I remember it well, tearing apart the floor of my bedroom closet in search of the original case for PlayStation’s Metal Gear Solid; unfortunately, as a younger fleshling, I was not as good as I am now about being organized and keeping good care of my videogame purchases, and I desperately needed this case. Without it, I could no longer progress. See, on the back of the jewel CD case was a screenshot of Solid Snake communicating with Meryl, giving her codec frequency the limelight. In-game, ArmsTech President Kenneth Baker mentions all of this, and it’s up to you, the gamer, to put it all together. I do believe the Internet was happening back then, but it was much slower to look things up on, and so, without the case to find that special codec signal, all future stealthiness was lost.
Visual proof for y’all:
It was magical, for sure; a wall-breaker, a mind-twist, a clever punch to make the moment truly have a lasting effect, a foreshadowing of what was to come. There’s plenty of other great things in Metal Gear Solid to talk about–Psycho Mantis was impressed by how long I’d been playing Suikoden–but alas, we’ll have to save it for a GAMES I REGRET PARTING WITH posting as I did, for some unknown reason, trade it in. Boo. Anyways, this 30 Days of Gaming topic is about sequels…
There was no such magical moment in Metal Gear Solid 2: Sons of Liberty. Yup, there were twists and turns and surprises, but nothing really hit the mark as well as the former title did. MGS 2‘s biggest letdown was, naturally, removing the character we all loved playing as and replacing him with…Raiden. Snake handled missions with force and raw determination; Raiden, with his effeminate looks and high-pitched voice, handled them less-enthused with the occasional argument between his girlfriend Rose. Cruelty burns bright knowing that Snake is still around, disguised as a marine and offering advice during the mission. And then, of course, there’s nude Raiden, a sequence that was bewildering and baffling, that more or less summed up the entire MGS 2 experience in that, yes, we’d all been had.
Now, there’s a lot I do like about MGS 2. Namely the first chunk of the game where you get to play as Snake, the boss battle against Vamp, and shooting bad guys with tranquilizer darts and then stuffing them into lockers for non-lethal kills. But overall, it just did not live up to the same thrilling, dramatic experience as in Metal Gear Solid. If anything, it got more zany, and while a little insane humor has always been peppered into the franchise, it was usually deftly balanced with a great story and characters to care about. I never grew to care about Raiden, and I did attempt to throw himself from Big Shell numerous times; it’s unfortunate to see that he’s still an important character in the franchise years later. Doesn’t Rose know anything about smothering lovers in their sleep with pillows?
Other nominees for disappointing sequels include: Jak II, Colony Wars: Vengeance, and Dragon Age II (saying this without haven’t even played more than the demo yet). What game sequel disappointed you, dear Grinding Down readers, the most?