Metal Gear Solid 4: Guns of the Patriots Review

Metal Gear Solid 4 is a tough game to review for a few reasons:
1. I am a huge MGS fan so my expectations are very high
2. MGS4 is split over 5 distinct and different acts
3. MGS4’s action and gameplay peaks early at about act 3

Please take a look at all my metal gear solid coverage and impressions to get a better idea of the gameplay elements, graphics, etc. that went into this review.

Gameplay: 10/10
Pros: The gameplay of Metal Gear Solid has always been impeccable and this latest version updates the controls and amps up the action. Gameplay drastically changes with each act introducing something new (from Mech Arcade action to motorcycle getaways). The new “combat zone” sneaking missions are extremely fun, flexible, and multifaceted. Metal Gear Online is a great addition that adds a ton of replayability, longevity and value to the product.
Cons: As a long time Metal Gear fan, I wish that there was one act that focused solely on sneaking into a military installation against human guards. I think this could’ve easily been achieved in Act 4 to give long time fans what they wanted. The final acts are also extremely short with a story I did not find as engaging as previous titles. Without MGO, Gameplay would certainly be docked some points.

Graphics: 10/10
Pros: The Graphics are hands down the best looking visuals of any video game out there and truly show off the Playstation 3’s power. What is even more impressive is the excellent animation, high framerates, in-game cutscenes, and diversity of level visuals. A true Technical achievement likely to be unsurpassed for a few years.

Sound/Music: 10/10
Pros: The Music is stellar and the game includes a large selection of tracks that encompass the whole Metal Gear Series. The sound is also impeccable and features dolby digital surround sound that truly makes you feel like you are on the battlefield. The Voice Acting is also very strong…especially David Hayter and Quinton Flynn.

Cons: There is some lame scripting and bad voice acting / cutscenes that are just too dramatic or poorly executed.

Lasting Appeal: 10/10

Pros: Immediately after finishing the game, I wanted to play the campaign all over again. This speaks very highly of the incredibly enjoyable Acts 1-3 not to mention the ranks you earn and items you unlock. The campaign clocks in around 20 hours and you’ll want to finish the story and see what lies next throughout the single player. There is also the fantastic addition of Metal Gear Online which is a much improved and graphically stunning update to the Metal Gear Multiplayer found in Metal Gear 3: Subsistence.

Cons: The story just didn’t capture me as much as Metal Gear Solid 3: Snake Eater. Furthermore, I felt the boss battles (and bosses themselves) were superior in MGS3 all around with a few of the other best battles being in MGS2 and MGS1. Maybe it is not fair to compare a fantastic game to all of its previous fantastic iterations, but in many ways MGS4 is the most unlike all the other games in the series and that is not always a good thing.

Average: 100%

Tilt: -1.00%

It may be unfair to expect the same from each Metal Gear game, but at the same time Metal Gear Solid 4 is just short of perfect. While each successive metal gear game improved on aspects of the previous title, Metal Gear Solid 4 is the first title to improve aspects of the game while making some missteps along the way. I would rank the story 3rd out of the 4 games in the series (Snake Eater, MGS1, MGS4, MGS2) and probably 3rd or 4th in Boss Battles. At the same time, Acts 1 and 2 offer some of the greatest innovations the series has seen and create some incredible moments…even if it feels a little un-Metal Gear. That’s really the only flaw with Metal Gear Solid 4… it peaks too early…and as the game slows down in Act 4 it misses an opportunity to pay homage to fans of the sneaking, tranqing and trickery found in MGS1-3. Act 5 is pretty much a movie, which ends the whole thing on a sour note. All the negativity aside, Metal Gear Solid 4 is a gaming masterpiece. It is a graphical powerhouse and evolves the gameplay of Metal Gear immensely and opens it up more to the Western Market. While it has its shortcomings, It definitely makes you want to pop in the previous games into your playstation 3 and play them all over again…if only there was a graphically updated MGS1: Twin Snakes for Playstation…oh well, I’ll just start with Metal Gear 2.

Verdict: 99%

One Response to “Metal Gear Solid 4: Guns of the Patriots Review”

  • 1 valpster Says:

    Good review! I’m new to mgs, just picked up the game today. After reading ur thoughts on the game I’ve decided to play this for now and leave BF:BC for all the rainy days 2 come.

    Blown over from Fun-motion 😉

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