Ground Zeroes: The first non-Metal Gear Metal Gear. Part One.

With the release of Metal Gear Solid V: Ground Zeroes we have witnessed the next entry in the Metal Gear Solid universe, but was it good, or was it bad? Once upon a time(Read: One month ago) I thought it was good, great even, but now I'm not so sure.

One reason is probably the most disappointing: The glitches. Metal Gear Solid often has little to no glitches found within its titles and the ones that are there are so small and trivial that it's not worth mentioning. Ground Zeroes is littered with bugs that make me question many things, particularly the FOX Engine's reliability.

One bug not particularly exciting were the disappearing bodies. On PS3 and PS4(And Xbone360, I'd wager) the bodies would disappear if there were a handful of them in the same area. One such occurance of this was during the Side Op: Rogue Threat Elmination, in which I had tranq'd one of the targets and he fell down invisible. The map showed he was still there but never the less, I had to return later to find his body laying there, as it was before.

Another issue I have with the FOX Engine is the draw distance. I played the game on PS3 but I've seen footage of the PS4 version where enemies "load in" at close approximation to the player. It ruins the experience when you use your binoculars to scout out the area, realize it's clear only to be surprised by entire groups of enemies all over the place. And no, they didn't change position, they just didn't load in right away.

It happens to marked enemies as well. Wait for them to load into the world, tag them and then go about your business. They disappear and load in depending on how far away you are. And if you are really far away, it might take upwards of a minute for them to load in.

This was very disappointing for me, as I was led to believe that the FOX Engine was very versatile and powerful, designed for games on current gen consoles and beyond beyond beyond.

As it stands, the FOX Engine reminds me more of a midly-weaker Unreal Engine 3 with all of the pop-in, both texture wise and character wise.

For the record, this is all within Ground Zeroes, a small bite sized taste of the other half of Metal Gear Solid V, titled The Phantom Pain, a much larger and expansive game in scale and scope according to Kojima Productions. If so many issues exist for such a small game, what will it be like when the maps are an upwards of 200 times bigger? So much bigger, in fact, Hideo Kojima says testers are having a hard time finishing it.

No miller, please go away.

The issue I have is this: PS3/Xbox 360 is holding back The Phantom Pain, just as it did Ground Zeroes. There is so little ram and processing power behind these machines and canceling development for them and moving onto the Playstation 4, XBone and PC would be a much smarter choice. The numbers are here and they can prove it.

In the United States, Ground Zeroes sold 278,000 copies with 204,000 of those being on PS4/Xbone. It's clear that if people want Ground Zeroes, they'd rather take it next-gen. Speaking of next gen, the Playstation 4 has recently sold 7 million consoles to the world.

The Playstation 3 and Xbox 360 may have a larger market share and install base, but with the next gen consoles picking up steam with hardware and software selling like hotcakes, it would be a no brainer. If Ground Zeroes handles so poorly with 512MB of ram holding it back, imagine what 8GB's can do for it.

But what they do is up to them. I just hope that The Phantom Pain is not held back creatively or mechanically. If Kojima Productions want to blow our minds, don't let hardware limitations get in our way.

What are you even talking about!?
Aside from the bugs and glitches holding the game back and spotting up a spotless glitch-free record for Kojima Productions, I have an issue with the story... or should I say, a lack of one.

When the game was announced, it was just Metal Gear Solid: Ground Zeroes. There was no roman numeral, it was supposed to be a sequel to Peace Walker and continue from there on a globe trotting adventure through 4 continents with Base Building and soldier recruiting and... well, you get the picture. The game that was announced was Ground Zeroes in title alone, as the features and mechanics they talked about at that point are now known to be from The Phantom Pain.

There were so many questions. "Ground Zeroes!? 4 continents? Is Outer Heaven finally getting up to no good and we're in control of it!? Wowee!" But the reality is a once-tech demo now-game is the result of this. I can't help but feel like the story was completely irrelevant. It wasn't important and seemed to be a bridge for The Phantom Pain than to exist on its on in any capacity. For Chrissakes, they spoiled the ENTIRE ending of Ground Zeroes in the red band trailer for The Phantom Pain.

Go ahead, take a look.

It's a fantastic trailer, one of which I have watched over 20 times since its release. I still get chills when I watch it, but if I had to say one thing about it: Not cool. Not cool in the slightest. Hideo Kojima, Captain of the HMS Ruse Cruise knows his fans will devour anything he gives them in the hopes of some hint or secret that will lead them onto other information. He knew that people will analyze every frame of that trailer in grand detail. That they would tell their friends, and their friends would tell their friends, and from zero to one, one to ten, ten to one hundred and one hundred back to zero again. And what does he do? He reveals the ending of another game entirely. Spoiling the ending of one completely different game a full 10 months(TEN MONTHS before its release.

We never knew it would contain a spoiler to the whole thing. We thought it may contain a few scenes that would last a second or so, but in a game that's completed in two hours, a few seconds is an uncomfortable amount of time.

I can't tell you my frustrations as I get to the end of the game and "START TALKIN BITCH. BITCH. BITCH BITCH BITCH FIDDLE." Roll credits. What's worst is after the game is over, we get a black screen with text over it explaining that "THE SMOKE WAS SEEN FROM MILES AWAY, THERE WERE NO SURVIVORS". I was almost expecting Patrick Duffysnake to wake up and reveal it was all a dream. No, not the ending of the game, but the last 10 months of hyping a hyping the game up only to spoil the ending before anyone could have possibly played it. Sure, we could have just not watched the trailer, but, who expects spoilers from one game in the trailer for another? Maybe I should watch out for the next Destiny trailer, it could very well spoil the ending to Watch_Dogs for all I know!

To be continued in Part 2

My name is Ryan. I like to play video games and Dungeons and Dragons and all kinds of other cool stuff. I also like to write. This is my website, it's nothing special, but I write about topics from time to time that probably make no sense. But if you think they do make sense, then hang around and check out some other articles. My friends call them "blogs" but goddamnit I've got a URL and everything, so they're "articles".

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