I'm really glad to see Metal Gear Solid V reviewing so well, because the series has one of gaming's most unique legacies behind it. Now that it's coming to an end, or at least a radical upheaval and transformation, at least it can go out on a high note.
As someone who's been with the series since the beginning, I've traced Metal Gear through both its ups and downs — and believe me, director and designer Hideo Kojima has led us through plenty of both. At its best, the Metal Gear series has presented a medium-defining hotbed of innovative play concepts and brilliant integrations between game and narrative; at its worst, it's been tasteless, pompous, long-winded, ill-conceived, and cringeworthy. To its credit, though, Metal Gear has rarely been mundane or boring. Kojima's ambitions haven't always panned out the way he intended, but he's always been ambitious.
Tomorrow's launch of MGSV marks, for all intents and purposes, the end of Kojima's involvement with the franchise he's shepherded for nearly three decades. Whatever form Metal Gear takes in the future, assuming it's not just slot machines, it will by necessity be a very different creature from the games Kojima has overseen.
As we approach the end of an era in gaming, we felt it only fitting for Retronauts to revisit the Metal Gear saga one last time to bid farewell to a long-running video game odyssey so dear to so many of our hearts. Joining Bob and myself this week: Fellow long-time Metal Gear enthusiasts Shane Bettenhausen (of Sony), and IGN's Jose Otero. Together, we offer a tearful salute while standing at the boss' grave, focusing more on the positive and memorable than the negative. For all Metal Gear's flaws over the years, even when it's been a hard pill to swallow, it's created great experiences and great memories. So why not take a trip with us down memory lane?
As an era ends with the release of Metal Gear Solid V, Shane Bettenhausen and Jose Otero join us to wax rhapsodic about the unique history on gaming's longest-running saga. No haters or Hayters allowed!
This week's episode takes its music directly from Metal Gear games spanning the full history of the series, from the original MSX game all the way through PSP's Peace Walker. Composers include Tappi Iwase, Norihiko Hibino, and many others.
- Metal Gear Solid V review: Kat's running commentary on the game. Good news: She thinks it's pretty great.
- Gaming's Greatest Con Job: A piece I wrote a few years back on the sublime brilliance with which Hideo Kojima lied to our faces about Metal Gear Solid 2, and why that made it a better and more meaningful game.
- Ground Zeroes and the Trouble With Tone: A look at why Kojima's grand ambitions sometimes fall flat on their face.