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Metal Gear Solid: The Twin Snakes (GameCube) artwork

Metal Gear Solid: The Twin Snakes (GameCube) review

"Realization of the importance of plot in games took another giant step when Konami released itís best-selling Metal Gear Solid for the PlayStation. In the years before, storylines had been evolving slowly, getting itís first big boost with the high sales of Final Fantasy VII, but Metal Gear Solid is what truly brought in-depth plots out of the ghetto to make a mark on the gaming world. "

Realization of the importance of plot in games took another giant step when Konami released itís best-selling Metal Gear Solid for the PlayStation. In the years before, storylines had been evolving slowly, getting itís first big boost with the high sales of Final Fantasy VII, but Metal Gear Solid is what truly brought in-depth plots out of the ghetto to make a mark on the gaming world.

Former FOXHOUND U.S. agent Solid Snake, retired to the cold harsh climate of Alaska and living the life of a dog musher, was forced back into the life of infiltrating the shadows by personal motives; the Shadow Moses Island chain of Alaska, hijacked and captured by terrorists, has been the secret grounds for the testing of a new Metal Gear, a giant influence out of Snakeís dark past. Furthermore, the terrorists are traitors to the U.S. government, former FOXHOUND agents, and the same unit Snake once belonged to. Woven into all this madness was Liquid Snake, Snakeís long-lost brother and the leader of the terrorists. To top it off, the terrorist demand from the United States government is the genes of Big Boss, a man who admitted to be Snake's father seconds before a father-son duel to the death the likes of which was more stunning than the Luke Skywalker vs. Darth Vader fights, which will complete the experiments of genetically-enhanced soldiers.

Combined with a plethora of cutscenes, in-depth stealth-infiltration gameplay that forced you to move through rooms as silent as a cat, and top-of-the-line aesthetics, Metal Gear Solid became one of the hearts of PlayStation culture. However, many were not satisfied with the game, watching as itís successor Metal Gear Solid 2: Sons of Liberty trumped MGS in every technical department. Enter a remake for the Nintendo GameCube titled Metal Gear Solid: The Twin Snakes.

The opening cutscene shows off itís flair that its roots never possessed, and The Twin Snakes is quick to show off its technical prowess. Jaw dropping at the huge graphical upgrade, control with Snake is more fluid than it ever was on the PlayStation. With a new controller, and a call for new experiments, Snake now has a new arsenal of abilities to draw on, many previously only usable in Sons of Liberty; the ability to hide a guard in your lockers is one of the noticeable upgrades, along with the inclusion of the M9, hanging from ledges, and sticking up guards for their dog tags, but the real deal is the new First-Person Shooter mode. Although thereís no moving while in FPS mode, things are more interesting.

Never fret, though. Silicon Knights, the Canadian [former] second-party of Nintendo, went above and beyond the call of duty to make sure everything bleeding nostalgia made itís way in. Snake is still more than capable of cutting the throats of his heartless enemies, sniping foes from afar, and generally kicking genetically-enhanced soldier butt. Let us not forget the cardboard box. Nostalgia flows like water when hiding under the cardboard box.

The head honchos that youíll be facing off against are back and less reserved than before. Psycho Mantis throws chairs at you, make the paintings laugh at you, teleports around the room when danger lurks, and throws electrical balls of energy at you. As before, the key to taking out Mantis is switching controller sockets, but be warned; heís much less complacent about killing you than in the original, and heíll have your head if you will. Sniper Wolf is still the best long-range shooter around, her independence and patience combining to be fatal to most opponents, and only after a long battle of wits, searching, and sniping can you finally win. The Ninja is more anti-weapon than ever before, in desperation of a hand-to-hand fight to the death with Snake. Vulcan Raven, the giant raven-worshipping shaman, will lumber around a large arena full of walls, aiming to get you within his long line of fire as you fumble to shoot your Stinger missile at him while keeping track of the radar at the same time.

This is how Metal Gear Solid was meant to be played.

Donít be thinking though that things are perfect, as Silicon Knights fell a bit off in matching the insane Hideo Kojimaís masterpiece. The FPS makes things a bit on the easy side of things. Mei Ling has lost her accent while Naomi sounds less enthusiastic. While Snake's regular animation looks awesome, when he stoops to fight a guard in hand-to-hand combat and knock them out cold, his model looks like crap. Even the cutscenes suffer, as some brazenly jump over the line in their over-the-top characteristics (Snake jumping off a flying missile and the ninja taking on Metal Gear ). Nevertheless, donít let this fool you; The Twin Snakes is still an excellent remake of a classic, and it far surpassed what most people thought the untested Silicon Knights could do. Is The Twin Snakes almost indefinitely superior to itís predecessor in every way? Yes. Is The Twin Snakes as ground-breaking, revolutionary, and genre-defining as the original? No.

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Community review by yamishuryou (May 02, 2005)

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