Game Title: Metal Gear Solid 4: Guns of the Patriots
Platform: PlayStation 3
ESRB Rating: Mature
Developer: Kojima Productions
Release Date: June 12, 2008
Overall Rating: 10/10
Review Author: ResidntZoidberg ,
Metal Gear Solid 4 is the epic conclusion of the Metal Gear Solid series, which began with the original Metal Gear Solid on the PlayStation 1 in 1998. Though the series is traditionally known for its stealthy gameplay, the fourth installment is far more free in allowing you to tackle the game in any way you see fit, which includes nearly all out action.
The game centers around Solid Snake, our mysteriously aged protagonist, who's on a mission to assassinate an old adversary named Liquid Ocelot. The game also features a returning cast of series favorites such as Meryl Silverburgh, Raiden, Hal 'Otacon' Emmerich, Eva and Roy Campbell, who aid Snake at different points throughout his mission.
Fortunately for newcomers of the series, the game features a large amount of brief flashbacks during the cutscenes, in order to aid in the backstory. Even better, Konami has plans to release an online database with a PSN update that will fill new gamers in on the story details, while reading your game save and blocking out all spoilers. At the same time, the game offers various nods, and incredibly nostalgic moments to the most seasoned Metal Gear Solid fans.
Metal Gear Solid 4’s control mechanics really bring the game into the next generation, with the best control scheme yet in the series. It plays like a dream, and you’ll be able to execute every single action in the game fluidly.
In terms of gameplay, it’s easily the most diverse Metal Gear Solid game to date. Not only are their varying ways that you can tackle the game, but there’s a ton of variety in the missions that are presented to you. Of course you have your standard sneaking missions, though you now have the ability to blast through them guns blazing, or a nice balance of both. However you’ll also find various other game mechanics available, such as tracking. And you’re not only presented with variety in the game mechanics, but in the setting as well. Many people had thought Metal Gear Solid 4 was going to take place in a Middle Eastern setting – and it does, for a while. You will be presented with almost all elements imaginable in the game, from the war-torn Middle East and South American jungles to European cities and snow-covered mountains.
No matter how you play the game, you will have immense fun playing through it. The game mechanics have so much depth to them, that you can find yourself playing through the game multiple times in unique ways. Another stand out feature of the game is a far more advanced CQC (close quarters combat) system, allowing you to knock out, disarm, or fell your opponents.
Not only is gameplay loads of fun, but the game itself has very high replay value. At this time of writing, not even two weeks after the game’s release, it’s a common thing to find people on their 8th playthroughs. With varying difficulties and emblems to collect, the game allows you to challenge yourself, and rewards you for doing so. There are tons and tons of secrets to unlock and easter eggs to find that are bound to keep you playing. Even without these aspects, I’m sure you’d still want to replay the game, because of how excellently it’s made, and how many different ways there are to approach a situation, keeping every playthrough fresh.
As you may have heard, Metal Gear Solid 4 begins with an install that lasts about ten minutes. Between each act (There are five), there’s another mandatory install that will last about two minutes. These installs are not a hassle, and when you see the level of quality and detail in the graphics, you will also see why they’re necessary.
Metal Gear Solid 4 is breathtaking, and it’s not a stretch to say this is easily one of the best looking games ever created, if not the best. The level of detail in the game is astounding. From dust settling on the camera to snow settling on Snake and melting indoors, no level of detail is too miniscule. You’ll never feel like you’re in a recycled building model, or seeing the same setting over and over. Plus, there’s incredible variety in the different locations you’ll be visiting. The character models also display the same level of detail and quality as the environments and other effects. They are incredibly realistic, and the facial animations are incredibly powerful at displaying human emotion, and helping you gain a sense of attachment to the characters.
Another aspect that makes this game so aesthetically pleasing is the beautiful cinematic angles that you’re presented with. It’s clear the Kojima’s skills in that department are incredibly advanced, displaying a clear mastery in the art. The varying camera angles and beautiful lighting will make you truly feel like you’re playing through a movie. You’ll often find your jaw dropped in awe at how tremendously the game presents itself.
The game boasts an incredible soundtrack, with memorable tracks, especially “Love Theme”, my personal favorite. It’s perfect in setting the atmosphere with its melodic, beautiful tone.
One of the greatest musical aspects of the game is the in-game iPod items, which allows you to play music spanning across all the Metal Gear titles, and even further You can relive all your favorite older songs while playing Metal Gear Solid 4, just another shining example of the sense of nostalgia that the game delivers. It’s a huge fan service, executed perfectly.
Another aspect strengthening the ‘Sound’ category is the excellent voice work. Every character in the game sounds amazing, and they deliver their lines with such mastery, it establishes an amazing connection between the gamer and the characters.
Still reading this, and you haven’t yet picked up Metal Gear Solid 4? I’d like to bonk you on the noggin if that’s the case. Metal Gear Solid 4 is easily one of the best games out there right now, and caters to nearly every type of gamers’ needs. It’s a fitting end for such an extraordinary tale, and a beautiful send off for one of the greatest heroes that video games have ever seen. Metal Gear Solid 4 is the reason I bought a PS3. It's the kind of game that you don't want to put down.
Everything about the game works. Works perfectly. Incredibly compelling, incredibly cinematic, it'll leave you on the edge of your seat. The control scheme is finally what it should be, breaking out of the archaic style of old, which in turn aids the fantastic gameplay, which boasts one of the best final boss fights even conceived. Plus, it basically answers every question left hanging in the balance of the series. Oh, and let's not forget this is probably the best looking game ever made at this point, with great voice and sound work, too. Not to mention this is the closest connection I’ve ever had to video game characters. I basically flooded my room over the last few hours/cutscenes of the game. It’s one of four games to ever make me cry, and it probably made me cry the most. I lost count when I had to start dogpaddling, controller held up overhead, out of the water.