TSA’s Top 100 of 2013: 9 – Metal Gear Solid: Ground Zeroes

9. Metal Gear Solid: Ground Zeroes

I may take some flack for this but the Metal Gear Solid series hasn’t appealed to me since Metal Gear Solid 2. I’m not really sure why, and there were certainly elements at the end of Sons of Liberty that were left hanging, but MGS3 just didn’t grab my interest and since then I’ve never managed to find a reason to get back into the series. I guess part of that comes down to not having a PS3 to play Metal Gear Solid 4, but even having owned one for a while now it doesn’t really hold any appeal.

[videoyoutube]However, Ground Zeroes may change all that. I mean sure, I’ll probably be grabbing Metal Gear Rising at some point, but if we’re talking full on Metal Gear Solid, Ground Zeroes might be what brings me back to the series. I think it’s the game’s open world nature that’s drawn me in; it feels like it has the potential to freshen up the gameplay somewhat.


On top of that I’m just curious to see how that kind of mechanic is going to play out in a Metal Gear Solid title, and how much stealth gameplay it will allow the game to retain. Combining those two mechanics seems tricky at best, and it’ll be truly interesting to see just how Kojima manages to fit the two together.

Story wise, the game’s set after the events of Peace Walker and, according to Kojima, is going to serve as a prologue of sorts to Metal Gear Solid 5. From the first trailer, released as part of the Metal Gear anniversary celebrations, we know that Snake/Big Boss is going to be assaulting an enemy camp at the opening of the game, and that he’s going up against an organisation called XOF.

Other than that we don’t know a huge amount about the game’s story so far, so let’s switch to other elements. For example, it’s been confirmed that this will be the first game to feature the impressive looking Fox Engine. From what little we’ve seen of Ground Zeroes’ gameplay so far it’s looking great graphically, although we’ll need to see how it copes with a large, open environment.

However, it seems that Kojima is confident about the engine’s abilities, claiming that once you’re in one of game’s open areas there’ll be no load times. When you move from one open area to another there’ll be loading disguised by a helicopter journey between those areas, which will at least keep them in context, but once you get into one of those areas the game will be load free. With the graphics on display the lack of load screens could be an impressive technical feat, but it is fairly standard for modern open world titles.

[drop]One of the other interesting elements of the game is the Mother Base, a home base that players can build up, as well as researching their own weapons and items. Whilst this doesn’t seem all the impressive for a game with customisation, you can manage your base and your research priorities from various smartphone apps, a concept that’s far more interesting. Assuming this works well it should be a great addition to the game and may help to get people more invested in that element of the game.

As for a release date, we don’t have anything even vaguely solid. However, Kojima has said that the game is targeted to current-gen systems, and with the next Sony and Microsoft consoles expected to launch in 2013, a 2013 release for Ground Zeroes looks like a distinct possibility. It should be pointed out, though, that he’s also said that the Fox Engine can work on next-gen consoles, so it shouldn’t be too difficult for the game to make that step up.

So will we see the game next year? Well we certainly hope so.



  1. Good choice, and fingers crossed it does show up on this generation. It’s great that Kojima is carrying on from Peace Walker, the production value was incredible for a PSP game and even with the comic book cutscenes it still felt like an epic. I still dip in occasionally, just to give the PSP an airing.

  2. Might be nice to get a MGS for the Vita.

    Not sure whether it will be 2013 though. Could be that it tips over in to 14 like many of this years Q4 games have done in to 13. Nevertheless, deserves to be in the top ten.

  3. You haven’t played MGS3 and 4!? You are dead to me Kris. :op

    MGS:GZ looks excellent but i hope it’s not PW on Steroids as i had trouble liking MGS:PW due to it’s style. Instead of it being the typical MGS game, it is split into invidual missions that show the plot. In my opinion, they dropped the ball with it and should have just done it in the style of MGS3.

    Anyway, i suspect Zero is behind XOF as we have yet to see a Big Boss game where Zero targets him and seeing as it’s the last game in the franchise. Am assuming it as there is little room left for another game besides the gap between MGS2 and 4.

    • Good point. But remember the style of PW was done because the target was the PSP.I doubt if GZ will adopt that format.

      Do agree on you r Zero assessment though. It has to be.

      • I understand why they did that in PW but i would have just preffered a full MGS that was crafted for the PSP. Which they did but it broke the flow of the plot and i found it a bit of a chore at times. Along with the disappointing bosses.

        Hopefully, MGS:GZ will be a fully fledged MGS game that sticks with the traditional narrative style that MGS uses. And i suspect it will. Hmm, i wonder if MGS5 covers how Big Boss got wounded and put into a coma via starting the Les Enfants Terribles project then focusing on Raiden’s rise to the Cyborg ninja? Although i suspect GZ will either mention how Big Boss got captured or it will be a major part of the plot. Would prefer if MGS5 was the game that covered the gap between MGS2&4.

        I suspect XOF is the best that Zero has to offer and have had some genetic modfications made to them in an attempt to defeat Big Boss.

        Spoiler alert:Big Boss wins. :P

      • Did you play Portable Ops at all? It was very similar in structure to Peace Walker but the missions were much less inspiring and the plot was difficult to follow. Peace Walker was a huge improvement but I think you’re right that it didn’t quite hit all the notes that Snake Eater did The presentation made it feel like lots of mini missions which was great for a portable game but isn’t really necessary for a console game, so hopefully the management is blended better into the breaks between bits of action.

        I’m putting money on there being two Zeroes, like some sort of Liquid/Solid twin prequel thing, then 5 being the main Zero back stab event!

  4. mgs was a crock of japenase shite…
    movie movie movie quick stealthy bit movie!

    • Can’t tell if you are trolling or if that is just your opinion. :S

    • I am inclined to agree. Not remotely interested in this game.

  5. Hugely looking forward to this. Especially like the idea of being able to micromanage the motherbase from my smart phone, although it may mean I never get off the game!

  6. I’m really hoping that this will be something special, I’m a big fan of the Metal Gear series.

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