Konami’s Metal Gear Survive quickly hits players with a reason to pay extra money on top of the game’s $39.99 asking price by restricting the number of character save slots. Players have access to just one slot, while three additional character slots are locked behind an in-game currency purchase.
Naturally, that in-game purchase isn’t sitting well with some Metal Gear fans. And it’s not the only questionable Metal Gear Survive microtransaction either. The game is replete with ways to spend small amounts of money.
Purchasing additional character save slots in Metal Gear Survive requires spending SV Coins, the game’s unique currency. Konami is selling those coins in batches as small as 100 (for $0.99) up to 6,000 (for $49.99). Unlocking an additional save slot requires dropping 1,000 SV Coins, which means you’ll have to pay roughly $10. (And if you do pay $9.99, you’ll get 1,150 SV Coins. There’s no option to just buy a nice, round 1,000 coins to unlock an additional character save.)
Based on my time with the game, there’s been no way to earn SV Coins through gameplay, though Konami did start handing out SV Coins today as part of a login bonus. Every day you play the game and log into Konami’s servers, it’ll give players an allowance of items (materials, medical supplies, rations, water, etc.). This weekend, to celebrate the game’s launch, Konami is giving out free SV Coins to players each day. But it sounds like players will wind up with 120 SV Coins by Monday, when the celebration period ends.
SV Coins can be spent on other things in Metal Gear Survive, like character emotes and boosts. “The in-game currency may be used to increase the productivity of Exploration Teams, increase food production and boost other features in the game,” Konami’s official description of SV Coins reads.
Some of those boosts effectively increase your character’s experience points. Buy a Premium Boost Pass, and you’ll earn more energy from enemies (which in turn is spent to upgrade your character), among other perks. Premium Boost Passes cost 200 SV Coins for a 24-hour boost and up to 2,400 coins for a 60-day pass.
And if you want to upgrade storage for your custom weapons or have more than four loadouts for your character in co-op multiplayer, you can spend SV Coins on that too. Upgrading your weapons storehouse is a shockingly high 500 SV Coins.
Survive’s predecessor, Metal Gear Solid 5: The Phantom Pain, featured a similar coin-based system: MB Coins. Players could purchase that in-game currency with real-world money in order to speed up production at their base of operations, Mother Base, if they were particularly impatient.
Dedicated Metal Gear fans will also be familiar with the push to pay for additional character slots if they played some of the Metal Gear Online games. The MGO that shipped alongside Metal Gear Solid 4 charged players for additional characters.
Even so, the practice of charging for extra character saves feels greedy, especially given how many other SV Coin-based purchases are in Metal Gear Survive, not to mention the fact that it’s a $39.99 game. I’m certainly in no hurry to start a second character (and thereby revisit the somewhat painful opening hours of the game), but in households with multiple Metal Gear fans who might want to play as their own character, it sure would be a nice option.
We’ve reached out to Konami for comment on SV Coins and if players will be able to acquire them through additional means. Given that the development team is in Japan, we were told to expect a response sometime after the weekend.