Review – Metal Gear Rising: Revengeance Demo


Review – Metal Gear Rising: Revengeance Demo
A cut above?

To clarify, I’m the resident Metal Gear fan in this office. Arguably, I’m the resident Metal Gear fan in most offices. And rather than balk at Platinum’s takeover of Raiden’s second playable outing, I greeted it for what it was – the best possible outcome!

Those even obliquely aware of Raiden’s heritage understand he is no longer the whinging, floppy haired protagonist of MGS2. He’s now a cyborg ninja who can hold back aircraft carriers with one arm lopped off!
Who better to construct this venture than the maniacal geniuses behind Vanquish!?!?

And so it is with no small measure of distress that I admit my initial frustration with the Revengeance demo which recently bundled alongside the Zone of the Enders HD Collection.

Jump Spinning Heel Kick + Katana = Happy Gamers!
Jump Spinning Heel Kick + Katana = Happy Gamers!Enlarge Enlarge

I should clarify. Because that’s basically my job...
A paltry handful of missteps retard an otherwise ripping good demonstration. Nonetheless, with barely 10 weeks til release, Platinum NEED to patch these problems, lest their final product suffer.

The demo opens with a refreshingly restrained cutscene. It brims with Metal Gear’s atypical, off-kilter charm yet swiftly introduces the Maverick Security team. And then it’s sword city. And... this here tree... is the mayor!

A 15 foot trunk of majestic fauna stands as the test subject for Revengeance’s acclaimed new Blade Mode. Sadly it’s an awkward mechanic. Manipulating Raiden’s cutting arc is a co-ordinated two thumb endeavour. As gamers, our muscle memory has adapted to targeting reticules not realigning semicircles...

Still, it’s a far cry from unusable. And two trees, three pillars and one rusted walkway later I feel confident in my bushido. This confidence dies out quicker than the Samurai once machete wielding, grenade lobbing cyborgs decide to throw down. As one might expect, they offer more resistance than palm trees.

Restricted to an expansive yet specific combat arena (a relic of Hack’N’Slash whose continued existence perplexes me) combat is an empowering affair. Raiden’s every limb is on Sword Duty! The usual array of Strong/Weak/Aerial/Launcher lays the well trodden foundation while active-anytime Blade Mode turns combat on its head. Often literally.

The cut-counter is a gratuitously pleasing addition. Foes can be diced into 300+ pieces if you happen to be a complete sadist. But, life lesson folks, making a mess is easy. Mastering a skill, like bullseyeing a cyborg’s left arm, takes patience and dedication.

Spine-Ripping is something of a must!
Spine-Ripping is something of a must!Enlarge Enlarge

Revengeance’ stealth is surprisingly robust. Visor modes map arenas. Vertical faces are easily hopped. Superfluous secondary weapons offer a quaint diversion, while sneaky melee takedowns ensure the entire second sequence can be comprehensively ninja-ed!

Sadly, though stealth kills spectacular up the proceedings even further, limited animations quickly deflate enthusiasm for this approach. He’s a ninja, guys! He’s probably got more than just ‘Backstab’ up his sleeve. More takedowns por favor!

The obligatory boss fight follows a literal scenery chewing set up, before the lightning speed Dogboss forces the twitch based parry system into play. Improvement here is MANDATORY! Successful parries results in speedy counters... SOMETIMES! Even the typically informative codec calls do little to illuminate the system’s inadequacy.
Eventually, following a furious war of attrition, the beast fell to my stubbornness. But not my skill...

Revengeance remains a most anticipated 2013 title! Platinum have dished up another slice of genius, a subversive actioner which ninja-runs circles about its most noticeable competition, DMC.

For all it's faults, Revengeance is a rebreath of refresh air!
For all it's faults, Revengeance is a rebreath of refresh air!Enlarge Enlarge

Regardless, we’d all prefer more Bayonetta, less Anarchy Reigns.
Upgrades are necessary to ensure this result.
Overhaul that defensive play.
Bolt on fresh takedown animations.
Renovate Blade Mode.

Keep tweaking, Platinum!
Then treat us all to some bloody Revengeance - ReBest ReServed ReCold.

0 Stars
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