• Publisher: Konami
  • Release Date: Mar 3, 2003
  • Also On: PC

Generally favorable reviews - based on 17 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 16 out of 17
  2. Negative: 0 out of 17
  1. Given that Snake is the ultimate videogame stud, it's great to work through some new objectives with his gritty new perspective. [Apr 2003, p.87]
  2. Substance is well designed, tremendous graphically and in the audio department, and a great, addictive ride.
  3. A huge selection of new minimissions allows for more time playing as famed series stud Solid Snake, and they further exploit "MGS2"'s strongest suit: the gameplay. [Apr 2003, p.111]
  4. 91
    There's so much new content that working your way through all of it will easily take more time than the actual Sons of Liberty game.
  5. I still love this game. However, it's become more obvious that the storyline is way too clunky, confusing and - sometimes - downright silly. [Apr 2003, p.34]
  6. Nothing's more hysterical than replacing Solid Snake with an old office lady, and watching her sneak off to take care of business on Big Shell, SOCOM at the ready. [Apr 2003, p.63]
  7. Where Substance really comes alive is the various VR modes and alternative missions.
  8. The ultimate “MGS” fan’s dream come true. And, with Solid Snake now front and center throughout the proceedings (Snake Tales anyone?), this “MGS” sequel can be enjoyed the way it was meant to: with as little Raiden as possible!
  9. If you totally enjoyed MGS2, this definitive version is certainly worth a look, delivering all of the extras and the original game in one package.
  10. I would say, if you don’t presently own MGS or MGS2, this would be a good investment.
  11. 90
    Although the PS2 game comes some three months after the Xbox release, this version is the better of the two—mostly because of its superior controls.
  12. This version's a hair better than the Xbox one, too. [May 2003, p.60]
  13. Yes, the action is still exhilarating at times, but without Kojima's story and cinematics, I found Snake's Tales to be rather dry. [Apr 2003, p.85]
  14. 84
    This is the BEST version of Metal Gear Solid 2 you can buy, so if you didn't play through the game yet, well, go get this one.
  15. 82
    The VR Missions alone could keep you busy for weeks. If, however, MGS2 didn't light your fire, your logs will remain unburnt by Substance.
  16. The hard-core Metal Gear Solid fan should get a kick out for the VR missions and other extras, so Substance wouldn't make a bad rental if you went into it knowing what to expect.
  17. One of the best looking games on the PS2 to date.
User Score

Universal acclaim- based on 94 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 26 out of 28
  2. Negative: 0 out of 28
  1. Apr 10, 2012
    A great game, but my least favorite Metal Gear. The story is, of course, amazing, and should be your main reason to play this. Controls feel awkward at times but they work fine, graphics look good but the environments are dull and repetitive. Boss fights aren't as great as in MGS1 or 3, but their personalities are interesting. The extras in this version aren't all that interesting, but this is still the superior version of MGS2.

    A must have for any MGS or stealth-action fan.
    Full Review »
  2. Sep 6, 2011
    Playing the same game with more features adds more replay value to an already classic masterpiece. So for anyone having a little of trouble in what version to buy, I mostly recommend you Substance by no other means. VR missions keeps a nice way of presenting something thats new for this episode, the other funny, fun, awesome new mode is the goofy MGS skate mode, where obviously you will play as Snake or the infamous Raiden as skating on the Big Shell map. Maybe playing the same game with new stuff isn't as fun as playing for the first time the first original version of the game, but though is still a good "new" game/experience that can't be missed . Full Review »