A Paladin’s Steam Review: Metal Gear Rising: Revengeance. Slicing up Metal Gears To The Tunes of Nature.

metal_gear_rising_revengeance

Metal Gear Rising Review

Swords dance and cut in this unique little gem of the Metal Gear Solid series.

A Paladin’s Steam Review: Metal Gear Rising: Revengeance. Slicing up Metal Gears To The Tunes of Nature.

  • Genre: 3rd Person Action Hack & Slash
  • Developed and Published by: PlatinumGames
  • Platform Support: Windows, Mac, Xbox 360 and PS3
  • Business Model: Base Game GOTY Edition
  • Copy purchased by myself

Preamble
Metal Gear Rising: Revengeance is a hack and slash game set in the universe of Metal Gear Solid. It follows the journey of Raiden, a katana-wielding Cyborg involved in getting revenge on those that wronged him. The story takes place years after the events of Metal Gear Solid 4: Guns of the Patriots (not available on PC). Unlike previous entries in this series that were based on tactical stealth gameplay, Rising sets itself with its high-speed action. It also sets itself apart as the first PlatinumGames title to make its way onto the PC platform.

Overall Story
The story, writing and acting has the very…Metal Gear feeling to it. I prefer to think of it as an excellent fanfiction style. It’s not bad and in some cases can have some deep themes interwoven fairly smartly throughout the plot. However, the series tends to suffer from something beneath the surface that’s corny, cheesy or just off. You’ll either enjoy it as I did or find it too bizarre to enjoy. There’s not a little of middle ground to stand on.

Raiden is part of a security company that protects VIPs and other important targets. They’re attacked by a rogue security company which results in him being injured and his charged killed. Rising then follows Raiden enacting his revenge on the company and the eventual stopping of a sinister plot. The story explores a number of different themes including the costs and repercussions of war, what it means to be a hero and whether might makes right. It may not be as hard hitting as previous titles, but I do feel they grounded themselves. The story’s fun and light even if the themes are rather dark. The cast of characters are likable (in their own way) and memorable.

Combat Thoughts
Raiden’s main weapon is a sword that can be controlled in a special slowed-down state that allows him to slice objects and enemies into multiple tiny pieces. This mode, called Blade Mode, is powered by energy that is regained from slicing enemies and performing a special Zandatsu finishing move. Many objects and enemies in the game can be sliced however enemies are often times too armored so their armor has to be cut down. He doesn’t have any ranged abilities but can parry away bullets. Anything bigger will needed to be avoided. There’s the typical light and heavy attacks along with combo moves that can be rather tricky to pull off. Outside of running away from attacks, Raiden’s only defense is parrying attacks. Activated at the right time, Raiden can use a powerful parry that stops deadly strikes. It’s an essential ability to learn as quickly as possible so you can survive the fights. Combined with the special combo moves, it’s a very enjoyable experience the entire campaign.

The combat is excellent, joyous and fun. It celebrates you being a sword slashing cyborg. The music, the flow of the combat and the enemies that you are confronted with. This game has some of the best boss fights I’ve ever had the pleasure of tackling in a game for a very long time. It can be frustrating at times as you might die a lot trying to figure out how to tackle the new enemies and bosses. But the game maintains a fairness to it even in the end game. The ability to slice off body parts with precision is great and handled well. Though I do feel that the stealth sections in this game are clunkier than in previous games. Thankfully, if you break stealth, it’s not an instant failure state, you just won’t get certain achievements. You’re able to conduct combat as normal.

PC Settings and Port Report
For being the first PlatinumGames on PC, they did a good job of making the port. To begin, all DLC that was sold for the console version is included for free in the PC version. Resolution options are restricted to 800×600, 1280×720, 1366×768, 1680×1050 and 1920×1080 with fullscreen and windowed mode. Antialiasing goes from 2x to 8x MSAA, Texture Filter up to 16x anisotropic, blur on/off and shadow low/med/high.There isn’t an FOV slider, V-sync only works in fullscreen mode and the framerate is capped at 60FPS. The graphics (and the game in general) are well optimized for the PC despite its console roots, though it isn’t as high-fidelity as it could have been. While you can get away with keyboard and mouse for the easy difficulty, you’ll want to use a controller for the best experience. Speaking of, the controller can’t be rebound but there are four different presets to choose from. Finally, there are multiple audio sliders for music, sound effects and voice.

Final Thoughts
For being their first entry onto the PC platform, PlatinumGames started off on the right foot. There’s plenty of PC options, the optimization is very good and they priced the game fairly. It’s very refreshing to have a AAA game without any of the usual nonsense that comes with games like these. It’s got a lot of content for the price and the combat system is deep, challenging but approachable. Just keep in mind that it’s a Metal Gear story, which is often overly serious with sometimes silly segments. The combat system is well fleshed out and ramps the pace up throughout the entire game. Rising was one of my favorite games of the year and it’s well deserved.

Until next time!

-KingIsaacLinksr

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