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Metal Gear Solid: Peace Walker Review

This is a discussion on Metal Gear Solid: Peace Walker Review within the Game Reviews forum, part of the Trophy Guides, Reviews & Articles; Metal Gear Solid: Peace Walker HD by Nagflar Basic Information: Developer: Kojima Productions (ported by Bluepoint Games) Publisher: Konami North ...

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    Metal Gear Solid: Peace Walker Review

    Metal Gear Solid: Peace Walker HD
    by Nagflar


    Basic Information:
    Developer: Kojima Productions (ported by Bluepoint Games)
    Publisher: Konami
    North American Release Date: 11/8/2011
    European Release Date: 2/3/2012
    Trophies: Yes, 1 | 2 | 8 | 39


    Overview

    Peace Walker was originally released on the PSP, described by Hideo Kojima as the missing link in the Metal Gear franchise. It sees the return of Big Boss as a playable character and explains how he created Outer Heaven, leading to the events of the original Metal Gear.

    Gameplay


    Peace Walker offers two type of controls: one similar to the one found in MGS4 (albeit with a different button layout and without the ability of moving while laying low) which features a 3rd person view, and one similar to that of MGS2, in which the camera is fixed but you can aim in a 1st or 3rd person view. This allows one to play to whatever suits his wants or needs until the player finds a setup he feels comfortable with.


    Like in previous MGS titles, stealth is more important than playing Rambo.

    Like in past MGS games, the gameplay heavily focuses on stealth and not on shoot-outs. This is reflected at the end of each mission in which you’ll be given a rating depending on how you played and how long it took you to complete the mission. More often than not you’ll find yourself in a situation in which you’ll have less troubles knocking out the guards silently than killing them in true Rambo-fashion. Obviously, your tools are very important to achieve this, so you’ll be relying on your camouflage (which is pretty much the same as MGS3’s), your weapons, and your items.

    Now, your starting items and weapons will not be bad, but they won’t be enough to get past many of the boss battles, so Kojima decided to do what he did in Portable Ops: let you hire ‘staff’, which consist of soldiers that you either recruit through force on the battlefield (by use of the FULTON Recovery System) or because they volunteered. These soldiers will all be rated on various fields (Combat, Medical, R&D, Intelligence and mess Hall) from F to S, which will then let you decide what they are better suited for. This will increase the level of whatever field they finish up at. It is through this that you’ll be able to get new equipment and develop it, which in turn will help you finish missions faster.

    Sadly, while that makes one to pour many hours into the game to recruit better staff and develop new and better weapons/items, it also makes it a very big grind in true White Knight Chronicles fashion. You won’t be able to beat the hardest boss battles without having spent dozens of hours in the game, and even though you can still play with friends and have them help you, difficulty scales with the more players you are with.

    Singleplayer


    Peace Walker continues the story of Big Boss a couple of years after the events in Portable Ops and a decade after those of Operation Snake Eater.

    Big Boss has defected The Patriots and is now part of his newly formed mercenary group, the Militaires Sans Frontières. After a training session, MSF’s deputy chief Kaz Miller tells him they’ve got a job offer by a teacher that goes by the name of Ramon Galvez Mena and his student, Paz. They tell Big Boss about their homeland (Costa Rica) being invaded by an armed group and that they want him and MSF to drive them out, to which Big Boss reluctantly agrees after hearing a voice tape of The Boss which Paz found.

    The story develops in true Hideo Kojima fashion, done through what’s known as MAIN Ops, in which you select and play a mission that, after being completed, will unlock a new one and so on and so forth. With more than necessary plot twists and a lot of cheesy dialogues and cut scenes, the game explains Big Boss’ motivations for creating Outer Heaven and how it came to be, offering more than a few memorable moments (and flashbacks from MGS3) along the way.


    Most of the ‘boss’ battles can prove to be quite a challenge, specially due to how long they may take.

    The level design, while similar to that of MGS3, isn’t as varied. Most of the jungle environments look almost the same, except for the few buildings here and there, and the lack of ‘facility’ environments like the ones in MGS1 don’t help much, but at the end of the day, it’s much more varied and better-looking than your average FPS of today.

    Multiplayer


    Peace Walker offers various forms of connecting with your fellow gamers with both gameplay and a trade system.

    The trade system allows you to exchange items (from weapons to equipment, which help make the life of others easier), to staff members, so you can help improve a friend’s mother base faster. It is to be noted, though, that you can’t simply trade an S ranked member for a C one. The trade must be ‘fair’, meaning you must give away someone of an equal rank, which avoids boosting your friend’s Mother Base levels.
    The actual online play is divided in two: VERSUS Ops and Co-op.


    Co-op can prove to be very entertaining and help you get past most of the missions with ease.

    In Versus Ops, you can play different classic multiplayer modes like Deathmatch, Team Deathmatch, Domination and a variation of Capture the Flag that is referred to as Capture the Quetzal in which you must hold the Quetzal and stay in your own zone for a pre-defined amount of time. While a fun addition, you’ll soon notice that most of the other players are carrying around overpowered guns which make you avoid VERSUS until you’ve been able to develop overpowered guns of your own, thus making VERSUS rather boring for people who don’t have the time to invest in grinding through the game.

    In Co-op, you may play any story/extra mission that you’ve unlocked by inviting either a friend or setting up a lobby and waiting for others to join. You may also search for any active lobbies and change the settings of the search function so it won’t find missions that are beyond your story progress (which is great).

    Technical

    Like previous HD remakes, Peace Walker offers enhanced visuals and audio. While it isn’t on-par (graphic-wise) with the other two games of the collection, it more than makes up to it with great voice acting and audio quality.
    It is my opinion that Bluepoint Games did an excellent job porting the game from the PSP, although it is to be noted that the online functions suffer from some lag and connection issues. More than once I tried to trade or play online with people just to find some connection issue that wouldn’t let me.

    Trophies

    The game’s trophies, while not hard, are a very big grind. Getting an S in every MAIN and EXTRA Ops isn’t very easy and you heavily depend on your equipment. Thankfully, the online does help get past some troublesome missions so you can at least keep going through the game without major problems until you get the necessary weapons to beat the bosses.
    All in all, a platinum trophy worth having in your collection.

    Closing Thoughts


    Peace Walker is one of the best MGS games to date, and if it wasn’t for the connection issues with the online play and some of the annoying cheesy cut scenes and characters, it’d be pretty much the best one released to date.

    Gameplay: 9/10
    Amazing, but the focus on grinding makes the game rather annoying and sometimes makes you want to stop playing.
    Singleplayer: 9/10
    Truly lives up to the MGS name, even with the cheesy dialogues.

    Multiplayer: 8/10
    Entertaining for a while, but not something one would play often, seeing how it’s more rewarding playing alone most of the time.

    Technical: 8/10
    The graphics not being as good as the other two games and the connection issues definitely don’t stand up to the rest of the game.

    Overall: 8.5/10
    Great
    Last edited by Nagflar; 08-10-2012 at 08:57 PM.

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    I always wanted to play this game, may have to pick it up now that its on the PS3/360

    Great review Nag :Awesome:
    Gauss's Piracy Uncertainty Principle: When you pirate a game, that act inherently changes the results of what is to come after your pirating. You can't make any statement with any certainty regarding what would have happened had you not pirated the game.


    Gauss's Rating Rationale:
    0-1: A game whose very existence is abhorrent to all things creative and intelligent.
    2-4: A just plain bad game.
    5-6: A game that has alot of mistakes, but is atleast playable and has some enjoyable sections. Good for a rent.
    7: An average game, should be played at some point
    8: A good game, should buy at some point
    9: A great game, day-one purchase
    10: A game that goes above and beyond the generation, its transcendent.

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    Plated this game, enjoyed the main story, but when repeating the extra ops make me feel bored.
    the online is sucks, played it for trophies only not for fun.

    thanks for the review.



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    Played the crap out of this on PSP and still believe it's the best game on the handheld by a country mile, agree about the cheesy bits.

    I am looking forward to playing it without the PSP controls which mangled my hands after a few hours play!

    It sits about fourth in all Metal Gears to date for me (Sons Of Liberty, Snake Eater and Guns Of The Patriots being better) and i consider it a proper addition to the series unlike the flawed Portable Ops and the offbeat Ac!d.

    Good review, very fair on it's shortcomings, shame online is dodgy, i didn't get to use it on PSP.

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    Ive platted both MGS2 & MGS3 & i find myself having to FORCE myself to play this, maybe its cuz ive never been a handheld gamer,but imo this is the clunkiest,most sluggish controled MGS game ever. & yes that is the fact it was a psp game. But every time i try to play this from simply shooting enemys to doing changes in Snakes inventory i say , "damn this shit is bad" cuz point blank compared to gameplay in one and two,it is, just an opinion from someone who enjoys MGS games but also someone who has never been a PSP player,cuz honestly i think thats what you need to be to enjoy this,the control layout itself for the game states that.

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    Quote Originally Posted by I_Nero_I View Post
    Ive platted both MGS2 & MGS3 & i find myself having to FORCE myself to play this, maybe its cuz ive never been a handheld gamer,but imo this is the clunkiest,most sluggish controled MGS game ever. & yes that is the fact it was a psp game. But every time i try to play this from simply shooting enemys to doing changes in Snakes inventory i say , "damn this shit is bad" cuz point blank compared to gameplay in one and two,it is, just an opinion from someone who enjoys MGS games but also someone who has never been a PSP player,cuz honestly i think thats what you need to be to enjoy this,the control layout itself for the game states that.
    Have you tried changing the control layout, though? There is one very similar to MGS3/MGS4 that felt very fluid and one similar to MGS/MGS2 that, while not as good, works well .

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    Yes , Ive messed with the controls,and your description hit the nail on the head, FLUID this game has never nor never will feel fluid to me compared to MGS2 or MGS3( 3 having the better improved control configuration) Its still a good game but i believe only if youve enjoyed PSP games,cuz i have tried some but dont enjoy them, and the first time i played this was like ....wow ,yup this was a PSP game all right. I may actually attempt for the plat one day,but it will be a punishing day, for myself this is an example of a game where no matter what story is in it, it does not save it from the gameplay which makes the game, or breaks the game.Im not knocking your review, I have enjoyed reading all three, i just had to voice my opinion on why this one didnt do it for me compared to 2 & 3.

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    Quote Originally Posted by I_Nero_I View Post
    Yes , Ive messed with the controls,and your description hit the nail on the head, FLUID this game has never nor never will feel fluid to me compared to MGS2 or MGS3( 3 having the better improved control configuration) Its still a good game but i believe only if youve enjoyed PSP games,cuz i have tried some but dont enjoy them, and the first time i played this was like ....wow ,yup this was a PSP game all right. I may actually attempt for the plat one day,but it will be a punishing day, for myself this is an example of a game where no matter what story is in it, it does not save it from the gameplay which makes the game, or breaks the game.Im not knocking your review, I have enjoyed reading all three, i just had to voice my opinion on why this one didnt do it for me compared to 2 & 3.
    I actually meant that the game's MGS3-styled layout felt very fluid to me, not MGS3 itself . I played the PSP version (albeit not much), but it didn't feel as accurate as this port's, specially because it lacked the right analog stick. If anything, it just took me a couple of minutes to get the hang of the controls, thing that didn't happen with MGS4.

    Don't worry, I know you aren't knocking down my review! You are just voicing out how you feel about the controls, just like I voioced out how I felt about them on the review itself. And I agree, it isn't what 2 or 3 were (specially because 3 was the first one to feature the TPS-styled control scheme), but I still think it is more than good enough to be considered a solid game in the series.

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    Your review, for the most part, is spot on. Peace Walker has a pretty good story line. The gameplay, in my opinion, is pretty solid.

    There's a huge variety of weapons and gear that's available to collect and use in the game. The only thing is, as you say, most of the game revolves around stealth, so you get limited opportunity to use any of the lethal weapons. However, the volume of stuff that you can collect, given the game was originally a handheld, is amazing. If you're a 'collector' then this game has definite replayability.

    Also, yes, the game is definitely a grind if you want the best stuff and best 'staff'. You can play over 100 hours and still not have everything in the game, and definitely not have it fully upgraded.

    Considering it's an HD remake of a handheld game from a few years ago, I think the graphics are pretty good. Also, I experienced very little connectivity issues.

    In contrast to you, I found it more enjoyable playing with co-op partners. It does increase the difficulty a bit, but as long as your partner(s) are competent, it's not a huge deal. While some missions are easier doing them solo, others can definitely benefit from having a buddy to play with. It also makes grinding not as mundane if you have someone to chat or develop strategies with.

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