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Les Dossiers de Passion MSX

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Pour lire les dossiers de Passion MSX en Anglais: Games - Emulation - Hardware - Interviews - The Box

Dossiers > Articles and Reviews in English > Games > [ENG] Metal Gear 1 - The fortress of Outer Heaven (1)

[ENG] Metal Gear 1 - The fortress of Outer Heaven (1)

METAL GEAR 1 - The fortress of Outer Heaven - part 1

Useful links :

Complete map - French alternative

Complete walkthrough - French alternative

Improved English version of the game - Alternative patches


Solid Snake has received the following mission from Big Boss, the commander-in-chief of FOX-HOUND : infiltrate the terrorist fortress Outer Heaven and destroy a very dangerous weapon, the Metal Gear, a terrible robot equipped with nuclear missiles. Doctor Petrovitch is forced to build this weapon, as his daughter Elen is prisoner in the fortress.

Hideo Kojima released this game in 1987, after a brilliant introduction with Penguin Adventure. He confirms his talents for the creation of games with original scenarios, where the gamer discovers step by step so many things and can expect strange surprises. Do you remember that there were already 2 different endings in Penguin Adventure and 3 different ones in King Kong 2 ? Metal Gear has only one ending, the destruction of the fortress, but the last fight is not the one you think !!! A masterpiece with so entertaining PSG musics that they remain in the very deep spaces of your audio memory !

The original (Japanese) version does not work on an European or Brazilian MSX2. What concerns the European (English) version, the translation had forgotten many texts. That's the reason why fans have made a great work to translate all the texts : you need therefore to patch the original Japanese version !

You can't miss this splendid game of the MSX system where the creator goes beyond the technic limitations to make a new type of game. The first goal of this game is indeed not to shoot on all what is moving, but to remain the most possible undetected to progress in a military complex. Furthermore, you start without any equipment and your fists (key N or M) are actually your only weapon in the beginning ! However, when you will be enough equipped, your fire capacities will be terrible and you'll need to use them with intelligence to open passages and liquidate bosses.

Note that if you are detected, there are two levels of alarm : on the first level, only the guards present on the screen will act; on the second level, they will call for extra guards !

To make a success of your mission, you need to release prisoners, some of them will give precious infos. It will be the case of Grey Fox, previously sent to infiltrate the fortress. You can also count on people by radio to progress, especially 3 members of the resistance : Kyle Schneider, Diane and Jennifer. This last one will help you only if you have 4 stars and if you don't kill by mistake her brother, also kept as prisoner.

The fortress of Outer Heaven includes 3 buildings in a desert of South Africa. The 1st building has 5 levels, whose the basement (level 0) and the roof (level 4); the 2nd building includes 4 levels, whose the basement (level 0) and the roof (level 3); the 3rd building has 2 levels, whose the famous 100th floor basement where the Metal Gear is hidden.

Lifts allow of course to go from one level to another one. In the 1st building, the lift on the left leads directly to level 3 as the lift on the right allows to reach all the levels. In the 2nd building, the (red) lift on the left allows only to go up, the (blue) lift on the right allows only to go down. The basements of the 2 first buildings are connected by a very difficult passage : no light and many traps !

As it is a very long adventure, it's strongly recommended to make saves on a regular basis. On an emulator, the best option is the using of the CPU save states feature.

On a real machine, you need to pause the game by pressing on F1, then access to the saving mode on tape by F5 (in case of error message, press on F6 and try again) or the loading mode (in case of failure, you need to try again). Attention ! The internal save happens only on basis of the last reached checkpoint near a lift. There are also patched versions allowing to save on disk or the SRAM of Game Master 2.

You can note the following trick : when you cancel a saving (F1 F5 ESC F1), it has as effect that the electrified grounds are without any danger !

During the game, try to remember the places where you can get these ratios or ammo of any type (including therefore bombs, mines or missiles) : if you come back to these places after being through one screen beyond or before, you will increase your stocks in the limits of your rank. You can also press successively on F1, F4, ESC and F1 to see the ratios or ammo regenerate themselves and take them again.

Every time you will have released 5 prisoners, you will get a promotion, the maximum is 4 stars. You need though to be careful : if you kill a prisoner, you will lose directly a star, what diminishes your capabilities of ratios and ammo.

Rank (number of stars)   1   2   3   4
Ammo for handgun   50   100   200   250
Ammo for sub machine gun   50   100   200   250
Grenades   15   30   60   60
Rockets   5   10   20   30
Bombs   5   10   15   20
Mines   5   10   15   20
Missiles   5   10   15   20
Ratios   3   6   9   12

Tips : Press on F1 and enter one of the following codes, then press again on F1 :

DS 4   You go to the next rank
ANTA WA ERAI   You go directly to the highest rank
INTRUDER   You can have a maximum of 999 ammo (code to be entered when you have some ammo)
ISOLATION   You can have a maximum of 999 ratios (code to be entered when you have at least one ratio)
HIRAKE GOMA   You have the 8 access cards and have therefore access to all zones of the game
     
    To access to the inventory of the items you own, you need only to press on the F2 key for the weapons, the F3 key for the other items. The selection of an item can be made by the cursors and the spacebar.

To use a selected weapon, you need generally only to press on the spacebar. When you are without any weapon or want to act very silently, use your fists (key N or M) to kill the guards. You can sometimes get ammo or ratios by doing that.

For the other items, their selection is normally enough. Special cases : the cigarets, the andidote, the ratios, the transmitter - you need to go in the inventory, select the item and press on the spacebar to get advantage from it (the three first mentioned items) or to get rid of it (the last mentioned item).
       
    To get help from different people, you can use a transceiver. They will contact you and you need to press on F4 to receive their messages, but you can also call them by pressing on F4. You need then to find the good frequency with the LEFT and RIGHT cursors before sending your call with the UP cursor.

Here's the list of the different usable frequencies :
Big Boss   120.85 replaced by 120,13 later in the game
Diane   120,33 replaced by 120,91 later in the game
Kyle Schneider   120,79 replaced by 120,16 later in the game
Jennifer   120,48
       
 

The weapons

  You can find and use different weapons in your operation of infiltration and destruction. When you find a weapon, take it by touching it and pressing on RETURN.
    Handgun : allows a semi-automatic shot each time you press the spacebar; can be found in a truck (level 1 of building 1); requires ammo; a silencer can be added; this weapon is recommended to kill the Eighth Boss
Sub Machine Gun : allows an automatic shot by holding down the spacebar; can be found in a cell (level 1 of building 1); requires ammo; a silencer can be added; this weapon is recommended to kill the Sixth Boss
Grenade Launcher : allows to aim at a target zone which follows your moves; can be found in a cell (level 3 of building 1); requires ammo; you'll need it to kill the Third Boss and the Fifth Boss
Rocket Launcher : allows to destroy hard enemies; can be found in a cell (level 2 of building 2); requires ammo; you'll need it to kill the Seventh Boss and the End Boss
    Bombs : allow to open passages in hollow walls; can be found in some trucks or cells; you'll need them to kill the Ninth Boss
Mines : allow to destroy heavy enemies; can be found in some trucks or cells; press on the spacebar to set them; you'll need them to kill the Fourth Boss
Missiles : allow to destroy enemies or switches; can be found in some trucks or cells; press on the spacebar to launch them, them remote-control their trajectory with the cursors; you'll need them to kill the First Boss and the Second Boss
Silencer : allows to remain undetected from the guards when you use the handgun or the sub machine gun; you need to kill 4 guards (level 3 of building 1) to get it
       
 

The access cards

  Eight access cards allow to progress in the game. When you find a card, take it by touching it and pressing on RETURN.
    Card 1 : can be found in a truck (level 1 of building 1)
Card 2 : can be found in a cell (level 3 of building 1)
Card 3 : can be found in a cell (level 0 of building 1)
Card 4 : can be found in a truck (level 1 of building 1)
Card 5 : can be found in a cell (level 3 of building 2)
Card 6 : can be found in a cell (level 0 of building 2)
Card 7 : you need to defeat the Seventh Bosses (level 2 of building 2) to get it
Card 8 : you need to defeat the Eighth Boss (level 1 of building 2) to get it
       
 

The other items

  You can find and use different other items in your operation of infiltration and destruction. When you find an item, take it by touching it and pressing on RETURN.
    Body Armor : allows to cut in half the effect of the enemy shots; can be found in a cell (level 0 of building 1)
Bomb Blast Suit : allows to be protected from explosions and violent winds; can be found in a cell (level 0 of building 1)
Flash Light : allows to see in the darkness; can be found in a cell (level 1 of building 2)
Infra-Red Goggles : allows to see the invisible laser rays; can be found in a cell (level 2 of building 1)
Gas Mask : allows to be protected against any type of gas; can be found in a cell (level 1 of building 1)
    Cigarets : smoking them allows to gain extra time before the self-destruction of the fortress (you need to select them in the inventory and press on the spacebar)
Mine Detector : allows to see the invisible mines; can be found in a cell (level 4 of building 1)
Antenna : allows to communicate even in case of electronic jamming; can be found in a cell (level 1 of building 2)
Binoculars : allow to see one screen up, down, left or right of your current location; can be found in a truck (level 1 of building 1)
Oxygen Tanks : allow to breathe under water; can be found behind an hollow wall (level 0 of building 3)
    Compass : allows to find his way in the desert; can be found in a cell (level 2 of building 2)
Parachute : allows to jump off the roof to the internal courtyard of building 1; can be found in a cell (level 2 of building 1)
Antidote : allows to neutralize the venom of the scorpions (you need to select it in the inventory and press on the spacebar); can be found in a cell (level 2 of building 2)
Ratios : allow to restore your vitality (you need to select them in the inventory and press on the spacebar); can be found in some trucks or cells or by killing some guards with your fists
    Transmitter : alerts the guards of your presence; is added to your equipment (level 0 of building 1) when you are captured (level 1 of building 1) ; to get rid of it, select it in the inventory and press on the spacebar
Enemy Uniform : allows to enter the building 2; can be found behind an hollow wall (level 0 of building 1)
Cardboard Box : allows to hide himself and move while being not so fast detected; can be found in a cell (level 3 of building 1)
Ammo : allow to use the 4 first weapons; can be found in some trucks or cells or by killing some guards with your fists; their number is displayed in the "weapons" section of the inventory
       

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