If I had to describe the PS4A team’s feelings towards Metal Gear Solid V: The Phantom Pain in one word, it would be ‘mixed’. Joining MGSV in this week’s PlayTime are Bloodborne, Destiny, Everybody’s Gone to the Rapture, Persona 4 Golden, Rocket League, Tearaway Unfolded, and more.
The last week was devoted totally to Destiny and you can expect me to devote the following few weeks to Bungie’s futuristic FPS too. After several weeks of poor access to the PS4, I was left loitering with a less-than-stellar Light level, so I knew I had to buck up my ideas. I had also not finished off either of the two current expansions – The Dark Below and House of Wolves – and needed to address that before the next one lands. So, I put on my Destiny T-Shirt and headed back to Venus, Earth, and the Reef; the locations that held the key to completing everything I needed this week. Mission after mission, I notched up win after win to take my character up to level 34 and polish off the first two DLC packs.
I also managed to get through some particularly reward-laden co-op missions courtesy of the Prison of Elders and a useful key from the Queen. I’m still having trouble finding legendary chest armour, gauntlets, and leg armour, but everything else is looking positively purple right now, and just in time for The Taken King, which will install itself at 10 a.m. UK time tomorrow. I haven’t spent this long within a single game since The Last of Us, and while Destiny does have its issues (especially the much-discussed pricing/package policies Activision have implemented for the latest expansion), it will probably have my attention for a while longer yet.
I finished Metal Gear Solid V: The Phantom Pain this week, and my concerns about the game still stand now the story is done. I love the gameplay, but the story just lacks the impact the other games have. Thankfully, the Chapter 2 main story missions are far better than Chapter 1 – mission 43 is amazing – but I wish the rest of the game could have been that good. I’m still working my way through the Side Ops, however. It’s funny; I’ve probably put close to 40 hours into the game and am still playing. It’s not a horrible game, far from it actually. It just feels like an incomplete ending to the franchise.
For me, this week has been great for gaming, with Bloodborne proving to be leaps and bounds ahead of its sister series, the Souls games; I love its combat, visuals and thrilling boss fights. I’m not honestly finding it very difficult, but it’s just so damn good. Conversely, I’m very disappointed with MGSV and am tempted to trade it in. Everything I loved about MGS isn’t there anymore and, whilst the gameplay is fantastic, the story and characters are some of the blandest I’ve ever seen. The repetition in missions is grating too, so I think I’m just done with it.
I’m also playing Disgaea 5; it releases later this month so I won’t say much about it, except that I’m enjoying it. Rocket League is still one of the best multiplayer games around, with me and my friends playing it regularly. It’ll end up in my top ten of the year I think. I’ve clocked in a good 30+ hours easily. The Last of Us still proves to have a great online component too, making the PS4 remaster purchase justified, as I can play with more friends now. Other games I’ve played include Rayman Legends and One Piece Pirate Warriors 3, plus I bought myself a PlayStation TV (mostly for Persona 4 Golden) and I’m loving it. It looks great on the big screen and most of my games seem to be compatible with it.
I’ve been playing Metal Gear Solid V: The Phantom Pain, and it seems my thoughts are far more positive than the rest of the PS4A team. Part of the reason for that is because I’m fairly new to the series, so I’m not as invested in the story as many other players are; consequently, I really have nothing but good things to say. I was expecting the incredible visuals and Kojima’s cinematic flair, but what I wasn’t expecting was the awesome Vice City-esque soundtrack, or the sheer amount of freedom it affords you to complete everything at your own pace and in your own way. My progress so far has been fairly slow, mostly because I insist on completing every Side Op as I unlock them, but I hope to make some steady progress on the main story in the next few days.
Also this week, I finally unlocked the last trophy I needed on the superb Everybody’s Gone to the Rapture. It turned out to be an extremely laborious platinum, but I enjoyed every moment I spent with the game, as not since BioShock Infinite has a game’s story had such an impact on me. Over the weekend, I spent a few hours on Tearaway Unfolded, which is fantastic. The new DualShock 4 gameplay mechanics are ingenious, and feel extremely satisfying to use; my favourite so far is swiping the touch pad to create a powerful gust of wind in the game world. It’s still early in my adventure but, if my initial impressions are anything to go by, it could potentially be even better than the original.