It doesn’t really get any better than this. Kojima has given us lots of new information and video, including the African jungle location, an AI buddy system, a pet wolf, and the return of the most iconic outfit in the Metal Gear series. It’s glorious.
We learned that Quiet has ridiculous abilities, including the ability to turn invisible, move at supersonic speeds, and perhaps phase out of existence altogether judging by the way she simply shed those handcuffs back at Mother Base. Whatever her powers, the most shocking revelation of all was that depending on how you play, you might not meet her at all! What kind of game is The Phantom Pain going to be, if the main female character is optional content?
Nothing could surpass the introduction of a new character, however, in the form of “D.D.” — an adopted wolf-dog who eventually grows into a badass companion for war.
The gameplay itself is what fascinated me, however. Big Boss can equip different prosthetic arms, which allow him to electroshock enemies, smash the ground for wide-radius sonar tracking of creatures, and the ability to climb cracks in walls. He rides into the jungle on a helicopter, and apparently can jump out whenever he wants, which is dangerously close to my fantasy of being able to parachute down to locations as Big Boss freely.
The buddy system is designed to give players a strong incentive to maintain relationships with his comrades (in order to unlock better powers), find new characters to befriend, and basically not become a brooding lone psychopath in the middle of nowhere. The fact that these are optional means that players will have to be vigilant, and get even more attached to characters whose fates are extremely unknown (ie. they don’t appear in future titles!)
We also got a new Silent Hills concept video, which is disturbing. Apparently its what Kojima and Del Toro discussed for the direction of the game, and it was made by just a small handful of artists at Konami using the Fox Engine. There’s been a lot of positive reaction to it, but I’ve also noticed some complaints that it’s not very moody or eerie, but more of a parade of insanity. It’s kind of interesting how big of a difference there is between a playable experience like P.T. and simply watching a video of something scary. When you’re playing, turning a corner is a terrifying risk. You almost don’t want to proceed, because you don’t know if you can handle what’s there. It’s stressful. A video like this simply can’t deliver that gruesome tension, where you control the pace.
It’s good to see that they are running with the series’ themes of sexualized horror, mingled with childlike innocence, and dark filth.
Some exciting things are on the horizon right now, which I will be proud to share with readers of the site. Although I can’t talk about them out of respect to the people who are still creating them, I will say that they are fueled by passion and conviction, and offer views highly compatible with my own.
One is a video, and one is a mega-sized article. I’m involved with proof-reading and giving feedback on both, and you can trust that they are worth anticipating.
As for myself, I haven’t been writing that much. I need to get around to finishing the commentary on Ground Zeroes, of course, but I’ve got other hobbies that are inspiring me more right now. It’s a good thing this site has intellectual, creative followers who are willing to work hard and share their creations freely, in the hopes of edifying more people.
You watched the 30 minute gameplay demo, right? Then you must have noticed something was off about the opening cutscene. Yes, Kojima made some serious mistakes regarding the dialogue, and our friend Joshua Garrison has gone through the trouble of correcting that:
Kojima wants to show off, but as I just wrote in my analysis of their marketing, they don’t seem to care about preserving the intrigue and mystery around this game at all. I’ve always hated behind-the-scenes videos for my favorite things, unless it’s years later and I’m not “into it” the same way still.
Here’s a thoughtful commentary on Metal Gear Rising: Revengeance, and action games that posture as “intellectual”. It’s an interesting take on the subtext of Revengeance (yes, apparently it has some!) in which the “true nature” of action games is explored.