Like most people, I wasn’t expecting Metal Gear Solid Touch [App Store] for another couple days. Imagine my surprise when forum member 1337brian discovered the game on the App Store well before its expected launch!
After spending the last hour or so downloading, syncing, and playing, I believe fans of the Metal Gear series will enjoy this latest pocket-sized entry in Kojima’s twenty-year running dynasty of action packed games. I admit I was skeptical when I initially read about the control scheme of Metal Gear Solid Touch, but after blowing through seven levels, each more hectic than the last, I'm surprised at how well they work.
Moving your finger anywhere on the touch screen allows you to aim using a circular targeting crosshair. Tapping shoots, and to seek cover to avoid enemy fire all you have to do is take your finger off the screen. Not all enemies will be in range of your M4 assault rifle, and this is where my favorite part of the game comes in--pinching your two fingers on the screen switches weapons to the SVD sniper rifle, perfect for picking off far away enemy soldiers. Moving your two fingers apart zooms back out and Snake switches guns again for close range combat.
Power-ups randomly appear, which either give you a more powerful weapon or refill a part of your health bar. Like many shooting games, conveniently placed explosive barrels that can be used to blow up nearby enemies litter the playing field. The game quickly gets tricky, and after only a few levels in, you will find yourself frantically juggling between seeking cover and alternating between your assault and sniper rifles.
Taking down enemy combatants isn’t the only thing you have to worry about, however. Standard for most shooter games, friendly units will also randomly pop out of cover, and shooting them takes off a portion of your health bar. It really should go without saying, but if you ever find yourself caught in the crossfire between Solid Snake and a platoon of angry enemy soldiers, I would really advise getting out of there fast!
The graphics consist of pre-rendered 3D backgrounds and character models which work quite well for the game. The animations are well done, and run at a high frame rate. The music fits right in with the Metal Gear universe and the sound effects are spot-on. The loading screens are beautiful, and are totally screenshot-worthy to use as iPhone wallpaper.
My initial impressions of this game are positive, but I still can’t disregard the associated price tag. Metal Gear Solid Touch is without a doubt one of the better tap-shooters on the iPhone, but at $7.99 you’re definitely paying a premium for the Metal Gear name. Keep your eye on Touch Arcade for an in-depth review soon; in the meantime, I’ve got some more baddies to shoot.
App Store Link: Metal Gear Solid Touch, $7.99
This first impressions article was written by Eli Hodapp, a guest contributor at TouchArcade.