Review – Metal Gear Solid V: The Phantom Pain

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I’M NUUUUCLEARRRRRRRRRR I’M WIIIIIIILLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLD

So I opted to not write anything for the past week in order to tackle MGSV and do it justice. Sorry to leave you guys in the dark for a bit there, but alas I’m here to review a game that is actually relatively new. Well, I’m about a month behind everyone else, but I wanted some time to actually play the game and write a review that wasn’t complete bullshit.

So we’ll start with what’s good because I like to start off positively. First up, the game itself. Controls? Nice. Graphics? Pretty good. Mechanics? Can be a bit grindy but otherwise not bad. It actually has a fair bit of replayability with a lot of side missions and multiplayer, something I can say that other Metal Gear Solid games didn’t have much of unless you wanted to experience the storylines again. Obviously a game with this big of a budget and attention to detail would end up (Metal Gear) solid overall, especially since MGS is so popular and essentially the only thing keeping Hideo Kojima afloat these days.

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Gotta keep it real Kojima

The plot is also Metal Gear levels of convoluted and silly, as expected from Kojima. If you’re a fan of the series and are fond of the confusing storylines, you’ll like Phantom Pain a lot in that sense. As for the quality of the story, we’ll get to that…

So where does MGSV truly shine? Well, in my opinion, the soundtrack. Ho-lee SHIT are there some good songs in this game. Tracks like Sins of the Father and Nuclear alongside older classics like Rebel Yell, Kids in America, You Spin Me Round and the Final Countdown is just, mmmm. If you don’t play MGSV for any reason, at least go check out the soundtrack. You won’t be disappointed.

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Wonder how many snipers listen to music while doing their job.

With Pain in the title, you’d like to think playing through the game would be painless, but sadly, no, it’s not. There are more than enough reused missions with the majority being some variation of “Infiltrate, Capture/Kill person/Destroy thing/Strap something to a parachute, then Exfiltrate”. I will be nice and say that the Metal Gear Sahelanthropus fight was pretty fun though. Obviously there’s some kind of giant robot in a series with robots named after the game series so I don’t feel bad about dropping a name bomb on that one. I wish you luck trying to spell it from memory. I’m retarded, so I’m just copy-pasting Sahelanthropus each time I type it. Sahelanthropus. Sahelanthropus. Sahelanthropus.

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Actual gameplay footage. No really, I swear

So, the meat of the game: the story. How is it?

guy-opening-doorIt blows. Retcons, plot holes, and tearing apart the other canon titles make up the most of it, although the oh so popular twist ending is so mind-bogglingly stupid it kind of redeems the rest of the crap you’ll slog through. It’s seriously a bag of candy at the end and simultaneously hilarious and emotional, although I guess responding to hilarity is also an emotion. Right?

Also, not really a negative point, but if you want the most of Phantom Pain’s storyline, you’d benefit greatly from playing the prequel game, Metal Gear Solid V: Ground Zeroes. Of course you’re free to take this information either way, being good that you can skip it or bad that skipping it means missing out on details used in Phantom Pain.

Overall, I enjoyed MGSV. If you want to check it out, you could justify buying it at full price. I wouldn’t go so far as to get any kind of collector’s edition or it, but the base game is solid. Don’t buy it because of the “omg Game of the Year All Years” hype though or you’ll be really disappointed.

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