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whatshot Metal Gear Solid 4 Guns of the Patriot PS3 Review - www.impulsegamer.com -

Gameplay 9.8
Graphics 9.8
Sound 9.7
Value 9.8
Distributor: Atari Australia
Classification:
MA15+
Review Date:
June 2008
Reviewer:
Andrew Bistak

9.9


Metal Gear Solid 4 Guns of the Patriot

The ultimate PS3 game has arrived on the console which takes the Metal Gear Solid franchise to the next evolutionary stage in Metal Gear Solid 4: Guns of Patriot. Once again game design demi-god Hideo Kojima returns to the series and truly takes the gamer on an almost movie-like experience as they are immersed into the character of Solid Snake, the ultimate soldier for good.

The attention to detail in this current incarnation of the series is truly transcendent of the gaming industry as the story, graphics and gameplay create one of the most memorable and original experiences in quite some time. Even if you have never played the Metal Gear Solid series, gamers will still be able to understand the story as they attempt to liberate the world from a nefarious evil.

In its essence, the game is your traditional action adventure game where the player must complete a set number of objectives as they engage in a variety of enemies who block their paths. Even though the original game was more of a stealth orientated title, Hideo Kojima offers players an assortment of ways to complete this title in a number of different ways, whether through a hardcore guns blazing approach or a more subtle Tom Clancy experience, both ways work quite well and can be swapped and changed at any time during the game.

The epic story of this current game continues from previous titles, however our hero Snake is now an aging and dying man due to genetically modified DNA. Although it seems he has given up hope of finding a cure, he still fights the good fight. It’s reminiscent of Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull with a truly approachable and likeable aged hero who still maintains his dignity and continues to not only challenge himself but also the world.

Although originally the character was quite two dimensional, this current incarnation of Snake has been thoroughly fleshed out which really allows the gamer to get inside his head. The game also returns quite a few fan favourites to this current game such as snake’s brother, Liquid Snake and also a some new faces that make this one interesting roller coaster of a ride. The game makes good use of flashbacks to previous games and when a cutscene occurs, by pressing the “X” button, this will give you a brief flashback to another moment from another game. 

Without spoiling the story further, the cinematography by Kojima is fantastic and this connoisseur has truly outdone himself with the cinemas which are rich, interesting and best of all, considerably shorter than previous versions which contained endless speeches. At the end of the day, this is as close as most of us will get to be the starring hero in an almost Hollywood like action epic.

Snake also has access to a variety of weapons and gadgetry such as his octo-camo armour which mimics the surroundings and basically makes you almost invisible to your foes, unless there is a sudden movement or you are firing your weapon. Some of the weapons in the title can also be upgraded and there is virtually a small arsenal of weapons scattered throughout the environment which can then be sold to arms dealer Drebin.

Unlike previous incarnations of the Metal Gear Solid series, this current version supports a first person shooter mode which is interesting and useful, however you cannot beat the third person view. The developers have added a new feature to the series with the incarnation of “Stress” for the main character and when Snake is under stress, it effects his “Pysche” meter which then effects his healing and weapon accuracy. Kind of cool and makes the gameplay more fair for your enemies, even when playing on "baby" mode.

Upgrading and purchasing ammunition is quite an easy task as all you need to do is collect the weapons from your fallen enemies and then visit Drebin. The weapons sold to Drebin are then cashed in for points which can then be used to purchase a variety of upgrades, ammunition and the like and makes the game thoroughly more enjoyable. Besides, seeing Drebin with his shaved monkey is always a treat. 

Graphically, Metal Gear Solid 4 is visually one of the most impressive games on the PlayStation 3 with extremely realistic looking gaming environments. What really pushes this game over the edge are the realistic animations of all the characters which one could be forgiven in thinking they are watching a real person perform these maneuvers.

The reason behind this is that all the characters have been modeled on real actors and have been motion captured to make this game extremely realistic and portray true human emotions. The attention to detail is insane from the gun fire muzzle to the lighting and special effects that flawless go hand-in-hand with the gameplay. With that said, I would highly recommend a high definition Plasma or LCD TV to truly experience this game.

The soundtrack of MGS4 is phenomenal and changes quite often throughout the story, even linking back to previous games, however the star of the title is that of David Hayter as Solid Snake with his gravel-like speech that suits the character perfectly and ironically all the characters sound perfect without them sounding too contrived or forced. The sound effects are all great in the game from the chatter of guards to the background ambience that easily gets the gamer lost in this beautifully created gaming world.

In conclusion, Metal Gear Solid 4: Guns of the Patriot is a true technological achievement on the PlayStation 3 and on any platform at the moment. Kojima has truly created a work of art from the story, graphics and gameplay that is perfect on all fronts. This game is almost perfect… almost and if you need a reason to buy a PlayStation 3 than this is the reason.

Brilliant!





 

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