August 19, 2015
NES30 #22: Metal Gear
Mention Metal Gear these days and people will understandably leap to Hideo Kojima's widely celebrated - and regularly mocked - series of Metal Gear Solid games that have been a mainstay of the PlayStation since the late 1990s. Metal Gear Solid itself (reviewed here) was of course a sequel - the third in the series - and the half-forgotten Metal Gear was the first.
Kojima originally developed Metal Gear for the MSX2 home computer. It was his publisher Konami that, with his knowledge or consent, quietly passed the source code to a separate development team to have them re-develop the game for the Famicom - and, subsequently, for the NES. Due to the unapproved changes made to the storyline and the gameplay, Kojima has understandably disowned the NES iteration. Full disclosure: I've never managed to play the MSX2 original, but the NES version is pretty great.
The game's not perfect: for one thing early sequences when your character is unarmed can be maddeningly tricky to survive. It has also dated quite significantly, although that's hardly surprising for a 28 year-old videogame (the Famicom version was released in 1987, the NES version in 1988). It's an important slice of history, however, and in a countdown of the best NES games it absolutely deserves its place.
This is the 1,500th post on The Angriest. Thanks for continuing to read it.