We have all been there while shuffling by guards inside a cardboard box or hiding behind crates as we equip a tranquilizer gun to neutralize another guard. The impulse to leave our hiding spots to deal some pain to our enemies has always been at the back of our minds.
Metal Gear Rising: Revengeance is the other side of the Metal Gear universe where those impulses can be realized without jeopardizing the mission. Solid Snake would cringe at the thought.
As the cyborg protagonist Raiden, the player must eliminate squads of enemy cyborgs, battle giant Metal Gears, and avenge the death of the prime minister N’mani while solving the conspiracy surrounding it. The task ahead is not an easy one.
Metal Gear Rising: Revengeance pays homage to the series by training the player with the well-known VR system. The gameplay has been changed to accommodate the action, but the concept behind the VR missions has remained the same. Raiden’s instructor, Doktor, instructs the player on the basic mechanics of combat and using a system called ‘Free Battle Mode’. Free Battle Mode functions differently than Raiden’s normal attacks. Instead of tapping both Square and Triangle to execute combos, this mode allows the player to attack with Raiden’s sword by using the right-analog stick.
As long as L1 is held, the player can target his enemies and enter a state of bullet-time where the amount of damage dealt is monumental. Certain attacks lead to very gruesome finishing moves where Raiden tears out his enemy’s spine. The carnage doesn’t end there as Raiden can also decapitate and even cleave his adversaries in half.
Boss battles also benefit from this new gameplay feature. When battling a Metal Gear, for example, Free Battle Mode will place red targets on damageable areas. Once enough damage is inflicted to these appendages, an on-screen message appears prompting the player to press L1. The damage dealt strips the armor off the Metal Gear, exposing the weaker material underneath. Repeating this process is the only way to defeat certain bosses. During this process, the action becomes a combination of seamless action and scripted QTE (Quicktime Events).
The game mechanics closely resemble previous Metal Gear games. A mapping system, placed in the top right corner of the screen, places temporary orange waypoint lines on-screen to help the player reach their mission objective. It is also possible to sneak up behind your enemies and eliminate them. Unfortunately, there is no way to avoid detection once you do this. Hardcore Metal Gear fans will definitely appreciate Konami’s decision to keep this core element in the game, but they may dislike the way it is executed.
Augment mode works in tandem with the mapping system to locate your next mission objective. It can also show the distance and location of enemies within your vicinity. This feature can also be used when you want to sneak up behind your enemies. You can activate Augment Mode by pressing up on the directional pad.
Despite the transition from stealth to action, Metal Gear Rising: Revengeance’s gameplay is surprisingly good. The only complaint is the camera system and how it will occasionally rotate in the wrong direction, obscuring your view of the action. This usually occurs during boss battles. And while the camera can be readjusted by using the right-analog stick, it doesn’t stay that way for long.
Raiden can scale surfaces by using his Ninja Sprint ability. By holding R1, Raiden will scale debris, walls and even jump on incoming missiles and use them as platforms. He will also block incoming enemy fire in this state. While not as accurate as Free Battle Mode, Raiden can attack his enemies while sprinting across the play field. This works well if your enemies are grouped together.
When all else fails, Raiden can rely on a selection of Sub-Weapons that range from grenades to rocket launchers, among others. These weapons can be found inside crates or behind debris, but their availability and use can vary. For example – in one scenario, Raiden is chased across a collapsing bridge by a helicopter. As he reaches the other side, he must use a homing missile launcher found at the location to weaken his enemy. Once the helicopter sustains enough damage, he can finish it off with his katana blade.
Metal Gear Rising: Revengeance is non-stop action from start to finish. Not only does it challenge your skills as a gamer, but it does a fantastic job of paying homage to the Metal Gear Solid series. With an engaging story, fierce boss battles and unique bosses like IF Prototype LQ-84I, there is little not to like about this latest addition to the series.
Platform: Playstation 3 (Also Available for Xbox 360)
Developer: Platinum Games Inc.
ESRB: M (Mature)
|Some of the most impressive graphics ever seen on the PS3.|
|As always, impressive voice acting and music round out the experience.|
|Bloody, challenging, and fun to play.|
|Metal Gear Solid fans will enjoy this game.|