Myth: Silicon Knights fucked up the cutscenes in The Twin Snakes
Fact: It was Ryuhei Kitamura who directed the cutscenes, and it’s not really his fault anyways.
By Ravi Singh, Posted in 2004
There is a wide array of confusion that is expressed everywhere about who fucked up the cutscenes in Metal Gear Solid: The Twin Snakes. Most people assume it’s Silicon Knights because they developed the game. So they usually make some Canadian joke about it. Too bad Japanese famed director Ryuhei Kitamura directed the cutscenes.
So people will criticize him for this. Even though they don’t understand the whole concept of The Twin Snakes and why he “fucked it up.”
Don’t listen to the “MGS had an awesome story, MGS2 had awesome gameplay, The Twin Snakes is a re-creation of the best story and the best game engine” bullshit because that’s just the propaganda they used to build up the hype and sell you the damn game, and a GameCube if you don’t own one.
The true concept was related to Konami’s relationship with Nintendo. Ever since the Nintendo 64, Konami hasn’t been doing well on Nintendo consoles. This is possibly the reason why there are not that many Konami games on the GameCube. However, Konami and Nintendo are actually on very good terms – possibly due to the GameBoy Advance.
Now all you fools who wished for a remake of Metal Gear Solid – they heard you. Metal Gear Solid is a very popular series in the western part of the world, and is somewhat popular in Japan. Nintendo convinced Konami to make an exclusive Metal Gear Solid game for the GameCube. If you don’t know why, consider the amount of people who bought a GameCube just for The Twin Snakes – proof that their plan was most likely successful. Konami considered that many fans would buy a remake of Metal Gear Solid. Hideo Kojima himself agreed. Which seems amazingly suspicious, because Hideo Kojima is very protective of his own work being reproduced if they are somewhat aged (i.e.: Policenauts, Snatcher).
The only problem in this was that Konami Computer Entertainment Japan, Inc. (Now called Kojima Productions) was busy with the production of Metal Gear Solid 3: Snake Eater. To top it all off, they probably would have taken some time because they aren’t that experienced with using the GameCube.
Nintendo then introduced them with one of their development teams that weren’t doing anything at the moment: Silicon Knights. Even though Silicon Knights didn’t want to (which they admit ONLY after the game was released, oddly enough) they were forced, if you will, to port the Sons of Liberty engine to the GameCube and remake Metal Gear Solid to thus create The Twin Snakes. Everything that involves gameplay… blame Silicon Knights. But is it their fault? It’s possibly Nintendo’s fault for forcing this project on them. At the same time, it’s disgusting to read interviews where Silicon Knights president Denis Dyack boasts how much his team loved working with Nintendo and KCEJ. So yeah. Blame the bugs and such to Silicon Knights since they seemed all proud to be working on this.
Now, the cutscenes, the topic we are discussing. They knew Silicon Knights didn’t want to make the game, so they were probably somewhat afraid of making them remake the cutscenes.
Nope, it wasn’t Silicon Knights who did this shit.
Hideo Kojima somehow managed to get famed Japanese director Ryuhei Kitamura to agree to remake them. Yes, every cutscene, including the Briefing, was directed by him. He is NOT a part of Nintendo in anyway. But before you start screaming and calling him “gay” may I note that your beloved HIDEO KOJIMA appointed him as the director, and to make this point more stiff – he APPROVED of every cutscene put into the game. “What?! Kojima allowed all those crazy cutscenes and backflips?!” Yes. Kitamura actually wanted to do more crazy stuff but Kojima possibly rejected them.
“New ideas cropped up along the way, though — supposedly, at one point, Kitamura wanted to pay homage to a scene from ‘Commando.’ To do so would involve throwing the motion-capture actors through the air, mimicking the blast wave of a virtual explosion, so the team brought in an air ram and spent the day launching unfortunate motion actors off a pneumatic catapult.“
- 1Up.com Behind The Scenes
Now tell me, if Kojima were to, say, get the Wachowski brothers to direct The Twin Snakes… don’t you think it would be very much like The Matrix? It’s their style. That’s how they have their characters play the roles in their stories. Ryuhei Kitamura’s movies have their action scenes very much like The Twin Snakes. No, they actually AREN’T a rip-off of The Matrix – Kitamura’s movies have been using the illusional effects you see in The Twin Snakes in his movies such as Down To Hell (1997) and Heat After Dark (1999) – both released before The Matrix. May I also note that the Wachowski brothers used the effects from many Kung-Foo Asian movies, but made them impressive looking, and made them mainstream with The Matrix? Or did you think they invented “bullet-time?”
Versus (2000) was Kitamura’s most popular film, and should be considered as evidence that it’s his style to make people do stuff like… backflip. Solid Snake is not his creation. He can make him backflip if he wants to. We find it ridiculous because we played other games with Solid Snake and he seems more hyper and flexible in this game. This is because Hideo Kojima directed the other cutscenes and made him that way.
Most people, including me, agree that the cutscenes with the Ninja were badass. Why are these badass when the others are thought to be lame by most people (once again, including me)? Simple. Kojima made The Ninja be crazy to begin with. Kitamura used his style with the Ninja – but it was expected of the Ninja to do crazy stunts like that. Kojima made Snake not crazy. Kitamura did. You understand? I bet if we have never heard of Metal Gear Solid, and we saw the cutscenes, we’d think it’s sweet. We’d just be mad we can’t do that in the actual game. We might still complain about the buggy gameplay and the crappy voice overs some character (Whoever played as “Naomi,” god damn, are you fucking awake?). But we would just consider Solid Snake to be some crazy guy who can do crazy moves. Same with everyone else in the damn game.
But we know Solid Snake wouldn’t aim his gun at some guy who forgot a fucking Codec frequency. We know Snake couldn’t backflip SIX TIMES, including two while holding a goddamn Stinger Missile Launcher… we know plenty of these cutscenes are ridiculous. But we shouldn’t blame Kitamura. This game shouldn’t have been directed by him. Which is why the news of Versus‘ action director directing the cutscenes for Devil May Cry 3 didn’t make me mad (I’m a fan of Devil may Cry) even though I didn’t like the cutscenes for The Twin Snakes – because Dante is a character that would work well with Kitamura’s style, unlike everyone who isn’t the Ninja in Metal Gear Solid (as a matter of fact I mentioned in a review how Solid Snake seems to be doing moves Dante would… months before Devil May Cry 3 was announced).
Here’s a couple screenshots from Versus. Note how some of them are similar to The Twin Snakes.
Ouch. Must’ve hurt… better go find Liquid’s arm.
Hmmm… doesn’t that “Half of my fucking face is bloody” look resemble…
…this? Seriously. Actually, the above is more like how Liquid Snake looked at the end of the game.
While Ocelot DID get his arm cut off in the original, the way it was shown in The Twin Snakes looked similar to the screenshot from Versus. Of course, Versus being directed entirely by Kitamura had more insane violence like… a guy pulling two eyeballs out of a guy’s face. How fucking rad is that? Could we have seen something like that for The Twin Snakes but it got cut out because of either Kojima or Miyamoto’s disapproval? Who knows. But my point was that these new additions are how Kitamura shows movies. The Twin Snakes happens to be the most bloody Metal Gear Solid game. Possibly because Kitamura’s films are bloody as hell too. Kojima’s cutscenes are bloody as well, but not as much. This is because he doesn’t use as much. If we knew how Kitamura’s movies are like, we might’ve NOT been surprised when we saw the cutscenes. Hideo Kojima, being a big move watcher, saw Versus. What you saw in The Twin Snakes is what Hideo Kojima wanted to be in The Twin Snakes. He picked Kitamura on purpose. Kitamura did not “fuck up” his job. I personally don’t like the cutscenes since I’ve learned that the characters in the game wouldn’t do stunts like that – but his job didn’t include portraying the characters exactly as Hideo Kojima did.
Here’s an example of my explanation regarding different styles by different directors being used to display the same scene: the famous painting “Las Meninas” by Diego Velázquez was “remade” by Pablo Picasso. The differences between the way the two are presented are insane, yet, it’s basically the same concept, much like the cutscenes in Metal Gear Solid are compared to The Twin Snakes.
The original “Las Meninas” by Diego Velázquez.
The Pablo Picasso remake. Did I just hear you say “HOLY SHIT?!”
Picasso’s style is making things look crazy like that. He didn’t ruin it, or fuck it up – it’s how he paints. I do wonder how Velázquez would react, but whatever. Perhaps something along the lines of “Tu puto!”
Don’t get me wrong. I have said numerous times that I never liked the cutscenes in The Twin Snakes with exception of the Ninja ones. In fact, I hated most of them. It’s just that I don’t think we should blame a director for using his style in his job of directing scenes. If we have to blame someone, should we blame Hideo Kojima? Maybe. He wanted Kitamura to direct. No offence Kojima, but… couldn’t you just direct them again? If you’re too busy with Snake Eater, couldn’t you get another director who doesn’t make movies with crazy effects? But then… what the hell were we expecting when we learned that the director of internationally-famed Japanese cult films was re-doing the scenes? Never mind that, why couldn’t they use exactly the same cutscenes as Hideo Kojima made, except… with better graphics? They could have done that, but most likely – Silicon Knights wouldn’t want to. So really, it’s nobody’s fault… well, maybe Nintendo. Maybe. But why would Nintendo enforce the development of this game? Fanboys. Not Nintendo fanboys – you Metal Gear Solid fanboys who always e-mail me with bullshit regarding my reviews (No kidding, people think some games should get 10/10 ratings) and how you think Raiden’s a fag (though he has a girlfriend and was disturbed by Vamp’s bisexuality), how Snake is awesome (Yes, we know, shut the fuck up), how The Twin Snakes is better than Metal Gear Solid 2 just because of the story (too bad the presentation of the story is fucked up, you twit) and such.
So blame yourselves, really. Every one of you who went “D00D A MGS1 REMAKE WIT MGS2 GRAFIX N GAMEPLAY WULD BE K00l 2 TEH MAX!!11″ go sock yourself in the face, then hang yourself using a GameCube controller. It doesn’t matter if you meant just a remake of the game with extra shit to make the new moves useful… it doesn’t matter if you wanted it on the PlayStation 2 (Not like it would have been any better, aside from the controls), the fact that you ‘gasmed once you heard about a remake of a game you ALREADY THOUGHT WAS ONE OF THE BEST FUCKING GAMES TO DATE… is ridiculous.
Oh, and someone please slap the voiceover for Naomi. The local ice cream man can do a better job – and he has a deep voice and can’t speak English very well.