Tuesday, 24 April 2018

Metal Gear Survive ★★★☆☆


Despite issues with everything from story, to pacing, insanely boring game mechanics, and questionable DLC practices, Metal Gear Survive isn’t a complete steaming turd. It may be close for some, but there’s probably something there for more forgiving fans of the series, or anyone looking for a new survival experience. Imagine you had access to all of the assets from one of the biggest games of 2015 but lost the man responsible for using those building blocks to produce a contender for Game of the Year.

Fast forward three years later, and that's where we're at with the Metal Gear franchise. Hideo Kojima is long gone, and what's left is a generic zombie shooting/resource management clone that misses the mark in many respects. The story follows a soldier working under Big Boss at Mother Base, known as the Captain. You’re sent through a wormhole to synthesise a cure for an illness picked up at the beginning, taking you to a land known as Dite.


Gameplay leans heavily on the survival aspects, with constant resource management high on the agenda. This is especially true at the beginning, as it’s a struggle to stay alive while keeping an eye on your hunger and thirst bars. They deplete with astonishing speed, meaning that it’s best to plan your next move first rather than rushing in wildly. It means that you’ll be spending a lot of time stealth killing various zombies and wild animals, which is where you’ll get the majority of your building blocks for more resources, which does make it easier.

Crafting new weapons and equipment does help to break the monotony, and the world is filled with different ways to mow down hordes when you get going with the main story. There’s also a base defence aspect to take care of, as you try to gain a foothold in the hostile environment while under constant attack. It’s reasonably fleshed out, and it’s probably the most interesting part of Survive overall. For example, eventually, there’s no issue with hunger or thirst, as farms and water tanks can be built in your base. However, it will take time and effort to improve, which many just won’t have the patience for.


While it does sound decent, it struggles to live up to expectations when compared to a typical MGS game. The story has been stripped of any real impact, and there’s a lack of a strong narrative as it’s set in an alternate timeline without most of the main characters. Survive has gained a lot of bad press upon release, mostly because you’ll need to maintain a constant internet connection to play, to allow for co-op features. Worse still, Konami decided to charge for extra character slots, coming in at £9.99 for the pleasure of letting somebody else have a go on a different save file.

Above all, it’s an unashamed asset flip with a few redeeming qualities for those willing to see past the flaws. There’s the grind itself, the low weapon durability, and the worthless in game content that can only be accessed by spending real money. On the other hand, if you’re interested in a new survival/base building game you could do far worse. Resources are generally plentiful, and you’re never pressured to spend money unless you want to.

Final Verdict: Dead On Arrival 


★★★☆☆
James Milin-Ashmore

Metal Gear Survive at CeX




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