The inaugural Metal Gear Solid 4 weekend has past and I’m sure some Siliconera readers picked it up. I never played Metal Gear Solid 4 at a booth by choice so this weekend was my first time playing it too. My first thought was Metal Gear Solid 4 felt more like a Hollywood action movie more than the other games in the series. Sure, you can sneak behind PMC soldiers as Old Snake, but you don’t have to. If you completely ignore the alert system Snake can run through the Middle East with guns blazing. There is even a first person camera to make Metal Gear Solid 4 more accessible for the FPS crowd.
Actually, I think it’s easier to act like Rambo in the first act. If you want to be stealthy you need to be patient. You have to wait for troops to move and get shot during enemy crossfire. You have to search for alleyways to hide in. You have to creep around soldiers while wearing a drum can, play dead on the battlefield, and search for routes on rooftops. These techniques, sans rolling in the drum can, are nothing new to Metal Gear Solid veterans, but a newcomer to the Metal Gear series can beat the first act without sneaking around. The main penalty is Snake will occasionally vomit from an overdose of bloodlust.
You may miss out on precious rations if you don’t search every corner too. However, if you shoot without discretion, you earn plenty of weapons. These extra guns are automatically cashed-in to Drebin Points which can be spent on better artillery. This feedback loop allows players to continue using brute force as a way to move from one cutscene to the next. Arguably, Metal Gear Solid 4 wasn’t meant to be played this way, but it can be. At certain points shooting skills are required and other times you need to utilize espionage abilities like trailing a mark. So no matter which choice you pick everyone does some of both.
But, when you get a chance to choose between the two which do you pick? Shooting or sneaking?
Images courtesy of Konami.