Metal Gear Solid

A compelling plot, interesting characters, and great action make Metal Gear Solid a game that no one should miss.
Reviewed By: Colonel Link - Staff Reviewer
Content at a glance:

Violence: When shot, enemies jerk a little bit and a puff of blood sprays. Cutscenes are a bit bloodier: In one scene, there are many dead people with bloody wounds, and the walls are covered in blood as well. Some characters lose hands and other limbs.

Sexual Content: 2 easter eggs allow you to see a woman in her underwear. A mind controlled woman begs you to "make love to her".

Spiritual Issues: Many of the characters have supernatural abilities, including psychic powers, mind control, flight, and one of the villains is a tribal shaman.

*Editors Note* Thanks to Evileye and Luinnar for help in editing.

*Editors Note 2* This review is based on the PC version of Metal Gear Solid: Integral, which is the original Play Station game, with VR missions and a first person mode. The content is the same.

Ah, Metal Gear Solid. Never heard of the game? Then you must have been hiding under a rock.

Metal Gear Solid is a action video and computer game directed by Hideo Kojima. The game was developed by Computer Entertainment Japan and first published by in 1998 for the PlayStation console. It is the third canonical title released in the Metal Gear series, and a direct sequel to Metal Gear 2: Solid Snake. It is often considered to be the first game, wherein the player must avoid being seen by enemies rather than fight them. The game implements several cinematic qualities, such as lengthy cut scenes, leading some to call it an “interactive movie”.


The game begins (assuming you watch the briefing first) with Solid Snake tied up in a chair in a very dark room. He soon meets an old acquaintance, Roy Campbell (from Metal Gear 2) who “asks” him to participate in a highly dangerous mission off the coast of Alaska (not that he has a choice). The island of Shadow Moses has been taken over by terrorists from FOX-HOUND, an ex-special forces unit for the U.S army. They are threatening to launch a nuclear missile unless the U.S hand over the remains of the greatest soldier who ever lived: Big Boss. They need his DNA to be able to create an army of super soldiers. Sound scary? That’s what the White House thinks. So it is your mission to infiltrate Shadow Moses, find out whether the terrorists have the capability to launch a nuke, and if they do, stop them. The story pleasantly surprised me with it’s emotional dialog, twist filled plot (without getting confusing) and interesting characters.

Gameplay: Snake is controlled from a third person overhead view, giving you a relatively good view of the surrounding area (although you can’t see ahead). The goal of the game is to make it from point A to point B while trying not to be seen by enemies (but this doesn’t get dull). This can be accomplished by pressing up against walls, crawling under vehicles, and even hiding under boxes (just don’t move when you’re under them). But if you’re discovered, you’ll have to find a place to hide until enemies stop looking for you. But if you’re feeling violent, you can also take them out. You can do this with a variety of weapons, including a Silenced Pistol, Silenced Machine Gun, Stun Grenades, C4, etc. Or you can choke, throw, punch, or even break their necks. So Snake isn’t helpless. Unfortunately, some of the moves aren’t ever explained in the game. So I was already two thirds of the way through when I discovered I could choke someone. (for anyone wanting to know, you press Q or whatever button you have assigned to shooting, and while you’re weapon in unequipped, you walk up behind them and use the button). So make sure yo read the manual!


Another helpful item is radar. It’s a bit cheap, which is why it isn’t there on the hardest difficulty levels. Basically, enemies appear as red dots in the upper right corner, along with their cone of vision. So if you’re far enough away, they won’t see you. If you’re right next to them, but not in their cone of vision, they can’t see you. Unfortunately, they CAN hear you.

Sound: Although the music is repetitive, it’s still pretty good. It speeds up when you’re in a fight, and is very dramatic when you’re having emotional dialog. Guns sound like guns, footsteps sound like footsteps, and the voice acting is great, if a bit too emotional at times.


Graphics: You have to remember that this is a PSX port. For it’s time, the graphics were very good. But the PC version didn’t seem to do anything except for adding one higher resolution setting. So the graphics are….bad. Snake has no eyes, just blurry black things. And faces in general aren’t good. But truth be told, this doesn’t detract from the experience much. I mean, what can you expect from 1998?

Violence: The actual gameplay violence is relatively mild. Enemies jerk around when shot, and there are faint blood mists. You can also choke or break their neck, although this is still bloodless. The cutscenes are where most of the violence is found. You see blood splattered walls with a dozen dead people with sword slices through them. A couple of people’s hands and arms are chopped off, and one man is stomped on by a giant robot.

There is also a mini game where the main character is tortured by an electric device, and you have to tap a button to survive. Also when you defeat one of the bosses he is eaten by birds, though the camera conveniently blocks most of it.

Language: B***ard and Son of a B**ch pop up once or twice, and D**n and Hell all pop up every so often.


Sexual Content: There are 2 easter eggs that allow you to see Meryl without here pants on (just underwear). I won’t mention them here, but the first one is very hard to get (and you’d never figure it out without a guide), and the second one is also hard to find. There is also a part in the game where someone says she has a “cute behind” and you see a couple of quick close-up shots of it. A female character who is being mind controlled begs you to “make love to her”. One of the main villains shows some cleavage. Meryl says that she is more comfortable with a gun than a bra. You hear that a doctor strip searched you, and she says you can do they same to her if you survive the mission.

Spiritual Content: Some of the FOX-HOUND members have spiritual powers. One was raised as a shaman and is able to control ravens. Another has psychic powers and can read people’s mind while flying around.

Conclusion: Metal Gear Solid is an incredible game, although it gets off to a horribly slow start. The story is gripping and full of emotion, and the gameplay is fun and emotional. I can recommend it to anyone over 15.


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Disclaimer: The opinions expressed in this Spotlight review are those of the reviewer (both ratings and recommendations), and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of Eden Communications or the Answers Network.

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