What is the best stealth game of 2015? The RPS Advent Calendar highlights our favourite games from throughout the year, and behind today’s door is…
RPS Feature 2015's best stealth game.
Hideo Kojima, a legend in the eyes of those who live on the virtual battlefield, has indeed parted ways with Konami and founded his own new PMC (private makegames company). The Metal Gear maestro has even managed to sneak his old studio name out of Konami. All year we’ve heard about a falling-out of some sort between the designer and the publishers, so it was pretty clear he was going, and Konami even blocked him from accepting an award this month for MGS V.
Well, as of today, he’s out, he’s gone, and he’s at a new Kojima Productions. Also, he’s grown a cracking new beard for that ‘grizzled veteran’ look.
We’re about 11,000 nukes away from Snake and pals throwing a shindig in Metal Gear Solid V: The Phantom Pain [official site] – disarming 11k of them, that is. You might’ve seen a while back that folks had uncovered cinematics celebrating nuclear disarmament, but it wasn’t entirely clear what they were or how to trigger them. Welp, Konami have now confirmed that, as guessed, it’ll trigger if every nuclear weapon players have built is destroyed (they’re part of the Forward Operating Base PvP invasion stuff). They’re issuing daily updates on disarmament progress too.
After a balls-up at launch, Pro Evolution Soccer 2016 [official site] shipped with a load of out of date team rosters. A subsequent free ‘Data Pack’ released a month later failed to straighten this out, but Konami promised that Data Pack #2 would set things right. Now they’ve confirmed that’ll be with us next week next Thursday, December 3rd.
Upon release, you might’ve spotted the odd discrepancy within the team lineups of Pro Evolution Soccer 2016 [official site]. Schweinsteiger still at Bayern and not Man United? RVP still at Old Trafford and not with Fenerbahçe? PES 2016 shipped with out of date team rosters, see, and troubles with follow-up ‘Data Pack’ updates kept players waiting longer still. To make amends, Konami have detailed future content plans including giving free UEFA Euro 2016 bits to everyone early next year.
Big Boss ordering a soldier into battle dressed as a sexy version of his ambiguous mentor/mother/lover figure who he himself killed is an unusual move even for a chap who abducts people with balloons, but this is Metal Gear. The curious MGS3-inspired DLC costumes for Metal Gear Solid V: The Phantom Pain [official site] have arrived. They’re outfits for male and female soldiers, Snake included, and showy getups for your horse, priced at £0.79 each or £3.99 for all seven. However, it seems some are bugged and don’t work properly.
Though I quite cheerily murdered folks in Dark Souls by invading their world – hey, look, everyone knows spooky woods have murderous guardians – I’ve yet to invade another player’s base in Metal Gear Solid V [official site]. 120 hours in, no one has invaded my own Forward Operating Base either. Loading MGS up this morning to see what a new patch brought, I noticed Konami are offering a whole load of rewards for invasions and it makes me wonder… do most people skip invasions? Have you intruded?
Update: Konami are denying that Kojima has left the company, saying that he is instead “on vacation.” More details below.
Metal Gear Solid maestro Hideo Kojima has left Konami. We’ve been reporting on rumours about Kojima’s departure from the publishers since March, but now it’s reported by The New Yorker that October 9th was his last day at the company.
Metal Gear Solid V [official site] latest update focuses on additions to FOB missions, in which players can invade and steal from specially-constructed bases maintained by other players. One of the updates is the ability to pay real money to insure the contents of your base. Find more details below.
RPS Feature And I'm Letting It
I expected MGSV: The Phantom Pain [official site] to be punishing – the kind of stealth game that stuck you with insurmountable challenges the second you stepped out of the shadows or were spotted. These expectations were born of what I assumed previous Metal Gear Solid games were, based on struggling through the first on PSone as a teenager, and based on the slavish praise they received from what I assumed were more skillful players than me.
I was initially relieved, then, when The Phantom Pain turned out to be accommodating. But after twenty hours of play, I’m much more surprised to find myself feeling so far towards the other direction. The Phantom Pain is too easy.
Pro Evolution Soccer 2016 [official site] is not going down well. Once again, its graphics are somewhere between the PS3/X360 console version and the fancier one on PS4/Xbone, which is baffling considering how beautiful fellow FOX Engine game Metal Gear Solid V looks and runs on PC. Still, if you want a big old 3D footie game on PC, your choices are FIFA or PES, so… which will you go for?
As promised, a demo for PES 2016 arrived shortly after launch (sorry, I didn’t notice its launch on Friday because I was busy shouting at a referee) and can be found on Steam for your sampling satisfaction. Its graphics settings are turned down, mind.
Our chums at Eurogamer are lending their trusted backing to recent claims that publisher Konami are beating a swift retreat from big budget land for a while, even though everyone and their D-Dog seems to be playing Metal Gear Solid V. Pro Evolution Soccer 2016 is out now and Metal Gear Online is still due for release, but if reports are to be believed everything else is getting dropped like a very expensive hot potato.
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Mistakenly lock eyes with a D-Dog plush toy in Metal Gear Online, and when you snap out your stupor you may find yourself hoisted into the air with a balloon on your bum.
Metal Gear Solid V: The Phantom Pain [official site] does have a little multiplayer action through its Forward Operating Base invasions, but it’s getting a big fancy affair with teamplay and different modes – not to mention zany gadgets like cute D-Dogs – as a free update. Metal Gear Online is delayed on PC, but with the console launch soon, Konami are showing it off a little so we can at least see what we’ll get next year:
I’ve been looking forward to the latest Pro Evolution Soccer [official site] game since reading a couple of extremely positive reviews of the PS4 version. The game arrived on Steam last night and I’m installing it right now but release day revelations are chipping away at my excitement. Last year’s PC Pro Evo was a hybrid version that felt closer to the 360 and PS3 edition of the game than that on current-gen consoles. The same is apparently true this year and while that doesn’t mean the game will necessarily be a load of cobblers, it does mean I’m unwilling to assume any positives related to the celebrated PS4 version will carry over.
RPS Feature Even An S-Rank Isn't Flawless
Metal Gear Solid V: The Phantom Pain [official site] may be the best stealth-action game ever made, but it’s not flawless. The game’s massive scope, and the surprising amount of detail in each interaction within that massive playpen, is impressive – however, that scope is precisely why certain aspects feel like they have something missing. Consider the following, then, as an exploration of The Phantom Pain’s own phantom pains – without plot spoilers.
You might remember Metal Gear Solid V: The Phantom Pain [official site] publisher Konami last week warned of a nasty bug that could corrupt your save file if you took a certain character with you on two particular missions – not something someone would expect to break a save. Well, that’s now fixed and my Steam has downloaded an update for The Phantom Pain, so consider it sorted.
For the curious – and those who don’t mind vague spoilers – I’ll explain more about it.
RPS Feature An MGS Virgin's Phantom Pain Diary, Day 4
I haven’t got anything like as many cassette tapes as I’d like in The Phantom Pain [official site]. A combination of a determination to be non-lethal, to knock out or capture everyone and my inherent ineptitude means most base raids go South pretty quickly, and I end up in a desperate sprint to a checkpoint in order that I don’t lose all my progress. No time to clear out all the buildings: just run, run until that magical yellow save circle appears in the top right of my screen, and I know my prisoners are safe and my diamonds are in hand. I’ve left tapes behind that way, and it breaks my heart. Rebel Yell and Love Will Tear Us Apart are definite casualties, the latter of which I can barely cope with the loss of. If it turns out I’ve abandoned Bowie’s Cat People somewhere, I’ll almost certainly lose my mind.
When I heard the distant strains of Take On Me while trying to rescue a prisoner from a particularly well-guarded base, I knew my priorities had to change. Physician heal thyself. The trouble is, I didn’t hear those strains until everything had already gone to hell.
RPS Feature It's oh so quiet
It’s been days since I wanted to talk about anything other than Metal Gear Solid [official site]. My sister is probably sick of this. We’re very close but live far apart so we tend to speak almost every day, not so much about our lives as about the things that distract us from our lives. She had no interest in Metal Gear Solid, but eventually my incessant chatter caused her to look into The Phantom Pain. I should have predicted the response.
“I watched a trailer for it last night. What’s the deal with the boob lady?”
I’d been talking about the game for days but hadn’t mentioned Quiet, your sniper buddy. I had been raving about the things I liked about the game, and when the conversation turned to flaws, it turns out it’s the small things that disturb the experience more for me than those bigger talking points.
If you’ve been playing Metal Gear Solid: The Phantom Pain [official site] for a bit, you may have joined up with superfast sunbathing sniper Quiet. Folks warn you that she’s trouble and heck, it seems she is. Publishers Konami have warned that she may corrupt save games on certain missions, and are warning folks until they can fix it. Read on for details because I feel I’ve already spoiled too much in this post and know I thought “Oh huh!” when I saw a tiny insignificant detail in the announcement.