Metal Gear Solid V’s E3 Trailer Clearly Directed By Kojima

The E3 trailer for Metal Gear Solid V: The Phantom Pain [official site] is one of the most Kojima things I’ve seen, I say with great affection. While it seems the Metal Gear maestro is breaking up with publishers Konami, he is at least around until the end of the game, and that includes directing this here E3 trailer.

In case you don’t want the villain’s grand plot spoiled, I shall wait until the next paragraph to mention his philosophy. You’ll like it, though. It’s very Kojima.

Language. He’s all about language. More than a virus, language is the greatest power and the root cause of conflict. I’m not entirely sure what he’ll do about that but gosh, this trailer! It’s amazing. And Big Boss is hallucinating. Though I don’t think (all) the blood is hallucinated: most people are so, so bloody, all the time. Look at this wild thing:

Honestly, I was expecting the final scene to be a Snake-looking chap growing “Kept you waiting, huh?” in David Hayter’s voice. Oh, I want there to be a wild reveal that the guy we’ve seen so far is a clone or an alien or a Snatcher or a spirit possessing Snake through the soulstone jammed in his forehead. I want to believe. I have a poster like Fox Mulder’s by my desk, only above the trees in mine is a blurry sheep dangling from a Fulton balloon.

43 Comments

  1. mpk says:

    Why is that woman with the sniper rifle only wearing her underwear? I know this is Kojima but… wait, that’s the answer really, innit. MGS has always been Kojima’s insane wet dream.

    I haven’t touched this series since MGS2 on the PS2, but this genuinely looks too batshit mental to miss.

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      DelrueOfDetroit says:

      Kojima claims to have designed her that way so they woukd have a character they could release as a cheesecake PVC figure.

      • ChiefInspectorLee says:

        he’s also said that he wanted a character for fans to cosplay

    • fairtrade says:

      “once you recognize the secret reason for her exposure, you will feel ashamed of your words & deeds.” – Kojima

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    Aerothorn says:

    I appreciate your work for many reasons, Alice, but one of them is having a Kojima aficionado on staff – PC gaming far too often has turned its nose up at his works.

    As far as the Hayter question: yes, a thousand times yes. As unorthodox as Kojima is, he appears to have a reason for most everything, and there’s no way he just arbitrarily replaced Hayter as voice actor – the presumption was that it was necessary for Big Boss to have a voice separate from Snake, which implies that Snake has to be in this game somewhere, somehow. And he is. But I can’t see Hayter voicing an eight-year-old, so I’m still drawing a blank; my best guess is that there are flash-forward scenes where you see (or play as) Solid Snake himself. Possibly a “recount” of the Metal Gear 2 showdown.

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      DelrueOfDetroit says:

      My personal hope is that the last level of the game will be a remake of the very first Metal Gear.

      • EhexT says:

        Which, for any other game would be a crazy pipe dream. But this is the man who rebuilt Metal Gear Solid 1 for a chapter in MGS4. I believe in Konjima – he’ll do something utterly crazy.

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      Phasma Felis says:

      From the first game, I hope we get to reenact that fateful moment when Big Boss cruelly betrayed Solid Snake (by phoning him and telling him to go west, when there was an easily-avoided pit trap to the west).

    • TacticalNuclearPenguin says:

      Well, lets relax a bit on Kojima hype, or at least let’s not necessarily assume the original voice actor was dropped for artistic reasons only, there could be anything behind it.

  3. Easy says:

    Insane? tick.

    Insta-buy? tick, tick.

  4. Machocruz says:

    From everything I’ve read and seen, this game seems like it’s just on another level of game design thought, ambition and attention to detail compared to everything else this year. An open world game with the polished mechanics and dynamism of a linear action game, a story that will comment on the real world (even if in Kojima’s daft, OTT way), ideas that no one else is even thinking of, all the cinematic spectacle that people who are into that kind of thing can hope for, probably best AI of the year. It’s really not close, in my estimation.

  5. Synesthesia says:

    can’t. fucking. wait.

  6. shitflap says:

    So fucking up for this

  7. Renegade says:

    Just finished reading Snow Crash only a few weeks ago. Couldn’t help but think back to it with all the talk of languages and viruses. It’s interesting to see where Kojima got his influences from.

    • particlese says:

      Yes! I read that book for the first time a bit over half a year ago, and it instantly came to mind here. That book created such a wild world, I think it’s kinda hard to avoid thinking of it when something else gets close or uses a few of its ideas. Ooo, and Rat Things also seem particularly ripe for use in MGS…

  8. ukpanik says:

    Love the music…like something from a Giallo film.

  9. slerbal says:

    I not only like the sound of this game, I really like the enthusiasm it generates. I know very little about Kojima, but if his game generate this much happiness in players, then he must be doing something right. Definitely adding this to my wishlist.

    • particlese says:

      I think his greatest accomplishments with the MGS games (I haven’t played any others) are that he somehow consistently keeps attention to detail (world- control-, and gameplay-wise, at the very least) through the roof, and he keeps a very self-aware, very gamey sense of humor close at hand while somehow keeping it classy and not calling toooo much attention to itself. If you’re not bothered by the “lol it’s a giant cutscene” mentality which often crops up when the subject of MGS comes up, you’re in for a treat, as there is a metric futon of excellent game to be had. Assuming this one follows the series’ trend/tradition, of course. :)

  10. particlese says:

    Anyone else really like the narration in this trailer? To be sure, it’s well past my bedtime, and I mostly didn’t follow along with the meaning of the narrative, but the first time I watched the trailer, I thought it was one dude subtly changing tone and accent throughout, and the effect was super cool. Watching it again, I’m pretty certain it’s separate people with or putting on not-completely-ridiculous accents, but they all still seem really well vocally matched in some quality I can’t quite articulate.

    Also: I’m totally psyched for this game, despite thinking 4 had a perfect ending with no need for continuation or prelude. (Starting with the microwave hall and ending at the dun-dun-dunnnn, which I assume exists but which I completely forget.) Must resist… upgrading… ancient/2009-ish computer…just a little longer…

  11. Gilly says:

    Is there a way for a non-console PC gamer who’s never had contact with the series to get into MGS?

    Also, what were the last words in that trailer? Were they French?
    Because then I think it’s not about language, but about the English language. Somehow. Maybe.
    He did mention the Lingua Franca.

    • nearly says:

      I assume you’ve heard by now that this is a prequel? This is set in the 80s and stars the main character from MGS3, which had flashed us back to the Cold War. The first MGS was 2002, MGS2 was set in 2009, and I believe 4 was an imagined 2014.

      Basically, the short answer is that Les Enfants Terrible (The Terrible Children) are clones of the main character here. You play as one of them in the other games which are not set in the past (MGS3 and MGS5). The relationship between father and sons is a little too complicated to get into briefly and would spoil most of the games since it’s kind of a major plot point throughout each of them.

      Unfortunately, although the older titles like MGS and MGS2 were released on PC relatively close to when they came out, it was some time ago and nothing more recent than Ground Zeroes (which is basically a playable teaser) have made the jump. Ground Zeroes is a lot of fun and I’d highly recommend it, but it’s not necessarily representative of past titles and you won’t get much of the story out of it. The best option at the moment is to find a Playstation 3, which isn’t really an option. An Xbox 360 would be serviceable as well, but you’d be missing out on a couple of the titles. Otherwise, I’m sure someone has compiled the important cutscenes as Youtube movies (Konami actually cut a MGS3 film for a special edition re-release, and it’s not terrible).

    • Raoul Duke says:

      I played MGS4 and Ground Zeroes coming from your starting position.

      Short answer, yes but with a caveat.

      The actual gameplay is fine and makes sense to anyone who has played a third person stealth/combat game.

      The “plot” (term used loosely) is almost totally made up of extended, sophomoric drivel, as displayed by the utterly awful voice acting and writing in this trailer. It’s like it’s written in Japanese, then run back and forth from Japanese to English about 10 times using Google translate, then read out by a person with no background in reading or voice acting.

      At least in Phantom Pain they’ve promised to largely eliminate the 10+ minute cutscenes which plagued MGS4.

      So I’d say… yes, there’s a very good game under the nonsense. And yes, as a PC gamer, you can enjoy it. But it’s much easier if you come into it expecting the plot to be overwrought, pseudo-intellectual garbage. Pretty much, assume that the content of that trailer will be stretched out by 5-6 hours, but in between doses of that you’ll get to play a really, really good game.

      • Just Endless says:

        Get back to me when you write something that’s 50+ hours of content, popularizes philosophy and politics, has a coherent through-thread of many characters, and isn’t “pseudo-intellectual, sophomoric drivel.”

        I honestly can’t think of a writer who’s accomplished a wider spread of complex ideas with one series, and so the whole thing may well be a mess, but it sure is a spectacular one.

    • particlese says:

      Regarding the French stuff, said was “Les Enfants Terribles”, and mumbled was “Zero called in” (English). Spoiler warning for the rest, although there’s plenty of game and story to enjoy even if you spoil these things!

      Les Enfants Terribles” is certainly French, and it refers to a secret project producing protagonist and antagonist Snakes cloned from Big Boss, who is the protagonist here. It was sponsored by Zero, another dude in the series’ astoundingly intertwined story. The very last thing said in the trailer was, I believe, “Zero called in”. And I assume the trailer’s talk about stolen identities refers to the Boss’s clones.

      Also, I haven’t played the “Ground Zeroes” tie-in/tide-over game yet (which was excellent in itself, according to RPS, but I don’t want to push my link posting limit), but I wildly speculate that it’s associated with Zero in some way or another.

      I don’t understand the games’ convoluted back story on the whole (hence the wiki links), but there you go. Hopefully others will step up if I need correcting!

      • particlese says:

        That should be two links in there, the second about Zero. They still both work, but sorry for the big red blob.

      • Johnny Go-Time says:

        I think what’s said, is:
        ‘Les Enfants Terribles’, Zero called it.

        i.e. “Zero told me it was called ‘Les Enfants Terribles’.” said the narrator (who at that point I think is Kiefer)

        • particlese says:

          Ah! Well, that makes more sense and is less of a non sequitur.

    • Gilly says:

      Thanks for the info, gents!

      Gues I’ll be skipping this till GOG makes an MGS compilation some time around 2025.

    • drygear says:

      There are some really well done Let’s Plays you can watch. If you have the time it’s the best way to experience the series besides playing it. I’ll link to the playlists. They did the order in 3-2-1-4-PW so that’s the order I’m linking to them. If you want the ones that just take place chronologically before this one, just go with the first and last link. Those are also the best in the series.
      link to youtube.com
      link to youtube.com
      link to youtube.com
      link to youtube.com

  12. Palladian says:

    I registered to say that I think even talking about ‘directing’ a trailer is one of the most Kojima things to do.

    Still, at least it’s not David Cage, whose ability to ‘direct’ trailers has proven far superior to his ability to direct actual games.

    • Raoul Duke says:

      I’d be embarrassed to have my name on that trailer as director… everything from the writing to the voice acting to the MS Paint-worthy fonts used was cringeworthy. Under all that it looks like the actual game will be great, though.

  13. Daniel Klein says:

    Gaming may not have its Citizen Kane yet, but we sure do have our David Lynch.

  14. Uninteresting Curse File Implement says:

    Honestly, I was expecting the final scene to be a Snake-looking chap growing “Kept you waiting, huh?” in David Hayter’s voice. Oh, I want there to be a wild reveal that the guy we’ve seen so far is a clone or an alien or a Snatcher or a spirit possessing Snake through the soulstone jammed in his forehead. I want to believe.

    You and me both, Alice… You and me both.

  15. Psychomorph says:

    What did I just see there… Oh right, a Japanese trailer.

  16. racccoon says:

    Oh Yeah! Could watch those all day, brilliant.
    So I play New order again like I never played it before such a great moment to cherish .