Review – Metal Gear Solid 4: Guns of the Patriots

Ahh yes, Metal Gear Solid! We come to it at last! If the blithering of pungent otaku hermits is to be believed this legendary video game franchise will act like a combination of Viagra and powdered rhinoceros horn on the superfluous appendage of the fanboy elite. Crafted over the course of years by the very kensai of console gaming; Hideo Kojima, Metal Gear Solid 4 — Guns of the Patriots is said to be the conclusion and crowning achievement of this twenty year old epic. The game’s protagonist; Solid Snake, nears the end of his life and with his last remaining days he will battle all adversaries, both old and new, for the freedom of the entire planet!

Not bad, eh? So after all that let me just come out and tell you what you want to know right off the bat: Guns of the Patriots is a must-have PS3 title for two reasons. →  Jesus: Readful Bio Monster

….Metal Gear?

Folks, it’s that time of the month. No not that; the monthly blockbuster is out. Hot off the heels of GTA IV, Metal Gear Solid 4 gives PS3 users a reason to rejoice. It also makes a hell of an excuse for me to finally pick up a PS3. I’m not going to get into the story, but suffice to say it was a bit of a trial to save for and obtain the console, culminating in a fairly easy pickup at the local Walmart early Thursday morning.

It feels good to welcome a new console into the house, and it will mean vl can get more PS3 reviews on the site. Perhaps I will write a bit about the console’s user experience, though I doubt anyone cares.

In any case, MGS4 is now out, reviews are coming in, and the results are actually unsurprising. →  But the future refused to change.

2008 Game Predictions part 2

Continued from Part 1.

Christian’s predictions

Devil May Cry 4
I realized when I decided to write about this game that I knew very little about it. What are they doing with DMC4? If you look around the ‘net you will find previews, but fewer than I expected. Leave it to Gamespot to write a classic preview that lays out the entire first five levels of the game, complete with story spoilers for me to read.

As nice as the game looks, I’m getting a bad feeling about the whole project. I have no idea how Devil May Cry stacks up to the competition in terms of sales, but I can’t imagine that its last entry led to numbers comparable to God of War or the numerous Ninja Gaiden revisions. →  All the lonely gamers, where do they all come from?

Retrospectives – Metal Gear Solid series part 1

Because this is a discussion of the game series there will be significant spoilers. Read and weep.

I have a strange relationship with MGS. If you take away a few enhanced releases, I have played (or am playing) just about everything MGS related, from the mainline trilogy to Twin Snakes and even the Game Boy Color game. Something tells me I’ll have finished MGS4 within four months of release, even if I have no PS3. I seem to be an absolute whore for Kojima. And yet, I’m not sure I entirely love MGS. In fact, I know I don’t.

The only game in the series that I would consider truly brilliant is 3. The rest may simply be problematic postmodern experiments. Everyone heaps praise upon the stories and storytelling present in MGS, yet it seems to me to be mostly anime fueled sci-fi schlock. →  Hell is other gamers.

Expansion Packs, Add-ons, Sequels, and Other Crap the World Doesn’t Need

I love the Sims. I am hopelessly addicted to the nutty little people that live in their own world on my computer. I am so hooked to this virtual crank that each time EA kicks out another goofy expansion pack for it, I bite and grab myself a few new locales or items for my little demented Sims to play with. The Sims is a completely genius game while at the same time, a totally evil one. It is a game that is groundbreaking in a multitude of ways, but for me, one specific trait stands out: The Sims franchise, for better or worse, made expansion packs and add-ons a norm of gaming. Sure, there were games before that did it and had success but no game boasts the breadth of expansion-y goodness that the Sims has on the market. →  Do the math.

Sony at E3 – slightly less terrible than the competition?

Max has been kind enough to fill in for Jay on covering the Sony press conference. When not reading videolamer, he runs the excellent website GameLemon.

I’ve already bitched elsewhere on this fine site about Sony’s presentation skills, but that little rant was small and only mildly satisfying, so I am going to say it again: Sony, please, for chrissakes, hire some presenters that are at least remotely cool and entertaining, and forbid your executives from ever appearing in public. I am sure they are all fine people and very important to the business, but they couldn’t excite a crowd worth a crap even if their bonus depended it.

Next, fire the idiots who wrote the script for the presentation. Those dudes need to get out waaay more if they think this is the kind of stuff that excites the gaming demographic. →  Contains 10% more consonants than comparable articles.

Laying this generation to rest: PS2

The PS2 was the clear “winner” of its generation, and with good cause. Despite murdering my precious Dreamcast with mostly unfounded hype, it was home to a very wide range of games from huge and tiny developers alike. The PS2 embodied both the best of Western gaming and Japanese gaming and this balance is what, in my opinion, allowed it to so thoroughly whoop the competition.

Hey there, pretty lady.

Matt —
Ace Combat 4 (Namco/2001) – Flying through the skies never felt so fun. The dog fights were intense, but the presentation was even better. The way the story was played out (with a nice anime look) was genius. I was generally surprised at how much effort Namco put into the story, especially for an arcade flight game.

Shadow of the Colossus (SCE/2005) – Awesome music, amazing story, and epic gameplay. →  Ridge Reader V