Etsu Tamari on MGR: Revengeance Story Changes

Thursday, March 7th, 2013

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Etsu Tamari, chief story-writer for Metal Gear Rising: Revengeance and the original Metal Gear Solid Rising, shares his experiences on rewriting the story after the transitions made to reach completion.

For anybody who has played Revengeance, it is unquestionable that the storytelling and approach are wholly different from that of the previous Metal Gear games. Additionally, the game was supposed to be much darker and more bleak in comparison to the finished product we have now.

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When approached by Platinum, the story had to change in order to correspond with the gameplay. The game’s old plot would fall apart in many places as a result, but Tamari reassures that he didn’t want to use the old plot anyway since “there was no other way it could be done.” He also thought it would be more fun to experiment by telling a post-MGS4 storyline. The game was originally supposed to take place between MGS2 and 4.

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Cutting at will is the true form of gaming combat

Many of Revengeance‘s elements would create difficulty in getting the story right. “You were originally allowed to collect IDs from the left hands of all the cyborgs in the game,” says Tamari. This concept would be rewritten where only few enemies can have their limbs severed. The downplaying of collecting arms would affect the story behind Doktor telling Raiden to collect cyborg arms, thus characterizing him as some creepy collector. Though it should be understood that this is perfectly normal within the diegesis of a Platinum game.

On Blade-Wolf, Tamari was adamant behind the idea of Raiden having a mechanical canine partner. He says he wanted to elevate Raiden’s status into that of a teacher role, much like Snake was to Raiden in MGS2 as a mentor-figure. He also adds there will be DLC missions involving Blade-Wolf with several more missions involving Jetstream Sam. Blade-Wolf’s mission is supposed to explain what made Raiden face the mechanical canine. In addition, the extra content delves deeper into Sam’s involvement with Desparado.

Metal-Gear Rising Revengeance Logo

You can read more about the extra content HERE.

Dialogue was also an issue, given that a lot of the gameplay in Revengeance was new to Platinum. Tamari had originally wanted more staff to work on the Codec feature and its massive amount of text, causing some conflict between himself and the producer, Korekada. Hideo Kojima would later step in and give Tamura the responsibility.

Though a lot of compensations had to have been made in rewriting the plot for MGR: Revengeance, there was less frustration on Tamari’s end, as he seemed to enjoy writing for the new game. While the end result is less typical of a Metal Gear Solid game, this new vision — under its comic-book flare and campiness — is a more interesting and flexible decision in taking the franchise at new lengths.

Tamari would include that this is something of revenge after adding all the content he desired; and no name is more befitting than “Revengeance”.

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About Andy Na

Andy was a member at Operation Rainfall since the beginning of its campaigning days. Though something of a troublemaker at the time, he now contributes to Operation Rainfall and shares his love for all things gaming and the visual arts. His favorite games include Xenoblade Chronicles, Kid Icarus Uprising, and No More Heroes. Andy currently holds a Bachelors degree in Cinema, which he uses to pursue filmmaking.




  • the writing is good in my opinion. If you are to use the codec every 5 minutes in the game you will enjoy it more than you should. I’m glad they decided to make that a trophy or I wouldn’t have even touch the thing