The results are in…

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With 64% of the vote and a widening margin, it seems you have chosen Metal Gear Solid 2 as the game you’d like to be reviewed first!  And so it shall be.

I admit I’m surprised, though.  The Last of Us has been dominating sales charts and the hearts of critics everywhere, and it started off strong in the poll.  Thankfully it shouldn’t take nearly as long to finish the review of MGS2 as it did to complete the other six parts of the Breakdown.

Believe it or not, after 12 years of analyzing MGS2, this will be my first time judging the game as a critic first and foremost.  Having delved into the farthest depths of the game’s madness, I feel a certain obligation to deliver a fair judgment, without personal bias.  I’m excited to see what I think.

Part VI (MGS2: A Complete Breakdown)

PART IPART IIPART IIIPART IVPART V - PART VI – PART VII

Part VI Substance & The Document

Now that we’ve analyzed the main game, Part VI examines The Document of Metal Gear Solid 2 and Metal Gear Solid 2: Substance, where we find even more fascinating evidence of Kojima’s hidden goals.

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Please watch Critical Close-up: Metal Gear Solid 2

Here’s a video you don’t want to miss.

If you enjoy my articles, you will certainly enjoy this deconstruction of Metal Gear Solid 2.  Unlike me, he actually puts a hell of a lot of effort into production, going to locations and intricate editing to make it really watchable.  I dare say it’s the best video analysis of MGS2 I’ve ever seen from a technical and analytical point of view.

Don’t just watch the video, however, do the guy a favor and spread it around!  He deserves major attention from game news sites, forums like NeoGaf, etc.  Think about how many shitty fluff pieces get promoted on Destructoid, and then think about how substantial and interesting this is.  A true MGS fan will spread the word, just as (Raiden’s cobbled together idealized VR manifestation of) Snake taught us to!

My notes?  I think the video could have been improved by having symmetry at the end.  It starts off talking about postmodernism, but it ends with the digital age.  Bringing up such powerful ideas without paying them off is a tiny bit of a shame.  I respect that he doesn’t speculate too much on Kojima’s motivations for the postmodern themes.  I love the fact that he deals with the VR theory, which is unforgivably neglected in most reviews and analysis, and I think it’s about time it gets a respectable presentation.

MGS1 & MGS2 Parallel: You Should Have Told Me You Had It!

Our friend Threedogg — who has probably played more MGS in his life than the rest of us combined — has created an interesting video analyzing some similarities between Metal Gear Solid and Metal Gear Solid 2.  It takes a look at the way Emma Emmerich and Meryl Silverburgh overlap!

I suggest you follow Threedogg on Twitter and on his Twitch page.  You’ll find a ton more content there than you will here!  He’s an inspiration to us all.

No more mullet? Play as MGS1 Snake on the Tanker

Our friends over at CodeRed Interactive have officially released a mod — yes, one of those cool things that changes how a game plays — for Metal Gear Solid 2!

“How does that make any sense,” you ask?  Simple, it’s for the PC version of the game, and all you need to do is follow the instructions on the installer, which you can get at the bottom of their downloads page.  Here’s how it looks in action:

You’ll feel like you stepped right out of Shadow Moses and onto a boat.

Also if you want to have a say in what they do next, go watch this video and vote in their poll!

Part V (MGS2: A Complete Breakdown)

PART IPART IIPART IIIPART IV - PART VPART VI – PART VII

[Updated Nov 1/2012: GameTrailers today declared that Metal Gear Solid 2's ending was the third worst in game history!  A special note has been added to the end of the article.]

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11 years later, Otacon and Snake’s bro hug gets media attention

Here’s a strange one for you: GameInformer just posted a piece on the moment in Metal Gear Solid 2 when Snake and Otacon do their handshake and bro hug.  As far as I can tell, nothing prompted the article, but I did notice it was categorized under “moments”.  I guess they just pick random moments from gaming and write about them.

Perhaps I make too much of it, but I always find it funny when game sites look back fondly at MGS2, considering how much hate it generated in the media — that is to say, after all the asskissing they did at first.  Feelings toward the game seem to go up and down with the times, eh?  Funny how Snake Eater was all about shifting perceptions of the times…