Review: Metal Gear Rising – Revengeance / Developer: Platinum Games / Publisher: Konami / Platform: Playstation 3, Xbox 360, PC / Release Date: Out Now
Ever since witnessing Cyborg Ninja painting hallways crimson with the blood of guards back in 1998, a good number of Metal Gear Solid fans have dreamed, “I wish we could be doing that!” Well, Kojima has answered that dream and it’s every bit as grossly entertaining as you’d think.
Several years following the events of Guns of the Patriots and the collapse of the war economy, Raiden is working as part of a security detail. When he and his comrades are attacked by remnants of old PMCs engaging in terrorism activities, Raiden goes after them and realises there are far more than just renegades at work here. Mostly though, this is an excuse to cut things up.
Utilising an extremely fast moving and very fluid combat system, Revengeance leaves other spectacle fighters like the Devil May Cry reboot in the dust. From being able to sprint up rockets fired from a helicopter so as to attack the pilot to going solo against a Metal Gear RAY, the game pulls off every over the top anime scene imaginable. It delivers on that entirely and pulls off some of the most entertaining boss battles of the last generation.
The gimmick here is the sword gameplay which has you entering bullet time and delivering precise cuts on any foes nearby. Everything from the health system to targeting weak points makes full use of this, and unlike other titles there’s a great degree of immersion to be found with it. It’s less relentlessly button bashing than it is making careful, rapid strikes which allow you to cut through enemies and scenery alike. Enemies react more to your strikes than other titles and you can see the damage rather than just watching a health bar dropping with each hit.
The game is hardly without its blemishes. The PC port is solid but is unable to make better use of the greater power available and has issues which are still being worked out, including one especially nasty one for Steam. Beyond PC specific problems, Revengeance embraces its power fantasy elements making it hard for you to die on the easier difficulty settings, but the higher settings are made near impossible thanks to one particular boss, and the story is tripe in comparison to other Metal Gear titles. Yes, you read that correctly. The nonsense present here almost achieves Neon Genesis Evangelion levels of poor storytelling and simplistic ideas dressed up as complex navel gazing. Though at least there’s the occasional sign of self-awareness.
Really, if you want to suplex attack mecha and slice up cyborgs into chunky salsa, Revengeance is highly recommended. If you want something with substance which isn’t skin deep, look elsewhere.