Developer: Kojima Productions
Release Date: Winter 2006/07
Since the PSP launched, fans have been clamoring for a Metal Gear on the go.
We have not gotten one.
We have, instead, gotten a smattering of card-based games carrying the Metal Gear name, and while they're supposedly not half-bad, it's still to the dismay of many interested in the franchise. Fortunately, Konami's finally giving so many of the fans what they want. Metal Gear Solid: Portable Ops is exactly what it sounds like – a full-fledged action-based Metal Gear for the PSP.
The storyline's set in between Snake Eater and The Twin Snakes – it's 1970, and players will be assuming the role of Big Boss (now actually bearing the title), as he forms FOXHOUND. FOXHOUND's purpose is to hunt down the FOX unit, which has started a revolt in South America, and is essentially wreaking havoc on Boss's operations. As a bonus, MGS3 fans will re-experience Subsistence's third-person camera, optimized for the PSP. This camera will allow players to best discern places for sneaking around and making the stealthy kills they love so much. They'll also get to experience the return and expansion of characters such as Para-Medic, Sigint and Major Zero.
In addition to the usual tactical espionage action, players will be able to recruit soldiers, enemies and certain NPCs to Big Boss's forces, both in the single-player portion of the game or via wireless access points. Not only can soldiers be found, but they can also be traded amongst friends, or even opponents. These soldiers will be usable in both single- and multiplayer to combat opposing squads. Skirmishes between squad forces can take place online in a variety of multiplayer maps using the PSP's wireless infrastrucure capabilities, making this the second time that Metal Gear has truly gone online.
The last key feature of this game is the White Flag system, allowing players and their squadrons to surrender and live, or to fight to the death if it is not used. Hopefully, this will decrease the number of online disconnects, as the system allows people to continue playing with their assets intact, even if they lose.
People feeling burned by the Acid games will finally have their moment in the sun this winter. Don't miss this one, or you'll have absolutely no excuse to complain anymore.
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