+Story & story telling
+Controls & Camera
+Will please fans
-Story & story telling
-Lag (mainly in multiplayer)
-If you didn't like MGS before this may not change your mind.
The charecter models are strikingly realistic. But due to the enviroments, the visuals aren't as good as everyone has been saying but still great. These graphics can be done on that other system (with some downgrades to the chartecter models); yeah I said it, that other system (meaning I've seen better visuals on PS3). My issue is that the game looks about as good as COD4 if not slightly worse (enviroments), but lags more than Uncharted... the best looking console game to date (debate that if you want). I would be fine with the great (not amazing) visuals if the frame rate didn't chug as much. I give the graphics a 9 of 10.
You WILL, I repeat, you WILL not find better voice acting. The sound track is also really good. But what is lacking is how engaging the battle audio is. Ya know the reloading, the gun shots, and explosions. Yeah they are good... But go play Battlefield Bad Company; this is what combat audio should sound like. So again audio is great but not as good as everyone has been saying aside from the amazing voice acting. It's getting a 9.0 of 10 due to the combat audio being a huge part of the game.
This is certainly what matters the most. MGS4 really evolves in terms of controls and aiming. I haven't played a game more accurate while using analog sticks to date, period. Nailing headshots left and right, shooting anything is smooth, I don't feel held back by a forced auto aim or aiming that's too twitchy. Though the controls are complex and may turn some people off, the options the controls give you are phenomenal. Leaning, going from over the shoulder to first person, zooming, seamlessly going from prone, crouch, standing vice-versa mix it up w/e, being able to roll on the ground, using the triangle button to quickly switch from your belly to your back, the inch worm maneuver, THE LIST GOES ON!! Oh and that 3rd person camera everyone cried about with MGS3, its light years better than MGS3S's (Subsistence).
Now enough about controls. What about the levels, boss fights and enemies? Personally as a MG fan... I wish MGS4 had more patrolling infantry to sneak around. I also wish the boss fights were better... They are good but the final few just weren't as fun as fighting 25 Metal Gear Ray's, Solidus Snake, or Shagohod. And Mr.Kojima you should have left the melee boss fight a cut scene or even let the guys from GTA design this boss fight lol, their hand to hand combat system is less clunky. Now CQC is awesome and all… but this particular boss fight is nearly as clunky as the one on PS1.
As for the environments each are enjoyable, the middle east is one hell of an intro, though the setting right after is a bit underwhelming. A certain setting from a previous MGS game comes up and it too is a blast. Gameplay gets a 10.
Lasting Appeal/Replay Value
The campaign is incredibly long, especially for Metal Gear. While watching cut scenes a non-speed run play through will last you 15-30 hrs (depends on skill level). Though there will be a select few freaks to complete the game in less than 10 hrs, and a few elite to beat it in 5 (believe it or not). Vets of MGS and/or 3rd person shooters should complete MGS4 around 15-20 hrs, people who like to take their time or are new to a game like MGS about 25-30 hrs.
The gameplay is so engaging this time around that as soon as I finished the game I found myself already replaying on hard mode capping baddies like I just purchased the game. In other words this game isn't getting old for me anytime soon.
Now let's talk about MGO. MGO is good, especially for Japanese multiplayer for a shooter! Almost sounds like an oxymoron huh? Well MGO has just about everything I can look for in an online shooter. You can choose from automated which works like the overused but popular matchmaking, or you can choose your games manually (thank god…). There is also clan support. None of that create a tag and boom you're in the clan like COD4.
But there are some issues that hurt MGO. One is minor and weird... Konami ID. Hello I already have a PSN ID that should be good enough right? Wrong, with MGO you need 3 ID's (yes 3 passwords too). First you're PSN ID, second a Konami ID, third your Gamer ID for your Konami ID. Thankfully this info gets saved but meeting up with existing PSN buddies isn't seamless and is somewhat of a pain. Also if you want more than one character profile, you have to pay for it. Yeah that's right $$$ or £££ or ¥¥¥ , pesos or w/e just for another character profile.
But the biggest issue. That tops the other somewhat minor issues (atleast for me). L-A-G. Remember how I mentioned that MGS4 could run smoother. Well hell, I wish MGO ran at least as smooth as MGS4's campaign. No matter how good your connection, lag is a constant problem with MGO. Especially with Groznyj Grad. The other 4 maps run good enough, but I wish they ran smoother with 12+ people. But lag on Groznyj Grad can get seriously ridiculous. Groznyj Grad even lags a tiny bit in training mode with just you, 1 player on the map. When it comes to replay value MGS4 gets a 9.5 of 10 due to hiccups with MGO.
MGS4 is an amazing experience with its biggest strengths being the ease of control which makes the gameplay phenomenal. Due to the controls, aiming, shooting, sneaking, snaking, cardboard-boxing or inch-worming by is an absolutely blast. The cut scenes are of course phenomenal and voice acting has no parallel to date. The MGS games show that voice acting from Japanese games need not be silly and underwhelming like Resident Evil (yes even 4), or bland and boring like the previous Final Fantasies (particularly XII).
The story telling is thick, thorough and will put off millions of people who aren't up to par with at least MGS1 and 2's story. MGS3 helps also. But for MGS fans, the story is fantastic; a lot of loop holes are tied up. All except for one or two involving our friend Snake.
As for weaknesses. The combat audio (gunshots explosions etc) could be better, Konami ID+Gamer ID are rated R for re…. You know where I'm going with that. But for the most part lag. It's a minor issue in the single player but a major issue with the almost excellent multiplayer. MGO would be excellent if not held back by its frame rate and Konami ID.
Lastly if you have not liked MGS in the past, this game will most likely not change your mind unless controls+camera were your only issues.
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Overall I give MGS4 a 9.4 of 10.
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Agree or disagree with my review? Even for the neutral leave a comment. And if you care to please rate it.