Xbox 360 Reviews

Metal Gear Rising Revengeance: Jetstream Sam DLC Review: The Grass Isn’t Always Greener

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Metal Gear Rising Revengeance was a surprising title that managed to emerge from development limbo and resulted in a great game. The first DLC for the game has come out and it gives players a chance to see how the other side lives. The most memorable character from the game by far was Jetstream Sam so it makes sense that this side story focuses on the enigmatic bad guy.

In this DLC you play solely as Sam himself. His move set is quite similar to Raiden’s albeit with enough intricacies to make him stand apart. His main fighting style consists of quick and strong sword attacks. He has two primary attack buttons, blocks the same way and can even use the same equipment as Raiden. Being part machine, like Raiden, he also uses the same principle of “Zandatsu” to slice his foes into tiny bits and absorb their energy to heal himself. The only omission is that Sam has no stealth attacks, meaning everything must be confronted in combat.

The coolest new ability that Sam has is charging his attacks. You can hold down Y to charge up an attack to do extra damage. The best part is that this can be done at any point in any combo, making it easy to do and extremely satisfying to execute. Sam’s other new ability is that he can taunt enemies. By doing this your foes will drop their guard and go on the offensive, doing more damage. It’s your simple risk/reward type of system.

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Sadly that’s about where the interesting part of this DLC ends. Everything that you face in this DLC is just rehashed from the original game. You traverse the same locations, fight the same grunts and face the same bosses. This wouldn’t necessarily be bad except for the fact that these fights play out exactly as they did before. There isn’t a single surprise or variation that I could discern.  The original game was great because of its crazy over-the-top action and almost all that is missing here, replaced with just regular battles and smaller scale versions of boss fights.

Another thing that surprised me was the difficulty. I’m not sure if this is harder than the main game or if I just lost my touch in the months since it released but I definitely had some hard times. The new VR missions are especially brutal, featuring long gauntlets against tough enemies. The worst part is that there doesn’t appear to be any way to access these VR missions outside of the story mode. This means that these side missions actively use the items you’ve accumulated. If you use up all your Nano Paste in the VR missions you will be out of them in the actual story as well.

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The Jetstream Sam DLC is quite disappointing considering how much fun the main campaign is. It doesn’t add much new to the table besides Sam himself and, while unique in several ways, he’s just not different enough. The side story is also short, adding about twohours of gameplay. If this DLC had offered something more, such as being able to replay the entire game as Jetstream Sam, it would have been much more enjoyable. About the only thing it really offers is some insight into a very interesting character but let’s be honest: Metal Gear Rising Revengeance was never about story.

SCORE: 5.0 out of 10

A copy of the Jetstream Sam DLC was provided to Pixel Related for review.

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