Konami teased fans with the release of Metal Gear Solid 5: Ground Zeroes. It was essentially a demo of what was to come when The Phantom Pain releases next year. Since that time, we’ve seen trailers that showcase more about the game, but it wasn’t until we finally saw a live demo that we began to understand the scope of this title.
In The Phantom Pain, you take control of Big Boss while Diamond Dogs is flourish-ing. You partake in missions that are fairly standard for Metal Gear Solid, but there are a few new tricks that add to the gameplay. This time around, you can call upon a supply drop to acquire new items, such as the trademark cardboard box. However, this cardboard box does a bit more. Big Boss can pop out of the cardboard box, snipe an enemy, then pop back inside to avoid being seen. If someone spots the box moving around, Big Boss can even shoot out from the side of the box, taking cover elsewhere.
While sneaking around and going on missions is an important aspect of The Phan-tom Pain, there’s another significant component that should make fans happy. While on missions, you can send enemies, vehicles, items and even sheep back to your base by attaching a balloon to them. When you return to your base, all of the items, men and sheep you added will be visible. The more items you add, the larger your base becomes and the more men you have under your command. This comes in handy whenever your base gets attacked, which will happen from time to time. Every base will be different depending on the items used to add to each base.
Finally, as an open world title, there are many different ways to approach each situation. For example, sometimes it may be better to wait until nightfall when there are less guards patrolling an area. In these instances, Big Boss can light up an e-cigarette to help pass the time. While Big Boss is “smoking,” time moves much faster, allowing you to wait until nightfall without having to sit around for hours. This adds a strategic element to many of the missions that was not as significant in previous games.
We’ll have more on MGS 5: The Phantom Pain throughout the year.