February 05, 2004 - Konami Entertainment's Metal Gear Solid: The Twin Snakes can best be described as an enhanced port of the original PlayStation 1 title. The two share a lot in common. Same story. Same level design. Same dialogue. They even feature similar control mechanics. But there are some key differences. Twin Snakes separates itself with completely overhauled technology. It looks every bit as good as the PlayStation 2 Metal Gear Solid 2 and then some. It boasts new control elements ripped directly from Konami's PS2 sequel, which means that Snake can jump over ledges, shoot in first-person mode and more, all in the same universe of the first game.
And then there are the personal touches, the subject of today's article. Konami, Nintendo and Silicon Knights have all introduced new extras -- references, if you will -- to the GameCube action-stealth offering which help make it unique. While many of these additions may go unnoticed by the untrained observer, we think that Konami, Nintendo and Silicon Knights fans alike will be very pleased. We've listed just a few examples -- along with new screens and one revealing movie -- below.
Twin Snakes is set to the backdrop of an Alaskan facility that has been overrun by terrorists. There are many rooms in this giant industrial base and a select few of them house some very special references. There are pictures of Hideo Kojima, who created Metal Gear; Shigeru Miyamoto of Nintendo fame and Denis Dyack, president of Silicon Knights, which co-developed the title. But that's just the beginning.
One of the characters in the game, a fellow named Hal Emmerich, is more or less the man in charge of the Metal Gear project. His office is home to an intense battle between Snake and Ninja. But it's also the keeper of several Konami, Nintendo and Silicon Knights items. Emmerich explains to Snake that he is a huge fan of anime, and as he does so a cut-scene kicks in which shows actual footage of Konami's ZOE: Anubis shooter for PlayStation 2 mixed with actual anime. Kojima fans will love it.
After the battle, Snake is free to explore the room and this is where a number of other references are revealed. A computer rests atop a desk and on its screen is the GameCube boot-up interface. Next to the computer sit both a indigo colored GameCube and a Wave Bird. (The console does not appear to be wired to any monitor or electrical outlet, but we'll forgive the designers anyway.) Snake can pull out one of his guns and blast the computer monitor away, at which point the screen with fizzle with electricity and break apart. Pump a few shots into the GameCube and it'll take bullet damage and jump into air upon impact.
Just across the room atop a broken set of computers sit Yoshi and Mario figurines. Both can be shot with Snake's weapon for different results. Pop a few caps into Yoshi's head and he'll delight "Yoshi!" over and over. Shoot Mario and a classic '1 UP' will appear above the plumber's head; it's accompanied by the extra life chime featured in so many Mario games of past. Blasting the Italian mascot can have an added benefit. Snake's health increases by a small margin for every bullet shot at Mario. It's a very helpful.
In the PS1 build of Metal Gear, Snake gets a dirty magazine with girlie pictures in it and he can use it to distract guards throughout the base. In Twin Snakes, the magazine features pictures of Alexandra Roivas, the female lead in Silicon Knights' psychological thriller Eternal Darkness. Sexy! Other Eternal Darkness photos, including the logo, are featured on various whiteboards throughout the title.
In another room not far away, a computer monitor shows off Silicon Knights' official website for Eternal Darkness. We've provided the real thing and The Twin Snakes version for the comparison of readers.