Review by SpiralSage
"History and Gaming collide!"
MGS3:Snake Eater is set in the early 60's. In this time, the Cold War was brewing. If you don't know what the Cold War was, let me give you a brief summary before I start this review. After World War 2, Stalin closed his gates to America and took part of Germany with him. The American's had already used an Atom Bomb on Japan(Twice, actually) and America was already on mass producing these deadly weapons. At the Same time, Russia was doing the same. The Two countries that came out as the strongest in World War 2. The Cold War wasn't a war on battlefields, but it was a war with bluffs and deceit. Two countries making weapons that could destroy the World.
The reason I thought it was appropriate to bring the Cold War up is because MGS3 is set around this time. Snake is sent into the Jungles of Russia to bring back a scientist working on a Tank-like-Weapon that can fire A bombs on rocky terrian. Volgin, a Commander of a certain Faction is Russia is determined to retrieve this weapon and basically start a revolution to overthrow Kruschev. Also, Snake's Mentor has defected from America to join Volgin's Faction taking with her a few experimental A bombs with her. Snake's job is to not only stop his Mentor; The Boss, but he also has to stop Volgin before he can unleash the power of this Tank-like-War Machine. Oh, and he only has a week to do this or Kruschev(the leader of Russia, if you didn't know) will assault the US with Nuclear destruction.
MGS3 is very intersting when you start playing. Unlike the other Metal Gear Solid games, there is no Radar. That's right, the only way you'll have a definite idea where your enemies are is if you actually see them. Luckily, you're given a kind of Binoculars that help you see far distances. Weapons have also changed....there are no laser sight since this is the 60's. This means you'll have to practice to get really good at killing (or traqulizing) foes.
The music in the game is nearly nonexistant. It's not that there isn't any music, but it works so well with the atmosphere of the game that you rarely even think about it, let alone remember it.. The Intro Song is a bit disappointing, unlike the dramatic MGS2 intro, Snake Eater's is like a cheap copy of a 1960's James Bond song. No joke.
The graphics are very sharp, maybe even sharper than MGS 2's graphics. You'll never walk into something that you don't what it is. Trees look like trees and stumps look like stumps. Character models in the cutscenes are pretty damn good and you're able to see everything Hideo Kojima wants you to see. I was also surprised how realistic some facial expressions were, like smiling for example.
Since the MGS series has always been about sneaking past your enemies rather than going Rambo on everything you see, you may love what MGS3 has to offer: Camouflage! In this game, you'll be able to change Snake's apperance using Camouflage. For example: Let's say you're in a large area covered in yellowish grass, you change change Snake's apperance by going into the Camouflage menu. There is a percentage meter that tells you how camouflaged you are, the bigger the number the better. If you use the wrong Camouflage when you're in a certain area, the enemies will find you easily.
Sneaking around is a big deal in this game because (like all MGS games) if an enemy spots you, they'll sound an alarm., I found the Alarm to be a lot longer than the ones in MGS and MGS2. When the enemies are in alert mode, they're out to find you and most likely ready to kill you on sight. You'll have to hide Snake in a good hiding spot and wait there until the enemies give up searching for you.
Damage also take a big part in MGS3, enemies bullets can actually do something to you in this game! Unlike MGS and MGS2, you'll have to treat yourself from wounds that have been afflicted upon you. Lets say you eat something that give you a stomache ache or if you get shot an the bullet stays inside of you. You'll have to use bandages and medicines to heal you! You can also have your bones broken so you'll need to use things such as splints to help you recover.
The last thing I want to bring up is probably the coolest:Eating. In this game, it is harder for Snake to find Rations as it was in earlier MGS games. Instead, there is a long bar below your health. The Fatigue Bar. This long bar is basically here to help you recover slowly, but if the bar runs out, you're probably screwed. This is why eating is such a big deal. You can find birds,mangos,mushrooms, and even snakes to appease your appetite. Certain foods will do certain this to you. Some may poison and some may be extremely delicious.
If you're a big fan of Hideo Kojima's work, don't wait for a price drop, but it now! If you're never played a MGS game before, but you've always wanted to, I suggest you rent it first just so you can get the idea of how these games work.
Reviewer's Rating: 4.5 - Outstanding
Originally Posted: 12/02/04
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