MGS4 Video Demonstration Released, Metal Gear Online Announced (Updated)

Konami held its 20th anniversary party for the Metal Gear series last night, with franchise father Hideo Kojima on hand to deliver some key presentations for upcoming games, including the much-anticipated Metal Gear Solid 4, the new Metal Gear Solid Online, and Metal Gear titles for the PSP and mobile devices.

Most notably, Metal Gear Solid 4 was shown in playable form during the proceedings, as seen in Kojima's gameplay presentation below:

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Download the full HD Metal Gear Solid 4 gameplay video at FileShack.

Kojima began by reiterating that stealth gameplay is still the name of the game in Metal Gear, but illustrated how this will change based on the battlefield setting. As enemies approached Snake on screen, Kojima quickly changed his character's disguise with a statue-esque camouflage, posing as a sculpture while the patrol passed by. Snake can also use a suit that copies the texture of whatever surface he is currently facing, allowing him to blend in with concrete floors and patterned walls like an urban chameleon.

Later, a battle erupted between what Kojima reffered to as "country A" and "country B," with advancing militia, exploding artillery shells, and unmanned aerial units diving to attack each other. Exploiting his occupied enemies, Snake moved from building to building, guiding the course of the battle with a liberal usage of RPGs and grenades. And in the heat of battle, apparently even Snake has certain needs. Pulling out a "gentlemen's publication," the player can now sift through in-game pinups--and judging from screenshots, this feature will be included in Kojima's online project as well.

Moving on to a game that was revealed last week, Metal Gear Solid Online was presented by Kojima as an up-to-16 player online teamplay experience. Hiding and sneaking is still the focus, with opposing teams attempting to take each other out as quickly as possible within a time limit. According to 1UP the game looks graphically on par with the Metal Gear Solid 4 engine, and features some interesting effects. Teammates pulse visibly every few seconds to alert you to their location, and enemies can scan each other to gain the opposing teams' locations. Respawn menus offer weapons and items to choose from, and apparently some melee combat--at the very least, a semi-scripted ambush attack--is supported.

Metal Gear Solid 3: Subsistence (PS2) contained an online component also named Metal Gear Solid Online, although the service for the game closed on April 2 in North America. A closed beta for the new Metal Gear Solid Online will be starting in Japan next month, but no release date has been announced. Some screenshots of the game were released by Konami.

Also announced at the party was Metal Gear Solid 2: Bande Dessinee for the PSP, a digital comic based on Metal Gear Solid 2 (PC, PS2, Xbox). The game will feature voice work from the original cast. Additionally, a 3D mobile version of Metal Gear Solid will be shipping along with a Metal Gear-styled phone from Sony.