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Retro Review: Metal Gear Solid 2

This republished review was originally written in 2002, this review is unedited and appears as it did back then. We hope this review gives you an idea of how the reviewer felt at the time and at the end you’ll see a small review from today where you can see how well the game held up over time.

You’ve just made your way into a huge ship after a scare of over whelming guards outside. You’re cold and wet. You’re footprints can bee seen. The guard is alert. You run until the soles of your shoes are dry and slip into a cupboard. The alert guard walks past. You get out and follow him, hold the gun up to his head and shout FREEZE. The guard stands there with his hands in the air. You shoot him with a dart and he falls asleep on the floor leaving a clear get away.

Or

You’ve just made your way into a huge ship after a scare of over whelming guards outside. You’re cold and wet. You’re footprints can bee seen. The guard is alert. You turn and shoot the guard. The gunshot can be heard by the man in the next room who calls for back up. You wait with your back against the wall 5 men come storming in. You pick them off with your gun as they charge at you. You walk over the dead bodies and into the next room while your gun still smokes.
Metal Gear Sold 2
What a game. This is simply fantastic. There is so much freedom and depth in this game. There are many ways of doing anything. You can act like a professional or a maniac, it’s up to you. I haven’t seen so much freedom in a plot based game since Deus Exs, and no other game before that.

I don’t think I need to talk about the graphics. We have all seen the screens. We know it blows away any other game on any console. But this really isn’t a game that has to base itself on its looks. It has depth, which is needed in a game. It’s what keeps us playing. Its fantastic.

I have heard complaint after complaint about the length of the game and it’s cut scenes. Well this is my side of the argument. Treat it like the film it is. Because that’s what it is, a film, that you can control. If this plot were in the cinemas it would have those Star Wars freaks foaming at the mouth. It would be up there with you Fight Clubs, Mementos, Reservoir Dogs and Pulp Fictions. But here’s the great part, YOU get to play huge chinks of it AND it’s can last around 12 hours!

So if films cost about £20 on DVD and are say 2 hours 30 minutes long then surely it would cost you £80 for 10 hours of movie fun. My point? Treat it as a full on action game and you will be disappointed. Treat it as the movie game it is and you will fall in love with this masterpiece.

So what is it like when you do get to move around Snake? Well it has you gripped that’s for sure. You are actually scared of loosing your life. It gives you time to think things out, but don’t think as though you can hide behind that box forever.

As for the AI, it has to be the best I’ve seen. Soldiers get scared, laugh in your face, and… erm… piss from a great height onto you. They tap each other on the back as they pass to let each other know when a room is cleared. They hold the guns down as it is ‘safer’. And the deaths… oh the deaths!

It’s hard to talk about the plot without giving too much away so what I shall say is this. It’s a twisty plot and gets you thinking. Hideo Kojima has something to say about life, and boy does he say it. All I can say is that if you don’t know the BIG plot twist by now then you will enjoy (or possibly hate as some people have done) this game more than anyone else.

So what keeps me playing. Well, what kept me playing Goldeneye? The little niggles. Bits that go wrong or have been hidden by the producer. There is so much in this game that you don’t see in it’s first run. Look on the web for such things. There are way too many to list in any magazine.
Metal Gear Solid 2 Raiden< Check this game out, treat it as it should be, you'll love it.2015 Re-Review

So how has Metal Gear Solid 2 held up? With multiple sequels and a whole lot of time the hype for this game have disappeared along with the anger at Raiden, the worlds most hated game character who somehow transformed into one of the coolest. If you’ve played a Metal Gear Solid game then you’ll still feel right at home here with very similar controls and game play you won’t be disappointed.

The AI doesn’t feel as smart now as it did back in 2002 and the niggles have grown slightly larger. Its still a really cool game but the bat shit crazy story and knowing you’re going to be playing Raiden for 90% of it do make us feel less likely to come back to this game in future. Do you give it a play? Of course, its still good but maybe check out the original Metal Gear Solid or MGS 3 over this one.