Metal Gear Solid: Peace Walker Review

One sneak too many for Snake or should we give Peace a chance?

By Rupert Higham, June 11, 2010


Some inductees will be hostile following Snake's full-on approach to recruitment, but a couple of days of persuasion in the brig soon brings them round.

Kojima Productions’ greatest obstacle in nailing that Metal Gear experience for the PSP has been the hardware itself and Peace Walker has done an amazing job simulating the Metal Gear-s of War control scheme of the fourth game. The largely redundant crawl is out and the crouch run is in, with the four face buttons handling that missing second stick’s camera duties. It’s not the most elegant set-up but it works, and with the auto aim assist you can easily pick targets off with precision headshots. There are a total of three control styles, including Portable Ops and Monster Hunter Freedom options, though as any players of Snake Eater (pre-Subsistence update) will tell you – if you’re playing Metal Gear without a decent radar, you need full control over your camera and Peace Walker succeeds admirably here.


It's not just in the four player boss encounters and collect 'em up design that resembles Monster Hunter.

Missions are divided into two kinds – main ops and extra ops, the former driving the plot forward in a little over 25 bite-sized (for the most part) gameplay segments, the later offering over 100 side missions. The majority of the main ops are tightly paced, dividing missions and boss battles allowing you to re-tool yourself appropriately between each, but there is the occasional mission that drags on far too long, and the complete lack of check points can frustrate, especially given the format’s supposedly pick-up-and-play ethos.

The extra ops serve as a fantastic accompaniment to the main ops, with some situational training exercises echoing past games’ VR missions and others following events parallel to the main ops, such as holding off troops while Snake tackles a boss. They constantly impress with their variety too, ranging from the acquisition of extra tanks and choppers, to rescuing POWs, all the way to the frankly unbelievable Monster Hunter missions. These unlock constantly throughout gameplay, with the majority introduced after the credits have rolled, setting a new standard for the series in content terms.


The new bosses aren't a patch on previous personalities, but they do provide spoils that can be used in an brilliant way later on.

Witnessing Big Boss’ Darth Vader-like transformation from series protagonist to antagonist was the story hook for the last PSP game and Peace Walker elevates this theme to a central design principle, effectively giving you the keys to Mother Base, (Big Boss’ proto-Outer Heaven) and bestowing full control of its inhabitants. Avoiding the arduous recruitment that plagued the early hours of Portable Ops, Peace Walker’s Fulton Recovery System sends your freshly tranquilised conscripts skywards for collection via chopper (even indoors amusingly) and it’s incredibly addictive and highly rewarding.

As you start to amass your army you can devote man power to one of five staffing duties. Combat units to send out on missions, R&D teams for weapon and item development, the mess hall team that keep your soldiers well fed, raising morale (stats), the medical team that heal wounded soldiers readying them for combat and finally the intel team that aids you mid-mission with weapon drops and area strikes.

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2 Responses to “Metal Gear Solid: Peace Walker Review”

  1. This game rocks!

  2. wryguy says:

    one of the best games i’ve ever played on any console.


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