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Metal Gear Solid Noob Diaries #22: Not-so Portable Woes

Metal Gear Solid Noob Diaries #22: Not-so Portable Woes

Welcome to the Metal Gear Noob Diaries. This is the recounting of my experience through the MGS series from MGS2: Sons of Liberty all the way to MGSV: Ground Zeroes. I’ll be updating every so often with new thoughts on sections of the games and taking a look back at memorable and enjoyable moments. I’ve never played the series before, so for the fans out there it could be an amusing tale of one noob’s journey, while those as green as myself could well learn a little about the mad world of MGS. Enjoy!

Here’s my sudden realisation of the day: I don’t really like the whole MSF military-building side of Peace Walker. I’ve tried to warm to it but I struggle to properly invest into something that I can’t actually see growing and improving. It makes me a little worried about MGS V to be honest, although the army-building part of that game looks to be a lot more ‘involved’. I suppose it’s an effect of the portable origins of Peace Walker - I can see the style suiting mobile gaming much better. But seeing as I’m playing on PS3, it doesn’t come off quite right. It’s especially difficult to invest when I don’t really need to.

Peace Walker bird

That’s not the only issue caused by the mobile-to-console transition either. The stop-start nature of the game - having to go back to mother base after every mission - is even more of an issue than it was with Portable Ops. Again, it’s because I’m playing on PS3 where I just want to dedicate a good chunk of time to each session as opposed to bite-size bits. Then again, I had a problem with that formula even when playing Portable Ops on PSP. So I’m obviously just a fussy moaner. To be fair though, the stop-start style is rather excessive: I’ll play a section that builds up to a boss battle, only for the level to end just before the fight itself. I then have to traipse through more menus just to get back into the action. It completely kills the flow of the game.

I’ll stop whining now. Although it’s worth saying that while those features are annoying, I’m still enjoying the game on the whole. Building up the MSF hasn’t proven to be the most enthralling of experiences, and I rarely bother with the side-missions, but the core story and associated levels are great. A lot of today’s session was focused on one small area in which I had to take on waves of troops - horde style. So that was pretty cool and pleasantly challenging, but not as difficult as the boss fight that followed. The boss fight against...some giant AI machine thingy, was fun once again. A little more formulaic than the previous battles but a nice a change of pace.

Peace Walker bunker

So with the giant boss defeated it was ‘into the underground bunker!’ Which is becoming a bit of an MGS trope by this point. A cool little segment ensued that felt very MGS2 - all concrete corridors and the like. It was all a build up to Snake being captured by Strangelove and Coldman. The rest was pretty much a worse version of the torture/prison escape bit from Snake Eater so there’s not a whole lot to say. It was a section that highlighted just how much I didn’t need to use MSF to research because I could troop through with just my silenced pistol and CQC.

So yes, I’m becoming a little disillusioned with Metal Gear Solid: Peace Walker. It’s probably only temporary, but a large part of me wants to move on to MGS4 right now. Bit awkward.

Metal Gear Solid Noob Diaries
Ryan Davies

Ryan Davies

Junior Editor

Budding, growing and morphing games journalist from the South. Known nowhere around the world as infamous wrestler Ryan "The Lion" Davies.

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