One of the oldest series in video gaming, Metal Gear never fails to disappoint even if its often ponderous narratives frequently fail to connect on the first playthrough. That’s OK, though, because esoteric nonsense is what makes Metal Gear so great, and nowhere is this more on display than in Metal Gear Solid V: The Phantom Pain.
Download Metal Gear Solid V: The Phantom Pain
To download this 2015 game, click on the button below the review. The game cane obtained from Steam. And if you like third-person shooters with stealth action you should also definitely check out Tom Clancy’s Ghost Recon Wildlands (2017).
The Game Review
Developed by Kojima Productions and released by Konami in 2015, The Phantom Pain is an action-adventure stealth game like its forebears.
The game also has heavy cinematic elements and preferences a twisting, sometimes meandering, plot over a straightforward Hollywood thriller.
But what it generates in mystery in the plot department Metal Gear Solid often ditches when it comes to gameplay. That’s the case here.
The series is often known for having competent action mechanics but never, ever rewards a run-and-gun playthrough in practice. This is because, while Solid Snake is capable, he is not invincible. Metal Gear Solid V: The Phantom Pain goes to great lengths to balance the game part of its spirit with its overriding desire to tell a story.
One of the best ways to do this is to make the action mirror the story itself. Here, Kojima Productions has pulled off quite a feat.
The stealth action lets you absorb your environment and what is going on around you. Similarly, when cinematic sequences occur, you’re also forced to stop and consider what is happening in the game.
You won’t always get it – that’s for sure – but the fact that the game is not going to bend to mainstream desires for pure action all the time is both a trademark of its pedigree and a detraction for some people.
The Phantom Pain often provides the player with more approaches to in-game scenarios than was ever on offer in previous games. The seamless connection between all of these gameplay systems makes the game’s world both organic and alive.
You never feel like you’re romping through a theme park or behind the wheel of some cheesy 1980s action movie.
To be sure, the latter has a heavy influence on Metal Gear Solid as a series, but The Phantom Pain is probably one of the best examples of how narrative and gameplay can inextricably complement one another.
That’s because Metal Gear Solid is really nothing without its story, and there’s a lot of that on offer here.
Should you have some background knowledge of what happened in the previous games? Here it not only helps but will probably prove itself a necessity. Otherwise, you will be lost. Sure, you can read summaries online, but nothing beats experiencing those games for yourself.
For gamers heavily invested in Metal Gear Solid lore, however, Metal Gear Solid V: The Phantom Pain is easily a masterpiece.
- Awesome stealth action and adventure
- A huge, detailed plot that goes on and on
- Characters that are iconic and compelling
- Tons of story
- Not a quick pick-up-and-play game