Metal Gear Rising: Revengeance
Metal Gear Rising: Revengeance Hands-On Preview - Cut From Different Cloth
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Within Metal Gear Rising: Revengeance's first 30 minutes you've fought the Metal Gear Ray, witnessed a cyborg take down a behemoth-class tank singlehanded and learned that the sword you’re wielding is capable of slicing anything and everything into pieces. Hundreds of pieces.

If you weren't sure before, you can be sure now: Revengeance is an action game through and through. No punches are pulled. Subtlety is a dirty word.

This should come as little surprise, of course. For starters, you're playing as Raiden; the white-haired cyborg ninja and seminal misfit of the Metal Gear series, known for appearing at random and saving the day in a flurry of blood and steel. Secondly, this is a Platinum Games creation; the studio that gave us the monochromatic gore fest MadWorld and two of this generation's finest action games in Bayonetta and Vanquish.

Raiden and Platinum seem as though they were custom made for one another. In a five hour session there was never a moment of downtime or reflection, both character and gameplay combining to serve up an unyielding smorgasbord of set-piece moments, ever-evolving enemies and so-whacky-they-work plot points. Raiden has generally been portrayed in a mysterious light up until now, but Platinum seems to be looking to illuminate him in as visceral and violent a manner as possible.

Tutorial optionally completed, your first experience of gameplay is to tackle a giant Metal Gear Ray. Far from a simple introduction, this fight against the six storey mechanical beast is a demanding battle that forces you to use a high percentage of your overall core move set. On the first attempt, playing on 'normal' difficulty, you'll probably die. You wouldn't be the first...

Without wanting to give too much away, victory is earned by taking out the thing's legs before jumping impossibly high and hitting it with all you've got between the eyes. No one said this was going to be realistic, and it's great that it's not.

Just when you think you've won, Ray comes back. Bad guys always comes back... It's standard practice in anything featuring a hero and a villain. The second round is even harder than the first because of the comparatively small combat arena and greater speed required of you to avoid becoming a grisly pool of blood on concrete.

The dual-round fight is the quintessential example of the pace being delivered here. Periods of heavy action are punctuated by exhilarating cut-scenes featuring simple quick-time events, followed by calmer dialogue scenes used to further the narrative. Then you're back in the action and doing it all over again. From what we've played, there's barely a minute to think.

Thinking, however, is exactly what you're going to need to do. Core gameplay is a mixture of light and heavy attacks, combined with a simple parrying system and the game's centrepiece 'free blade' mode. It's not easy and you do need to be patient in learning the techniques and attacks that are essential for survival. Attack as defence is the best way to go, striking enemies that are about to strike throws them off-balance and provides valuable opportunities for you to prevent them from ever lifting a weapon again. Alternatively, you can play it cool and wait for them to come at you before launching the perfect parry and following up with a counter-attack.

Stronger enemies usually offer the chance to vanquish them by employing a special technique that pops up as a quick-time event. As many battles involve you tackling numerous enemies (five or more), ridding yourself of the biggest threat early can literally be a lifesaver. However, due to the intense pace of the game, that's not as easy as it might otherwise be. Missing the button prompt is common practice amid the flurry of activity, forcing you onto the defensive back foot more often than an action game usually asks of you. This is no button masher, that's for sure; fail to defend properly and you'll not see it past the first couple of chapters.

If you do manage to hit all of the button prompts, you have the chance to inflict terminal damage by using free blade to chop your target into as many pieces as possible. Holding a trigger button and slicing away on the analogue stick gives you one-to-one movement control over Raiden's sword. The results are gruesomely wonderful with limbs, torsos and other miscellaneous body/machine parts succumbing to the strength of Japanese steel.

Bigger enemies can often survive such an onslaught and lose little more than an arm or leg, seriously crippling them for the rest of the fight and buying you some breathing room to focus your attention on another threat. During the first few hours these 'bigger' enemies included the aforementioned Metal Gear Ray, a robo-dog with a chainsaw for a tail, a fancy looking tripod packing a flamethrower, various forms of attack helicopters and grotesquely muscled giants of men with a love of mimicking the 'Hulk smash'.

It's all delightfully camp in the typical Metal Gear manner, like a James Bond movie directed by Robert Rodriguez and starring The Rock.

Certain sections give you the option of avoiding conflict by trying to stealth your way past foes using the tried and tested cardboard box method. Whilst slowly tiptoeing under the hood of your recycled brown shield provides fun novelty value for a short time, it feels wrong in a game like this to be bypassing combat at all. Raiden is loaded with so many flash moves that it's a shame not to use them. Besides, resisting the urge to fight results in your earning less Battle Points at the end of the chapter which limits your ability to upgrade moves/weapons/health and makes things more challenging later down the line.

That's the overriding impression of Revengeance: it's a challenging game. Perhaps those first few hours are easier to get to grips with than they are in Bayonetta, but it's certainly not far off. Watching someone play and listening to the mad bouts of frantic button pressing makes it seem like a typical button-masher, a game that anyone could pick up and 'win' by simply diving in with reckless abandon. That really is not the case. Calm, thoughtful attacks must be executed at speed to succeed, they must not be executed at random.

Given that Revengeance is absolutely nothing like the kind of thing we're used to seeing from a Metal Gear game, it will be very interesting to see whether or not fans of the series buy into what Platinum Games is trying to do here. What's for sure is that the mechanical gameplay elements bear no resemblance to one another at all, they could hardly be more different. On a different note, however, the overblown characters, convoluted narrative and general air of worldwide threat is present and correct.

This is more Platinum Games than Metal Gear... Your personal outlook on the two will determine if that's a welcome development or not.

Metal Gear Rising: Revengeance is out in February 2013.


User Comments

Forum Posts: 499
Comment #1 by AirborneRichard
Monday, December 10, 2012 @ 04:15:56 PM
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I feared it might just end up in a hack & slash game, its good for those who love these kinda games in terms of Bayoneta and Devil May Cry. But for pure MGS fans who like stealth as part of their gamefun this is probly not the best choice. Still looks good tho, but not a day one buy for me.

Forum Posts: 307
Comment #2 by Snowed
Monday, December 10, 2012 @ 04:26:13 PM
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FIRST. Oh hell yes awesome my first time being FIRST!!!

Game sounds cool.

Forum Posts: 120
Comment #3 by Xmoda
Monday, December 10, 2012 @ 04:27:34 PM
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does any1 know if you can use kinect with this game it would be awesome!

Forum Posts: 73
Comment #4 by bradengunn
Monday, December 10, 2012 @ 04:30:48 PM
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@1 Well at least your one of the pure Metal Gear fans who is willing to give the game a chance.

@2 I hate to break it to you but.... you were second.

@3 As far as I know there is no kinect support.

Forum Posts: 85
Comment #5 by JustinSane
Monday, December 10, 2012 @ 04:48:33 PM
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Forum Posts: 63
Comment #6 by Riskbreaker XYZ
Monday, December 10, 2012 @ 04:51:52 PM
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My flatmate played through Bayonetta and Vanquish, and I watched him do it. As such, I never played them myself, but it was great fun to watch someone play them properly on higher difficulties without missing a beat. That's why I will play this on day 1. And as I'm a Metal Gear fan, all the better, as it gives me a point of reference with an already established mythos.

I was so happy when I heard Platinum Games were given the licence. :)

Forum Posts: 13
Comment #7 by Bongo Bongo347
Monday, December 10, 2012 @ 05:07:10 PM
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There is no kinect support. They were asked in a interview and they laughed and said no.

Forum Posts: 1596
Comment #9 by HalfEVILmonkey
Monday, December 10, 2012 @ 05:25:56 PM
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@#2: Just....WOW. You are almost as bad as that Conquisator dude.

Forum Posts: 6
Comment #10 by bigp 6
Monday, December 10, 2012 @ 06:36:37 PM
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Big MGS fan & im asshamed to say ill be buying this just for the name on the box (like apple fanboys) even though i dont care for hac n slash.....i kinda figure this will be what RE ORC was to the resident evil franchise which is a shitty spin-off so i wont set my expectations to high

Forum Posts: 6
Comment #11 by peace099
Monday, December 10, 2012 @ 06:37:46 PM
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Well "pure" metal gear solid fans should also know that this isn't metal gear SOLID. It's staring Raiden, of course it's not going to be stealthy.

Forum Posts: 6
Comment #12 by peace099
Monday, December 10, 2012 @ 06:39:27 PM
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Forum Posts: 6
Comment #13 by bigp 6
Monday, December 10, 2012 @ 07:22:48 PM
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@11 If it starring Raiden means its not a stealth game & not metal gear solid then how do you explain MGS 2? The game starring Raiden has nothing to do with it not being a stealth game or a true metal gear solid....MGS 1,2 & 3 all had different protagonist yet they where all stealth & they where all metal gear SOLID.

Forum Posts: 161
Comment #14 by Benchem
Monday, December 10, 2012 @ 07:37:46 PM
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I think the key thing for people to remember is that while it is set in the Metal Gear universe, this isn't a Solid game, this is a Rising game. It SHOULD be different to the Solid games. If they brought this out, and it was your usual MGS stealth title, people would complain that the franchise would be being milked, as Ground Zeroes and The Phantom Pain (?) are coming out next year, both of which are standard MGS games.

I think Revengeance gives people a chance to experiment with the universe, and hey you never know, it might even turn into a little gem (like Halo Wars).

Side note - Still think Revengeance is a stupid, stupid name though.

Forum Posts: 51
Comment #15 by Woody28
Monday, December 10, 2012 @ 08:23:38 PM
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It looks cool and looks like fun. Definitely be picking this one up.

Forum Posts: 186
Comment #16 by Floodclaw
Monday, December 10, 2012 @ 08:51:00 PM
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Raiden pulled this sort of stuff in MGS4, so it fits in with the series at least.

Forum Posts: 7
Comment #17 by Senkei88
Monday, December 10, 2012 @ 09:02:40 PM
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It's good to be a true Hack 'n Slash AND Metal Gear fan. I can't pass on this one!!!

Forum Posts: 1996
Comment #18 by ColdSpider72
Monday, December 10, 2012 @ 09:55:37 PM
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Not only did #2 completely fail, he was also excited as hell to be first. Who the hell gets excited about something like that?? Are you a 7 year old? Grow up.

Enjoy your infraction and/or banhammer to the face.

Forum Posts: 154
Comment #19 by EngagedMetal7
Monday, December 10, 2012 @ 11:35:00 PM
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@18, are you ever not a complete dickhead???

Forum Posts: 20
Comment #20 by Michaelsully
Tuesday, December 11, 2012 @ 12:23:39 AM
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Remember in MGS4 back in 2007 when Raiden showed up and twirled Gekkos around by their ropes and then put a sword in his teeth and killed 20 Frogs with his mind sparks? Yeah, this was totally going to end up as a stealth game.

MGS2 Raiden, yes, was stealthy. Well, up until you fought 50 Tengus in an elevator (Fission Mailed) followed by a showdown with multiple Rays.

I'm just sayin' it's not that crazy that this is a hack'n'slash.

Don't like it? Absolutely no problem, there's Ground Zeroes and possibly Phantom Pain. :D

Forum Posts: 56
Comment #21 by Ravenkrak
Tuesday, December 11, 2012 @ 01:28:41 AM
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I've never played a MGS game in my life. Just never felt any desire to. But this is by Platinum, so I'm there. And it sounds like they're living up to their usual standards of awesome.

@20 I'm sure Gekkos and Frogs are something from the MGS world, but all I can picture is PETA getting highly offended by this Raiden guy, who now seems to be the cruel and insane enemy of poor defenseless animals everywhere.

Forum Posts: 84
Comment #22 by Lazy_FAQer
Tuesday, December 11, 2012 @ 06:09:21 AM
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Loved MGS1 ... played it through about a dozen times. All others were giant 'meh' fests as far as I am concerned... 3 hour FMV intro? nah thanks.

As a NG fan, this may just be the best Metal Gear game ever for me:)

Forum Posts: 48
Comment #23 by TEAJUNKIES
Tuesday, December 11, 2012 @ 09:51:51 AM
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Really can't wait for this. Never played a MG game but love quality hack n slash titles. This should be fun.

Forum Posts: 84
Comment #24 by Lazy_FAQer
Tuesday, December 11, 2012 @ 10:50:01 AM
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^ Ninja bros in arms:)

Forum Posts: 204
Comment #25 by Zacry072
Tuesday, December 11, 2012 @ 11:08:32 AM
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I hope it isn't absolutely critical to have played any of the Metal Gear games as I have not. I loved Bayonetta and Vanquish so I want to play this game based solely off of that fact.

Forum Posts: 954
Comment #26 by Dark Anaconda
Tuesday, December 11, 2012 @ 12:38:56 PM
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1. This is Raiden, not Snake ,look at MGS4 how Raiden fights, he is not hiding , he is like: " Come at me bro" > so this Spin-Off is just fucking good. If u don`t know that ,you are not a true MGS Fan. The only argument you can bring on is: " But Raiden did a stealth job in MGS2, so why not now again?" Lol, do you remember the part where he got the sword? After that his "stealth part" was over. After getting the sword he turned into a front-fight warrior , no need for stealth action if you fight with him.
So making this game into an hack`n slash is just very good and fits well for Raiden`s fighting style.

2. This is Platinum Games, do u know the company? If yes, you would know that they are making amazing games, such as Bayonetta, Vanquish and Anarchy Reigns, Konami and Platinum Games NEVER disappointed me, unlike other companies like Crapcom with RE and DMC. The fact that Platinum Games is working on this game makes the game worth buying it.

3. MGS Rising > kind of the new Devil May Cry for me , skipp the new "Emo May Cry" and get this game, this way you can also support Platinum Games ,they deserve all the money.

Forum Posts: 0
Comment #27 by predator_jb
Tuesday, December 11, 2012 @ 12:43:29 PM
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I think i need to get ZOE box set for the demo, looks good from videos ive seen. Any updates on the plasma lamp for the collectors edition? Just want to know if the UK gets it before i preorder.

Forum Posts: 291
Comment #28 by ViNyLek
Tuesday, December 11, 2012 @ 01:04:47 PM
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@#2 Just don't commit suicide just yet. there will be plenty more opportunities to be first still=)

OT: I struggled with Bayonetta on normal at some parts (though I loved it I never even started hard), so still sort of catious about this game. Hopefully they will release the demo and I can decide once and for all=)

Forum Posts: 77
Comment #29 by Rob2682
Wednesday, December 12, 2012 @ 01:21:02 PM
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Played all past MGS titles can't wait for this one !

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Game Info
Platinum Games


US February 19, 2013
Europe February 22, 2013
Japan February 21, 2013

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