Video game review: 'Metal Gear Rising: Revengeance' has some twists on usual button-mashing gameplay

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Entertainment,Ryan Vogt,Video Games

"Metal Gear Rising: Revengeance" is a game the way the used to make them. It makes zero sense and is absolutely full of stuff that would never get past quality-control killjoys if the game were made in the West.

"Revengeance" stars Raiden, a cyborg ninja, because either alone just isn't hard-core enough. With his huge metal underbite and prematurely white hair, Raiden is out to take revenge on the various bad guys who have caused him to need so many replacement parts.

He does this with a pulsating sword that can cut through anything. Except for all the things it can't. A tree? A joke. A bridge? No problem. A giant mooing robot? Consider it split. A concrete wall? No can do. When the game wants to put a barrier in front of you, suddenly your miracle sword can't, ahem, cut it. This brings us back to our days of playing "Doom." "Why do I need a yellow key to open this door? I have a rocket launcher."

Developed by Platinum Games, "Revengeance" does away with the stealth gameplay that's the "Metal Gear" series' trademark, opting for full-on action. Platinum is the studio behind such acclaimed beat-'em-ups as "Bayonetta," so "Revengeance" has some neat twists on the usual button-mashing gameplay. And series creator Hideo Kojima is still onboard, so the cinematic sequences are the very best in the medium.

'Metal Gear Rising: Revengeance'
» System: PS3, Xbox 360
» Price: $59.99
» Rating: 3 out of 5 stars

When will Kojima realize his true calling and get into filmmaking? All this said, "Revengeance" also has a few things that shouldn't have gotten past the quality-control killjoys. Way too much of the game is a scavenger hunt, in which you scan your surroundings for little collectibles that unlock new features. And the difficulty is uneven at best, with a cakewalk following an all-out battle, and vice-versa.

"Revengeance" deserves five stars for its title alone, and five more for living up to its spirit. It's a fun game, even when it isn't.

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