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Metal Gear Rising: Revengeance Preview – The Cutting Edge

As big a fan of the Metal Gear series as I am, I had a lot of doubts going into my Metal Gear Rising: Revengeance hands-on demo. Maybe I was too attached to seeing Snake or Big Boss as the series’ main protagonists; I just couldn’t fathom that a game with Raiden as a main character could work. As well, a series that has built it’s fan base with engaging stealth gameplay for decades suddenly changes direction and goes full-action? Sounded like franchise suicide to me.

Yet here I am, two days after my hands-on with the game with a changed mind and a newfound excitement for the game’s release. Developed by team behind the Japanese hit Vanquish, Metal Gear Rising: Revengeance features the love-him-or-hate-him Raiden, set many years after the events of Metal Gear Solid 4. Raiden now works for various PMC’s as he builds a future for himself and his family. Though in the world of Metal Gear, that’s easier said than done.

Hit the jump to read more of my Metal Gear Rising: Revengeance hands-on preview.

I have to say, it really does make sense that Konami chose Platinum Games (Baynetta, Vanquish, and MadWorld) to develop Metal Gear Rising: Revengeance because of their pedigree in creating over-the-top action games that are not only fun to play, but oozes style as well; just the right mix for an older and more mature Raiden.

Just like Bayonetta, Metal Gear Rising: Revengeance is a third-person action game that features cinematic, stylistic action with a bit of stealth gameplay added to the mix. Like most action games, Raiden performs standard and heavy attacks using the ‘X’ and ‘Y’ buttons. Raiden can also block, and roll away from enemy attacks for defense.

It does feature a more dynamic camera system that sticks allows for full control of the view of the action. Though most of the time, the camera sticks pretty close to Raiden (his back actually) so its easier to see the damage his blade does to the enemy units, environments, and in-game items.

And by damage, I mean anime-style blood fountains, cut-off appendages, and bloody chunks of flesh on the battlefield. Especially when Raiden activates his “Blade Mode” where time slows down and Raiden slices and dices his enemies to small bloody pieces. On the Xbox 360, the Left Trigger activates “Blade Mode” and the right thumbstick allows players to precisely control Raiden’s slicing attack motion. This is really helpful during hostage situations as Raiden can slow down time and strategically slice an opponent without hurting the hostage.

An interesting detail to take note of is that there’s a hit counter to the right of the screen that keeps count of how many times a players cuts through enemies during “Blade Mode”. I think this is a great mechanic as it has the potential to inspire competition throughout the Metal Gear Rising: Revengeance community;with players outdoing each other’s scores online and on Youtube gameplay/brag videos.

There are times that the game nods to the older titles with players being able to sneak up on unlucky opponents and dispatch of them in brutal fashion. For example, during my hands-on demo, I snuck up behind an enemy guard and pressed the ‘A’ and ‘X’ button together to boot the opponent into the air, jump just above him and activated “Blade Mode,” needless to say, it ended with soldier sashimi all over the floor.

During my hands-on demo, I was able to fight enemy soldiers, a Gekko (from Metal Gear Solid 4) and an attack chopper. In addition to these battles, I was introduced to Metal Gear Rising: Revengeance’s free-run mechanic which allows Raiden to traverse environments and the obstacles in his path easily and in a stylish manner. Basically, the mechanic has Raiden car jumping, vault-climbing all over obstacles like they weren’t even an issue for him.

Graphically, the game looks and feels a lot like a cross between Metal Gear Solid 4 and Platinum Games’ own Vanquish. There’s a lot of detail in the environments and the character models. What’s also amazing is that character models get cut and sliced in accordance to Raiden’s slicing motion. For example, if you aim to slice an opponent diagonally through from his right shoulder to left torso, he get’s cut in half exactly where the blade sliced through. This also applies to environments and objects in the game.

It’s amazing how much a game can change your mind with just one demo. Almost all of my trepidation of the title were allayed and got me really excited for Metal Gear Rising: Revengeance’s release sometime next year. I’m not sure if Revengeance will be as good as Platinum Games’ past titles, I’m happy to say that it looks and plays great, and will definitely entertain both action-adventure fans as well as Metal Gear die-hards.

Check out our Metal Gear Rising: Revengeance gameplay video below:

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About janhutchings

Canadian Game Industry Blogger / Contributor for @Sonyrumors & @ShogunGamer / Communications and PR Professional. Voice of Canadian and Indie Gaming. http://jtmgames.com/

Posted on September 4, 2012, in Game Previews and tagged , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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