The first playable demo for Metal Gear Rising: Revengeance takes place in this year’s Tokyo Game Show. We often hear that Metal Gear Rising isn’t canon just because it lacks the sneaky approach all other previous Metal Gear games are. How does it fare on our demo test? 

We found this experience to be irrelevant, as what we feel brings the best Metal Gear experience would be its storytelling and the way the cut scenes are portrayed – flashy and awesome, yet down to earth (to a certain extent). However, since Metal Gear Solid 2, I’ve been wondering on how wonderful if Raiden could have a hack-and-slash game, as the typical espionage game prevents him from dishing out his flashy swordsman moves we all see in numerous cut scenes.

Enough about that, let’s now focus on the game itself. As mentioned, this isn’t the typical espionage game that the Metal Gear Solid franchise is known for. Metal Gear Rising is a third person hack-and-slash game, much like Platinum Games own Bayonetta.

Gameplay is tight, fluid, and looks pretty darn awesome in our demo. Despite the lack of anti-aliasing most PC gamers are used to nowadays, Metal Gear Rising still looks very good. Environments are detailed, and everything still looks and feels like a standard Metal Gear game.

The game’s pretty straightforward, with Square and Triangle buttons as standard slashing moves, X to jump, and R1 to dash. Of course, there is the ‘Free Cutting’ mode where you can time your slashes with a press of your button. Holding L1 allows you to go onto the mode, and flicking your right analog stick will have your sword cut towards that direction. For example, you hold the right analog stick up, and then let it go in a swift motion much like flicking your finger downwards on your smartphone; your sword will cut downwards. It takes quite a bit of practice to get it right, though.

There can be no dodge. Offense is the best defense!

Blocking or parrying  is another skill you need to master. By pressing the direction of your opponent’s attack on your left analog stick and Square at the same time, you can effectively parry most attacks. You can only block, not parry, attacks like those from Gekkos. We feel that the Boss fight with LQ-84i, the robotic dog with an optical neuro AI is best played by parrying its attacks when it rushes you with a Hyper Mode charge attack, as it gives you more chances to inflict damage onto it. The chainsaw fitted onto its back can be attached to its tail when it’s not doing its charge attack. It is able to do sweep and hack attacks at you.

We noticed there are different bars for you to equip certain items such as grenades, as shown in the demo. Items can be obtained by hitting specific types of boxes throughout the game. To equip an item, press the Select button and go to the tab that enables you to highlight the item you have just obtained. To use the grenade, we have to press L2 to ready the grenade and R1 to release it. There’s a guided trajectory showing you where it will land. We believe that there are more items where you can equip to give Raiden various power ups and boosts, perhaps greater agility, speed, armor or damage?

All in all, we feel that this 15 minute demo shed light on how great this game is turning out to be. Purists of the Metal Gear Solid series should stick to the espionage type of games, if they feel so compelled to give this particular game a miss. But however, we feel that many Metal Gear fans who simply want to enjoy game franchise’ greatness for what it is, that is its story and art direction, we feel that they will not be disappointed.

Metal Gear Rising: Revengeance will be out in stores for its US release on February 19, 2013 for the PS3.


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