Metal Gear Solid V: The Phantom Pain – Review

Metal Gear Solid V: The Phantom Pain is the most recent installment in the Metal Gear Solid Franchise. Metal Gear Solid V: The Phantom Pain takes place right after Metal Gear Solid V: Ground Zeroes. You wake up as Big Boss in a hospital with enemies at every corner. From the gun-wielding to the Supernatural. With it, it brings many great mechanics it has built throughout the years. It is the first game in its series that expands into Open-World gameplay. You have large pieces of land in Afghanistan and Africa to explore and carry out your missions. The story is complex with strong characters; each with their own beliefs.

Although it came out in 2015, it’s free on the Xbox One through Games With Gold until the end of May.

The Story of Revenge

It is no secret that Hideo Kojima loves to add little nuggets into every detail. You carry on the legend of Big Boss. Coming back to the battlefield for revenge. Alongside Miller and Ocelot, you grow your new base of operations – Diamond Dogs. On the search for Skullface, you discover more sinister plans. Honestly, from the start of the game, it feels like a John Carpenter film. There is the military aspect, then the nearly supernatural side. The story goes through twists and turns. It’s like the game was written on a Fiddle. And as Big Boss, only you can make decisions and uncover the enemy’s true motives.


Unfortunately, the story of Metal Gear Solid V: The Phantom Pain is unfinished. The game carries very heavy themes that can’t truly be appreciated entirely by a younger audience. And even then, many overlook the unique creativity of Hideo Kojima. The game is full of it in the cassette tapes you get which you can listen to at any time through your iDroid. The game does leave a lot of things unanswered. It is without a doubt that the game had more story, but in the end, you are left with unanswered questions as Big Boss.

New Faces

During the course of Metal Gear Solid V: The Phantom Pain, you are reunited with characters such as Miller and Ocelot. However, the game does well on introducing new faces.  The characters are alive with personality, and the voice acting is superb. It absolutely excels in bringing characters to life with tremendous talents like Kiefer Sutherland.

I mentioned before that MGS V: TPP feels like a John Carpenter film. New enemies bring with them a sense of horror. In the way, they move, how they attack, sound, and the ambiance you are put through. It’s interesting how quickly the game can go from feeling like an 80’s action film like Rambo to something like Jacob’s Ladder (great film btw). The camera angles used to make you feel like you’re immersed in a film during the cutscenes. It’s cinematic brilliance.

The Gameplay Mechanics

Simply put, the gameplay is the most refined thing in the game. You can research new equipment to play the game differently. You can eventually extract tanks! You’ll gather resources and build your base. You are in complete control as to what gets researched; as long as you have the resources and the manpower to do it. There is almost always a non-lethal way to approach missions. You can go full stealth and only put those in your way to sleep and Fulton them back to base. Another way to handle missions is to land down in the middle of the base while blasting Flight of the Valkyries and a fully Automatic Rifle. Definitely, lots of fun to be had. There are even hidden ways to accomplish many missions.

Along the way, you have your Buddies. The more you take them out into the field with you, the more the loyalty improves and it allows you to unlock different upgrades and equipment.

As you grow your base, you will be able to send out Units to do jobs for you. This earns you resources so you can keep growing and keep unlocking new equipment! You can even invade other player’s Base to steal their resources, if successful. However, in some invasions players will be able to fight back. You are also at risk of having your own base attacked, so it’s important not to skip out on your defenses.

Everything can be done through your iDroid! Whether you need a new weapon, you can either call out an order to research new gear or call for a supply drop. You can even call for different air strikes for support.

Metal Gear Online

Metal Gear Online (MGO) is the Multiplayer implementation. All of the Mechanics from the Singleplayer game are found in the multiplayer. There are different game types you can select from, and even an online leveling system. As you level up, you unlock new gear.

Final Thoughts

Although there is so much to talk about MGSV: TPP, it can easily be said that it is worth a play. No other series combines so many different genres so fluidly like Metal Gear Solid. It leaves the player with too many open-ended plots. And still, with that flaw, the game holds up to mature story-telling and delivers a dynamic gameplay experience.


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