army. In my opinion not such a great game. But who am I.
Another one for the PSP (there are by the way 2 other MGS games for PSP but I cannot for the life of me remember which ones) is Metal Gear Solid: Peace Walker. This game is set in 1974 and the idea is the same as the previous game.
Tell me.. How do you like the Metal Gear games so far? One thing I have not mentioned, but is very important is that these games are not you’re average ‘bust-in-like-rambo-and-shoot-everything-that-moves’. No they are stealth games, the goal of the game is to achieve your goals without being seen (or being seen as less as possible). How you do this is completely up to you. Either you hide and still shoots everything that moves, or you just try to avoid combat as much as possible or you try to stun your enemy without killing anyone (which is, I assure you, harder than is sounds).
As I told you before, all the metal gear games tell 1 big story. A well formed, complex story line. In order to fully understand it you’ll need to play each and every game. Or if you don’t feel like playing every game, there is a nice fellow that took the time to type out the entire MGS story line, which you can find here.
Now this game is rather popular, so people can still make money out of it so there will be more metal gear games. There are 2 games announced right now. The first one is Metal Gear Rising: Revengeance. No snake in this game, you play again as our ninja friend Raiden (as you may have noticed, raiden is a cyborg in MGS3, he was part of some sort experiment, I did not quite get the details). So this game also represent Raiden as a futuristic cyborg ninja. For a while it looked like this game was going to be cancelled but ofcourse we would not be here reading (in my case writing) this if it was not reannounced. So there you have it. I was told it was going to be released somewhere in October of this year but it has been delayed to February of next year. Do note that this game is not ‘Tactical Espionage Action’ but Lightning bolt action. Let’s face it, if you are running around like Raiden, wielding a sword the size of a small truck, it’s kinda hard to hide. Honestly I do not know what to expect from this, it looks super nice and cool but it is something very different from your average metal gear gameplay.
But then, some weeks ago a new Metal gear was announced, called Metal Gear: Ground Zeroes. And this, my dear friends looks awesome. Worthy of the name next gen. The entire game looks like an actual movie. It moves smooth, nice, it looks amazing, dare I say… revolutionary. This game is a prologue to a metal gear 5 game so says Hideo Kojima.
This game is completely open world and it looks very “dramatic”. This game takes place AFTER Metal Gear Solid: Peace Walker (since there is not much to tell about snake after MGS4). So it will be somewhere between 1974 and 1980 I’m guessing.
In the beginning of this month an introduction movie and some gameplay was shown to the world. If you like more details about this game, check this movie out. You will love it, I’m sure.