Xbox Series X/S – PS5 Review: Metal Gear Solid: Master Collection Vol. 1

Kept you waiting, huh?

The origin of stealth action returns. Metal Gear Solid: Master Collection: Vol 1unifies the beginning of the Metal Gear gameplay experience in one single package. Infiltrate enemy fortresses all over the globe, complete your missions with stealth and experience the thrilling cinematic story of the Metal Gear series. This collection includes the classic versions of the games, complete with minimal edits to copyrighted contents.

I first played a Metal Gear game when The Twin Snakes released for GameCube, I hadn’t played the original MSX titles or even the first game or MGS 2 at this point. Afterwards, I knew I had to dive in so I picked up a PS2 and played MGS 2 and 3 which had he hooked for years. The MGS HD Collection that came out with PS3 and Xbox 360 only contained remakes of MGS 2, 3 and Peace Walker, but no MGS 1 or Twin Snakes remake…

The Master Collection Vol 1 contains the first 3 titles, the two MSX games, Snake’s Revenge and even the 2 Digital Graphic Novels that launched on PSP. Naming it Vol 1 definitely implies there is a Vol 2 in the works and fingers crossed it will contain a game that has been stuck on PS3 for too long…Metal Gear Solid 4: Guns of the Patriots.

The timing of the collection is curious, especially with a full-on remake of Snake Eater in the works. But I guess Konami want to keep everyone happy by giving them the original games and remakes. It’s clear that the versions of MGS 2 and 3 are taken from the original HD Collection, while MGS 1 is a simple conversion.

I hadn’t actually completed the original MGS, only Twin Snakes…so playing it was tougher than I imagined. The controls for all games are as you remember, but still there’s a huge difference between the original MGS and it’s sequels in terms of fluid controls. The framerate of each game depends on which platform you are playing on, but for the PS5 version it did run at a solid 60FPS for both MGS 2 and 3 at 1920×1080 resolution but the original game runs at 30FPS, also at 1920×1080.

*Update: I was later able to play the Xbox Series X version and found that it ran the same as it’s PS5 cpunterpart with no differences.

It may seem a bit lazy for Konami to just  up-convert the PlayStation® version of Metal Gear Solid, HD Collection version of Metal Gear Solid 2: Sons of Liberty and Metal Gear Solid 3: Snake Eater to these. But I get it from a business point of view, but I do wish that it was more optimised. Things are better now since the game launched in October, but the last patch was back in January and a this point, I’m not sure if the game is getting updated any further. But I remain optimistic that it will fix any remaining glitches/bugs the collection contains.

The good news is that if you don’t want a specific game of the collection, then you can buy them individually. The trophy lists are not the same as in the HD Collection and are in fact harder than ever before. I managed to get all the Achievements in the 360 version for MGS 2 and 3, but know there’s no way I could achieve what they are asking for with this list. Only the most dedicated players out there can accomplish this.

The Verdict

Metal Gear Solid: Master Collection: Vol 1 contains some of Konami’s finest games and while it hasn’t been plain sailing for it in terms of performance, it’s still the only way to play these games for the current generation without going back to older systems. Issues aside, it’s still a superb collection and worthy of your time.

Score: 8.0

Disclosure: I received a free review copy of this product from