Metal Gear Solid V: The Phantom Pain is a fantastic stealth-action experience. A celebration of all the elements that makes the series one of gaming’s greatest. The open-world format really opens up new ways to go about your mission at hand and really allows the player to develop their own distinct style of playing. It is a true joy to step into the boots of Big Boss and fulfil the legend of the world’s greatest soldier.

Set in the year 1984, nine years after the events of Ground Zeroes, Boss is coming out of a coma and must rebuild his mother base and amass a new army. After the prologue mission the player can explore the desert plains of Afghanistan at their own pace, either taking on side-ops or moving the storyline along through the main missions. When not in the field you can explore your ever-increasing Mother Base and manage new staff and develop new weapons and tech. It’s easy to lose track of time in the world of Phantom Pain. mgsv_gameplay

The way the story is set up is a bit different from what many fans are used to. The game is a lot less centred on long cutscenes and the codec calls have been removed altogether. A lot of the intricacies of the story are relegated to cassette tapes that you can play on Boss’s walkman. This is where you’ll find most of Kiefer Sutherland’s voice acting. Instead of forcing players to sit through long codec calls and cutscenes there is a lot more freedom in regards to how involved you want to get with the story. It will maybe put off some veteran MGS players, but at the same time works well for newcomers.

The Phantom Pain is a beautiful game to look at and listen to. The Fox Engine really flexes its power and characters and environments look phenomenal. The sound design is equally strong with a great voice acting, and a fantastic soundtrack. All the various guns, mines, grenades and rocket launchers pack a great punch. Definitively one of the year’s best looking games.

Whether you are a long time fan of the Metal Gear Solid series, or a newcomer, The Phantom Pain is a great game that any stealth and action fan should give a chance. Hideo Kojima’s latest masterpiece is a strong game of the year contender for sure.

Metal Gear Solid V: The Phantom Pain Review
  • Awesome Presentation
  • Fantastic open-world gameplay
  • Encourages different play styles
  • Story oddly paced at times
  • Some repetitive missions
93%Excellent tactical espionage action!
Reader Rating: (1 Vote)

About The Author

Ingólfur Ólafsson

Metal head, front-man, natural gamer and editor at Eskimo Press.