Metal Gear Solid 2
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Written by: Emerald
One of the most highly anticipated games ever, and the most anticipated
for the PS2, and more than any PSX game as well. Is it worth it all, though.
Well, in the end, it DOES come down to the individual, but these are my
Graphics: The graphics ARE beautiful (and I say that for lack of
a better word). The way the characters look and move resembles that of
Silent Hill 2, though better, and are awe inspiring. The attention to
little details are what really make this game different from all the rest.
Glass bottles can get shot and shattered in different locations depending
on where they're shot (i.e., shoot the neck and only that will break,
shoot the base and the bottle will fly up into the air), and will fall
accordingly. Ice will melt accordingly as well. If one cube is all alone,
it'll melt faster than if there are a couple stuck together. Water leaves
foot prints, also, and lighting is very realistic. The flapping of Snakes
bandana and hair (as well as Raiden, I'll get to him later) also mimics
reality. The cut scenes look just like actual game play screens. I sometimes
try to figure out when they use CG graphics and when they use game graphics.
In truth it's hard to believe that they did use CG, the game graphics
are done that well. Pop-ups do not exist in this game, but then again
the camera angles never really allowed for the player to see any. Smooth
characters/environments are nice eye candy, and the explosions and bullet
impacts as well as the littler details are absolutely amazing. In a nut
shell, on the level of GC and Xbox.
Sound: I am a big fan of movie soundtracks and video game soundtracks
and always consider whether or not one is appropriate for the other. Does
the music fit the movie/game? Does the movie/game fit the music? Do they
do justice for each other? Etc etc. In MGS2 the answer is a definitive
YES. Harry Gregson-Williams, the same man that did The Rock, Enemy of
the State, and Armageddon (to name a few) is the man responsible for the
musical score found within. Befitting and ,also, beautiful. But music
isn't the only thing in a game. No, there is always the actual speech
of the characters. With returning talents from David Hayter and the voice
talents responsible for Otacon and Revolver Ocelot as well as the Colonel
(not sure of there names). The voice overs are just as good as in the
original. The lip synchronization isn't quite perfect, and you may not
want to watch their mouths as the speak since you will see some mismatched
movement. But, on the plus, the character's mouths move even outside of
cut scenes, and the lips can move independently so as to help form certain
sounds. The sound effects are just as good as the speech and the gun shot
sounds, explosions, ambiance, ect, are, as well, realistic.
Gameplay: The numerous new maneuvers such as peering around corners,
first person aiming/ shooting/fighting, hanging from ledges, and holding
up bad guys (again, just to name some) are very useful and greatly improve
the realism of the game. Getting used to each move really isn't as hard
as you may have read, it's simply knowing what to press and when (just
like in a fighting game, only easier combos). The storyline is somewhat
drawnout resembling that in MGS, but it isn't as drawnout as it. You might
figure 'hey, we've heard all about Snake, Otacon, Ocelot and the Colonel
in the first, they can't have so much of the drawnout character development
as in the first, right?' Hahaha, you're sadly wrong. This is where Raiden
(pronounced 'riden', I don't know why) comes in to play. After only 2
hours of controlling the cool Solid Snake, you're forced to play as the
newbie, Raiden, for the remainder of the, in total, 12-13 hour game. This
is the reason I feel it isn't entirely worth it. I was expecting/ looking
forward to a new, longer adventure as the cool, calm, and collected Solid
Snake, but, alas, it was not to be. However, with these little misfortunes
aside, it is fun, and, in times, very fun. But having to get used to a
new world and smarter and different foes makes the first time through
a tad hectic.
Value: I figure that owning the game, in itself, is alone very
worth it. Anyway, I have yet to figure out everything that can be unlocked
or changed (such as if the ninja's costume changes color like in the first,
or if they'll wear tuxedos, etc etc). The replay value is worth it simply
because there's not a lot of things more fun than tactical espionage.
Obviously there are somethings that I didn't write about, so as to
leave something to be found out by whom ever decides to play and/or buy
it. Being the huge Metal Gear fan I am, I don't think I'll ever sell this
game so long as I don't absolutely need to, no matter how many times I've
played it nor how boring it may eventually get. My choice for PS2 'Game
of the Year'.
Final Score: 5.0 (out of 5)