I honestly took too long to continue the previous Metal Gear review. This time it will fill both mecha design talk and review spot of the month, because this really has been a month where things just have gone all the wrong ways, and will continue to do so for the new few months. I’m also adding this and the previous entry to Robot related materials page you can access above the banner.
Anyway, we’ll do things like last time. Go through the games in release order and review them as-is. The Metal Gears in this entry are now considered to be unrelated to the main series games, thou seeing how retarded those design went in the end, I wouldn’t mind just shoving these in just because. They will be reviewed as both standalone entries, and how they relate to any of the mainstream series entries or to each other, if applicable. I will not go over Unmanned Gears here, as they’re not the title mechas, but I will include EXCELSUS in this one, because it didn’t appear in the previous entry.
Metal Gear 2
Much like Link’s Adventure, Snake’s Revenge gets unnecessary bad rap from the fandom nowadays. Originally it was a valid entry to the series and was seen an improvement all around to the NES Metal Gear, despite being more a sequel to the MSX version. But I’m not talking about the game in any further detail today, it’s all about the robots.
Metal Gear 2 is honestly a decent design. It’s not a spectacular one, but keeps familiar design aesthetics from the original. Metal Gear 1, as it’s called in the game, is even shown in the introduction.
Things that apply to the new design is that it stands wider and its legs are now armoured, a weakness in the original. The core design seems to be the same otherwise, with nuclear missile launcher on the left and cockpit on the right. Well, not a cockpit per se, but a housing unit for the computer units, as Metal Gear 2 was to be an autonomous. Chaingun set on its side is a bit over the top and while it does stand out a bit, it’s not any worse detail than what the rest of the franchise has. The launcher though is comical and looks like a big damn cauldron. However, the exhaust pipe on its side is a neat detail that’s lifted from Metal Gear 1, a neat little nod to the design continuation.
Metal Gear 2 really is a neat little design that doesn’t really shine in its limited sprite form. With little tweaking here and there and a full-blown illustration of it, it might just look damn fine. As it is now, Metal Gear 2 is mostly a curiosity.
Metal Gear GANDER
Now we’re going to crazytown. Metal Gear 2 is basically the only that ties itself to a previous iteration and the rest are just Let’s design something awesome.
From the GameBoy Colour game Metal Gear Solid, or as it was known in Japan and how I will call it to avoid mistakes, Metal Gear: Ghost Babel is a sequel to the MSX Metal Gear rather than to anything else. Gander’s design was recycled from PlayStation Metal Gear Solid as it was one of the design concept that went unused. You really can see why, because it’s an awkward design. It can walk and shoot, but not much else. Gander’s very top-heavy with its fake railguns and wide top, so it’s more or less a design that doesn’t really work. Not to mention its weak spots was its legs, something that even Snake’s Revenge managed to fix. I know Kojima and his cronies like to fap over repeated motifs, but at least they should’ve showed in the design.
Gander’s whole deal was that it’s linked to seven satellites carrying nuclear missiles. The next question is; why in the fuck you’d need something like this to do it? There’s no real logical reason, it’s just because Metal Gear’s gonna Metal Gear. It’s height and profile would’ve made it a huge target anyway, so whoever thought this was a good idea to go with after the original Metal Gear was destroyed should’ve gotten fired right there and then. Of course, outside the game the design is pretty neat and reflects some of the post-Evangelion sensibilities in Japan. However, Gander would set the way for all future spin-off Metal Gear designs to look extravagant.
Meal Gear KODOQUE
Metal Gear AC!DII was a weird little series, combining card games with stealth. It was honestly pretty bad, but popular enough to get a sequel. Kodoque’s a more interesting design out of the bunch because of its massive shields on its arms that house missiles and can form a protective cocoon around it. Where its nuclear launcher is, but that’s more or less unimportant. What is important that it is a departure from the previous Metal Gears in the series and has a very unique, boxy look to it.
Without its shields, Kodoque’s inner design gets to shine. It’s pretty messy sketch, but shows things nicely. With the shields, Kodoque reminds a little bit of Sachiel from Evangelion, and Without the shields it is reminiscent of Zeruel. But that’s most likely just me. As the AC!D games stand on their own, Kodoque’s design is not tied to the previous incarnations, and stands on its own a nice design. While it’s not a spectacular design, it remove the basic concept slightly away from the mainline and does its own thing with it, albeit some of its elements does seem similar to previous versions to the point of looking like a stripped version of Gander.
Metal Gear Chaioth Ha QadeshThis what happens when you take crazy pills and start seeing pink elephants. While Kodoque had a colour scheme that fit with most Metal Gears, Metal Gear Kabbalah here has a broken neon pastels slapped all over it. It’s a neat contrast to the rest of the series, but it does make it look a lot more like a really expensive toy. Sadly, like most post-Metal Gear Solid Metal Gears, it too reuses design elements from REX and it loses points because of that. Despite the “head” being more an elongated piece, almost like a Xenomorph’s, it still stays in the REX mould. The rail gun and radar-like equipment also reside in the same place. It’s arms do give it a more unique look, alongside its itty bitty legs, but just because it has those elements from REX makes it look like a retarded cousin.
However, props where they’re do, the legs do make it relatively low profile, even if wide one. It looks nasty and doesn’t looks like it could be toppled all that easily. While I tend to bitch not following the design sensibilities, Caioth Ha Qadesh gets partially free pass for me on that because we can assume some elements we simply deemed stupid and revised completely. Hell, even the core intention of both units are different, outside nuclear capability. But the REX elements are its biggest detriment and thus gets only a mediocre pass. Kodoque set a good stage, and they fucked it up. Then again, it could be assumed SaintLogic saw Kodoque an imperfect design all around and decided to revise it completely, something that should’ve done more often within the series. Still, pretty flashy design that leaves an impression for sure.
Between here should be Eldera’s Metal Gear and Mesal Gear, but because the other doesn’t have a key art of it and the other is just a huge monkey, they don’t get reviewed.
Metal Gear EXCELSUS
Metal Gear EXCELSUS gets a stamp Pretty damn neat from me. It’s huge, ridiculous and completely batshit insane in design. It’s not utilitarian or nuclear capable, it’s just big with four legs and two arms that make up huge energy swords. Unlike previous Metal Gears, EXCELSUS was designed to be extravagant and stupidly huge for the sake those things themselves, and can’t directly be compared to the more “realistic” ones. Except Metal Gear Walking Monkey from Metal Gear Solid V, that shit was just retarded.
So the whole deal with EXCELSUS was supposedly that they have a huge ass robot that they can rip and tear through urban area and Unmanned Gears residing there. It’s sheer size would scare the civilians away, and as nuclear weapons became less an issue in the story at this point, I guess EXCELSUS’ idea of unrivalled fear spreading on the battlefield makes it a Metal Gear.
I could bitch about the size and shape and all that, but at this point in the story when you’ve had huge submarines warmongering, metabiological machines and the whole nanomachines plot going incredibly stupid, EXCELSUS feels right at home at being a honking fortress of killing. It does what it intents and doesn’t even reuse REX’s parts, which is always a +3 in my books.
Whether or not we’ll get more Metal Gears in the future is an open question, but I doubt Konami will leave the series dying. They’ll most likely keep things down a bit, and unless they remove themselves completely from the video game industry, I’m sure some form of Metal Gear title will happen outside pachislot.