As anyone who has read my review of MGS2 will know, I’m really not very good at these games. But I love playing them for their crazy storylines and intriguing characters. What follows are ten ways that I messed up in MGS3, so that you might avoid the same mistakes/laugh at my ineptitude (minor spoilers ahead):
- I thought that Snake’s stomach rumbling was a crocodile. I think that the first time Snake’s stamina dropped low enough for his stomach to start rumbling there must have been a crocodile within view, as every time it happened after I assumed there was one nearby, even inside buildings. It wasn’t until very late in the game that I realised the error of my ways.
- I forgot that I could move bodies. The ability to pick up and move bodies was included in this game, and despite the fact that I had used the same ability in the previous two installments, I completely forgot that it was a thing. It wasn’t until I had to hide Raikov that I looked in the back pages of the manual and found that I could pick up bodies. This was particularly annoying as precious ammo from unconscious soldiers could have been gathered in this way.
- I didn’t realise that batteries recharged. A new featured of MGS3 are pieces of equipment that run on batteries such as a motion detector and life-sign scanner. Both are very useful pieces of equipment for avoiding sticky situations, but I hardly used them for fear that the batteries would run out and I wouldn’t be able to use them in a boss fight. Little did I know that by unequipping the item, it’s batteries gradually recharged.
- I failed to read the instructions on the RPG. For almost the entirety of the game I fired the RPG from the hip like some kind of badass gunslinger – and missed almost every time. It wasn’t until the battle with the Shagohad that I realised I could hold down L1 and use the scope on the weapon.
- I had been sneaking wrong. I couldn’t figure out why the enemies kept noticing me sneaking up on them, until I found out that I should have been using the directional pad instead of moving slowly with the left thumbstick.
- My interrogation technique needed some work. All too often, when grabbing an enemy I panicked slightly and held down the circle button too hard. This resulted in Snake accidentally cutting the throats of many enemies that I really needed some answers from.
- My epic battle with the Shagohad. I fought the Shagohad for a good thirty minutes, waiting for an opening, before realising (read: ‘googling’) that I had to shoot the treads. In my defence, this is something I tried early on in the battle, but I must have hit the wrong spot. Also, when I called up SIGINT he told me that I could fire my rocket inside the tank when the big machine gun fired. You lie SIGINT!
- I thought the fight with The End was just making Snake really hungry. I couldn’t figure out why Snake’s stamina was falling so rapidly in the fight with The End until I noticed he was shooting him with tranquiliser darts – but not before I had practically cleared out his backpack of food.
- I kept shooting people with the handgun by mistake. The names of the handgun and the tranquiliser gun both begin with an ‘M’, and their silhouettes are almost identical. So, whilst trying to put guards to sleep by shooting them in the leg with a tranquiliser dart, I instead pissed them off and gave away my position.
- The combat roll. I didn’t discover that the combat roll could be used to knock enemies down until the very end of the game. I can’t tell you how many times that would have been useful.
Perhaps I’m too used to in-game tutorials, but really that’s just an excuse. I should have read all of the manual, not just the first few pages, and/or the instructions on the weapons. Oh well, you live and learn, perhaps I’ll be better when I play Peacewalker, although somehow I doubt it.