We’re once again honored to have Mad Jackyl present us with a great article about the Metal Gear series — this time about how the recurring ninja character serves the plot of the games. The article is below the jump, so read on and please enjoy!
Yoji Shinkawa, born Christmas Day of ’71, joined Konami at the age of 23.
It was 1994, and young Shinkawa was given the honorable task of debugging Policenauts, as well as doing the graphics for the pilot disc, and the 3D graphics for the PlayStation version. It was a humble start for the man who would four years later be the Illustration Director and character designer for one of the best games to ever be released. The question is: would it have been one the best games ever if it hadn’t been for Shinkawa?
If you’re like me, it was the character of Solid Snake that truly made MGS1 endearing, allowing me to connect with it emotionally. He was a lean, mean, smoking machine who always got the job done and didn’t let his feelings get in the way. Essentially, he became everything I wanted to be in my juvenile fantasies for years. And yet when we look at this interview from an old player’s guide, Kojima explains that the original incarnation of Snake was “totally different”:
For your enjoyment, this article was updated as of May 1, 2011
The Puzzle Element
Taking Metal Gear Solid off of its grand pedestal and playing it from an analytical, critical point of view again, we can see past the coolness of the experience and see the real nuts and bolts: the design.
To me, the puzzle element is easily the most underestimated part of the old Metal Gear Solid for the PlayStation. It’s something that has been lost over the course of the series thanks to the rabid, pigeonholed nature of the conversation surrounding it. And what I mean by “puzzle element” is the way that you had to think in order to complete an area of the game smoothly. Remember the first level of the VR training? This is the most simple, pure representation of what Metal Gear gameplay is all about. A single guard patrols back and forth with precise timing, and the goal is just on the other side. If he sees you, it’s Game Over; if you reach the goal, you win.
Already, the puzzle is underway.
For your enjoyment, this article has been updated on April 4, 2011
The year was 1998.
While President Bill Clinton was busy dealing with the Lewinsky scandal, the videogame industry was releasing some of the greatest games ever made. It could very well be single greatest year for videogames, before or after. Games such as:
Resident Evil 2
Final Fantasy Tactics
The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time
StarCraft: Brood War
Thief: The Dark Project
Oh, and a little thing called Metal Gear Solid.
That’s what I call a good year.
When Hideo Kojima looks back at MGS2, what is his favorite part? Could it be the introduction of Raiden? Or perhaps the craziness of the Arsenal Gear section? What about the speech at the end about starting over and creating a new identity?
Well according to his Twitter feed, it’s the part where Raiden and Rose talk about King Kong:
My favourite scene from MGS2 is where RAIDEN meets Rose. When she was asked “Which building did the King Kong climb?” by the sightseeing ladies, she pointed at the world trade centre which is the new building by the direector John Guillermin. The ladies denied it. Then, the movie-buff: RAIDEN came in to showed the old empire state building.
Huh, who would have guessed?
So you’ve seen Brink‘s official website, maybe some trailers, and now you’re thinking, “Hey this looks pretty cool!”
But what you don’t realize is that it’s going to suck. Follow me as I explain why you should stop being hyped for Brink right now.
5. The Art Style
“Idiot!” you shout. “Brink has some of the best visual direction of any first person shooter! It looks great!”
You instantly dismiss this article and hover your mouse over the “Back” button, but wait: I AGREE. So here’s my question: why did the idiots over at Splash Damage fight the idea?
The Scarab is among the most poorly designed units in videogame history. It may not be as terrible as these things from Smash Bros. Brawl, or the Ongogg or whatever from the Halo series, but it’s sheer ugliness is an unsettling reminder of what can happen when designers run out of ideas and just don’t care anymore. In almost every action game since the early days of the arcade there have been basic enemy units who serve as little more than cannon fodder, and usually look stupid so that your murder instinct is activated automatically. If that was the purpose of the Scarab’s design it was a great success, but it still doesn’t make it any less crappy.