Developer: Platinum Games
Publisher: Konami Digital Entertainment
Platforms: Xbox 360, PS3, Steam
If you have played Metal Gear Solid 4 and when you saw Cyborg Ninja Raiden and thought that was really cool well Metal Gear Rising is basically a whole game devoted to that idea. Metal Gear Rising is a fast paced action game with tons of slicing and dicing.
Metal Gear Solid games are known for their intense story and great writing but Metal Gear Rising not so much. This spin-off has over the top characters and with an over the top plot. This actually fits with the theme of the game which all about just having fun. You won’t be questioning your commanding officers motives or care about the motives of your advisories but you sure will enjoy cutting them up as Raiden from the original series.
Metal Gear Solid stories had complexity and real world applications like understanding the complexity of PMCs (private military companies) and their danger to the military industrial complex if they could be completely controlled by a system. Rising does not since they don’t even take into account the events of Metal Gear Solid 4. There are a bunch of political inconsistencies that I could talk about but the story is just too out there.
Though just like Call of Duty 2 storyline which had all of Europe somehow not worried about massive amount of Russian military craft flying over them, the ridiculous of the story leads to great action sequences. You will be fighting futuristic cyborgs, robots, and enemies with over the top abilities. Who needs a well crafted story when you can fight a Metal Gear with a sword.
The game does have a lot of great references to Metal Gear Solid series. In the writing they will give small mentions or dialogue that will remind you of the original series in a good way. I laughed at many of the jokes that reminded me that even MGS had a great way of adding humor into it’s story. Since it doesn’t take itself seriously it has a lot of great humor to all kind of references.
This is not your typical serious well thought out storyline from Metal Gear Solid but it doesn’t matter. When you watch a movie like Pacific Rim do you really care or do you just want to see giant robots fight giant monsters. You are a cyborg ninja fighting other cyborgs so enjoy the awesome action scenes.
The action of Metal Gear Rising is fun, challenging and at times frustrating. This is an action game that tests your reflexes and your ability to understand your enemies attack pattern. Even though the game has the name Metal Gear in it do not expect tactical covert stealth, do expect fast action packed ninja gameplay that is quite fun to play.
The action is fast paced and full of slicing and dicing. You will be able to cut much of the environment and all your enemies up with your powerful sword. Go to a Blade Mode and time will slow which gives you time to precisely slash your enemies which way you want. All the Cyborg Ninja awesome you have seen Metal Gear games is now possible in Rising.
Enemies in the game offer quite a challenge requiring good flexes and good understanding of enemy behaviors. You will not be able to just hack and slash your way through the game. You will have to learn how to parry, when to attack, and when to use abilities. Not all enemies are difficult and many are challenging enough that you will feel rewarded when you acquire the skill to beat them on your own.
Controlling the game is not always fluid for a game that requires good execution. I will admit personally I am not great at games that great require reflexes but I have really enjoyed games like God of War. The controls of Rising for parts of the game can be frustrating since sometimes it feels more like the controls and not the enemies are more challenging. Maybe it is the camera angle or having the parry and attack be the same button but at times I was definitely frustrated.
It doesn’t ruin the game by any means it just means that you have to be some what good at combo based action games. God of War will be easier but something like Ninja Gaiden will be much harder. If you are only a PC gamer than these type of games might be something new to you. You will need a controller to ease yourself in since the keyboard and mouse works but is not as easy to control as a controller.
The game Blade Mode makes good use of the unique cutting system. You will be able to control the precise direction of your slashes to cut objects, enemies and environments as you please. You are rewarding during fights to make use of cutting the enemies arm or core to either heal or gain points that can be used to upgrade Raidens stats. It is a clever way to make you learn how to effectively use Blade Mode and besides cutting enemies into 15 different pieces is just fun to see.
The boss fights are fun plus they take advantage of the over the top storyline to give you creative and unique fights. One boss you fight early in the game uses robotic arms that can be used as a really long staff and as a whip. The bosses fit the theme of cyborg assassins very well since they combine technology and speed. They give quite the challenge making sure you know how use the skills you learn throughout the game.
The game offers also other type gameplay through the campaign to give a good pacing of the overall game. Sometimes you can use stealth to make some encounters easier and sometimes you will even a smaller robot to sneak around a base. You will also unlock VR missions that you can use to hone and test your skills. They offer good change of pace when you feel like you want to do something else besides the campaign.
If you like fast paced action games than the gameplay in Metal Gear Rising does not disappoint. It is only a single player experience but it is a polished action packed skyscraper running, cyborg slicing, and Metal Gear fighting fun filled game. This is a game that likes to have fun with itself and give you a ton of over the top action which is a good thing.
Wow do the graphics look great on the PC for this game. All the characters, action, special effects, and environments look really smooth. You do not have to worry since this game is a spin off that this game might not get the production values to look good because it looks amazingly well. Even with all the crazy action happening the game does not slow down.
Blade Mode looks really cool with the graphic qualities since when you are cutting up enemies you will slowly see them turn into pieces. They are cut to pieces exactly where you cut them too. Many objects you find will be able to be sliced up like fences, poles, and of course water melons. The graphics take great advantage of the fact that you are a cyborg ninja.
Cyborgs also have a great look to them designed to look futuristic and cool. There are some silly looking cyborgs and machines but since the game is just having fun it matches the tone and theme well. The human characters look really nice too though some a little clique but thats alright given the tone of the game.
Music fits the game very well with quick electronic beats matching the speed the enemies that you will be chopping up. The music really amps you up to go quicker and makes you want to quickly slice up cyborgs. Since the game if placed in a world where cyborgs are common place the music matches very well with the environment.
Voice actors do a great job portraying their characters. Since the game is not serious they have funny personalities and great lines that make you remember this is just a game and to have fun in. Though sometimes it tries to be serious especially with Raiden and then the writing can just get weird but luckily these scenes can be skipped if you want to.
The writing will do a great job of making you laugh and a bad job of making you think about the world in a serious manner. For the less serious moments I am laughing at the conversations I have with characters in the Codec or meet in the world. The serious moments I am questioning the huge plot holes and even characters intentions but when you think about it cyborg ninjas can’t really be taken seriously.
The story isn’t anything worth trying to understand or giving much thought about. The story is great at making you laugh but only that. For those that are Metal Gear fans that loved the series story telling and want to know what happens in the world after the series stay away it will disappoint you. This game is for those Metal Gear fans that saw Raiden in a cyborg ninja suit and thought “this is so cool.”
The controls can be very frustrating at times and hard to accomplish. There are easier to control combo based action games that feel much more natural. The times where the controls can be frustrating are limited to certain locations where the camera angle isn’t responsive enough or where the enemies don’t fit naturally into the game such as flying enemies in a game with a limited jump. Nothing to ruin the game just something that should have been more polished.
Also the game features a item system that doesn’t fit very well into the game. You have access to grenades, rocket launchers, and even cardboard boxes which is always appreciated. The problem is trying to using grenades and rocket launchers in combat will significantly slow down the combat. In a game that makes quick action so much fun anything that slows it down to the point where Raiden is walking is not appropriate.
The game doesn’t give you a great tutorial either. Maybe for people that have played games like Bayonetta this will come smoothly but early in the game I was just hacking and slashing past the one fight where they introduced the parry system. For a system so important to the game you need to have more than just one fight with three easy to kill enemies to teach you the technique. I had to go online and watch a video for the first boss to understand how exactly to use the parry system.
– Amazing graphics
– Fun fast paced action
– Cyborg ninja
– Challenging enemies
– Good sense of humor
– Some controls are not smooth
– Average story
This game will be amazing for people that love fast paced combo action and Raiden from the Metal Gear series. This game is about having fun and does not take itself seriously. If you want to play a cyborg ninja that slices and dices building size robots as butter than you will enjoy this game
8 out of 10