Review by Rapskallion
"All the waiting has payed off; MGS2 lives up to the hype!!"
Well, the day has finally arrived. Metal Gear Solid 2 is out, and thank the Lord, it managed to keep the the series' roots and still take it to a new level. The game is worthy of being called a sequel to what I consider the best PSOne game ever made. Now, on to the details of Rapskallion's Rating System.
The thing that makes the Metal Gear series so great is the story. And this one is no different. The game is full of plot twists that keep you guessing until the very end and never fail to amaze you. Some people feel that there are too many twists and it can get too far fetched, but that's just how the game is. And I love every second of it. The cutscenes are the best I've ever seen, some of which are almost as cool as scenes from movies like The Matrix. This is more than a game, it's an experience. However, if you don't wanna spend about half your time watching the game, perhaps you won't agree. Still, I'd pick watching MGS2 over almost any movie. The plot just plain rocks.
As far as action games go, these are the best graphics I've seen. Character's look great, weather effects are amazing, shadow effects are perfect, cutscenes are movie quality... it doesn't get better than this. While there aren't any draw dropping examples of graphical artwork, this is the best looking action game on any console right now. Take that, XBox!
The controls are just like the controls out of MGS, but with a good number of additions. The most important addition is the first person view. You now have the ability to shoot in first person mode with every weapon, not just sniper rifles. This is very important to master, especially for getting the dog tags. Other additions include rolling, looking/shooting around corners, and hanging/moving over rails. Controls work great, but they do take time to master, especially if you aren't already familiar with MGS controls. Button sensitivity is awesome, but can sometimes result in accidently killing the guard you're trying to hold up for his tags. Getting all of the buttons straight takes time, and you'll inevitably get caught once or twice for pushing the wrong buttons. Still, once you get used to it, the controls make sense and are fairly simple to use.
The sound department is excellent. Voices of the original MGS have returned, including the famous voice of Solid Snake, David Hayter. The classic MGS theme is still here, and hearing (as well as feeling with the dual shock) your heartbeat as you hide in a locker has never been so intense. Excellent voice acting and a great musical score make this game shine even more.
As usual, the only multiplayer in MGS 2 is talking to friends about the great plot twists and what a damn good game it is. Or bragging about your ranking.
Replay Value: 9/10
The game is a good bit longer than MGS, but still seems over way to fast. The main reason for this is because you cannot put the game down until you discover all of the plot twists and solve all of the mysteries. And that is a good thing. However, there is a good bit of replay value because of the dog tags. Each soldier has a unique dog tag which you can collect by holding them up. Can you collect them all? This, along with 5 difficulty levels and dozens of secrets, add significantly to the games value. Trust me, you'll play through it more than once.
To me, this is one of the most enjoyable gaming experiences of all time. It's tons of fun to play secret agent and sneak around guards, or try to find new fun ways to dispose of them. There are countless little Easter eggs thrown into the game that add boatloads of humor; you can do some really funs things with some of those posters and magazines! Some people may get frustrated because this game is not easy; you cannot go in guns blazing. Also, some may be turned off by the numerous lengthy Codec talks, which tend to get boring unless you are really into the plot (like me). Personally, I give this game a 10/10 on fun. The score gets lowered slightly because some will be slightly irritated by difficult parts of the game. But how could it be fun if it wasn't challenging? Trust me, you'll love this game from start to finish, and then even more after that!
It would be a crime to give this game anything but. You may think I am bias, giving into the hype and not taking this game for what it really is. But trust me, I went in with a fairly negative attitude. I thought that it was more than likely that the game would suck in comparison to the original, being just a mediocre game not coming close to filling those huge shoes left by MGS. I was wrong. This game is, of course, an essential part of any PS2 owner's library. If you don't have it already, go buy it. Today.
Reviewer's Score: 10/10 | Originally Posted: 11/17/01, Updated 11/17/01
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