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Hey all, I finally played this game after many years after I found out they released the english patch for the Saturn version end of last year. It would be the version to play if you have not played this yet because it has a few extra scenes, extra unlockables, and in game game glossary with tons of shit to nerd out to. Like I'm serious that a glossary is a lot of fun. The new patch also changes some homophobic and transphobic speak that was falsely attributed to Kojima before but more the translators in 2008 or whatever trying to give the game proper flourish. There was also some internet memes apparently in the Playstation patch but I have no idea what it was. They took some steps back and it's much closer to the original script in all. It was definitely a refresher after all the badness of MGSV.


I was able to run it no problem on my Saturn after burning, but I did find out that somehow I had owned a Saturn with a modchip this whole time. You can softmod the Saturn to play CD-Rs with Pseudo Saturn installed on an Action Replay cart I hear though. Or just emulate if you are no fun. :)


But you guys, this game is so good. It's definitely one of my favorite Kojima games now (although I still haven't played Snatcher but own a copy) and I sort of wish he'd just try to make another straight up adventure game. I guess it's closer to a visual novel but there are tiny small amount of puzzles to solve plus a few bring inventory item to x person. But the story is where this shines. Even though it's overblown in typical Kojima manner, it's a guy showing love for all of these weird historical trivia pieces and as well as spending a lot of time crafting a lot of dialogue and nuance around his own creation. I relistened to the Idlethumbs podcast where Steve Gaynor discusses this game and he's totally right. I got so absorbed in this gritty space world. I mean I'm already prone to enjoy cyberpunk type stuff, but it's neat to just click around on stuff and see the characters talk about all of the things on the screen.


I'm also seriously into this style of character design. I really miss how animes used to look in the 80s and 90s, but even then I think this is beyond the standard. It feels very much like Cowboy Bebop to me in which the characters are all drawn very distinctly with their personality imbued in their appearance but not in an overt way. I looked up the character designer, Tomiharu Kinoshita, to see if he had done anything else for another game or anime or comic or something but no luck, even when searching for his name in Japanese. It appears all he ever worked on was Snatcher also a character designer and a few other Konami games in less essential artist roles. It sucks this guy seems to have fallen off the the map in the 90s because he is super talented and the character concept is a treat to look at. If anyone can figure out anything about this guy I would be interested.


There's also a throwback to looking in the manual for a certain puzzle, which is really lame but awesome to me in an old school way. I really liked almost all of these characters. Ed, Jonathan, Lorraine, Khris, and Meryl were fucking awesome. Actually being able to see proto Meryl was pretty cool as she turned out to be a bit more important to the plot than I originally thought. Also it's funny that besides the children,


she is the only character who doesn't get shot or dies. Like near the end of the game I seriously was feeling a bit paranoid and tense that pretty much every fucking character besides the main villains was getting offed one by one. I was sure Meryl would be added to the bodies, but nope she sort of saves the day at the end.

I was fully engaged the whole time. While it starts slow, some people have criticized the game for that, I actually enjoy that kind of pacing. Because at the beginning and I can kind of walk around and exhaust conversations and learn about this odd world of Beyond Coast and the tensions with earth, corporations, and pharmaceuticals. I would prefer the game to be very open and meandering but then become more urgent and quick up until the end.


The shooting segments were meh, but I can't say I hated them. I guess this was cooler to people in the 90s? Snatcher had them. I just used the autolock on for stuff and called it a day. There's no reason to do particularly well on any shooting segment. The only time in which you would do say is the Policenauts Private Collection which is a bonus disc for Playstation much like The Document of MGS2 for PS2. You get a long cutscenes for scoring high in the cherry picked scenes there, but I still wouldn't say it is that frustrating.


I really enjoyed the 80s sort of feel of the music in this game. In some ways similar to how MGS1 sounded. My wife kind of ruined the one of the main themes for me which echoes throughout so many of the songs because she pointed out that it sounds like the radio jingle for this stupid local Mattress company here in Austin: to 50 seconds) So every time it played this cue, we had to single "Factoooorryyyy mattresssss" along with it. It's fucking weird that it's the same thing and now I can't unhear it without singing about a factory mattress along in my head. The do do do do do do main theme is still awesome though.


The big caveat to enjoying this game is the sexism. I wish I could say less about it, especially concerning the whole bounce the boobs of all female characters. The way Steve said on the podcast is it's coming from an era of originally being a PC98 game and giving the mature audience there something instead of full blown explicit sex scenes. Apparently most PC98 games were porn games, which I had no idea until looking this up. The people who translated this game in the first place apparently almost decided not to because of this stuff. Also apparently Kojima got into an argument about the importance of having the option to sexually harass all women with the head of Sony back in the 90s about this. It all makes Kojima and this game look very bad. Plus given his track record after it's never really been resolved. However, the only really reprehensible stuff outside of the bouncing boobs is just the depiction of Ed's teen daughter, namely that absurd poster, and how Jonathan can hit on her. As I found out this is something apparently Kojima just took from Lethal Weapon.


Also considering if the original audience is for men who also like porn games I can't imagine how this stuff is in any way erotic. The bouncing looks silly and any time you do it, the woman gets angry, will stop talking to you, and all of the surrounding characters get mad and plus characters you meet later will have heard about this and chastise you. I guess that's how people would generally react to a creep but why? The most I can say is the two characters who do allow it and laugh it off it would make more sense but still unnecessary and is ultimately unimportant to the whole game. Even if you choose to never be lecherous it's distracting that it's there. I kind of wish an optional patch existed that disabled all of this stuff, even if it would make the Gamergate types cry forever about censorship. Also when reading about this game I just recently found out it was in development for some time for an English release on Sega Saturn. So I do actually wonder if this is what would have happened anyway had it officially come to the US. This tends to happen in the age old story of localizing Japanese perversion. I think only the most loser basement dweller would disagree with this as the harassing of women as a comical device here is completely at odds with the rest of the tone of the game. It's pretty serious almost the whole way through besides some minor banter.


Also for any that are still hesitant, I sort of figured out a point where the game stopped putting bouncing opportunities and did not use portraits that looked like it may turn into a hentai game. I would say maybe a third through the game, about halfway through Act 2, after talking to the museum guides. The game has 7 Acts although the first two are much larger. So once I pinpointed this I could safely play the game in front of my wife without looking like a sleaze, it was fine. She also liked getting to see Meryl in something again since she was a big fan of her in MGS1.


The main picture I posted here is from the PC98 version, which actually I really wish were translated now as well. The art is a lot of amazing pixel dithering done in higher res than PSX/Saturn and while it has less animation what I've seen is amazing in it's own right. I read somewhere that this version will probably never be translated which is a shame because I think if I understand correctly the plot is also slightly different in parts as well. I read that you unlock the ability to have subtitles after beating the game in the PC98 one (What fucking weird unlockable is that?!) and they don't even play over all of the voice acting in the game anyway, so it would require extra coding to have them always play.


I feel like I should get around to Snatcher now sooner than later, but the A/V connection sort of looks like crap on a modern TV with a lot of interference. The Sega CD never had S-Video output but apparently you can get this modded. However I have no idea if I have the skill to do that and I don't know of anyone locally who does that sort of thing. There's some people who make some component cables I might take them up on but they are a bit expensive for right now in my life.


And last note, I had never seen the first Lethal Weapon before playing this. I think I saw 2 or 3 before but in my childhood but don't fully remember. I turned it on just to see what all Kojima stole besides just the appearance and dynamics of their characters when placing it into his space game. There's the drug plot which Kojima works into the importance of drugs and dealing with SPAAAACE MADDNESSSS as well as disintegrating your organs. Ed's daughter is straight from Lethal Weapon, including her attraction to his partner. Suprisingly Danny Glover's wife is not dead in the movie the way I was expecting. The Mel Gibson character seems to have a similar issue as Jonathan where his wife left him but I don't think Jonathan is suicidal. Plus there's that whole cryo sleep thing. He's definitely portrayed as NOT FOLLOWING THE RULES LOOSE CANNON though, but still more levelheaded than mean old Mel Gibson. Other than that not much really seems shared between the two, so those that say it is a complete rip off are wrong.


Also Lethal Weapon is a REALLY bad and stupid movie. Like the fighting is so cheesy. Gary Busey is not threatening. At the end all of the cops stop doing their job just so Mel Gibson can fight Busey one on one in a very homoerotic way for like 15 minutes in the rain. Mel Gibson spends almost all of this time losing as well and then he is cheered on when he barely wins a fight that is not a real fight anyway because the police are still there to take Busey away. I kept imagining the thoughts of the police force were like, "Seriously Mel Gibson? Do we really need this pointless display of macho bullshit? It's fucking raining and I want to book this mother fucker and go home now."

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