Metal Gear Rising: Revengeance – Hands-on Preview

view gallery VIEW GALLERY

Metal Gear Rising: Revengeance is shaping up to be an interesting mash of styles, themes, and universes.

On paper, it really shouldn’t work. The Metal Gear series has always focused on the shadows, on staying hidden, whereas Platinum Games do their best work in garish neon glare. But had chance to go hands-on with the chimerical creation that is the sublimely named Metal Gear Rising: Revengeance, and, somehow, the disparate parts all manage to fit together into a gory, entertaining and painfully difficult whole.

The game stars Raiden, whipping boy of Metal Gear Solid 2 and now a cybernetically altered super-ninja armed with a glowing energy blade and a jaw that looks like it could bite its way out of an oil tanker. From what little story we could discern from the slice on view you appear to start out on some sort of rescue mission – presumably to do with the African state Prime Minister as seen in the recently released trailer.

Most of the gameplay will feel instantly familiar to anyone who’s played a hack-and-slasher before. You have heavy attacks and light attacks, and you can combo them together to create devastating chains of blood spouting carnage. On top of that comes the game’s unique selling point – the ability to pull a trigger button, slow time, and pick out the position of your slice by tilting the analogue stick.

It takes a while to get used to, but once things click you’ll be cutting through weaker enemies with ease and lining up your slices to catch the glittering orbs that grant you ever more impressive points bonuses. As you’d expect from a Platinum game you’re graded after almost every encounter, with smart, stylish play naturally yielding the best ranks.

If you manage to sneak up on a guard, you’re treated to a brief cut scene involving your sword, gouts of blood and some squelchy noises as you run him through. It’s a satisfying coda to a well-orchestrated sneak, and probably shows off the dualism at the core of Revengeance best: there are glimpses of Metal Gear here yes, but they’re only punctuation marks in Platinum’s blood-daubed manuscript.

Alongside the gore and the exposition-heavy cut scenes, one thing stood out – just how difficult the game is to play. A parry system that requires you to time swipes and directional inputs to clash with your opponent’s attack is fiendishly difficult, demanding split second timing and more practice than was afforded us during our all too brief time with the title.

Fans of Platinum’s output will relish the challenge, but it may well come as a shock to anyone coming to the game from the side of the pure Metal Gear series. The fast, fluid gameplay sits at odds with the staccato rhythm of its progenitor, and could well alienate fans of Kojima’s stealthy progression (or else leaving fans demanding significantly more from future Metal Gear games if the formula proves to be a success).

Worth the wait? Metal Gear Rising: Revengeance is shaping up to be an interesting mash of styles, themes, and universes. It has Platinum’s violence and swagger, overlaid with Kojima’s focus on cinematic storytelling and attention to polemic. As ever we reserve judgement given the brevity of our preview, but Revengeance certainly kept us enthralled for every second of our play through and just could be one of 2013’s first post-Xmas musts.

By Harry Slater

Format: PS3, Xbox 360
Developer: Platinum Games
Publisher: Konami
When? 28 February 2013

PROMOTED VIDEO
Life and Style
ebookNow available in paperback
ebooks
ebookPart of The Independent’s new eBook series The Great Composers
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

ES Rentals

    iJobs Job Widget
    iJobs Gadgets & Tech

    Recruitment Genius: Web Design Apprentice

    £6240 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This company is a well established websit...

    Recruitment Genius: Senior .Net Application Developer

    £40000 - £60000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This is a fantastic opportunity...

    Recruitment Genius: .Net / SQL Developer

    £25000 - £35000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: A skilled .NET developer with e...

    Recruitment Genius: IT Technical Support Engineer - PC/Mac

    £25000 - £30000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This IT support company are cur...

    Day In a Page

    As in 1942, Germany must show restraint over Greece

    As in 1942, Germany must show restraint over Greece

    Mussolini tried to warn his ally of the danger of bringing the country to its knees. So should we, says Patrick Cockburn
    Britain's widening poverty gap should be causing outrage at the start of the election campaign

    The short stroll that should be our walk of shame

    Courting the global elite has failed to benefit Britain, as the vast disparity in wealth on display in the capital shows
    Homeless Veterans appeal: The rise of the working poor: when having a job cannot prevent poverty

    Homeless Veterans appeal

    The rise of the working poor: when having a job cannot prevent poverty
    Prince Charles the saviour of the nation? A new book highlights concerns about how political he will be when he eventually becomes king

    Prince Charles the saviour of the nation?

    A new book highlights concerns about how political he will be when he eventually becomes king
    How books can defeat Isis: Patrick Cockburn was able to update his agenda-setting 'The Rise of Islamic State' while under attack in Baghdad

    How books can defeat Isis

    Patrick Cockburn was able to update his agenda-setting 'The Rise of Islamic State' while under attack in Baghdad
    Judith Hackitt: The myths of elf 'n' safety

    Judith Hackitt: The myths of elf 'n' safety

    She may be in charge of minimising our risks of injury, but the chair of the Health and Safety Executive still wants children to be able to hurt themselves
    The open loathing between Barack Obama and Benjamin Netanyahu just got worse

    The open loathing between Obama and Netanyahu just got worse

    The Israeli PM's relationship with the Obama has always been chilly, but going over the President's head on Iran will do him no favours, says Rupert Cornwell
    French chefs get 'le huff' as nation slips down global cuisine rankings

    French chefs get 'le huff' as nation slips down global cuisine rankings

    Fury at British best restaurants survey sees French magazine produce a rival list
    Star choreographer Matthew Bourne gives young carers a chance to perform at Sadler's Wells

    Young carers to make dance debut

    What happened when superstar choreographer Matthew Bourne encouraged 27 teenage carers to think about themselves for once?
    Design Council's 70th anniversary: Four of the most intriguing prototypes from Ones to Watch

    Design Council's 70th anniversary

    Four of the most intriguing prototypes from Ones to Watch
    Dame Harriet Walter: The actress on learning what it is to age, plastic surgery, and her unease at being honoured by the establishment

    Dame Harriet Walter interview

    The actress on learning what it is to age, plastic surgery, and her unease at being honoured by the establishment
    Art should not be a slave to the ideas driving it

    Art should not be a slave to the ideas driving it

    Critics of Tom Stoppard's new play seem to agree that cerebral can never trump character, says DJ Taylor
    Bill Granger recipes: Our chef's winter salads will make you feel energised through February

    Bill Granger's winter salads

    Salads aren't just a bit on the side, says our chef - their crunch, colour and natural goodness are perfect for a midwinter pick-me-up
    England vs Wales: Cool head George Ford ready to put out dragon fire

    George Ford: Cool head ready to put out dragon fire

    No 10’s calmness under pressure will be key for England in Cardiff
    Michael Calvin: Time for Old Firm to put aside bigotry and forge new links

    Michael Calvin's Last Word

    Time for Old Firm to put aside bigotry and forge new links