The game originally came out for the MSX2 computer, and I was surprised to find out that it actually did get an English language release in Europe, though apparently it doesn't have a great translation. A few years later the C64, PC and NES got their own ports of the game, and I've heard that they weren't translated from the MSX particularly well either. I'll be playing the Nintendo version so I suppose I'll find out.
Oh hang on someone's trying to call me.
Seems a bit weird going after the last weapon first, but it sounds simple enough. Would have been nice if they'd given me a gun though, or a knife, or anything. All Snake has on him right now is a pack of cigarettes, because not even Nintendo could separate Solid Snake from his smokes.
By the way the music for this bit is great. Here, listen to it on youtube while you read: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Dmokw0GkEKU
Nope, can't sneak past the dogs, RUN SNAKE RUN!
Unlike sleepy jeep guy at the start, this enemy looks well armed and wide awake. I'm either going to have to wait until he's looking the other way, or I'm going to have to take him out with some special forces CQC moves.
Choosing continue put me right back at the start of the jungle, so now I've got to get past the dogs again. Still it does have infinite continues, so it could be worse.
Wait, I have an idea. Maybe there's something I can use inside one of these trucks. I couldn't get into the one on the earlier screen, but it's possible I just wasn't lined up with the thing right.
There wasn't anything inside I could take, but it have started to move the second I climbed inside. So with any luck it'll take me through the gate and not just dump me out in the jungle somewhere.
I tried checking the other truck on the left and found some rations inside, which restore health. Then when I climbed back out I was immediately spotted by the guard! The guy's position is reset to face the back of the truck whenever I enter this screen, so it's impossible to sneak back out.
I ducked back inside the truck to avoid being shot, and found another tin of rations sitting there. It seems that this is where they keep their infinite supplies, as they keep respawning every time I enter the screen. I decided to eat one to refill my life bar then grab every tin I could carry. Which turned out to be three.
And then I tried the other truck...
Actually getting stranded in the middle on nowhere turned out to be another stroke of good luck, as on the way back I stumbled across the key I needed to actually get into the building.
Right, let's see what else Card1 can open up for me.
|Metal Gear (MSX2)|
|Metal Gear (Commodore 64)|
This level of the building has a differently layout in the original MSX game by the way, and this pit was a special bonus added exclusively for people playing the ports to enjoy. Though I get the feeling that this is just a preview of the kind of shit all the versions are going to have on the next level.
I suppose I'll have to choose 'continue' and go find out.
At least I got to keep the Card1 and my stack of rations.
LATER, ON THE SCREEN AFTER THE PARALLEL CORRIDORS OF 50% CERTAIN DEATH.
Actually he's apparently supposed to be saying 'Shift change!!' He just couldn't be bothered to wait for the next shift to arrive before wandering away.
|Metal Gear (DOS)|
|Metal Gear (MSX2)|
The NES and MSX games are starting to get a lot more similar though by this point, with a lot of the rooms sharing an identical layout. Though I think it's fair to say that the MSX game has the better graphics. It's mostly just a different palette, but it makes a big difference.
|Metal Gear (DOS)|
He tells me that Schneider knows the location of the gas mask... but forgets to tell me who that is or the radio frequency to contact them. I dunno, maybe it's in the manual. Fortunately I already found the gas mask along the way, so I don't require their help just yet.
And then when I reach the other side of the room, the game makes me take my gas mask off for a second to get my Card1 out to unlock the door. Just in case Snake hadn't breathed in enough poison already.
So now I've got to go backtracking through the base, looking for a door I couldn't open with my Card1 first time around.
I still haven't found a pistol yet though, annoyingly. Lots of pistol ammo, but no gun. I'm starting to worry I must have walked past it at some point, still hidden in one those trucks or behind a door I forgot to unlock.
Come on, one of these keys must open this door. I'm going into the inventory and trying each one in turn, but it's not happening. This would have been so much better if the keys worked automatically from my pocket without having to be selected. I'm sick of having to switch from Card2 every time I find a (potentially) Card1 door. Also would it have killed them to write the access level on the door?
ONE GAME OVER SCREEN LATER.
20 MINUTES LATER.
Oh and now Big Boss is calling again. Probably to tell me he forgot some essential advice about not getting thrown in prison cells.
I did eventually find a way out of the room on my own though by systematically punching everything in it until something opened.
I want to like NES Metal Gear, but I get the feeling it doesn't like me much. Falling down invisible instant death pits, swapping through key cards at every other locked door, and replaying chunks of the game after every major screw up just isn't much fun. Plus you've got to backtrack through the base to open up areas with your new gear like in a Metroidvania game, except in this backtracking means sneaking through the same groups of soldiers you've already gotten past, and I've already solved those stealth mazes. Plus it doesn't have the same appeal somehow as blasting through a group of old enemies with a new toy you've just earned. I mean sure you could go on a killing spree in this, but that's not really in the spirit of Metal Gear.
But if I was forced to keep playing one version of the game, I'd choose the MSX one. Preferably the re-translated version included with Metal Gear Solid 3: Subsistence and the Metal Gear Solid HD Collection. It looks the best, arguably sounds the best, and seems to have the lowest amount of bullshit. Though on the other hand, no Jungle Theme...
That's what I think anyway. If you want to share what you think, there's a handy comments box underneath. Opinions, criticism, suggestions, requests etc. are welcome.