Thursday, January 13, 2005

Metal Gear Solid 3

Genre: Action, Spy / Espionage, Shooter
Platform: Playstation 2
2004 Konami Computer Entertainment Japan

Metal Gear Solid Games
Metal Gear Solid Strategy Guides/Art
Original Soundtrack
Toys and Accessories
Everything Metal Gear
Cover Description:
Rival Nations are secretly developing weapons that could threaten the future of Mankind. Deep in the jungle, an elite soldier must combine stealth and survival to infiltrate the enemy and stop a weapon of mass destruction from triggering the largest full-scale war the world has ever seen. Go behind enemy lines in this riveting story of peace, love and war from award-winning director, Hideo Kojima.

NEW ERA: The 1960s
Battle of Ideologies - Relive history as the Cold War and geo-political landscape change.

Battle of Instincts - Outsmart enemies with camouflage, close-quarters combat, stalking, interrogating, climbing, hunting and treating injuries.

Battle of Reptiles - Pit yourself against an environment where traps catch enemies and prey, threats lurk in the shadows and noises alert predators.

I love Naked Snakes >>> by Demoncaller777

I love Metal Gear Solid. Period. You probably won't find a bigger fan around than me. Think I'm lying? I read the strategy guide for the original Metal Gear Solid (Ps1) about five times before I even OWNED a playstation! Why, you ask? Because it just sounded so cool! Psycho Mantis messes with your screen, reads your mind, there are so many secrets, it was all incredible. When I finally played the game I couldn't put it down. No eating, No sleeping...well, actually there was eating and sleeping, but it's just to drive the point home. The point being that MGS is just one of favorites, and holds a special place in my heart. That being said, you are here for a review of MGS3, aren't you? Well, I'll deliver. Just understand that it's a tad biased. Then again, you asked to read my "opinion" on it, and that's what I'll give you.

Gameplay: MGS3 is a stealth/action title. The entire purpose is to not get noticed. You aren't in there to kill everyone in sight; you are there to do what you need to do without arousing suspicion. If you do, you can take out the enemy with much force. In MGS3 you no longer have the radar, either. This ups the difficulty by an incredible integer. This is the hardest MGS by far...And I'm talking about normal difficulty. You'll have to use sonar (detects lifeforms, which includes animals, more on them later) and motion detector (detects...motion, obviously). While these help, they are no where near as good as the radar. Sonar emits a high pitched noise when used, making it incredibly risky. Noise is your enemy.

Also new, is the stamina gauge, which effects gameplay immensly. If you don't eat, your stamina goes down. With low stamina your (a) stomach growls, making noise, and as stated, noise is bad. (b) Aim shakes. If you don't want to alert a guard then you'll want to kill (or tranq) him first shot. If you miss, it could be disastrous. (c) Health lowers until you die. Eating, however, is not a difficult task. You can eat at anytime, during boss fights, in alert mode, while in jail, while up a tree, anytime. And it's quick and easy, as well. Just go into menu and "food" and pick your dish. You get food from shooting at animals/vegitation with either tranqs or live ammo. The animals and vegitation are not limited whatsoever. You'll find many kinds of snakes, fish, frogs. There are some spiders, scorpions, rats, goats...a large variety to say the least.

Another new addition is the Camo system. You now have a percentage at the top of the screen, which shows the degree of which you are hidden (not the chance of the enemy seeing you). At best you can get 95%, which means you have the perfect camo, face paint, and are lying down. Understand that this will not happen as much as you would hope. You'll usually go at about 20-50, which is a fine level, and you won't be discovered too fast. While running, the percent goes down, while "stalking" (new to MGS3) it does not go down.

Battle System
This game is a shooting/action game, so the battle system is such. Although, the control scheme is just perfect. It's always worked out well, and makes me want every other shooter to have controls like that. You are loaded with a lot of weapons. New to this game: the M37 Shotgun, WP grenades, knives, Cigarette-shaped tranquilizers, knockout rags, a fork, the Single Action Army, the infinite ammo Patriot, RPG-7 (missle launcher, rocket launcher, replaces Nikita and Stinger) and the SVD (Sniper rifle, replaces PSG-1). Also new, is the CQC system, replacing the old 3 hit combo of MGS past. Now you have many choices as to what to do when an enemy is too close, or you are just bored of sniping. Now, with CQC, you can snap necks, hold hostage a guard to take some free shots at his friends, slit throats, hold up guards after pushing them to the ground, interrogate them for info (like radio stations, camo locations), and knock them out. This doesn't ever prove to be exceptional helpful, but it is a lot of fun. It may save you at points, but only if used in the most perfect a fashion.

The story is a tad unusual. It seems very, very basic at first, kinda seems like all the other MGS's. You (Naked Snake) progress through the story on an attempt to destroy the Shagohod (Old school Metal Gear [Actually an intensely powerful nuclear ICBM launcher]), and it just so happens that the Cobra's (reminiscent of Foxhound, and Dead Cell) try to get in the way. With their leader, your old mentor who's betrayed you, as one of your targets, it only makes sense. Your mentor (The Boss) has many scenes in this game, most of which are just her beating Snake into submission. Whether it be breaking his arm and throwing him off a bridge, or destroying every gun he has, or stepping on Snake's hand with a horse, they are all fun to watch. This game does an excellent job of connecting all the previous (future) MGs games. It introduces you to Ocelot, shows you why he loves torturing people with electric and why he uses revolvers. I always thought in MGS1 when Ocelot said "I know why you have the same codename as the boss," and, "Let's see if the man lives up to the legend," that he was referring to Liquid Snake for the first quote and Solid Snake for the second quote, but now I realize that both are in reference to Naked Snake A.K.A. Big Boss. At the very end of the game the story is completly twisted upsidedown. A second playthrough is recommended.

Visuals in this game are excellent. I played Twin Snakes (Gamecube reincarnation of MGS1 with improved graphics) after I played MGS3 and felt that TS had awful graphics. I always thought TS had amazing graphics until I played this game. They are just beautiful. The colors all fit just right. They have to, to fit the Camo ideal. Everything is done with incredible detail and precision. A sight to be seen.

Some of the characters in MGS3 are just boring, bland people who don't do that much in the story. Most, however, are very new and fresh. The End being the greatest by far. He's a sniper who is very, very old. He's actually dead until he awakens to end his life in a perfect fight. His battle is the most enjoyable fight in MGS3, and perhaps in MGS history. On the other hand, characters like General Volgin end up being too involved in the story, and he's not that interesting a character. No Roy Cambell in this game. He's replaced by Major Zero, who is your standard issue British guy. He has an accent, and likes James bond. Funny at times, but most of the time has no impact in the story at all.

Sounds in this game are incredible. Music is perfect. Every song fits the occasion, and are well written. The composer actually composed for many movies as well, so you can only expect good things. The sound effects (i.e. gunshots, hits, grunts,) are well done. Everything sounds like the object it's supposed to, and really makes you feel like you're in the game.

You'll definately want to play more than once. After the first playthrough, you'll want to check out how the ending effected the entire game, which it does, to a large degree. Then after that, you'll want to shoot all the Kerotans (frog toys) to unlock the stealth camo. Then you'll probably want another playthrough with that. Then, well, I see no further reason to, but you'll probably end up playing it anyway. Only because it's so much fun to mess with guards. That's always the most fun in MGS games.

So, in short, if you are a Metal Gear Solid fan, you probably already own this game, and have been enjoying it. If you are just an action game fan, then you probably already own this game and are enjoying it. If you for some reason don't own this game (I suppose lack of funds will suffice, but you have good organs to sell. Get to it! Chop Chop!) I suggest you go out and get it. It's by far one of the best games for the PS2. It's just delightful every time. Trust me, this is a purchase you won't regret.

Completion Time: 20-30 first time through
Highest Level Achieved: N/A
Ratings: Gameplay 10; Battle 9; Story 8; Visuals 10; Characters 9; Sounds 10; Replay Value 7

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