Big Ti-Oh I'm sorry I was typing while reading and didnt see you there. I usually reserve my writing about video games until the end of the year and get it done in bulk , but I feel this is something worth writing about atleast while all the net is still talking about it.
What is it that I want to write about you ask? Well its kind of this thing I noticed when playing the phantom pain , its something very similar to the likes of Splinter Cell: Conviction or Hitman : Absolution. Ill get to it in abit but let me get this out of the way.
Despite What I have to say I will let you know that I still think that at its core MGSV is a game worth playing for sure , when it comes to its graphics , audio and gameplay its pretty damn polished. What I found to be lacking is the mission stucture and writing (charecters and story). From this point on I am going to assume you have beaten the game therefore MAJOR SPOILER UP AHEAD. With that said here are (in my opinion) some of the issues I found with the game.
Issue-1: The phantom game:-
By now you probably are familiar with what the definition of the medical condition of phantom limb is, but just in case I will tell you again just like its probably a good idea to tell you that this game was written and directed by Hideo Kojima AGAIN. From what google tells me its a condition in amputees where they feel sensation on missing limbs , in other words its a feeling on something that is not there. This is pretty ironic since the the further you get into the game you will have this feelin that there is definatly something missing wheather its story missions that will connect story donts , or most of big boss's goddam dialogue. Big boss is charecter known for his words how the hell do you think he managed to convice all those damn soldies to fight fo him. It isnt so much the issue that big boss is now voiced by Kiefer Sutherland( who will be referred to as Kief from here on) , its an issue that he has very little to nothing to say.
Issue-2: An open world stretched thin:-
The words "tactical espionage operations" can be seen under the games title on the box , they definatly deliver on that front. This is no longer a single man sneaking mission where weapons are obtained on site , this is both a good thing a bad thing. See my memories of prior MGS games involve me finding random useful shit to aid in my sneakage the further I progressed , its part of the adventure experience of the earlier games the furtehr you go the better the gear you got to match more dangerous enemies. With portable ops , peace walker and phantom pain its all about recruiting and assigning personell to research your better stuff. This becomes an issue when you realise that there are REAL TIME waiting times on the gear. Now focus on this one , if your game already exceeds 20 hours nowadays people are pretty happy.
Factor in all the time spent getting on and off the helicopter , running to and from and objective ( even with d-horse or d-walker its a good few minutes which accumilates over time) , add to that the time you will spend on side ops which I dont understand why they are in SIDE OPS if you HAVE TO do them to progress just put them in missions. In the side mission invovling the recovery of the kids you can generally recover all of them withount the fulton except for the 3rd (unless I am somehow mistaken) some dipshit thought it would be pretty funny to put this kid on top of a tower , all efforts to not fulton his ass ended in killing a child which the game will remind you that you killed a child. The rearch for this thing that I just needed 1 time to progress took almost 60 minutes all for a mission that took 5 minutes to finish. I do not think that is good design.
You already have a bunch of padding here , then the game essentially takes chapter 2 and folds it onto chapter 1 to fatten the game. It was like an unholy combination of Far cry 2 and Alone in the dark(2008) , as in unneccessary episodic layout meets eventually frustrating repetition.
Metal gear games are known for the story and cutscenes , they even began to take precedance over gameplay the more the series went on(this is not a good thing , but its something youve probably gotten used to) thus they really fipped the tables here. So of the 30-40 hours (it took me that much) you will need to beat this alot of it is strung out repetition which could easily be substituted with some more story.
Issue-3: Bathroom wall story writing
If youve read this far you are no stranger to bad writing , but come on a vocal parasite and a Saddam Hussain ( big boss) double? It more of Far cry 2 and Alone in the dark-esque writing that result in a game which keeps driving you forward all for a dissapointing or lacking pay off. More on the bad writing is charecters written to behave very differently than you might remember. I dont understand why they had to turn Huey into Snidely Whiplash. Why is it that Oceleot and Miller basically do nothing. I think Boss and Skullface couldve been so much more with more lines , speakiing of Skullface why is he reduced from shadow operator to fuck up in mere minutes of you meeting him face to face. Finally on Quiet I honestly dont have much to say (eh heh) but they shouldve just kept her in the very first thing you see her wearing in the hospital.
This combination of weak story or many plotholes and charecters that feel off is what throws me back to Hitman: Absolution or Splinter Cell: Conviction , they essentially turned Sam fisher in that game from a pascifist to death incarnate and Agent 47 became Mr. Bean.With MGSV Kief never says the legenday "Metal Gear !?" line , there is no slo-mo mecha porno of the metal gear. More on that for a game called metal gear it barely features the damn thing.
I think its part of the issue of trying to tell a personal story of a fictional charecter. At this point the fans of the series probably feel they understand the charecter better than the guy who wrote him/her/it.
Alright then asshole , how would you have done it?
I can't sit here and tell you I could write this game's story better ( did you read the stuff above , goddamn). However if I were to structure it , I do not think it should have been about Big Boss becoming evil. Hell , I did not even know the game was supposed to be about that. The trailers and the back of the box say "ALL FOR REVENGE"
Had I been the one that structured this game I would have cut mother base comepletly out , since the FOB stuff is not wroking anyway right now and honestly I spent most of my time in the field. The mother base stuff comes accross as some way to satisfy the clash of clans crowd if you ask me. I think they shouldve sold mother base seperatly and had ground zeros be apart of the phantom pain instead of being on its own.
Additionally I would have it so that Skullface is the one who reveals to you that you are not the boss despite this youd still fight him because fuck him and fuck cifer. As for Eli and his uprising I think he has a place in the game it just shouldve been apart of Chap-1. One last thing I would change is that when you replay the hospital mission I would have loved it if real big boss had David Hayter's voice , oh well.
So you hated it , huh?
I hated part of it , I just cannot say I hate this game after all the time with it( if you can finish Far cry 2 , you can finish this).
The whole deal of Hideo and his twists in plot was so goddamn played up by the media , that whole epic missing link in the story. Would you really give this writing a 10/10 ( not mine , the game) , but you have to give old jima some credit for making you love this franchise to begin with( and ofcourse all the other poor souls at Konami who worked with him).
There is some magic to behold when it comes to Saddam stealing Kim Wilde bootleg tapes from the russains and an eye patch dog, it everytime rain is falling and you look at boss and a buddy running back to the helicopter post mission. To say it in much less words: its a good game , its just not a good metal gear game.
As always thanks for your time.