Archive for June 29th, 2008

Thoughts at the halfway mark

I’ve finished Act 3 of MGS4 and about halfway through Act 4 and here are my thoughts.

MGS4 makes me appreciate MGS2 (probably the most ridiculed of the entire series). I can’t reveal too much without giving away spoilers. But MGS4 so far ties up things nicely for me.

MGS3 is a must to play. Of course all three previous games are a must to play before you even touch MGS4.

There are some things that remain constant in MGS such as sneaking and codecs. But MGS4 makes you approach each situation differently. Of course nothing comes close to what MGS3 put me through. (I ran through the game in 3 days and almost lost my mind in doing so). I did things in MGS3 that I would rather not do it again because of the sheer difficulty. But nothing impossible. It just takes a lot of guts. Something that a movie can’t bring you.

Hideo Kojima and his team have created a masterpiece. The Metal Gear Solid experience is something that movies are unable to achieve and that is interactivity. The player has to give something to the game before one is rewarded with moving through the game or seeing the beautifully rendered cutscenes. This trade off makes the medium a whole lot more satisfying.

For those who got the limited edition which had the blu ray movie disc I can safely say that you can start watching the disc after finishing act 3. Though the disc says in numerous occassions that you should finish the game first. A few scenes may spoil it for you but with amount of emotional investment I’ve made to the series, it’s hardly a spoiler for me.

Each act in MGS4 resolves unanswered questions left in the previous games. Such what ever happened to ??? and where did ??? after the events of the game.

Hideo Kojima in my opinion is the new Tom Clancy of military storytelling. If Hunt for Red October had Jack Ryan, then Solid Snake is to Metal Gear. The accuracy of the equipments and weapons used in the series is amazing paired with an AI makes the world of the Patriots all too real. The way the story has been weaved into our history and probably events to come are too frightening to imagine. But this all blends into the realism and the world that is Kojima’s.

Right now I’ve saved before a boss battle and I will continue playing this week and blog what I thought of the entire game.