4 years in the making, 6 months of waiting, 10 hours of playing and I can’t stand Metal Gear Solid 4

30 12 2008

metal-gear-solid-4-20050915072840184

by Matthew Moore

Yeah its been about 4 years in the making at least. It was first shown at E3 2005, so perhaps longer even than that.

The game was released in June 2008, so yes about 6 months its taken me to finally play this game.

10 hours of gameplay, some might say more than enough time to put into a game that your not all too sure about.

Oh yes you know i’ve done my homework on this one – Good old Wikipedia!!

Interestingly, if you type “Metal Gear Solid 4” into the worlds most popular online encyclopedia, you’ll find 19 pages of information telling you all you need to know about this game, even though it seems to take a mere 14 pages to explain the country Croatia.

My most recent and probably last save indicated that 10 hours had passed and i’ve just finished Act 2.  As I watched the installation of the 3rd act, not even the grand look of Snake lighting up his third cigarette of the process could keep me wanting to continue.  At this point I powered down the Playstation and pondered.

I could not just sit and accept that this is a terrible game.  After all, the general populous do thoroughly enjoy it. To the point that earlier in the night I was told “I love it! I’ve completed it on Big Boss Hard without firing a weapon or being seen”.  For an experience to warrant that much time from a player, the core mechanic of the game must be really good!  Not only that, but a 1up podcast I listened to this morning argued towards the fact that the Second Act was perhaps the best.  I thought I was in for a treat!

So with the Playstation off and my thoughts to myself I can only assume its my fault.  Perhaps this game is just not made for me?  With only playing one of the previous Metal Gear Solid games, perhaps I didn’t appreciate the story as much, which is a core part of the appeal for many people.  So how about the gameplay, well the stealth aspect of the game has really improved over the years even enough for some fans of the game to play thought multiple times.

With these points in my head, allow me to become part of the minority and perhaps the most hated MidLife Gamer, but I really could not care any more for Metal Gear Solid 4!!!  Really, I’m annoyed that I gave it a lot more time than most titles, i’d even compare it to the likes of Condemned or Army of Two.

I just find it impossible to connect with any of the characters of the Metal Gear Solid universe.  I believe one of the last cut scenes I sat through; which is also a fan favorites was the ninja fight between Vamp and Raiden.  This entire sequence confused me.  The MGS universe I thought was always trying to grind itself into a realistic (all be a little over visualised) world.  However when I see some really over the top gymnastics that might work well a for demon hunter like Dante, I’m sorry, but this does not work in South Africa.

But hey, its not all about the story is it, I’m sure lots of people like MGS for its tactics.  Well you can forget it!  Snake although being about 100 years old now still seems to be able to hold enough guns, gadgets and equipment to capture Osama Bin Laden. This makes you quite the death dealer – so no need for the sneaky sneaky.

So is it just me?

Am I defective?

Am I missing something?

Our very own Wayne has also just started playing this, in the same position as me, 4 years in the making, 6 months waiting and last I hear only a few hours playing.  I’m really looking forward to seeing if its just me, or if being only 6 months late to the party makes a difference.

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10 responses

30 12 2008
Hasan

Thank you! You are not alone :D!

30 12 2008
Phizzy

I stand by my opinion that you’re DOING IT WRONG.

30 12 2008
Matthew Moore

Ohhh look at that Phizzy… looks like someone beat you to it and agreed with me 🙂
We should start a gang Hasan 🙂

30 12 2008
Phizzy

Oh if you want me to get a bunch of people to come in and disagree with you, I can do that. 😛

30 12 2008
Wayne Shayler

It is a very different style of game. The ‘stealth’ genre uses a completely different mindset to be effective. Now I don’t normally like all this creeping about, but MGS is a little different. It does take me an awfully long time to get into it, but when I’m there I really enjoy the tension.

That’s not to say that MGS4 is a great game though.

I really enjoyed the first MGS and am about half way through the second (Sons of Liberty). I just don’t enjoy playing as Raiden so probably won’t finish it. I wanted to play the third installment (Snake Eater) before playing the PS3 version, but I couldn’t wait any longer.

MGS is one of those series where moments of gameplay can be incredibly tedious and if you don’t feel that the rewards for your labour are great enough, then it’ll be a very short lived journey.

I’m going to save my final judgement until I get further into it though…

30 12 2008
NJ

I loved everything about MGS4. The story is the best of this gen so far, top notch graphics, sound and gameplay. Everything I expect from a next gen title is in MGS4.

6 01 2009
Jaehoony

I got a lot of things that I wanna say, but I’ll try to keep it short.
Well number 1, if you try to please everyone, you won’t please anyone.
Same with games. No matter what kind of classic or master piece,
there will be people who doesn’t appreciate it.

Having said that, what didn’t you exactly like about MSG4?
You only mentioned about not being able to connect with the characters
and how you don’t think Raiden fits.

It’s not like MSG4 characters are weirdest people on earth with no rationality.
If you can’t connect with them, you are not using your imagination.

And with that much advanced nanotechnology, Raiden being Dante with super muscle power and perception isn’t completely unreal. I’m guessing you are not big fan of sci-fi.

Play the entire game with your prejudice-mode off. If you still don’t like it, oh well. It happens.

13 01 2009
Phizzy

I don’t think you’re LETTING yourself connect with the characters. A character comes on, you’ve never seen him before, but you think you’re supposed to already like him because he might’ve been in one of the previous games you haven’t played. So you give overly cold reactions to them. Seriously, I think you should play MGS 1 & 3 and then give it another try. MGS3 is one of my favourite games ever. So brilliant.

14 01 2009
Matthew Moore

Considering one of the characters that really made me loose faith happened to be the main protagonist in the one game I did play (MGS2)…. I don’t think going back through the series is going to help.
I think Jaihoony got it right – you cant please everyone.
Which is why I’m interested in seeing what Wayne thinks of it….
Come on Mr G!!

23 01 2009
Will

The only part I was really scratching my head at was the realism comment. I really don’t think it’s been about that at all–the characters are purposely over-the-top and the elements always hyper-realistic. It’s just a stylistic choice. I think everyone playing realized when playing that Raiden fighting with no arms was ridiculous, but it works within its context of reality.

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