Previews

Metal Gear Rising: Raiden faces his toughest foe yet: ninja cats

We slice up limbs, Gekkos and cars in our hands-on with Metal Gear's violent spin off

The Rising demo begins in an open area with no enemies - just piles of random junk. This is where you learn how to use the impressive free cutting system to slice up objects and enemies with absolute precision. We slice cars in two, dice melons and execute man-shaped wooden targets.

Then we spot a prowling kitten - and of course we try and chop it up like Spam. But every time Raiden swings his sword, the cat effortlessly dives out of the way in slow-motion like a furry Neo from The Matrix. Rising might not feel quite like a Metal Gear game, but the series' oddball sense of humour is very much intact.

Zoom

Though Bayonetta developers Platinum have taken charge, Hideo Kojima's team are still involved at every stage of the production. A credits screen at the end of the demo lists the top brass involved and the Platinum/Kojima split is 50/50. This is a proper, canonical Metal Gear game, even if without the word 'Solid' in the title.

ACTION STATIONS

In previous Metal Gears, Kojima's hyper-choreographed action was reserved for cutscenes but Rising gives you a chance to actually play those stylish cinematic sequences. That scene from Guns Of The Patriots where Raiden effortlessly destroys a group of Gekkos is now something you can control yourself rather than watch with distant appreciation. In fact, it's even more overblown and stylised. Platinum's flair for outrageous, anime-inspired action makes this the most unhinged Metal Gear yet.

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