definition of Wikipedia
|Metal Gear Solid|
North American Release cover art.
Digital Dialect (PC port)
Microsoft Game Studios (Microsoft Windows)
Lee Jeon Myung
|Media/distribution||1 or 2 CD-ROMs|
Metal Gear Solid (メタルギアソリッド Metaru Gia Soriddo , commonly abbreviated as MGS) is a video game by Hideo Kojima. The game was developed by Konami Computer Entertainment Japan and first published by Konami in 1998 for the PlayStation video game console. It is the sequel to Kojima's early MSX2 computer games Metal Gear and Metal Gear 2: Solid Snake. The game featured cinematic cutscenes rendered using the in-game engine and graphics, as well as voice acting in numerous codec sequences.
Metal Gear Solid follows Solid Snake, a soldier who infiltrates a nuclear weapons facility to neutralize the terrorist threat from FOXHOUND, a renegade special forces unit. Snake must liberate two hostages, the head of DARPA and the president of a major arms manufacturer, confront the terrorists, and stop them from launching a nuclear strike.
Metal Gear Solid was very well received, shipping more than six million copies, and scoring an average of 94 out of 100 on the aggregate website Metacritic. It is recognized by many critics as one of the best and most important games of all time, and heralded as the game which made the stealth genre popular. The commercial success of the title prompted the release of an expanded version for the PlayStation and PC, titled Metal Gear Solid: Integral; and a remake, Metal Gear Solid: The Twin Snakes was later released for the Nintendo GameCube. The game has also spawned numerous sequels, prequels and spin-offs, including several games, a radio drama, comics, and novels.
Despite a transition to 3D, the gameplay of Metal Gear Solid remains similar to its 2D MSX2 predecessor Metal Gear 2: Solid Snake. The player must navigate the protagonist, Solid Snake, through the game's areas without being detected by enemies. Detection is triggered by the player moving into an enemy's field of vision and sets off an alarm that draws armed enemies to his location. This also triggers "alert mode" and the player must then hide and remain undetected, at which point “evasion mode” begins and once the counter reaches zero the game returns to "infiltration mode" where enemies are not suspicious of Snake’s presence. The radar cannot be used in alert or evasion mode.
To remain undetected, the player can perform techniques which make use of both Solid Snake's abilities and the environment, such as crawling under objects, using boxes as cover, ducking or hiding around walls, and making noise to distract enemies. These are carried out using the third-person camera, which often changes its angle to give the player the best view of the area possible, and an on-screen radar, which displays enemies and their field of vision. Snake can also make use of many items and gadgets, such as infra-red goggles or a cardboard box disguise. The emphasis on stealth promotes a less violent form of gameplay, as fights against large groups of enemies will often result in serious damage for the player.
The game's progress is punctuated by cutscenes and codec, as well as encounters with bosses. To progress, players must discover the weaknesses of each boss and defeat them. Game controls and play strategies can also be accessed via the Codec radio, where advice is delivered from Snake's support team; for example, the support team may chastise Snake for not saving his progress often enough, or explain his combat moves in terms of which buttons to press on the gamepad. The Codec is also used to provide exposition on the game's backstory. Completion of the title provides the player with a statistical summary of their performance, and a "code name" based upon it, typically the name of a common animal.
In a first for the Metal Gear series, a training mode, called VR Mode, is available in which players can practice hiding techniques, weapon use, and sneaking. In addition to the stealth gameplay, there are set piece sequences that entail firefights between the player and enemies from the third-person and first-person perspectives.
The protagonist of Metal Gear Solid is Solid Snake, a legendary infiltrator and saboteur, voiced by Akio Otsuka/David Hayter. According to character designer Yoji Shinkawa, Solid Snake's physique in this particular installment was based on Jean Claude Van Damme, while his facial appearance was based on Christopher Walken. During the mission, Snake receives support and advice via codec radio. Colonel Roy Campbell, Solid Snake's former commanding officer, supports Snake with advice and tactics. While he initially keeps a number of secrets from Snake, he gradually reveals them. He is joined by Naomi Hunter, who gives medical advice; Nastasha Romanenko, who provides item and weapon tips; Master Miller, a former drill instructor and survival coach; and Mei Ling, who invented the soliton radar system used in the mission and is also in charge of mission data; the player can call her to save the game.
The main antagonist of the game is Liquid Snake, leader of a now-terrorist splinter cell of the organization FOXHOUND, and genetic counterpart to Solid Snake. An elite special forces unit, FOXHOUND contains experts specializing in unique tasks. Members are Revolver Ocelot, a Western-style gunslinger and expert interrogator whose weapon of choice is the Colt Single Action Army; Sniper Wolf, a preternatural sniper; Vulcan Raven, a hulking Alaskan shaman armed with an M61 Vulcan torn from a downed F-16; Psycho Mantis, a psychic profiler and psychokinesis expert; and Decoy Octopus, a master of disguise.
Other characters include Meryl Silverburgh, Colonel Campbell's niece and a rookie soldier stationed in Shadow Moses who did not join the revolt; Dr. Hal Emmerich, the lead developer of Metal Gear REX; and the "Ninja", a mysterious cybernetically enhanced agent who is neither an ally nor an enemy of Snake but does oppose FOXHOUND.
|Metal Gear series fictional chronology|
The story is set sometime between February 21st and 27th, 2005, six years after the events of Metal Gear 2: Solid Snake (not to be confused with Metal Gear Solid 2). A genetically enhanced, renegade special forces unit, FOXHOUND, leads an armed uprising on a remote island in Alaska's Fox Archipelago. This island, codenamed "Shadow Moses", is the site of a nuclear weapons disposal facility. The forces that seized this island, led by a mercenary known as Liquid Snake, have acquired the nuclear-capable mecha, Metal Gear REX, and are threatening the U.S government with a nuclear reprisal if they do not receive the remains of the "legendary mercenary" Big Boss within 24 hours.
Solid Snake is forced out of retirement and is dispatched at the request of Colonel Roy Campbell to penetrate the terrorists' defenses and neutralize the threat. Snake is also ordered to locate two hostages: DARPA Chief Donald Anderson, and ArmsTech president Kenneth Baker. Colonel Campbell's daughter, at the time believed to be niece, Meryl Silverburgh, is also held captive in the facility after refusing to take part in the uprising. Snake enters the facility via an air vent and eventually locates Anderson in a cell. He informs Snake of the new Metal Gear REX unit housed at the facility and how he can prevent it from being launched using a secret detonation override code, but then suddenly dies of a heart attack. Meryl, who is held in an adjoining cell, manages to break out and assist Snake in escaping as enemy soldiers are alerted to his presence. Snake then locates Baker. Whilst attempting to free him, Snake is confronted by Revolver Ocelot, who challenges Snake to a gunfight, which is interrupted by a mysterious cyborg ninja who cuts off Ocelot's right hand. Baker briefs Snake on the Metal Gear project and advises him to contact Meryl, whom he gave a PAL card that could be used to prevent the launch; but, like the DARPA Chief, he suddenly dies of a heart attack.
Snake then contacts Meryl via codec, and agrees to meet her in the base's warhead disposal area on the condition that he contacts Metal Gear's designer, Dr. Hal "Otacon" Emmerich. As he emerges onto a canyon, Snake receives an anonymous codec call. The mysterious voice calls himself "Deepthroat" and warns Snake of a tank ambush up ahead. Snake is confronted by Vulcan Raven in an M1 tank, but manages to defeat the two gunners and proceeds to the warhead disposal area. Snake locates Otacon in his lab. The ninja reappears, and Snake realizes that it is actually his formerly deceased ally Gray Fox. Otacon agrees to aid Snake remotely, using special camouflage to procure information and supplies while he remains invisible. Snake meets with Meryl and agrees for her to accompany him on his mission. Meryl gives Snake the PAL card Baker gave her. As they head for the underground base, Meryl becomes possessed by Psycho Mantis's mind control tune and pulls her gun on Snake. Snake disarms Meryl and defeats Psycho Mantis who, before he dies, informs Snake that he read Meryl's mind, and discovered that he has "a large place" in her heart. After they reach the underground passageway, Sniper Wolf ambushes them; wounds Meryl; and, after a brief duel, captures Snake.
While Snake is imprisoned, Liquid confirms Snake's suspicion that they are twin brothers. Snake is then tortured by Ocelot and the player can choose whether or not to give in to the torture. When Snake is taken to his cell, he discovers Anderson's body lying in the corner, drained of blood and looking decomposed for days. Eventually Snake is able to escape his cell.
As Snake makes his way up the facility's communications tower, he is ambushed by Liquid in a Hind-D attack helicopter, but swiftly defeats him. As he emerges from the tower onto the snowfield, he is confronted once again by Sniper Wolf. This time, however, Snake defeats and kills Wolf in front of a grief-stricken Otacon, who was infatuated with her. Nonetheless, Otacon continues to aid Snake.
Snake continues on to REX's hangar, while Vulcan Raven lies in wait. Raven, having shamanistic intuition, is able to discern Snake's heritage. He can also tell that Snake is a clone, saying that he is "from another world." Snake and Raven battle it out in a freezer warehouse, which results in Raven's death. During his death scene, Raven tells Snake that the man he saw die in front of his eyes was not the DARPA Chief but Decoy Octopus, a member of FOXHOUND. Raven leaves Snake with a cryptic message of his violent future before being devoured by ravens.
Infiltrating Metal Gear's hangar, Snake overhears Liquid and Ocelot preparing the launch sequence for Metal Gear REX. Thinking he is deactivating it by using the PAL card, Snake activates Metal Gear REX. Liquid then reveals his true colors, having impersonated Master Miller from the beginning of the operation. Liquid informs Snake that his entire mission was manipulated by the renegades to allow the launch of the nuclear weapon. Liquid explains that they are the product of the Les Enfants Terribles project, a government-sponsored effort to clone Big Boss, that was conducted during the 1970s. Liquid explains that Snake received all of Big Boss' dominant genes, while he received all of the recessive genes. He also reveals to Snake the government's true reason for sending him in: the reprogrammed FoxDie virus would kill all the members of FOXHOUND, allowing the government to retrieve REX undamaged.
Liquid assumes control of Metal Gear REX and a battle ensues. Gray Fox suddenly appears and destroys REX's radome and dies trying to fend off the bipedal tank from Snake. Snake destroys Metal Gear REX and is challenged again by Liquid in person. He fights Liquid atop REX and defeats him after knocking him over the edge. He is then reunited with Meryl or Otacon, depending on the player's actions. They escape through an underground tunnel, while being chased by Liquid, in a jeep. After the two vehicles crash at the tunnel entrance, Liquid emerges and pulls a gun on Snake but suddenly dies from the FoxDie virus. Colonel Campbell, briefly ousted from command of the mission, calls off a nuclear air strike intended to obliterate the evidence of the day's events and officially declares Snake killed in action to stop the US government's search for him in the future.
After the end credits, the player finds out that Snake is the one with recessive genes whilst Liquid had the dominant genes. Solid Snake is revealed to have an indeterminate amount of time left before FoxDie kills him. Ocelot is revealed to be a double agent for the President of the United States. His intention was to obtain Baker's disk containing Metal Gear's specifications and deliver it to the President, and kill whoever knew of his true motives, one reason for his "accidental" killing of the DARPA Chief.
Kojima initially planned the third Metal Gear game in 1994, originally titled "Metal Gear 3", and to release it for the 3DO Interactive Multiplayer in 1994. Conceptual artwork, by illustrator Yoji Shinkawa, of the characters Solid Snake, Meryl Silverburgh, who was also a character in the adventure game Policenauts, and the FOXHOUND team, were included in the Policenauts: Pilot Disk preceding the release of the full 3DO game in 1995. However due to the declining support for the 3DO, development of the game shifted to the PlayStation shortly after it was released.
Kojima retitled the game Metal Gear Solid, choosing this over the working title Metal Gear 3. This was due to the fact that he believed that the first two MSX2 games in the series were not very well known. He used the word 'Solid' which was chosen due to the game being the third installment in the series, and because it uses 3D computer graphics. Sequels to this game also use the Metal Gear Solid title, and follow a new numeral progression.
The development for Metal Gear Solid began in mid-1995 with the intention of creating the "best PlayStation game ever". Developers aimed for accuracy and realism while making the game enjoyable and tense. In the early stages of development, the Huntington Beach SWAT team educated the creators with a demonstration of vehicles, weapons and explosives. Weapons expert Motosada Mori was also tapped as technical adviser in the research, which included visits to Fort Irwin and firing sessions at Stembridge Gun Rentals. Kojima stated that "if the player isn't tricked into believing that the world is real, then there's no point in making the game". To fulfill this, adjustments were made to every detail, such as individually designed desks.
Hideo Kojima created the characters of Metal Gear Solid. Modifications and mechanics were made by conceptual artist Yoji Shinkawa. The characters were completed by polygonal artists using brush drawings and clay models by Shinkawa. Kojima wanted greater interaction with objects and the environment, such as allowing the player to hide bodies in a storage compartment. Additionally, he wanted "a full orchestra right next to the player"; a system which made modifications such as tempo and texture to the currently playing track, instead of switching to another pre-recorded track. Although these features could not be achieved, they were implemented in Metal Gear Solid 2: Sons of Liberty.
Metal Gear Solid was shown to the public at the E3 gaming event in 1997 as a short video. It was later playable for the first time at the Tokyo Game Show in 1998 and officially released the same year in Japan with an extensive promotional campaign. Television and magazine advertisements, in-store samples, and demo give-aways contributed to a total of US$8 million in promotional costs. An estimated 12 million demos for the game were distributed during 1998.
The English version of Metal Gear Solid, translated by Jeremy Blaustein, who localized the Sega CD version of Snatcher, contains minor refinements made during localization, such as adjustable difficulty settings, a bonus tuxedo outfit for Snake, and a "demo theater" for viewing cutscenes and radio conversations. Versions of the game dubbed in Spanish, German, French and Italian were released throughout Europe in addition to the English-dubbed version released in America. A premium package was released in Japan and Asia containing the game, a t-shirt, dog tags, a music CD featuring the soundtracks of the MSX2 games, and a booklet with information about the game's production and plot. A European version of the package was also produced, featuring different content from the Japanese version.
The Japanese PlayStation version of Metal Gear Solid, as well as Integral, had been reissued twice: once under The Best range and second time as a PSone Books title. Likewise, the American and European versions of Metal Gear Solid were reissued under the "Greatest Hits" and "Platinum" ranges respectively. The game is included in the Japanese Metal Gear Solid: 20th Anniversary Collection set and in the American Essential Collection set. The original Metal Gear Solid was released on the PlayStation Store for download on the PlayStation 3 and PlayStation Portable in 2008 in Japan and in 2009 in North America and Europe.
Released on June 25, 1999 for the PlayStation in Japan, Metal Gear Solid: Integral is an expanded version of the original game based on the North American localization. The original Japanese voices are replaced with the English dub, while offering a choice between Japanese and English captions, and there is an extra disc of virtual reality training missions dubbed the "VR Disc". Added to the main game are an alternate sneaking suit outfit for Meryl to complement Snake's tuxedo and the red-colored Ninja, a "Very Easy" difficulty setting where the player starts their mission with an MP5 sub-machine gun with infinite ammo, new Codec frequencies with staff commentary and hidden music, a first-person view mode, an option for alternate patrol routes for enemies, and a downloadable PocketStation minigame.
The "VR Disc" features over 300 missions testing the player's sneaking and fighting skills, as well as less conventional tests, such as murder mysteries, battling giant genome soldiers, and three missions where the player controls the Cyborg Ninja. Special features include trailers for Metal Gear Solid, a preview artwork of Metal Gear RAY from Metal Gear Solid 2: Sons of Liberty and a "photoshoot" mode to take pictures of Mei Ling and Naomi. In Japan, Famitsu magazine scored the Integral and "VR Disc" bundle a 34 out of 40.
The VR Disc from Integral was released as a separate product outside of Japan — in North America as Metal Gear Solid: VR Missions (September 23, 1999) and in Europe as Metal Gear Solid: Special Missions (October 29, 1999). When loading Special Missions, the player is prompted to replace the game disk with either of the disks from Metal Gear Solid. If the disk is correctly identified, the player can insert the Special Missions disk and the game will then load as normal. This requirement was absent from the American VR Missions and Japanese VR Disc. Special Missions cannot be played on pre-SCPH-70000 PlayStation 2 consoles, as it will not recognize either Metal Gear Solid disk, but the game is compatible with other consoles.
A PC port of Integral was also released in Europe and North America in late 2000 with PocketStation support removed. Scoring 83 in Metacritic's aggregate, the game was criticized for "graphic glitches", the aged nature of the port, and being essentially identical to the PlayStation version.
A remake of Metal Gear Solid, titled Metal Gear Solid: The Twin Snakes, was developed by Silicon Knights under the supervision of Hideo Kojima and released for the Nintendo GameCube in North America, Japan, and Europe in March 2004. While Twin Snakes was largely developed at Silicon Knights, its cutscenes were developed in-house at Konami and directed by Japanese film director Ryuhei Kitamura, reflecting his dynamic signature style, utilizing bullet time photography and choreographed gunplay extensively. While the storyline and settings of the game were unchanged (although a select few lines of dialog were re-written more closely resembling the original Japanese version), a variety of gameplay features from Sons of Liberty were added such as the first person aiming and hanging from bars on walls. Another change in the English voice acting was the reduction of Mei Ling's, Naomi's and Nastasha's accents, as well as the recasting of the Ninja from Greg Eagles, who still reprised the role of the DARPA chief, to Rob Paulsen. The graphics were also updated to match those of MGS2.
The musical score of Metal Gear Solid was composed by Konami in-house musicians, including Kazuki Muraoka, who also worked on Metal Gear. Composer and lyricist Rika Muranaka provided a song called "The Best is Yet To Come" for the game's ending credits sequence. The song is performed in Irish by Aoife Ní Fhearraigh. The main theme was composed by TAPPY (岩瀬 立飛 Iwase Tappi ) from the Konami Kukeiha Club and was also used in Ape Escape 3.
Music played in-game has a synthetic feel with increased pace and introduction of strings during tense moments, with a looping style endemic to video games. Overtly cinematic music, with stronger orchestral and choral elements, appears in cutscenes. The soundtrack was released on September 23, 1998, under the King Records label.
|GameRankings||94% (28 reviews)|
|Metacritic||94 / 100 (20 reviews)|
|Electronic Gaming Monthly||10/10|
The game was very well received by the media and some of the most prominent gaming critics. NGamer said "It's like playing a big budget action blockbuster, only better". Gaming website IGN awarded the game 9.8 out of 10 and said it came "closer to perfection than any other game in PlayStation's action genre" and called it "Beautiful, engrossing, and innovative...in every conceivable category". Users and critics of GamePro gave it an average score of 4.8 out of 5 calling it "this season's top offering [game] and one game no self-respecting gamer should be without". But they criticized the frame rate, saying it "occasionally stalls the eye-catching graphics" and "Especially annoying are instances where you zoom in with binoculars or the rifle scope", and also the interruptions of "advice from your team", in the early parts of the game, calling it an "annoyance". GameSpot also criticized this, saying "It needlessly interrupts the game". They also criticized how easy it is for the player to avoid being seen, the game's short length, and called it "more of a work of art than ... an actual game". It received an Excellence Award for Interactive Art at the 1998 Japan Media Arts Festival.
Metal Gear Solid is often recognized as one of the key titles involved in popularizing the stealth game genre. The idea of the player being unarmed and having to avoid being seen by enemies rather than fight them has been used in many games since. It is also sometimes acclaimed as being a film as much as a game due to the lengthy cut scenes and complicated storyline. Entertainment Weekly said it "broke new ground with...movie-style production...and stealth-driven gameplay, which encouraged...hiding in boxes and crawling across floors". GameTrailers claimed that it "invented the stealth game" and called it "captivating, inventive and gritty". The game is often considered one of the best games for the PlayStation, and has featured in best video games lists by GameFAQs, Japanese magazine Famitsu, Entertainment Weekly, Game Informer, GamePro, Electronic Gaming Monthly and GameTrailers. However, its placing in these lists is inconsistent, ranging from 1st to 50th.
In 2002 IGN's editors ranked it as the best PlayStation game ever. Writer for the site David Smith said that just the demo for the game had "more gameplay [in it] than in most finished titles". They also gave it the "Best Ending" and "Best Villain" awards. In 2005, in placing it 19th on their list of "Top 100 Games", they said that it was "a game that truly felt like a movie" and that the fights were "unique and innovative", and claimed that it was "the founder of the stealth genre". In 2010, PC Magazine ranked it #7 in its "10 Most Influential Video Games of All Time" list, citing its influence on "such stealthy titles as Assassin's Creed and Splinter Cell." According to 1UP.com, Metal Gear Solid's cinematic style continues to influence modern action games such as Call of Duty.
Guinness World Records awarded Metal Gear Solid with a record for the "Most Innovative Use of a Video Game Controller" for the boss fight with Psycho Mantis in the Guinness World Records: Gamer's Edition 2008 edition.
Metal Gear Solid, along with its sequel, Metal Gear Solid 2, will be featured in the Smithsonian American Art Museum's "The Art of Video Games" exhibition, taking place from 16 March to 30 September 2012.
A Japanese radio drama version of Metal Gear Solid was produced shortly after the release of the original PlayStation game. Directed by Shuyo Murata and written by Motosada Mori, 12 episodes were aired, from 1998 to 1999 on Konami's CLUB db program. The series was later released on CD as a two volume set. Set after the events of the PlayStation game, Snake, Meryl, Campbell and Mei Ling (all portrayed by their original Japanese voice actors) pursue missions in hostile third world nations as FOXHOUND. The new characters introduced include Sgt. Allen Iishiba (voiced by Toshio Furukawa), a Delta Force operative who assists Snake and Meryl; Col. Mark Cortez (v.b. Osamu Saka), an old friend of Campbell who commands the fictional Esteria Army Special Forces; and Capt. Sergei Ivanovich (v.b. Kazuhiro Nakata), a former war buddy of Revolver Ocelot from his SVR days.
In September 2004, IDW Publications began publishing a series of Metal Gear Solid comics, written by Kris Oprisko and illustrated by Ashley Wood. As of 2006, 12 issues have been published, fully covering the Metal Gear Solid storyline.
The comic was adapted into a PlayStation Portable game titled Metal Gear Solid: Digital Graphic Novel (Metal Gear Solid: Bande Dessinée in Japan). It features visual enhancements and two interactive modes designed to give further insight into the publication. Upon viewing the pages, the player can open a "scanning" interface to search for characters and items in a three dimensional view. Discoveries are added to a database which can be traded with other players via Wi-Fi. The "mission mode" allows the player to add collected information into a library. This information must be properly connected to complete a mission. Metal Gear Solid: Digital Graphic Novel was released in North America on June 13, 2006, Japan on September 21 and the PAL region on September 22. In 2006, the game received IGN's award for Best Use of Sound on the PSP. A DVD-Video version is included with its sequel (Metal Gear Solid 2: Bande Dessinée), which was released in Japan on June 12, 2008. The DVD version features full voice acting.
A novelization based on the original Metal Gear Solid was written by Raymond Benson and published by Del Rey. The American paperback edition was published on May 27, 2008, and the British Edition on June 5, 2008.
Director Hideo Kojima confirmed in 2006 that a film adaptation of Metal Gear Solid was in development. He also hinted that the movie may be set in Alaska, the original setting for the game. Despite pitching his ideas regarding the movie, the voice of Solid Snake, David Hayter, will not be writing the final script, appearing in the movie or directing the film. However, a petition has been started by fans to get Hayter involved in writing the script. The movie's producers hoped to invite Kurt Wimmer to write the movie, but the final decision has not yet been announced, but DeLuca dismissed the claim. According to an interview in Nuts magazine actor Christian Bale is interested in playing Solid Snake in the film.
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