The more I play The Phantom Pain, the more I realise it’s not a Game of the Year contender

Ben Salter of MMGN: It’s a strange feeling. I’m still really enjoying it, but I need it to be finished. I’ll go home tonight and play it for four or five hours without realising how much time has passed. But I’ll be disheartened if I’m still here with the same dilemma next weekend. I can see the finish line, and I'm happy to cut corners to get there.

Perhaps I’m falling out of love with The Phantom Pain.

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TLG19911179d ago

I do kind of agree with this, at first i was certain it would be game of the year. im 45 hours in so not loads but the more i play now the more i think it wont get it. not saying its not an amazing game and i dont know if its because im a MGS fan and the lack of story as i go further is disheartening me.

Saying that i have a friend which this one is his first MGS game and he isn't having a problem with what everyone else seems to be.

It a fantastic game gameplay wise, if there was just more story and cut scenes i would be more than happy. so im expecting fallout 4 to take it this year.

lameguy1179d ago

Same here with the story. Usually I wouldn't be able to keep a good story game out of my mind the entire day and I'd want to play it every free waking moment I have.

With TPP, the gameplay is top notch, but there's no story that keeps me coming back each night. In fact, I feel ok even tonight having not played it at all. It's almost like I wouldn't even mind if I never finished it at all. There needed to be more story to go along with the gameplay to keep me yearning for more.

I'm only on mission 18 so maybe it gets better, but man... at the rate that I'm playing it, and knowing there's so much more to complete, and knowing the story so far... it's making it so hard to keep playing.

madmonkey011179d ago

the thing syou describe only get worse as things prgogress, you have maybe 2 or 3 more missions with a story development behind them, the rest are just rinse and repeat the same things.

SniperControl1179d ago (Edited 1179d ago )

I feel the same way, i haven't touched it in a week or so, got to mission 20 and just lost interest, kinda boring if i'am honest. The resource management and base extension is tedious and unnecessary and something i have no interest in doing, the story is non-existent, the scoring system is also unnecessary, and Kojima is so vain that he has to have his name plastered all over the screen whenever a mission is completed, WTF is that about?

Really dont understand how this game is getting such high reviews, the worst MGS in the series in my opinion.

No way is this a GOTY contender.

bouzebbal1179d ago (Edited 1179d ago )

Bloodborne is my GOTY this year. didnt play MGSV yet but Bloodborne gave me that feel of playing on my Genesis. i was hooked from start to platinum trophy and every game that makes me feel like this is a GOTY.

mikeslemonade1179d ago

Bloodborne is game of the year, Duh!

OhMyGandhi1179d ago (Edited 1179d ago )

I'm about 50 hours in so far, and the game is immensely enjoyable for 5-10 minutes at a time, but rinse and repeat the same kinds of missions without even the illusion of a greater meaning to any of it, and I got really bored.

The great thing about a game like Far Cry 3 for example, is that when you clear an outpost, said outpost is then available for fast travel, so there is an incredible incentive to clear as many outposts as possible, especially in such a big and expansive world.

In the Phantom Pain, you don't get that luxury. Enemies come back, magically talking over their radio even though I've destroyed all of their equipment ages ago, and it's rinse and repeat.
Phantom Pain is practically all outposts, without a single defining narrative pushing you through the missions and taking your breath away at the "big reveal" at the end of each of them.

I am a huge Metal Gear fan and while the story is bat-sh*t crazy and outlandish as all hell, I want some of that zany attitude to make me feel like I am working for a true, realized goal then checking off boxes on a list of chores.

People act like I'm a sympathizer for ISIS when I mention that this game isn't the best thing since sliced bread. It's enjoyable in small doses, but tedium and dullness set in so quickly that I suspect this game will quickly become the black sheep of the Metal Gear franchise.

XBLSkull1179d ago

Phantom Pain is easily the best MGS. If any other MGS has been a GotY contender this deserves to be one as well. That being said I'm certain Halo 5 is going to win anyways so it doesn't really matter.

WelkinCole1179d ago

It's what I feared when I heard that they are cutting down on the cutscenes and taking an open world approach.

MGS has always been a game/movie hybrid with exceptional focused/directed story and gameplay experience. Once you cut down on cutscene and go open world it changes it significantly.

MGS4 is a fan-service and why with MGS3 are the best in the series.

Before 5 I would enjoy every second and play until the next custscene that would expand more on the amazing story/experience.

I blame these stupid kids that have the attention span of a gold fish that cry like babies if the games they bought does not give them hours and hours of gameplay. It is really really sad.

In saying this though Kojima still did an amazing job in trying to adapt to what these kids wanted while still maintaining some semblance of a MGS experience for long time fans. I would not be surprised if he was pushed into this new direction by Konami and contributed to him leaving.

DevilOgreFish1179d ago (Edited 1179d ago )

Won't pass full verdict until i complete it. The cinemas are pretty scarce but there is a story, let us not forget Ground Zeroes + Phantom Pain = the MGSV experience. There's plenty of cassette tapes between the two if you wanted to know the minds of a few characters.

The choice of cassette tapes for background story was based around the interruption of gameplay. Would gamers prefer to see the same background story in a codec moment, which breaks away from gameplay. Or would gamers prefer to see the background story in a lengthy conversation via through cinemas. The question remained with kojima productions.

They could add in another chapter to fill in more story but the rest of the game was made as it is.

StrawberryDiesel4201179d ago

Same here, I was way more pulled in by MGS4 and the story between Old Snake and Liquid. And MGS4 had stellar gameplay to match the story. I'm actually debating selling Phantom Pain back while it still has value. It just seems like a barren open world with random guard posts to infiltrate. It gets boring fast.

miyamoto1179d ago (Edited 1179d ago )

And people were amazed at me MGSV is not on my Top 10 games of 2015....

For me

the top contenders for PS4 GOTY are Bloodborne and ....

Until Dawn- the PS4 right hook of a game no one saw coming!
And it hits gamers around the world really hard!

chrisco84au1179d ago (Edited 1179d ago )

GOTY this year is going to be brutal.

So many contenders with more to come. Remember, it's all opinions guys.

The most fun I have had with a game so far this year is Disney Infinity 3.0 (Star Wars nerd) but it's not my GOTY, it's close to be honest.

Bloodborne, Until Dawn, Everybody's Gone to the Rapture, Rocket League, Disney Infinity, MGSV so far, yes I mainly play on PS4. But that's just me, I'm not wrong, nor am I in any way right.
How he feels about MGSV I feel about the Witcher, I LOVED it to begin with, then the more I played the more I lost interest and it dropped out of my top games of the year, it's still an amazing game, just didn't keep me hooked and by the end I just wanted it to be over, so I can see his point of view.

At the end I'm thinking Fallout 4 or Battlefront will get it for me. But this year has been amazing.

Just like the article, he is just giving his opinion. Well written.

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Magicite1179d ago

why do I have a feeling that Mad Max deserves more praise and MGS deserves less praise? I think first impressions were wrong and now people realize the truth.

StanLee1179d ago

I really believe the over inflated review scores for MGSV is directly responsible for many being disappointed in the game. Reviews hail the game as groundbreaking, genre defining. It's crazy the superlatives used but the game simply isn't any of those things! It's a good game but it's no where near the game reviewers perceive it to be.

christian hour1179d ago (Edited 1179d ago )

As someone who played the infamous OPSMUK demo for Metal Gear Solid almost twenty years ago, over... and over... and over again... and again... and again...

...I'm not relating to this problem of getting bored from repetition.

I tackle each approach differently every time. You're in part responsible for switching up how you play to keep the game fresh, it's not entirely up to the game. It gives you the tools and varying ways to play, if you choose to play repetitively then that's not really the games fault.

Granted there are some minor flaws here and there (and these are just flaws with open world games in general), but nothing worth devoting article upon article to. MGS had flaws in the past, and they were mostly due to inherent flaws in Linear Games. Of COURSE these are only flaws when you compare them to something else and say "well such and such doesnt have this problem". Probably because such and such isn't the same thing, therefore would not have the same inherent flaws.

I don't think people know how to critique properly anymore. It's all just hate without reason or consideration.

I've played every MGS, over and over time and time again. And every time, the levels stayed the same, the guards stayed the same, but my approach and how I chose to play, the various new gadgets that made replaying worthwhile or the difficult unlocks to set my goals for... They keep it fresh. All of this is available to you in Phantom Pain too.

OhMyGandhi1179d ago (Edited 1179d ago )

I respectfully disagree with that logic.
It's not the gamer's fault for getting bored.
Telling the player that he/she should should be the one to keep it interesting is ridiculous...It's the game's sole responsibility.

It's like me telling people to play Mario with an arm around my back, or that people should only play with a certain, weaker weapon in a game like Bloodborne just to "change it up". Obviously, both games don't need it because they are intensively interesting and fun to play, but the point still stands.

If a game truly sells the player on the concept of open world mission design, and "many ways to play", then tactics should change up dramatically in a more organic way as they play. Variances in weather try to make it more interesting, like the dust storms, but I've found that trying to meander around these storms is equally pointless, because I've always been spotted from 100 feet away by some random joe who decides NOT to keep his head down during it.

I've tackled a base at night, I've shuffled along the desert floor during the day (which is seriously the most pointless time of day to tackle ANY mission) and I've changed gear to mix things up. I don't want to be detected, and I want to hide bodies, and I want to extract the prisoner or "highly skilled soldier", destroy their comm equipment and call it a day...It's really difficult to mix it up when nearly every method to complete aforementioned objectives with a good rank is identical. Your not going to go in guns blazing, or go about sniping people that you may want to use Fulton with. You also don't want to kill someone from across the map and leave their body in the complete open...

The way this particular game is designed makes it seem like there are so many ways to go about a particular mission, but in reality, there is only one or two ways you can clear a base and still get a good rank for your effort.

flyingwombat331179d ago

This. I think most MGS fans were not prepared for this much freedom. I can relate to the story woes in the second half, but I think this is one of the most marvelous games I've ever played. I think expectations were impossibly high. There were people on these forums thinking the game was going to end with you playing as Solid Snake sneaking into the mother base you built as Big Boss to take down Venom. THOSE WERE ACTUAL FAN EXPECTATIONS, OF COURSE UOU INSANE FANS ARE DISAPPOINTED.

My friend, who never liked MGS, just got to Africa and was thrilled that there was a whole other area. Meanwhile, MGS fans are sad that there isn't another COUPLE of open worlds. This is a mixture of Metal Gears usual divisivness and expectations that had run amuck.

I think it's fair to criticize the games narrative pacing, I think that the game would actually be better if it was shorter And they'd condensed all the story material in chapter 2 into chapter 1, but some of the complaints are just ridiculous.

blvdnights14141179d ago

So what you're saying is to put ketchup on my steak? It's not the fact that in it's original form the steak is bland but my fault for not not finding a way to cover it up.

Helios861179d ago (Edited 1179d ago )

That's a weird argument, look here's the thing, I want to get through every mission undetected and non-lethal because that's always been MGS for me. What this means is that I will use tranq rifle and tranq pistol whenever I can and go in for grab and choke when not.

So find target, find a path and tranq whoever I can't sneak past and hide their bodies if needs be. If this works, which it does 90% of the time, then there is no incentive for me to do otherwise especially when the game rewards me for playing this way.

In fact getting S-rank basically requiers you to get through the mission as fast as possible undetected.

The game encourages me to play a certain way, it doesn't encourage me to experiment.

When doing sideops on the other hand I do whatever I feel like. So the scoring system or atleast the way that it works is a big culprit in this.

As RustedMan said it's not the players responsibility to make the game interesting.

Witcher 3 is a good example of how open world games should be made, with all sidequests being little stories in and of themselves that weave into the world and backstory. In MGS5 it get's boring and you lose track of the story, which already feels very thin.

With that being said I enjoyed the game a lot overall and as far as being a game of the year contender, yes sure but it doesn't come near Witcher 3 let alone Bloodborne and we haven't tasted Fallout 4 yet.

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FunkMacNasty1179d ago (Edited 1179d ago )

My biggest problem is that, in previous metal gear games, every mission, every moment when players controled Solid Snake, Big Boss, or even Raiden or Plissken, every corridor we crept down, every C4 we planted, every time we quietly subdued a soldier... It was done with a purpose, a feeling of resolve as we move forward through a story of international espionage, military secrets, back stabbing characters and unlikely allies, and plot twists...

Now with Phantom Pain, while the gameplay is fantastic and the game is overall very fun... It seems more like a "greatest hits" collection of great infiltration missions rather than a true metal gear game. Big Boss barely even speaks, despite Keifer Sutherland doing a much better job of sounding convincingly like Big Boss than I expected.

As a huge metal gear fan, I must say I'm a little let down by MGS V

flyingwombat331179d ago

I think that the futility of conflict and the cycle of revenge is the point if the games design. I'm a huge MGS fan, and I think this goes with the best of them. I wouldn't say it's my favorite, but it's a worthy addition to the series.

nub_cakes1011179d ago

There's a reason why big boss barely speaks, I'd be spoiling it if I told you so I won't. All I'll say is the secret ending (mission 46) has a very interesting twist.

vickers5001179d ago (Edited 1179d ago )

"It was done with a purpose, a feeling of resolve"

Gotta disagree with you there. Mgs4s areas to me felt ridiculously unresolved as I moved through them, trying to silently take out everyone while enemies just kept infinitely respawning. Really broke immersion for me. While the enemies in mgs v will respawn, they only do once you quit the instance and come back, which can be explained away by new soldiers being called to defend that outpost while you're gone, whereas with mgs4, there's no limit to the amount of stupid soliders that will come from behind a corner, fail to notice the pile of dead bodies in front of them, and will go to their pre determined spots waiting for things to happen. At least the soldiers in mgs v move around a bit, some of them unpredictable at times.

callahan091179d ago

I'm loving MGS5. It's not as purely perfect of an experience for me as Bloodborne was, so it wouldn't get my GOTY, and I haven't played The Witcher 3 yet (just bought it though, so SOON!), but MGS5 is just an absolute joy to play. I just love the gameplay, couldn't have asked for better.

user99502791179d ago

hmm. kind of glad i opted out of this one. Seems like the hype is fading, dust is settling, and reality is setting in. I see it a lot across the net.

I'll prob still get it, but down the line for cheaper.

TLG19911179d ago

WOW no just because the "hype is fading" don't get that confused with a poor game. this game is still by FAR my game of the year. but i am expecting fallout to make me feel more satisfied throughout the whole thing.

I am 45 hours in to MGS and no sign of slowing down, i play it every spare moment i have really and it is far from getting boring or repetitive. there are not many game at all that can hold on to me for that long these day, wither 3 i don't even think i got 30 hours and was completely burnt out on that game.

as i have said before if this was a brand new IP nearly every issue wouldn't be an issue is this game would in turn be flawless.

FunkMacNasty1179d ago

It's definitley worth the hype, but if your a hardcore Metal Hear nerd, as some of us are, it might let you down on the story side of things. Don't get me wrong it's an excellent game, gameplay is top notch, mission strategy and freedom is great... For me, it just comes down to missing those long (sometimes 20 minute) cinematic scenes where characters had meaningful interactions and the lore, history, and secret cannon of the Metal Gear universe was shared in detail.

Either way, its definitley not a game to be missed, if you like stealth-action games! But I went into it expecting story design along the levels of the other MgS games. But, sadly at 30% completion.. Ive seen about 3-4 three-minute or less cutscenes. And the story thus far has
Not contained any of the "holy sh*t!" moments that MGS3 or 4 contained.

madmonkey011179d ago

its worth the hype for a couple of hours, the best bit is the prolouge, an the first few missions, everything after that is just rinse and repeat the same formula, being repetitive works for games that are gripping and exciting, but not in this.

-Ikon-1179d ago (Edited 1179d ago )

Game is STILL getting 10/10s weeks after release.. cry more your opinion sucks

not even a contender? rofl garbage clickbait

TheBurger291179d ago

So opinions only matter if you agree with it? Nice logic...

I have 3 friends who bought mgs v and all are bored with it already. Konami probably paid IGN and all these other places to give it high scores. I will wait for angry joe as he actually tells it how it is.

RowdyNeil1179d ago

MGS4 - "More gameplay, less cutscenes"
MGS5 - " More cutscenes, less gameplay"
Do people ever stop bitching?

xxchicago33xx1179d ago (Edited 1179d ago )

I couldn't agree more with this comment. I actually really like how they've integrated the story into the game via the cassette tapes.

This gets a lot of the lengthy backstory/set up elements out of the way without requiring 30-40 min cutscenes. I also like how they've broken them into smaller 2-3 min sections.

Plus you can go back and re-listen to them...which is necessary given all the different story arcs.

I dig it...because I did bitch about the cutscenes in 4.

Hk85karlsson1179d ago

Another agree from me. People will never stop moaning.

madmonkey011179d ago

its actually,
MGS5 needs more actual unique game play instead of the same mission 100 times, and some semblance of coherent story. that does not mean it needs hours of cut scenes.

DrumBeat1179d ago

Someone should tell these blowhards to stop acting entitled.

WelkinCole1179d ago

Two sets off people you are referring to.

People that complained about MGS4 long cutsecens are not long term MGS fans. MGS4 is a fanservice.

People now complaining about less cutscenes are in fact long time MGS fans. Like me.

coolman2291179d ago

MGS4 had ridiculously long cutscenes, some going up to 45 minutes, with very little gameplay in between. It's not that it had a reasonable amount of cutscenes and people complained. The game was called Movie Gear Solid for a reason.

MGS5 has so few cutscenes that unless you manage to find the specific tapes that have critical plot points you're going to be completely lost. It has plenty of gameplay. I regularly see people say that they put hundreds of hours into the game without beating it. But the story is so sparse it might as well not be there.

MGS1, 2, 3, and PW all had a standard length for cutscenes in the series. No one complains about them having too long of cutscenes. Unless they're not into Metal Gear. It's ridiculous to say that either of those complains are somehow unwarranted. Metal Gear is known for long cutscenes and lots of story, regardless of the quality. MGS5 drops all of that for almost no story. That's the main reason people are complaining.

MysticStrummer1179d ago

"MGS5 has so few cutscenes that unless you manage to find the specific tapes that have critical plot points you're going to be completely lost."

I don't see how. I barely listened to any tapes and I didn't get lost.

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mark_parch1179d ago

i still think witcher 3 should get it although halo 5 and fallout 4 will be epic. but can't see a xbox exclusive getting it so probably between witcher and fallout

madmonkey011179d ago

dont think an xbox exclusive as ever won a mainstream GOTY. so it will probably go to bloodborne or fallout.

KwietStorm1179d ago

There's a difference between BEING game of the year and being a game of the year contender. Phantom Pain is obviously a game of the year contender. But at the end of the day, who cares? This whole goty stuff has been nothing but another detraction over the last X amount of years. Everyone should just enjoy their games instead of proclaiming which is the 'winner,' especially months before they even play them.

KidMakeshift1179d ago

That's disheartening. Sounds like my experience with Mad Max. I'm guessing it's like the Halo effect where everyone praises the shit out of it, but after the hype train disembarks everyone starts being rational and analyzing the game. I'll eventually play The Phantom Pain, but my expectations are now a lot lower.

nyctophilia131179d ago

It was a losing fight anyway. Bloodborne locked up GOTY in the Spring.

3-4-51179d ago

Knew it.

All the media hype and fanboy hype blind praising a game JUST because a certain random human being is involved.

This is the problem with America these days.

Everyone Celebritizes people and acts like because somebody did something they like in the past, that everything they touch must be perfect or whatever.

* They praised it within making it be earned.

Just GIVING him the game of the year title instead of making somebody earn it.


MysticStrummer1179d ago (Edited 1179d ago )

I had the opposite reaction. The more I played MGS5 the more I enjoyed it. Bloodborne is still GotY for me so far but I think MGS5 is awesome fun and easily deserves to be in the conversation as a contender.

And, early next month…

WelkinCole1179d ago

The worst MGS is till better than 99% of games out there. Of course it is a contender. It's just not an automatic GOTY for me like every other MGS when they were released.

How I rate it is still a 9.5 for me. I was so looking forward to go back to big boss/naked story as MGS3 to be is the best in the series. It just has not lived up to the insanely high standard in terms of story I expected. To be quite honest the story is quite bland.

Realms1179d ago

MSG 5 is a game GOTY contender. You don't have to like the game, but many gamers are minimizing the good things that MSG 5 did well. As far the game play is concern some gamers keep saying, well it's repetitive you can say that about any game. I feel like it didn't live up to some gamers expectations and that's the reason they are knocking on this game. Hardcore MSG fans may even feel cheated and say that the story is lacking and that a valid point. The problem with that is that even early reviews said that was the case and still gave 10 out o 10. In the end play game don't play the game but judge on it's merits and not what your perception of what the game should have been and you will find it much more enjoyable.

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madmonkey011179d ago

i found the first 10 hours or so were really good, great in fact, but then after that it became repetitive and bland.

Tedakin1179d ago

I haven't played it myself, but I have 2 friends who said they're not loving it. One said he wishes it were a bit more linear.

Naji4Me1179d ago

For me MGS4 much better, there is no doubt MGS5 one of the best game in this generation but still TW3 and Bloodborne my nominees for GOTY.

Evil Rant Monkey1179d ago

Mgs4 gameplay is awesome! That game dragged me right in and had me playing non stop. I've found it difficult to get into Mgs5 the same way. PS MGS always holds top spot in my heart though for story and gameplay.

oIITSBIIo1179d ago (Edited 1179d ago )

The game is repetitive, it was boring after for me the 20th episode I was not having fun with the game, I kept playing to see the end that's all.