That game's problems ran much deeper. Completely unbalanced mechanics (particularly rage mode), overpowered items, enough random deaths from stage hazards to rival Smash Bros, far too many samey characters, and a lack of depth condemned it to mediocrity. Not to mention the complete lack of local multi, unforgivable in a beatemup.
I think it would have helped a lot if they halved the roster but made each character much more distinct and complex.
Max Anarchy is gleeful dumb fun for a few hours, but it gets old fast once the novelty wears off and you have to contend with the actual game design. I think the whole point of the game was for Platinum to experiment with online multiplayer, and it was unfortunately a failure. Awesome soundtrack, at least.
Max anarchy was what I considered their worst, until I played this. I mean, sure I should wait until the final game to pass a judgement of this sort, but stuff like dodge roll is way to standard to be an ability, and on top of that the moves feel really pathetic. I'm not too sure why the attack strings have such a mashy insignificant feel. It's like everything is an afterthought or just a bridge to blade mode, which isn't fun to use at all.
Being a Platinum fanboy and one who considers MGS2 the best. This game is a wet dream drying up in a desert right now, for me.