Here we are in front of new Metal Gear title but one without the name of Hideo Kojima as director who is involved in some way. If Survive was the message of Konami to say that the saga continues and that they dont need anything or anyone for it, that might wasn’t the most successful result, especially not for this type of game which title stands for, Survive.
If we goback to the history of MGS saga, this is not first time that Metal Gear has spin off. If you remember the Acid games we saw on the PSP in 2004 and 2005, the arcade game, and the most recent one with Rising Revengeance that just turned five years after it was released. It is also worth remembering the graphic novel of the PSP made by Ashley Wood in 2006.
This series has always taken alternate paths as part of its universe. If we compare it with other important franchises we can’t forget the case of Resident Evil with its multiple spin offs. Although not all went well, there was always the concern to try them and same happens with Survive now, but unfortunutely this might not be the best game. In fact nobody expected it and the community itself was responsible for making this a bad name and spreading hate through social media which went so far to the degree that Konami had to close comments in videos with trailers on YouTube. In reality Survive is not worst game in history as many wished for what happened between Konami and Kojima, its’ just a title with the defect of being called Metal Gear.
THE STORY OF SURVIVE
Let’s start with the story. Survive is linked to the events that occurred in Ground Zeroes , when the Mother Base is attacked and a hole or portal, opens to take everything in its path to another dimension that you will then have to explore. As strange as this is heard, it is something that every fan of the saga is used to after playing so many deliveries for almost two decades with questions of supernatural phenomena. But in the end, the story of Survive is more a pretext than something that leads us to play it to learn more about the universe. The reality is that, there is little to say and address after MGSV: The Phantom Pain. I dare say that this is not a Metal Gear game. It is a survival game that is hanging or taking advantage of the name. It is logical. It is a business decision.
The funny thing is that there is no main character as such, or nobody recognized. Rather, the avatar that you create will be the hero of this adventure under the name of “Captain”. As soon as you have it, in the first hours (quite boring), you will be given an introduction to the story in which someone called Goodluck, serves as narrator of the events through texts and images as a tutorial to familiarize yourself with the game system. In Survive there are no spectacular cinematics, only cutscenes and a lot of dialogue as well as voice recordings. You can clearly see the lack of budget and that this spin off, took all that Phantom Pain left for the scenarios. Fortunately the control is the most salvageable of this delivery as it is impeccable once again. In addition to the control, the interface, movements and actions are rescued from the last delivery, among them, the option of sending people or objects to the base.
Returning to history, it turns out that for a long time it was known about the existence of this other dimension and that it was very important for obtaining a resource called Kuban Energy (Kuban energy) that is precious. However, the place is infested with creatures called Wanderers , which are like zombies, only with different looks (yes, Metal Gear now has its game with zombies). For the campaign it will take you more than 20 hours of play to finish it. Your role will be to travel to this dimension called Dice on the map The Dust (Afghanistan) to fight the wanderers whose artificial intelligence leaves a lot to be desired and that being discovered will do little to persecute you.
EXPLORING THE DESERT IN SURVIVE AND ITS GAMEPLAY
I must tell you that if you are not a fan of the tower defense and survival style video game genre, then Metal Gear Survive will be a very bitter drink for you. How to play Survive? The key is crafting, that is, to be collecting all kinds of materials and resources for the construction of things like: weapons, your base, food, accessories, ammunition, and so on. Each material or resource has its own creation station. This aspect works and very well, but the biggest problem is how tedious and tired you can get to perform this action so many times in your hours of play. Sometimes, to take any resource, just press a command, in others it takes many seconds to get energy from the enemies to the point of despair. Some things work very well, others not so much.
The exploration is the basis of everything in this game and for this you need a lot of patience. You will have to always be looking for all the resources and energy Kuban as it is essential for anything in the game and works as currency. This you get, in greater quantity, from the enemies, so you are forced in most of the time to enter combat leaving stealth aside completely. Yes. Survive is an action game and not an infiltration game, consider this.
The problem with the game is that it falls into the repetitive to the point of being boring by constantly doing the same thing. Collect things, complete missions and return to the base again and again. The bad thing is that despite having an automatic save mode, if you want to do it at a particular point in the mission you have to go back to the base to do it, which hurts and breaks the rhythm and if you do not do it you could lose a great advance.
Perhaps one of the most stressful things about Survive is that your character or avatar works like a Sim, that is, you have to take care that at all times you have enough food, be hydrated and avoid getting sick, otherwise you will die. More than a challenge, it results in something absurd and that often affects the experience in general. Many times you will have to go out and explore a couple of hours and get enough resources for a couple of missions that could take you no more than half an hour. As I said, patience is a great virtue in this game.
To make your character better on the battlefield, you must increase your level and unlock skills that help you in your combat movements as well as the use of your limbs and improve the duration of your energy that is essential to prevent it from running out quickly the character was vulnerable to attacks. So, once again, everything revolves around gathering energy and fulfilling missions.
GAME SYSTEM. DEFEND YOUR GOAL AT ALL COSTS
The game system, in addition to obtaining resources, involves the protection and defense of strategic points on the enemies’ map. How is this? You have to place simple wooden fences or peaks, sandbags or metal grills to withstand the waves of enemies, place mines and other traps. If necessary, you will have to use firearms, bats, axes, mallets, bows, spears and more to counteract the situation. This is the basic premise of the title and the same is transferred to the online part. In this part you feel that the game had a lot of potential and that is where he represents the biggest challenge to be prepared and not die in the attempt to survive. It feels that the title could deepen more but falls short of the idea. Of course, I must say that it was exciting to hold the last seconds alive before turning on a TV transporter with the wanderers being about to throw the protection barricades. This is what Survive does best .
DEFENDING YOUR BASE ONLINE
The cooperative mode for four people requires holding three waves of saved creatures saving an energy center on the map. The more level you have and experience, the greater the challenge, and the harder to kill the enemies but the better weapons you will have at your fingertips. Coordination is vital to achieve it and you can relive a partner who has been killed but you have a range of time to achieve it. In the end, obtaining rewards is very attractive, an issue that you can take to campaign mode. In this modality is when you must demonstrate your skills and experience both in the base protection and when creating weapons and placing defenses. The whole game is designed so that you spend most of your time in this mode learning from others (if you are not an expert in this genre), and using all your arsenal to defend the base. Each wave is more complicated and between the rest of each one you must go to the zone of creation of weapons and defenses to be prepared. The only bad thing is that it feels lack of more scenarios, it is so evident the recycling of what we saw in MGSV that they did what they could with what they had.
It’s a shame that Survive is the first game in the Metal Gear saga that has received such low ratings, because personally I think it blemishes the legacy of this franchise.
It would be good to know if Kojima had in his plans this spin off before leaving as part of the future plan or it was a direct decision of Konami taking advantage of the name of the saga. Clearly this is not a Metal Gear except for control. The story is not flashy but quite the opposite, the graphics take advantage of the Fox Engine again and take advantage of the world we saw in the 2015 game. Little need to be rescued from a game that will surely be forgotten in a few months, unlucky for Konami, Metal Gear and especially the gamers. What a difficult and hard task it was for the team that was in charge of this title knowing the future that awaited them. All the staff that at the time was in Kojima Productions had the mission of creating a game that no one was going to accept as soon as they announced it. We will have to see the future of the game in the coming years with users and the time that the servers remain active.