Alrighty, so let me kick this off by saying that I've always compared Resident Evil, and Metal Gear Solid to each other. The classic resident evils, and MGS1 in particular. They both named and defined a genre, and kicked off their mainstream success on the first PlayStation console. Which is why I've always had a keen eye on both of them as a collective entity of Japanese masterworks. But it seems to me that the newer games on current gen consoles (Resident Evil 5, and Metal Gear Solid 4) seem to have done something very similar to each other. I'm trying very hard not to let my bias with Resident Evil affect the integrity of this article so I'll just get started.
To start things off, both games start in a new, unfamiliar, harsh, war-ridden landscape, against an enhanced version of previous enemies.
Resident Evil 5 kicks off in Africa, against the Ganados (Enhanced Zombies)
And Metal Gear Solid 4 kicks off in the Middle East, fighting Gekko, enhanced Metal Gears.
And both of these games bring back the main protagonist from the original PlayStation release. Which bleeds into some collective integrity shit. In other words, we're covering the entire series, and how both games try to explain everything.
For one thing, Personality-wise, the character's share similar perspectives. They feel grizzled, they feel that fighting like this isn't worth it anymore, they feel like they are pushing themselves. However, in Snake's case, he's literally dying and having to face his mortality, while Chris is just getting sick of seeing BOWs. But regardless, similar perspectives indeed.
Incidently, both characters get the chance to ride on a vehicle and shoot everything in sight with a mounted gun.
Another big thing in common is that both games attempt to explain what happened before the protagonist's time, MGS4 explains everything about Big Boss, and Resident Evil covers the life and death of Oswell E. Spencer. As well, the life cycle of the corrupt organizations present throughout both series (The Patriots; MGS, and Umbrella Corporation; RE) The main founder of both of these organizations are killed at a very old age, by a very important character in the series. Who themselves, eventually die.
Big Boss Killed Zero, and Wesker Killed Spencer, aaaand then they died. Well then.
Similar to as I mentioned above, you kill a main character yourself in these games, but in this particular case, you kill a pest that has been on the character's back ever since the first PlayStation release;
and Liquid Snake (Or Ocelot,this time around), who have both gone through some kind of mutation pertaining to what they are trying to achieve.
Straaange, isn't it?
Story wise, this is about the gist of the similarities I've noticed. However, In both games, they both have nostalgic value. In other words, the weapons and locales do something to pertain back to the first release.
In Metal Gear Solid 4, you get to go back to Shadow Moses Island, an ingenious way to wrap up the collective integrity of the series.
And in the on-disc DLC, I mean the Lost in Nightmares expansion, you can find a not-so-subtle nod to the first PlayStation game by bringing an at-first-glance identical interpretation of the obliterated mansion.
Plus, in Resident Evil 5, they bring back RE1's famous Berreta as the default weapon, and in Metal Gear Solid 4, you can find the SOCOM pistol from the first PlayStation title. They also bring back many characters from the original games, as well. MGS4 gave us Naomi, Mei Ling, Campbell, and Otacon. RE5... Well, there's Jill. The rest weren't important enough so they only appear in Mercs mode... well alright then.
Well, I guess that about covers it. I just wanted to share with someone my off-the-wall comparison of these two games. I feel it's to damn close to be a coincidence, but whatever, It makes for an interesting article.