Metal Gear Solid 2: Substance... So like, when do I play?

Alright, I picked up MGS2 for Xbox on a whim today, because it was a pre-owned at my local EB for cheap. Decided to see what made the PS2 fanboys pee their pants.

Pop the disc in and power up the Xbox and watch the cool intro credits. Start the game, and I get to watch another set of intro credits (repeating everything that was said the first time around).

Okay! I’m on the ship! Just let me at them! But I gotta wait and watch some cutscenes while Snake talks to some guy Octana or something.

Alright! So Octana is giving me a control walkthrough! But, only, he’s giving it to Snake. So Snake actually moves around the screen without me doing anything. He even fires off a round when Octana tells him how to shoot.

But okay! Now the tutorial is over! Let me at 'em! But now, I got to watch even more cutscenes of Russian commandos killing American marines, while Snake just sits and watches.

Then it’s another conversation with Octana.

And then, FINALLY, I get to move around. And I hate it. The camera angle sucks, the controls are just funky, and I’m starting to worry that what I’ve heard about MGS2 is true: that it’s nothing more than 5 minutes of action interupted by 15 minutes of exposition, repeated ad naseum. Arghhhhhhh… It’s the “Myst” of action games.

To quote Han Solo: No Reward Is Worth This.

I’m starting to worry that what I’ve heard about MGS2 is true: that it’s nothing more than 5 minutes of action interupted by 15 minutes of exposition, repeated ad naseum.

It gets worse. Far worse. About a third of the way through, it jumps the shark and gets very Japanese.

Just pray you’ve given up before this happens.

 -Tom

The VR missions are fun, though. Just skip the game and play those. Much more satisfying. Plus: actual gameplay!

If it were possible, and if you had the time, I would suggest trying to get to the finish because it only gets more absurd as you go. Look out for the crapping seagulls! Watch as the former president of the United States grabs your crotch! Marvel at the idea that your real enemy is a cyber manifestation of the spirit of our country born in the oval office! Wheee!

It actually becomes a bonding moment for those of us that finished the game. When talking about the game we’ll just look incredulously at each other and go “what…the…fuck???”

There are to many wannabe film makers in the game dev community.

Not for everyone I know, but I enjoyed the dramatic cutscenes. The music, the voice acting and the graphics sure helped.

Yeah, but it’s a pretty expensive movie, isn’t it?

Yeah, but it’s a pretty expensive movie, isn’t it?[/quote]

You can probably beat it in 1-2 rental periods, so if you pretend you bought a soda and a box of popcorn, it’s about right. I liked the game and the pretty colors. But I wouldn’t buy it. :P

Myst had almost no exposition, and no cut scenes (it did have a few “in-game” FMV sequences, but they didn’t pull you away from your first-person view and they were very short). It didn’t have any action, either, but it wasn’t supposed to (it was primarily a game about exploration). I don’t think the two games are at all similar, aside from the fact that you don’t seem to have enjoyed either of them.

I liked Myst, but I agree with you about the MGS games. I really don’t understand the appeal. I like the stealth-based gameplay, but it’s mostly too simple, highly linear, and there simply isn’t enough of it. Yeah, the cut scenes are nice, but you can’t make a game out of cut scenes. Or I guess you can, if the MGS games are any indication, but I still won’t enjoy it.

Like Chris Roberts. shudder

Pity to see such a great talent decide he’s too “big” for videogames. Ah well…

And Jordan Mechner. He’s a game god just for Karateka, Prince of Persia I & II and The Last Express. Apparently he felt those were demo reels for his film career and is floating around Hollywood hawking scripts the last I heard.

Get Splinter Cell.

All the action, none of the fluff. :D

This was the reason I could get no further than about 30 minutes into MGS2 before going crazy.

Unfortunately, I am finding the stealth gameplay in Splinter Cell very frustrating as well…perhaps I just need to admit that this genre is not my type :(

Before you give up on it completely, try and steal a copy of Thief from some scrawny geek who collects obscure titles, since you can’t find it in stores.

He’s also disavowing Prince of Persia 3D I’d imagine. His name is on it as a consultant, but when I wrote the guide he flatly refused to let me interview him for the book (Prima was on a "Exclusive Developer Interview cover bullet point kick at the time). I only really wanted to talk to him about POP I and 2 anyway.

Before you give up on it completely, try and steal a copy of Thief from some scrawny geek who collects obscure titles, since you can’t find it in stores.

And let me add, if you’re going to get it, get Thief Gold, Eidos’ “Fuck you to fans” in CD-ROM, which has three extra missions that you can’t patch in if you get Thief: The Dark Project proper.

While on the subject of cut scenes in console games in the place of actual gameplay, this is from a very short Xenosaga preview at Gamers.com.

The story is so grand, in fact, that in the first six hours of the game, we spent what amounted to just one hour actually playing. But we’re not complaining, since Xenosaga’s sci-fi, soul-searching drama had us hooked from the outset–and when we finally got around to a few battles, we were treated to a combat system as deep as it is fun.

I was looking forward to this title, but am I crazy for wanting more gameplay out of a game? I am none to good a figurin’, but 1 hour of battling out of every 6 of “gameplay” seems like a colossal waste of my time.

Agreed. Games are not movies and the more interaction you take away the less it’s a game.

That’s if you can even buy Thief Gold anymore. Thief is part of a budget series of games now, but it’s plain old Thief in the box, not the gold version. Bloody Eidos. I want the damn extra missions but I can’t get them no matter what and I’ve been looking for years now. All this just because I didn’t want to buy the bloody Gold version for full price retail.

I think I’m in on the MGS2 dissin train as well. I was pretty worked up when it came out, in fact that’s why I bought my PS2 the first time(and then sold it the first time as well). I loved MGS, it was really a great game, and then I tried two.

I actually managed to get fairly far in the second one and then just gave up. I hate long cut scenes and I hate the shit out of stealth