By now, many of us who frequent gaming news sites are aware of the wildly varied reviews of Metal Gear Solid V: Ground Zeroes. According to MetaCritic, scores are as low as 50%, yet as high as 100%. Though 50% is as low as MC has recorded, I have observed scores as low as 1/5 (20%) from less-known [and perhaps less reputable] sources that *could* simply be looking for hits. In my opinion, the game does not deserve to be so lowly rated, simply because anything below a 50% should be reserved for glitchy, broken games. If reviews are any indication, Ground Zeroes is barely better than Sonic '06. Why so low? The general consensus appears to suggest Ground Zeroes is solid, gameplay-wise. It's a matter of length.
But...isn't length relative? It's all about how you approach it, which brings me to my point: The Fighting Game Dilemma. Let's be honest, if we were offered a timed demo for both Street Fighter IV and Metal Gear Solid V: Ground Zeroes, we would complete both, easily. When playing fighting games, we tend to stick to our tried-and-true characters and often avoid using unfamiliar means. The various approaches of Metal Gear Solid V: Ground Zeroes are analogous to a Ryu/Ken/Akuma player in Street Fighter IV using Vega. It takes a while to become accustomed to the unfamiliar. One argument is how Ground Zeroes takes place in Camp Omega for all missions. While this is true, unless the background is interactive, does it make any kind of difference for fighting games? No, it's purely an aesthetic touch. The training grid stage is no different from Guile's Airport which is no different from Seth's laboratory. The argument just doesn't hold in many cases. Games like Guilty Gear and Blazblue are excellent examples of The Fighting Game dilemma because these games require much more finesse and competence to master. You can, dare I say, speed run it, or you can take the time to absorb all the game has to offer and familiarize yourself with the mechanics thoroughly.
Then there exists the argument of game modes. This is difficult to dispute because Ground Zeroes only has one. For that, it cannot be compared to fighting games, BUT fighting games do sell for higher (sans good guy Aksys in some cases, i.e., Continuum Shift was $40). Supplemental game modes are often just multiplayer modes (unless you're Warhawk or Titanfall where that's all you are). Either way, those games will only last you as long as the servers are available really. Warhawk has local multiplayer, but eh...
Anyway, I digress. If Metal Gear Solid V: Ground Zeroes costs $30 and is, as others call it, a "glorified demo", should fighting games in general cost full retail? It seems like a bold conclusion to draw, but both are literally titles that require you, the gamer, to make the most of it and experiment. There's no right or wrong way to enjoy it, so long as you succeed, the game is short, and replay value depends largely on your ability to step outside of your comfort zone of reliable tactics. These games, though short, are largely exploratory.
For me, a big difference is Konami actually having the audacity to basically say, "we're selling you a demo". Makes you wonder how many people thought Blazblue: Continuum Shift and Street Fighter IV would be the only iterations of the game. At any rate, I guess I just wanted to put this into perspective. It isn't the first time consumers have been taken for a ride with popular franchises. Part of me says, "seriously, Konami?" Another part of me says, "well, at least the game isn't broken and it's an extremely promising look at the future of Metal Gear Solid". So to summarize, Metal Gear Solid V: Ground Zeroes takes a lot of flack--perhaps warranted, perhaps not--for length when it's truly a matter of making it work as a game that has no "right" way of playing. Your way of playing is literally a means to the end, but never *THE* means. In the same vein of thought, it doesn't exactly differ from how fighting games are; in fact they are quite analogous.
As a side bar for my thoughts, let me just say: for what it's worth, some of these fighting games appear to be taking greater advantage of gamers than Ground Zeroes. Street Fighter IV basically said, "You paid $60 for a broken game...let's throw in some characters, and tweak it and call it even. Oh wait, almost done, some more tweaks and characters. Hmmm, one more time." Not just here, but virtually every other fighter from Capcom. Heaven forbid we think they actually use the networks of these consoles to deliver patches. Blazblue sort of pulled this as well (though it was never full retail). Point is, there will only be one Ground Zeroes...I think.
Take a look at the many games that allowed free-roaming and exploring vast locations. Here are the best PS1 open-world games.
Marvel's Spider-Man 2 will feature a "swing assist" slider, with the default setting at 10, which is the same as in previous Spidey games.