Can you give me a Dorito hat to make it easier to eat at least?
When Final Fantasy set off the proverbial nuclear missiles onto the internet in 2008 when Square Enix announced Final Fantasy XIII would be a multi-platform game than a PS3 exclusive, the internet collectively shot their wad and shat their widened pants. Respectively. This was a game changer in regards to how exclusivity would be viewed in the industry.
It was only a matter of time before other big IPs went multiplat. GTA had with IV and then FF’s main series with XIII (though spin-off Versus XIII would remain – and, for all intents and purposes as of publishing this blog, still is – a PS3 exclusive). It’d be a year before the last of the proclaimed Holy Trinity would fall. A year later, it would.
In 2009 at E3, Hideo Kojima did a Yoichi Wada and announced Metal Gear Solid: Rising would come to Xbox 360 (and later announced for PS3 and PC). At the time, it was being made internally at Kojima Productions. A year after its E3 debut, we would get our first proper look at the game and details. The two bits of gameplay we saw from E3 and Tokyo Game Show got me very excited for what was looking to be a different Metal Gear experience.
What excited me more, though, was that the story would bridge Metal Gear Solid 2 and Metal Gear Solid 4. Whilst no more specifics was given besides that, considering the main character was Raiden, chances are it would have shown how Sunny would be saved from The Patriots in the aftermath of MGS2.
No hope lives here
Then it went strangely quiet. Too quiet. An E3 2011 appearance was not made, but the game was mentioned and teased during Konami’s E3 press conference. After that, the VGAs and chatter would arise. Rising would finally appear into the open! I was excited! People anticipating it were excited! We’d finally get to see it in action once again! It seemed like a win-win situation! Then its reunveil trailer happened.
This wasn’t the promised Rising I was excited for. Whilst the gameplay looked fairly solid – it was put in the hands of Platinum after all – it was otherwise cheesy. Too cheesy for even Metal Gear Solid. And with it, my interest and enthusiasm all but dead. Finding out it’d take place after MGS4 killed it.
Having recently downloaded my Twitter archive, I went through my historic tweets in the aftermath of the VGAs announce. I found one tweet that stood out to me. When someone tweeted at me that I was stupid for thinking the game would be nothing great and that he thought the game would be amazing, I tweeted back:
“I might be stupid, but I’m not wrong. Rising won’t be amazing.”
Then, something happened. Little by little, starting with Kojima’s “Truth About Rising” Vidoc, I started getting curious and curious about the game again. And it built up and up and up. Then the demo came with the Zone of the Enders HD Collection and — I thought it was alright. Admittingly, I couldn’t get past Bladewolf, but that’s because of a severe lack of knowledge on parrying his attacks.
Realising the truth
So here’s the admission you’ve all come to see. The admission that made you click on the link in the first place. I was wrong about Metal Gear Rising. Very wrong.
Disclaimer, I’ve yet to finish it, however, I’m very close (on the second to last chapter). But the game itself surpasses the Kojima Productions version looked in terms of gameplay. It has that high Platinum standard that we’ve come to expect from previous games like Bayonetta or Vanquish in that it’s fast-paced and up to scratch.
The game’s camera, however, is not. It is an annoyance at times and actually became a big hindrance at one point during one of the boss fights. Developers making hack-n-slash action games: sort your shit out with cameras. Rising isn’t the first one to have this and chances are it won’t be the last. But good grief, just have a summit and sort it out. Please?
The other thing that annoyed me when Rising was reannounced was the story would take place after MGS4. I was really keen on exploring the gap between MGS2 and MGS4 with Raiden, Sunny and The Patriots. Not to mention, Raiden got his happy ending after MGS4. But the thing is this version of Rising, the events after MGS4, stand out well (from what I’ve played so far) as a standalone telling of the Metal Gear canon. Platinum have only had a hand in the gameplay side, whilst Kojima Productions handled story matters.
That said, I’d still like to see the MGS2/MGS4 Raiden & Sunny story explained down the line.
Those are just some thoughts, but the short truth is I was wrong about Metal Gear Rising. I was idiotic in writing it off. I’ll be thinking better in future in writing games off just from marketing. But the majority I’ve played of Metal Gear Rising so far (I intend to finish it this week) is impressive. Scratch that, it’s amazing.
It seems I can be stupid. I can also be very, very, very wrong.
I still think Revengence is still the most stupid fucking word in existence, though.
Disclosure: This opinion is based on a final Xbox 360 retail copy of Metal Gear Rising, provided by Konami.