The indie developer behind the ‘Just An Idea Studio’ channel has recreated the beginning of Hideo Kojima’s game using Epic Games’ graphics engine.
Metal Gear Solid, the stealth adventure created by Konami under the direction of Hideo Kojima for PlayStation, released in 1998, is one of the most influential and iconic titles in the video game industry and culture. It is also for Juanma, the independent developer behind the Just An Idea Studio YouTube channel, who has set to work to recreate the first moments of Solid Snake with the Unreal Engine 5 graphics engine .
The video does not recreate the entire game, but only the first stage Snake passes through, the sewers guarded by a couple of guards. The polygonal settings of the first PlayStation are transformed here into an environment full of details, with a current lighting system and visual effects typical of a recent blockbuster.
Halfway through the video, the developer explains that Metal Gear Solid, along with Fumito Ueda’s ICO, has been the title that has inspired him the most. ” Metal Gear Solid is one of the most important games of my life. It changed the way I see video games, and even my way of being in many things,” he writes in the video description. After replaying the title for the twenty-third time, he considered what the game would look like with modern graphics and subsequently thought of doing it himself.
“The first step was super obvious, and I needed to play the game; I wanted to remember the setting, the scale, the textures, the modelling Because in the end that’s what I wanted to convey. I really wanted to create a demo that felt like Metal Gear. I wanted that when you saw the demo, you said: ‘Okay, this is Metal Gear with current graphics’ “, narrates the developer. “But for you to acknowledge it. I didn’t want to do something generic that looked like anything.”
To do this, he says he used reference images and videos that he analyzed frame by frame to replicate the setting and scale correctly. “I wanted to be so faithful that originally my idea was to look for the PSX Snake modelling. I found it and spent a lot of time retouching it to make it more polygonal because it was too square to put the textures in HD. After all, it had ridiculous resolutions […]”, Add. However, he later had to change it to a Snake model from Metal Gear Solid 2: Sons of Liberty, which he also had to retouch because the grid aesthetic did not match the environment.
He then explains how easy it was to find a system to create Snake’s skeleton and port it into Unreal Engine 5, as well as designing the scenery with Nanite and Lumen, which allows the engine itself to interpret the bounce of light realistically by the stage, water and other surfaces. Of course, not all were relatively automated processes: “I spent a lot of time creating the details. Details on the surfaces, on the objects, on the animations…”.
We have been hearing rumours for years about a supposed remake of the work that catapulted Kojima to fame, although there is no evidence to confirm that it is a reality. The most recent rumour dates back to September 2020, when a remake of the first MGS for PS5 and PC was pointed out, in addition to remasters of the third and fourth installments. Later we learned that Konami was looking for external developers to work with the series. In addition, David Hayter, the voice of Snake in almost the entire series, said that he had also heard of that remake .