I've done a few reviews now but this is the one I'm most excited about so far. I'm pretty obsessed with the Metal Gear series so I've been quite skeptical of this hack-and-slash take on it.
Despite this, I've found that this spin-off still represents just about everything that defines Metal Gear. Developer Platinum has done brilliantly keeping up the Kojima quality and it even shares a lot of the quirks a fan would expect to find.
I should say despite its solid footing in the Metal Gear
line-up there is a risk that it could be tough to get a lot of people on board because of Raiden.
This is his second shot in the main character limelight; the first time - in MGS2
- didn't go too well. It looks like Kojima took that into account when he redesigned Raiden to become a cyborg ninja. To be honest I liked him the first time around, but since he truly became a badass in MGS4
I hoped he'd be playable once again.
isn't too disjointed for a spin-off, it fits right into place at the very end of the whole timeline so far. The events here happen three years after MGS4
and Solid Snake is nowhere to be seen. He's probably dead by now after all the Foxdie drama.
Following on from the theme of MGS4
the story is all about Private Military Companies, warmongers. One PMC in particular, Desperado, is not happy about the world becoming so peaceful because where there's peace there's no business.
Right at the start of the game it introduces the two main bad guys, Sundowner and Jetstream Sam of Desperado, showing off the fantastic looking facial animation work. It gives you a few minutes of hacky-slashy action to get you acquainted with the gameplay before an unmanned Metal Gear Ray busts into the scene for you to tear apart.
It's all about the action, the combat posesses a decent variety of available tactics. As well as mashing buttons and trying to swing your sword the quickest there are a few quirks to it, the biggest one being Blade Mode. You can also dodge (pressing two buttons at the same time, a bit annoying) and parry most attacks so there's some strategy in defence too.
Blade Mode is the main feature of MG:Rising
, used to precisely aim your strikes. Once your fuel cells are full enough, go into Blade Mode and it slows everything down to bullet time and shows you where each enemy's fuel cells are.
Strike through it and you can grab it to absorb their electrolytes, filling both your energy and health. This is called Zandatsu (stab and grab) and scores loads more points than a standard kill.
As enemies take damage parts of them turn blue to indicate that you can slice right through them using Blade Mode. The genius part of this is that they change tactics depending on what parts you slice off. Cyborgs that attack with giant arms will turn to running up and drop kicking you if you sever their arms, and regular soldiers will crawl around and swear at you if you hack off one of their legs. It's so much fun to mess with them.