Metal Gear Rising didn’t have it easy. Changing studios well into the game’s development could not possibly bode well for the final product.
Then again, this is a Metal Gear game. You either do it right or not do it at all. With its release still months away, will Metal Gear Rising find its place in an already excellent series or will it end up like Snake’s Revenge? These are the questions I asked myself as I began the PAX Prime 2012 demo.
Taking place three years after the events of Metal Gear Solid 4, the game puts us in control of Raiden and his sword as he ginsu knifes his way through the battlefield. Our demo with Konami puts us in the middle of an anonymous war zone with several shacks, columns, a ferris wheel and a few sword fodder soldiers who will later be reduced to slabs of meat.
Combat is simple, X– our demo was on the Xbox 360– made Raiden attack with the sword while Y parries. Slicing soldiers into twain doesn’t sound as easy at it sounds. Nano-enhanced soldiers will put up a fight, blocking your attacks and unleashing vicious countermoves. Without well-timed parries, you can expect Raiden to take an axe to the face. The fighting actual reminds me a bit of the Batman Arkham series and Sleeping Dogs: challenging, cinematic and fun.
Soften a soldier enough, you can slow down time to unleash a vicious sword flurry of death, destruction, and awesomeness. While holding down the left trigger, you can use the right analog stick to execute precise sword slashes. This has to be the most satisfying part of the demo, watching enemies literally fall into pieces. The environment takes damage too and you can use it to dispatch your enemy. The Konami rep happily told me I can cut the ferris wheel to have it fall on my enemies. He told me this after I cut the last one into seventeen trillion pieces.
From what we’ve seen, the combat is solid and the sword slicing is oh-so-satisfying. We can’t wait until it’s polished. We expect the final product to have smoother combat and wicked graphics. From what it looks like now, Metal Gear Rising has a lot to be excited about.
Metal Gear Rising: Revengeance will come out February of 2013, but look for the demo in the Zone of the Enders HD Collection later this year.