|System: PS2||Review Rating Legend|
|Dev: Kojima Prod.||1.0 - 1.9 = Avoid||4.0 - 4.4 = Great|
|Pub: Konami||2.0 - 2.4 = Poor||4.5 - 4.9 = Must Buy|
|Release: March 18, 2008||2.5 - 2.9 = Average||5.0 = The Best|
|Players: 1||3.0 - 3.4 = Fair|
|ESRB Rating: Mature||3.5 - 3.9 = Good|
The final entry in the Metal Gear Solid series that is included in this collection is Metal Gear Solid 3: Subsistence. This is the extended edition of Metal Gear Solid 3: Snake Eater, although it curiously doesn't include the second special features disc that came with the original. But lack of special features aside, Metal Gear Solid 3 definitely feels like the most in-depth entry in the series. The story is a prequel to the entire series, and the game marks the first in the series to feature a truly open world, and was the first in the series to have camera control and advanced enemy A.I.
The gameplay is also much more in-depth, and there's definitely a lot more to do with Snake in Metal Gear Solid 3 then there was in previous games. It marks the introduction of the stamina bar, and for the first time you'll have to find food to give Snake in order for him to survive. And while many applauded this more intricate approach, I miss the simplicity of the first two games. But I suppose Metal Gear Solid 3 is probably the most modern of the three games, and current-gen players will probably find quite a lot to love in this last-gen title.
If you have never played the Metal Gear Solid series, this collection gives you the perfect chance to catch up on one of the best series in game history. And even if you have played the series before but perhaps missed an entry or two, you will still definitely get some value out of this $30 set. The only qualm that I have with the Metal Gear Solid: Essential Collection is that it doesn't have any bonus material for fans that may already own all three of these great titles. But I suppose you can't ask for too much when you're offered three classic games for such a great price. And of course, with the much anticipated final entry in the series, Metal Gear Solid 4: Guns of the Patriots, on its way, fans will definitely get what they want in due time. Metal Gear Solid: The Essential Collection is basically only for people who are new to the series or have missed some of it. But for this select group of people, Metal Gear Solid: The Essential Collection is a must buy!
Amanda L. Kondolojy
CCC Freelance Writer