If you were in any way sceptical about the curious pairing of Platinum Games and Hideo Kojima’s tactical espionage thriller, Metal Gear, don’t be. Hurtling along at an incredibly dizzying speed, Metal Gear Rising is a razor sharp blend of chaotic brawling and classic Metal Gear stealth. Put simply, this is a gloriously bombastic slice of third person action that pits Metal Gear Solid 2 hero, Raiden, against a posse of biomechanically engineered bad guys working for the villainous private military company, Desperado Enterprises.
Eschewing blocking in favour of a parry activated by a timed button press and forward flick of the right stick, Rising forces you to learn and learn fast; pull it off too early and you’ll simply block an attack, but with watertight timing enemies are left wide open to a finger blistering counterattack, or Zandatsu. This particularly ingenious element of game design allows Raiden to slice and dice an enemy into countless chunks before reaching inside, yanking out a severed spinal cord and crushing it to replenish his own health system. It never tires.
Beautiful to look at, and breezing along at a smooth 60-frames-per-second, the Rising experience is felled only by its sometimes clunky camera that tends to clash with confined spaces in the game world, more so than in wide open battlegrounds. It’s a minor glitch in an otherwise breath-taking experience that absolutely begs to be replayed as soon as the credits start to roll. Own it.
Reviewed by Sebastian Williamson