port of Substance was actually supposed to be released later than the PlayStation
2 original. However, Microsoft managed to have the tables turned. They walked by
Konami's office and dropped a load of bills with a message probably something like
"Tis us being nice. Tomorrow, we bring bomb." Or maybe they went ahead and hired
a hitman to assassinate the PlayStation 2 coder to buy some time. You never know
with Microsoft. But anyways, this version was released not only before the PlayStation
original, but - before it was meant to be released in general, meaning there are
more bugs than you can spray coolant at, sister.
To explain what the fuck you're getting, you're getting a port of the special edition
of the PlayStation 2 hit "Sons of Liberty." This edition features over five hundred
VR and Alternative missions, five Snake Tales, and Skateboarding mode... well, you
don't get that in this port. Doesn't matter though, you probably bought this game
to hide in a cardboard box, not to pull a Chad Muska in the Big Shell. It's all
on one Dual-Layered DVD so you don't have to swap discs. How nice of you, KCEJ!
The Sons of Liberty part of the game is the European version. Meaning you get extras
such as a new difficulty level, a silencer for the USP Handgun, and some other stuff
that was unreleased in the United States. The game itself is pretty good, but the
Xbox fucks it up. I am not saying the Xbox sucks at all. It is a good system, but
since this game was designed exclusively for the PlayStation 2, some things go all
weird on you. The best example is the messed up frame rate. In the Tanker Chapter,
the rain causes massive slowdown - and that's even after they removed a lot of the
rain! So while you are running in slow motion to a door and enter the Tanker, everything
speeds up. Meaning that had they used the normal framerate, the rain part would
have even been slower. The colors are too bright for a Metal Gear game, the resolution
causes excessive non-anti-aliased shadows, the controls don't feel as good as they
should (you have to press in the left control stick to switch in and out of First-Person-Mode
which isn't good when you're battling an army of soldiers) even with the multiple
control schemes available (in which the white and black buttons replace L1 and R2,
but are not in reach most of the time)! That's not all of it, but it's all the major
problems with the port. Well... I just have to add the fact that swimming underwater
is going to take a lot longer in this version.
In the VR Missions, the only shit that will slightly affect you are the resolution
and color bugs, which isn't much. The framerate seems normal, and the only thing
you need to be worried about are the controls. The Alternative Missions... well
since they take place in the settings of Sons of Liberty, it depends. For the most
part, nothing will be really affected, but a small amount of them take place in
The Snake Tales are all fine on the Xbox, having a small amount of bugs, except
for "Confidential Legacy" which takes place in the Tanker and has plenty of rain
to slow you down.
Despite all of the bugs and uncomfortable controls, the Xbox does boast in-game
Dolby Digital 5.1. Now you know where the fuck Fatman is by hearing his roller-skates,
Plus, while both versions feature the better Thermal Goggles, the Xbox version's
goggles do not have fog. See, the Thermal Goggles are done with bump mapping. The
PlayStation 2 has that feature, but doesn't do it quite well and the Xbox has used
bump mapping in previous games. So in the PlayStation 2 version, an object far away
won't show it's red or orange layer, but in the X-Box version, all layers of heat
Score - 8.9/10
The best game for PlayStation 2 is now available for X-Box owners to enjoy!
Everything from the original game and more is in here! In-game Dolby Digital 5.1
and better Thermal Goggles slightly make-up for the amount of bugs.
Some of the VR Missions get frustrating, the inconstant framerate gets annoying,
the controls are not comfortable, and while not a lot of people really care for
it: no skateboarding.
The first time you play this game: Watching yourself run in slow-motion and
not realizing that it's slower than it's supposed to be until you walk inside the
Tanker and everything's super-fast.
If you own an Xbox, I suggest you to buy this title. The game is great and if
you manage to ignore the bugs, you'll find a damn good title. But if you also have
a PlayStation 2 with you, go buy that version. This version is for all the non-PlayStation
2 owners who want to experience what they have been missing!
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