Metal Gear Solid Peace Walker is sequel to MGS 3, which is prequel to all of MGS series. I have not played MGS Portable Ops and I do not have any plans to so I will not do a retrospective on it, and I believe most people consider it as non-canon. With that said, this is chronologically the second game in the series. Peace Walker was originally made for the Playstation Portable back in 2010, then it was remastered for PS3 and Xbox 360 in the HD Collection in 2011. Once again, it was made by …… sigh….. Konami, but directed by Hideo Kojima!
Big Boss aka Naked Snake returns as the protagonist of the game. He is now the leader of Militaires Sans Frontieres, an army without border. He wants to create an independent nation of warriors that fight for no one but themselves.
Kazuhara “Kaz” Miller aka Master Miller. You might recognized him for the man that was helping you only to be disguised Liquid Snake in Metal Gear Solid 1. Here, he is acting as Big Bosses number two operating the Mother Base. He is in a way, your hunsbando.
Huey Emmerich is robotics genius and future father of Otacon. He is robotics expert that helped to create the mechs appearing in this game, including the titular Peace Walker. Like Otacon, he believe what he was doing was for good, only to be betrayed.
Dr. Strangelove is the AI Developer who programmed the AI for all of the mechs as well as Peace Walker. She is obsessed over the Boss and based the AI of of her. Because of her feelings regarding the Boss, she kind of hates Big Boss.
Paz Ortega Andrade is this super innocent girl from everyone’s dreams that asks Big Boss to help.
Coldman is the villain this time around. In my opinion, he is the least interesting as villains go. He wants to create a nuclear detergent for the greater good.
The story takes place 10 years after the events of Metal Gear Solid 3. Since then, Naked Snake aka Big Boss left United States to start his own country with blackjack and hooker, but forget about blackjack and hookers.
Paz and a No-I’m-Not-A-Villain approaches Big Boss and asks him and Militaires Sans Frontiere to help as their home, Costa Rica, is occupied by a military force. Series of events lead to Big Boss facing off with CIA creating a nuclear detergent.
For those of you who don’t know, Nuclear Detergent is a protocol to prevent nuclear war. A has nukes and B has nukes. B will not nuke A because if B does, A will nuke B back and the world will enter World War 3 in nuclear fallout. So its a anti-nuclear nuclear weapon, kind of.
But Goldman fears that if it is human in charge of the nuke button, they will be too scared to pull the trigger. So he hired Huey and Strangelove to create a nuclear platform capable to nuclear retaliation if push comes to shove: the Peace Walker. But since bad guys are bad guys, they may have other plans for this nuke equipped mobile AI dreadnought, so Big Boss has to put an end to it.
There has been good number of changes from the usual gameplay. Starting off, rather than being a linear story of events happening after events, Snake has a mission select menu where he can replay any missions again. And to further make it mobile, the maps are made of smaller map areas so the PSP only has to load bits of areas.
One of the biggest criticisms was the controls. As PSP does not have a second analogue stick, the face buttons (triangle, square, circle, and X) were used to aim. Using the shoulder buttons to do your attack actions are carried over from Metal Gear Solid 4.
Taking a page from Pokemon, you can now kidnap enemy soldiers and force them to join MSF, or take a page from Shin Megami Tensei, and convince volunteers to join your new army. When you make an enemy unconscious, you can strap this balloon in them, and they will fly into the sky and be collected by your men. It is absolutely hilarious.
Unlike the previous games, there is now a head quarter called the Mother Base. In the Mother Base, you can put your newly kidnapped soldiers to work, be it sending them to the battlefield to make money, have them research and develop new weapons, or using them to do your infiltration missions. Who knows, maybe you may even make a weapon to surpass the Peace Walker.
-How Does It Hold Up?-
I think this one holds up REALLY well. On the PSP, it looks gorgeous, and on the PS Vita, it looks even better. One of the best parts of this game is its ability to play Co-Op with another player on silly missions as well as main story missions. And this made the game so much fun and silly. I wish more Metal Gear games let you do Co-Op stealth missions together…. and I am not talking about Metal Gear Survive. Even to this day, we take out our PSP/ PS Vita out and have Co-Op sessions from time to time.
I still remember me and my brother both loaded with missile launchers taking on a giant T-Rex. Yes, this is a mission in the game, one of the silly ones. It was so dumb, and it was epic in every way.
One thing that makes this one …. not easily accessible is the controls. As mentioned above, the face buttons act as the second analog stick. It takes a while to get used to it, and I think many will be put off by it. Although this issue is fixed if played on the PS Vita or trying it out on the HD Collection.
Well, I hope you liked this one!