Not much was known about Metal Gear Solid: Rising (now Metal Gear Rising: Revengeance) until now.
The fast paced 3rd person action title being developed by Platinum Games (of Bayonetta fame) is a far cry from what Metal Gear fans are used to.
When I had the chance to speak with famed series creator Hideo Kojima before the 2011 Spike TV Video Game Awards on Saturday, I asked him how he felt about what the team at Platinum had done with Rising, without him leading the way. His replies were interesting, but I wouldn’t truly see why until after the world premeire trailer later that night:
As you can see, Kojima-san said that if he had made Rising, the outcome of the game wouldn’t be as speedy as the game they are making now, and in fact it would be a lot more Bushido-esque.
For reference, let’s take a look at the trailer for Rising:
That is certainly not slow, and certainly not Bushido.
Now, for those of you not familiar with the term Bushido, you should know that is it the code or way of the samurai.
If we look to Bushido, the Soul of Japan, by Inazo Nitobe (written in 1905) it is defined in part as:
The sense of honour, implying a vivid consciousness of personal dignity and worth, which could not fail to characterise the samurai, born and bred to value the duties and privileges of their profession.
The discipline of fortitude on the one hand, endurance without a groan, and the teaching of politeness on the other, requiring us not to mar the pleasure or serenity of another by expressions of our own sorrow or pain, combined to engender a stoical turn of mind, and eventually to confirm it into a national trait of apparent stoicism.
Perhaps what Kojima-san envisions is a game where a lot more attention is paid to not only the stoic and honorable sword wielder, but the sword itself, and the long and bloody relationship between the two.
In that respect, Nitobe writes:
So precious an object cannot long escape the notice and the skill of artists nor the vanity of its owner, especially in times of peace.
Too often did the blade flash forth from its peaceful sheath. The abuse sometimes went so far as to try the acquired steel on some harmless creature’s neck.
The question that concerns us most is, however,–Did Bushido justify the promiscuous use of the weapon?
A dastard or a braggart was he who brandished his weapon on undeserved occasions. A self-possessed man knows the right time to use it, and such times come but rarely.
Perhaps we would see a game that pays much more attention to why and how Raiden kills, and see his swordfighting movements in a much more traditional samurai-esque and even a “romantic” way. I would certainly need a lot more time with Kojima-san to know for sure.
So, are you satisfied with how the fast paced Rising is turning out? Or would you have preferred a slower, more Bushido-esque swordfighting game helmed by Kojima-san?
Regardless of what you think of the direction Metal Gear Rising: Revengeance is taking, the man himself stated that, “The team made something very different from what I do, and I like it”
If anything, I would add:
Wherever man struggles to raise himself above himself, there we see the immortal discipline of Hideo Kojima at work.
Photo Credit [OPM]