The Let's Play Archive

Metal Gear 1 & 2

by Cool Ghost

Part 23: Metal Gear 2 Part Four: Zanzibar Land's Bad Buying Decisions

Metal Gear 2 Part Four: Zanzibar Land's Bad Buying Decisions

Last time on Metal Gear 2, we followed a guy around a little and then talked to a scientist.

Today, we're gonna be sneaking around some imported squeaky sand and go through an invisible swamp maze.

First, we have to go through the jungle again. As you can see, since we followed the green beret through the maze, we now have access to our radar on those screens. The whole area is unguarded, too, so at this point it only exists to slow us down a bit.

Yeah, so fuck that, you don't need to look at this shit, but you do need to know that directly north of the jungle is a desert. I don't think that's quite how biomes work, so one of these is probably artificial. Or both are, because when you're the world's only nuclear power, you can do whatever the fuck you want with nature.

Also, there's a call coming in.

: Who are you?
: Just one of your fans. ...Do well.

So the mystery man is telling the truth, and this desert is loaded with mines. You can use your mine detector to see the mines and run around and avoid them, or you can just crawl around and grab the mines.

I did the second thing, and now I have a bunch of mines.

Metal Gear 2 Manual posted:

Anti-Personnel Mine [M 78]: An anti-personnel mine which explodes on contact. Set with the shot key, and crawl over to pick up. If you are equipped with a mine detector they will appear on your radar as white dots. Up to 16 can be set within radar coverage.

Mines are still mines, but now they're no real threat to Snake because you can pick them up by crawling over them.

The next screen has mines AND containers. Basically the same as the last screen, but with more decoration.

This screen, though, has trucks and guards. It also has a call when you enter. Before you answer it, hold onto your pants because things are about to get stupid.

: It was imported from as far as Okinawa of Nihon. Be careful, the sand squeaks when you walk on it...bye.

Metal Gear 2 Manual posted:

Nariko Sand: Imported from Okinawa, Japan. If you walk over them, they "squeak". They are planted around the middle part of the desert.
Yes, Holly just called us to tell Snake that Zanzibar Land imported sand from Japan, and that the sand squeaks when you walk on it. Unfortunately, there's no manual entry for the squeaky sand. Gameplay-wise, it works the same way as those noisy grates I talked about a couple of updates ago, so you have to crawl around this screen.

Beyond that call, the only thing of worth right now is this ration kept in a truck.

One screen south and one screen east of that desert is a swamp with a child next to it (you can see the desert on the radar, it's in the top left corner).

: But a big truck ran over there! You believe me?

So trucks can drive across this swamp, even though there are no visible roads (and a road built on a swamp would be pretty shitty anyway)?

Welcome to the invisible swamp maze. Because the slowed-down jungle maze wasn't bad enough.

First thing first, you have to go back around to the lower part of the screen to get started on the invisible swamp maze.

The only way to find the path through here is by walking in a direction until you fall into the swamp and then push back onto the path. If you're in the swamp too long, you die.

There are four screens of this awful place. And then, a child. What does he have to say?

The idea of trucks moving through the ISM is stupid no matter which side of it you're on.

There's another little bit of maze, and then Snake comes across this dumpy little barn. Zanzibar Land: enough money to import sand, but not enough to repair their hostage huts.

This hut, by the way, is magical and just happens to be larger on the inside. Like everything that's larger on the inside, it's also empty.

Past the entrance is this nice open area. A bit of a pointless waste of space, but it beats fighting a tank.

Of course, this fuckass has to come and shit up my day.

: You have arrived at a good time. I was just going for a run. I'm Running Man, the fastest mercenary in the world!

A bit on the nose, don't you think?

Metal Gear 2 Manual posted:

Former short-range runner which was famed during Barcelona Olympic. Doping ended his life as an athlete, and he became a mercenary. Later, he joined European terrorism. Fully acquainted in detonation technique, he sets booby traps depending on his fast legs. In France, he once served as a sub-leader of an extreme terrorists group LES ENFANTS TERRIBLES (terrible children). Within SEK (German domestic anti-terrorism special force), he is feared as a "running man".

Running Man: feared as a "running man".

Seriously, though, I would think that "being fast" belonged more in the "other skills" section of your resumé, as opposed to being your main qualification. I'm not the Zanzibar Land hiring committee, though, so who am I to judge which mercenaries are going to be useful troops?

Now Running Man goes for a run around the boss arena (Running Man is a boss fight, spoiler). Unfortunately, this happens mostly off-screen. It wastes your time and is silly and Running Man is a goddamn fool.

Oh yes, let's.

: Hear the's nerve gas. If you beat me before the gas gets you, you'll survive. A race against time...let's go!

Watch me murder this jackass.

Before we "go", let's call Kessler!

: A former short-range runner at Barcelona Olympics. Runs 100 meters in 9.69 seconds. Banned from Athletes Association for doping. Joined European terrorists after that. Your legs never gonna catch him. A cheetah and a snake... Try to set up traps for him, use his fastness against him... ...Before the gas kills you. ...Over.

There's a word for "short-range runner", George. The word is "sprinter".

Welcome to a boss fight without a threat. To kill Running Man, you equip the gas mask and the landmines, then run about and set mines at choke points. Running Man is always a couple of screens away from Snake, so he has to run through these halls.

His attack strategy consists of waiting for you to run out of air or hoping you run over your own mines until you die. Running Man does not attack you directly, ever. And if you ever do get low on air, all you have to do is run back to the entrance area to refill.

About 10 mines later, Running Man dies and turns into some kind of fried chicken man.

Unfortunately, his lungs and larynx still work, so we have to listen to this jackoff's death speech.

"Fastness" is not a word. The word is "speed".

: Snake...Solid Snake.
: ...Snake? A cheetah defeated by a snake...why?

The reason I killed you is because you tried to kill me with nerve gas, you stupid idiot.

: ...Raced to death maybe?

This is stupid. Running Man is stupid.

Was stupid. Now he's dead and he left us an ID card. Let's get out of this hole.

Before we do that, though, we have to go talk to these children.

: But they moved them to a factory at west side of 1st floor.

Why does this kid know so much about where missiles are? Why are children allowed in the same room as missiles?

The way Schneider told it, the Zanzibar Land president/warlord/main dude was all about helping war orphans, but putting these kids in a room with missiles is not a good way to do that.

I thought this kid might have a different line if Snake didn't have his gun equipped, but she doesn't.