I already have my protective shields up for the incoming onslaught of nasty comments that I will inevitably receive for writing this editorial, but I feel it needs to be said.
Metal Gear Solid V, to me, is an incredibly repetitive game. That is not to say it is a bad game, because it is not. It really is a fantastic game and fully deserving of all the praise it has been receiving. At the same time, I feel many critics completely glossed over the repetitiveness of the game.
Each mission that I have played so far in the game has mostly consisted of scouting out a base, taking care of the guards and either blowing something up or rescuing prisoners. I’ve made it to Africa in the game, so I think I’ve played a fair amount to make this judgment. The final mission in the Afghanistan location changes things up a bit but when your boots hit the ground in Africa, you’re back to completing similar objectives it seems.
The gameplay is superb, as are the stealth elements to the game that allow each mission to have variety in the way you play. As most other reviews have already stated, every player is going to have a different experience with Metal Gear Solid V. Crazy moments like sliding in the cardboard box down a hill into an enemy, popping out and giving him lead to the dome is an example of such a moment I experienced. But the missions themselves are very much lacking variety so far in what I’ve played. The mission structure seems to mostly be set up like this:
Start at Mother Base –> Get in Helicopter –> Select a Mission –> Select drop point and begin observation of your objective –> Silently take out a base of enemies, or go in, guns blazing –> Complete final objectives and extract.
I am having some trouble pushing myself to continue on with the game for the same reason I have an issue completing a number of open world games. They are becoming more and more repetitive. The experiences I have had in Metal Gear Solid V, I have had in other games already as well. I have stealthily taken out military bases in Far Cry 4. I have interrogated multiple enemies in Batman: Arkham Knight. I have assassinated high profile targets in Assassin’s Creed: Unity. Get my point?
None of those games were bad at all, they were all great games. Metal Gear Solid V is a great game, but even with an engaging storyline, great gameplay and utterly gorgeous graphics, a lack of variety is keeping me from wanting to complete the rest of the game. Maybe the missions in Africa are more varied and I have not played enough of the game yet. At the same time, I believe it is a design issue within the game itself if I cannot push myself to go further due to a lack of actual objective variety, rather than gameplay variety.
There’s hundreds of different ways you can tackle each mission, but even so, when completing similar objectives over and over again, it still feels repetitive at the core.
The game had a strong start with its introduction, and I almost would have preferred more of a linear experience if it involved more in-game sequences like that. Because that shit was intense, to say the least. Gimme more of that Kojima.