Last month a new version of Metal Gear Solid 4: Guns of the Patriots was released. It’s dedicated to the series’ 25th Anniversary, and released in Europe for a price of around €19.99. This article will show all the differences between this new version, and the original version that came out in 2008.
Front of the box: This is entirely different. The original release features a Shinkawa print of Old Snake, whereas the new release features an artwork of Old Snake, Raiden and Meryl (this artwork actually isn’t new, but was used as promotional material on the MGS4 world tour in 2008). The 25th anniversary logo is printed in the corner. Also notable is the ‘only for PlayStation’ text, as well as the PlayStation Network logo, both of which aren’t featured on the original cover. Of course, the new PlayStation 3 logo has replaced the old one.
Back of the box: They look the same at first glance, but there are some minor differences. The third column of text on the original box is about Metal Gear Online, the one on the 25th Anniversary disc is about the anniversary. This is the Dutch box, but translated the text says: Metal Gear is 25 years old – to celebrate the 25th anniversary of the Metal Gear series, Metal Gear Solid 4 is now here with full trophy support. Relive Solid Snake’s final mission with brand new challenges! This box also contains an exclusive double sided poster.
In addition, two of the screens have been removed (both featuring Metal Gear Online), while the others have been enlarged. The multiplayer icon has also been removed. The size of the text has been decreased, and for some reason the red and white colors on the logo have been switched around.
Manual: The manuals are almost identical, with the difference being the fact that the information regarding Metal Gear Online (which has been shut down June 2012) has been removed, making the new manual a lot thinner. Also, the color seems to be slightly different.
Disc: The discs feature a different print on them. MGS4′s discs has the same art of Old Snake that’s one the front, whereas the 25th Anniversary disc has the same snakeskin pattern that’s on the manual. Furthermore the old PlayStation 3 logo has been replaced by the new one, and the age ratings have been altered (probably due to the removal of Metal Gear Online).
Extra’s: The original release came with just a flyer for the official guide. The new release features no such thing, but comes with a double sided poster instead. One side has the same print as the box, while the other has the 25th anniversary artwork of three Snakes. It measures about 59 x 35 cm (or 23 x 14″).
In conclusion, this rerelease doesn’t offer much extra for those who already own the game. The main differences are the included poster, trophy support (though this can be downloaded for the other versions as well) and the new box art. It seems likely Konami has mainly reprinted the game to avoid possible confusion regarding Metal Gear Online, and for that reason removed all references to the service. But, at the attractive price of €19.99, this is a good deal for people who missed out on this great game.