Metal Gear Solid: Portable Ops

Key events

Konami unveils new PSP game bundles

Konami unveils new PSP game bundles

Get Metal Gear plus one other for 20 quid.

Konami is offering PSP owners the chance to pick up two of its titles for 20 quid.

Or GBP 19.99, to be specific. From March 27th, Konami will be bundling games in twin-packs, complete with special cases and original cover art.

The first two packs will both feature Metal Gear Solid Portable Ops, with Silent Hill Origins and Coded Arms playing B-sides. So far, the packs are only confirmed for the UK.

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David Hayter takes on the Internet

Voice of Snake responds to reports.

Solid Snake voice man David Hayter has written an open letter to the Internet after comments he made at the Anime Expo recently were apparently "misinterpreted".

PSP Roundup

PSP Roundup

MGS Portable Ops +, Ultimate Board Game Collection, Riviera, Off Road.

Metal Gear Solid Portable Ops +

Portable Ops +, an expansion to last year's mostly excellent game of the same name-minus-the-plus-sign, features eight hundred cut-scenes, each one over two hundred minutes long. Konami didn't want us to mention it, nor the fortnight long UMD installation, but there it is anyway.

Okay, not really. In fact, for a series so infamously encumbered by narrative bulk, Portable Ops + is weirdly devoid of storyline. We'd even go as far to say it suffers from a lack of scene-setting and plot purpose.

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MGS Portable Ops expansion

MGS Portable Ops expansion

Snake's on an Internet.

Konami has taken the wraps off a fresh expansion pack for the excellent Metal Gear Solid: Portable Ops game on PSP.

It was unveiled at the PlayStation Premier event in Tokyo, and features new online multiplayer stages as well as new characters and comrade-recruitment methods - plus a fresh new single-player experience called Infinity Mission.

Metal Gear Solid: Portable Ops+ - yes it's a rubbish name - will be sold as both a standalone product and bundled together with the original across Japan in September, according to IGN.

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Portable Ops league launches

Portable Ops league launches

As delayed game is released.

Konami has launched an online league for Metal Gear Solid: Portable Ops on PSP, which finally launches properly in Europe today following this month's earlier, botched attempt to get it out there.

Residing at www.mpoleague.com, the service allows players to create their own custom tournaments and build up their own clans, managing recruitment, discussing tactics in the forums and all that jazz. Konami also plans to run three official tournaments between June and October.

The rather brilliant Portable Ops has taken a while to arrive in Europe, but it's been worth the wait if you ask us. As well as a meaty single-player game, which moulds the traditional MGS stealth gameplay into a more compact form that suits the PSP, the game offers online multiplayer similar to PS2 title Metal Gear Solid 3: Subsistence.

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MGS: Portable Ops pulled

Konami quiet on new date.

Konami has yet to announce a new release date for Metal Gear Solid: Portable Ops after it failed to launch last Friday.

Lost in Blue 2, MGS PSP in May

Konami concretes spring dates.

Those of you eager to get your hands on Konami's rather excellent pocket Snake adventure will be slightly upset to see it has slipped out of April.

MGS Portable Ops PAL bonuses

And it's out in April.

The European version of PSP title Metal Gear Solid: Portable Ops will be released in April, Konami said today, and will boast a range of features that weren't available in the US and Japanese versions released last year.

Metal Gear Solid: Portable Ops

Metal Gear Solid: Portable Ops

Is that a Snake in your pocket? (Sorry.)

When the PlayStation originally burst onto the games market in the mid-nineties, quite a few gamers and journalists alike became preoccupied with one rather odd question - who was to be the mascot for this new system? After a decade of Nintendo and SEGA's platforms being all but defined by Mario and Sonic respectively, it was tough to grasp the fact that Sony had no intention of allowing their console to be led out by a single character franchise - after all, the whole point of PlayStation was to reach an incredibly wide range of people by appealing to a broad swathe of gaming tastes. Undeterred by Sony's apathy on the matter, pundits tried to give PlayStation a third-party mascot - Crash Bandicoot and Lara Croft were both front-runners - but none of them ever really stuck.

None of them except, perhaps, for one - a character who couldn't be further away from the primary colours of Mario, a grizzled war veteran and stealth expert whose idea of a good time is sitting in a cold corner of a nuclear base inside the arctic circle having a radio conversation about the meaning of warfare and loyalty with a nerdy anime fan who's just pissed himself in a locker. He's a good-time kind of guy. Metal Gear Solid took the gaming world by storm when it was launched near the high point of the PlayStation's lifespan; Metal Gear Solid 2 sold countless thousands on the idea of "next-gen", back when next-gen meant the PlayStation 2. The rapturous response given to trailers for Metal Gear Solid 4 ahead of the launch of the PS3 cemented the deal; he may have dalliances with other platforms, but PlayStation does have a mascot character at last - and it's Solid Snake.

PlayStation Portable hasn't lacked for a little love from this enormous, sprawling franchise either - two turn-based games based on a trading card system, called Metal Gear Acid, have won critical acclaim and are seen by many gamers as an excellent compromise between Metal Gear's gameplay and the requirements of a handheld device. There's even a "digital graphic novel" title for the PSP, a Metal Gear story told using heavily stylised graphic novel artwork and distributed on UMD. What the platform lacks, though, is a solid instalment in the core Metal Gear story arc; a slice of genuine Tactical Espionage Action and a piece of the growing epic of the Snake operatives, the FOX units, Outer Heaven and the Patriots to call its own. Until now, that is.

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Metal Gear PSP to get sequel?

Metal Gear PSP to get sequel?

Producer reckons so.

Metal Gear Solid: Portable Ops has received rave reviews since its release in the USA late last year, and that coupled with comments made by an assistant producer suggest a sequel is definitely on the way.

Ryan Payton, who admits the PSP game screwed up his social life, told the PSM podcast: "If it's successful on the retail level there will definitely be a sequel."

"Just on a personal level that's something I really, really want to do," he added.

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Special MGS camo edition PSP

Out in Japan in December.

Konami is preparing special edition Metal Gear Solid: Portable Ops PSP bundles for Japan, including a special camouflage-skinned PlayStation Portable console.

MGS4 trailer at Leipzig

MGS4 trailer at Leipzig

Five total from Kojima studio.

Hideo Kojima's internal Konami studio, Kojima Productions, will be out in force at the Games Convention in Leipzig, Germany, next month - with five new games to show off.

These include Metal Gear Solid 4: Guns of the Patriots on PlayStation 3, for which we're promised "a spectacular video trailer", as well as new PSP title Metal Gear Solid: Portable Ops.

MGS fans will also get the chance to check out Metal Gear Solid 3: Subsistence in person, ahead of its release this October on PS2. It's been out in the US for (ahem) some time now.

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