Still just as exhilarating as it was when I first played it as a teenager on release. With this replay I could finally remedy a big regret of my gaming career: Actually beating the final boss and finishing the game on hard difficulty, which I just couldn't do in 2013, as the difficulty spike was just too brutal.

In the years after its release Rising became a cult classic and with good reason - the game is not only a phenomenal action game with some of the best uses of music in combat but is also infinitely quotable through the narrative in between that doesn't overstay its welcome.

There are definitely some rough edges where the game pulls you away from what the fun part is by introducing various stealth sections to somehow prove that it is a Metal Gear game, I guess. And the weapons and items you get are really not that interesting at the best and annoyingly clunky and useless at the worst, providing some unnecessary fat in an otherwise remarkably lean experience. At the end I don't feel like faulting the game for anything, though. It is so full of character and charm, that it just gets away with it, cementing itself as one of my favorite games of all time.

Reviewed on Oct 18, 2022