Can Metal Gear Solid combine open-world with coherent story-telling?

3 min read
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MGSV PP

Hideo Kojima has made some big promises for Metal Gear Solid V: The Phantom Pain. Beyond realistic horse mechanics, we’ve been shown all kinds of open world elements. At the same time, Metal Gear Solid will be based on a solid and coherent storyline. But this isn’t as easy as it sounds.

Taking to twitter, Hideo Kojima explained the balancing act. I won’t embed all the tweets, but rather quote them together as if they were one giant explanation for ease of reading. Of course you are welcome to read the tweets instead over on his timeline.

MGSV allows you free stealth mission in open world. Not only broad map but also infiltrate routes/transport methods depends on you. We must compensate spontaneous freedom in order to avoid incoherency. What I’m doing right now is to solve such problem. Let’s say we plan on climbing mountain. We start from preliminary investigation, training, mapping, getting gear, simulating before action. But unexpected happens (different map, bad weather, dead-end road, wrong gear, thin air, someone gets sick) when actually climbed. It is the same as game/movie creation. We encounter many various problems during dev from big to small but it never completes unless solving this problem. No point/choice of return. It’s only how we beat our brains out and aim the top of the target, that’s the best part.

I think this is an important question to tackle and I’m really keen to see how Kojima deals with it. Most games with vast open-world gameplay lose the thread of continuity for the story. It either leads to an artificially closed off world, or a story that never really seems to have any urgency. Perhaps Kojima will find a brilliant solution for this and other studios can adopt the new template.

Read  Spider-Man swings past some Marvel landmarks in this open-world gameplay trailer

Last Updated: February 26, 2015

Zoe Hawkins

Wielding my lasso of truth, I am the combination of nerd passion and grammar nazi. I delve into all things awesome and geek-tastic. You can read more of my words over at www.borngeek.co.za, or just follow me on all the social networks to get the true range of my sarcasm and wit.

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