RPS Asks: Are You Invading Players’ Bases In MGS V?

Though I quite cheerily murdered folks in Dark Souls by invading their world – hey, look, everyone knows spooky woods have murderous guardians – I’ve yet to invade another player’s base in Metal Gear Solid V [official site]. 120 hours in, no one has invaded my own Forward Operating Base either. Loading MGS up this morning to see what a new patch brought, I noticed Konami are offering a whole load of rewards for invasions and it makes me wonder… do most people skip invasions? Have you intruded?

Forward Operating Bases, to briefly explain, are extra structures you can build in the seabase management side of The Phantom Pain. They let you assign a whole more of your abducted pals into developing weapons, treating the wounded, delivering intel on enemy movements, and so on. They’re a quick and relatively cheap way to reach deep into the tech tree, certainly quicker than acquiring more-skilled staff. But! FOBs can also be invaded by other players of similar tech levels, who can steal a chunk of your resources and staff. If you’re online, you can fly over and fight the defender off yourself – that sounds fun. If you’re busy or offline, you’ll be told they came and get to invade them in return.

Konami had said FOBs were optional but, past a certain mission, if the game’s connected to its online servers it’ll force you to build one. Many players are ‘opted into’ these invasions, then, but I suspect few are trying them. Like I say, I’ve never been on either end of an invasion, and Konami keep adding things to push people towards them. They recently ran an event where you could invade an NPC FOB – with plenty of in-game popups to remind you of this – presumably to introduce people to the idea. They’ve added theft insurance too. Now ongoing events are offering decent amounts of staff and cash if you invade folks or expand FOBs, and the loading screen spams advice about dealing with intruders. They stopped just short of saying “YOU GUYS, YOU CAN INVADE BASES, PLEASE TRY IT C’MONNN.”

(A cynic might say Konami simply want folks to spend real cash on microtransactions that boost FOB development, but I’ve received so many of the ‘Mother Base Coins’ free simply for logging in regularly that I’d only need to buy them if I wanted an unnecessary number of FOBs.)

I still won’t invade anyone during these events. Firstly, I know how how much effort goes into acquiring resources and decent staff, so I sorta don’t want to be a dick to strangers. I wouldn’t want them to retaliate and take my precious S-rank staff in return, either. With a chunk of the tech tree still to unlock, I don’t want to slow that down. And if you do get killed invading someone, you must pay an expensive ransom. I like to think I’m in a classic cold war stand-off with all the other Big Bosses, not wanting to go after them because they’ll come after me.

I do dig the idea of flushing an intruder out the nooks and crannies of my own Mother Base, though, watching them deal with chokepoints and security systems I carefully placed myself then storming over to chokeslam them. I’d definitely have a go if Konami ran some sort of ‘training exercises’ event where you could invade other folks simply for funsies, not taking or losing anything.

But you, how about you? Are you invading anyone? Have you been invaded? Did you even know you could? I realise The Phantom Pain has a whole load of menus with meaningless names that some might simply ignore. What would get you to play them?


  1. mattdonatelli says:

    Would be nice if both players staff gained experience and rank from the whole encounter. That way even if you’re trading a few people, everyone gets better.

    • hamilcarp says:

      Your security staff can earn medals from successfully defending, which boost their stats to some degree.

  2. AshEnke says:

    I haven’t. I haven’t invaded anyone in Dark Souls either (I’m not good enough to even try it !)

    The things I did is stealthily invade people’s sessions in Watch Dogs. The novelty here is that there’s a game mode where you have to follow the player for a few minutes. If you lose sight of him for too long, it’s over. If he identifies you with his phone you have to escape while he has to kill you.

    It’s as fun as it sound. Trying to pass for a NPC, driving after him (but he goes 120kph through red lights and npc never do that), and when he’s on foot try to run only when his back is turned and avoid the all-seing identifying eye of his smartphone.

    I like the non-agressive nature of this mode. And I like how paranoid it makes me feel when I’m playing and I press escape and the game doesn’t pause, because someone’s in my game, and I don’t know who he is, but I don’t want him to know that I know, and I try to trap him or lose him.

    • Vapor_Strike says:

      God, Watch Dogs was such a brilliant game. I could invade people for hours on end and not get bored, and when I finally did start getting annoyed if I lost too much in a row, I could just scan phones until a Blume Affiliate got mad at me and reported me to other players, and then searching them out when they showed up.

      I’m gonna go reinstall now, actually. I have an urge to be sneaky again.

      • hamilcarp says:

        “Watch Dogs was such a brilliant game”

        Now there’s something I thought I would never hear in a million years. Maybe it has a cool multiplayer game mode, but that does not a great game make. In every other aspect that game is as mediocre as it gets.

    • Premium User Badge

      keithzg says:

      But wait, Watch_Dogs alerts you when a player ‘invades’, no? I remember a friend who was playing the game mentioning that that ruined all the fun, in no small part because in his experience then players would immediately just start shooting every NPC around them.

  3. draglikepull says:

    I really like the idea of the FOB invasions. The problem for me is that the single-player game just has SO MUCH to do and is so long, I didn’t feel like I had time to add yet another task to my already daunting list of activities.

    Now that I’ve finished the game and put it aside for a bit, I’m thinking about going back and doing some FOB stuff, since I don’t have the main story nagging at me to complete it any more.

    • RobinOttens says:

      Yes! Yes do this. I went back to do a few FOB invasions a week after finishing the game and I loved them. It’s a whole new, huge area to sneak around in and it’s the only place the game pits you against high-tech gadgets like drones. You’ll be left feeling guilty for stealing either way. But you’ll have had fun playing around in a new area!

      After like ten missions I stopped though. And coming back the next day to see all those players I invaded had taken their revenge and plundered all my resources is kinda demotivating. So my advice is; if you start invading others, spend those resources immediately.

      Also, can anyone tell me how and when you can actually start building nukes and the whole deterrence thing comes into play? Because I don’t have nukes anywhere in my R&D options.

      • Ufofighter says:

        Resources tab.

        I think you can’t use the resources you steal, they are unprocessed and the platforms processes the resources at a steady rate no matter how you have in stock.

        You can use the ones they give you when you make a successful infiltration in the support (?) platform though, but they give you so few that it really doesn’t matter.

  4. Hitchslapped says:

    FOBs suffer from the same problem as the singleplayer campaign -> repetitive as fuck

    • Enso says:

      I’m so sad. The day I got it, the game felt amazing. It really is well put together. But I completed chapter 1 within the first month after doing a lot of side missions, and now I’m findind it hard to fully finish.

      So many more unlocks but they all unlock so slowly. I started doing fob missions because I could get more resources but then you have to do other things to have them actually processed and be at your disposal.

      I’m going to keep picking away at it up until online launches, to keep my chops fresh, but the single player experience is starting to feel stale

      • spaced says:

        My sentiments exactly, Enso. Hats off to you.

      • Vapor_Strike says:

        I trudged through it to finish the story. After that it got uninstalled immediately. It was fun for the first few missions, but I realized pretty quick how awful the bases were actually set up, and the open world in general. There’s just nothing to do. Repeating missions over and over again is the exact definition of anti-fun. It doesn’t help that that was 50% of Chapter 2, but then you have all these side missions to do as well. No thank you. Same with FOBs, except that I was lied to and told it was optional. Not only was I forced into it, but I left for a week and came back and was missing tons of resources and hundreds of staff members. Retaliation was impossible either due to them having nukes, or them having fully upgraded defenses, which are so incredibly stacked against the infiltrator that it’s ridiculous. And if a player shows up to defend, you might as well jump off the edge, as you won’t get anything done with their infinite respawns and rocket launchers.

        Online has my attention, but the base game? My unchanging opinion is that it’s just a massive steaming pile of crap hiding under a cardboard box with an anime girl on the front.

        • OmNomNom says:

          Well put. I’m surprised anyone who bought this at launch is still charmed by any of the gameplay. It’s all incredibly clumsily put together and repetitive, with terrible flat humour.
          Not the game all these shining reviews were promising at all

  5. greggles says:

    I don’t like how the FOB system is setup. The risk/reward setup is a bit odd. It kinda of splits your resources and money up between the main base and your online base. It’s almost like they were prepping for metal gear online, and decided to test some stuff in MGSV but didn’t quite finish it…like the game.

  6. The Sombrero Kid says:

    Wouldn’t play clash of clans if THEY paid ME, nvm the other way round.

    • Unclepauly says:

      OH! There you go! We thought we lost you again. C’mon now, let’s get you back to the home so you don’t freeze out here ok?… Is that right? Clash of Clans did it again? Those damn Clashes of Clans are always at it aren’t they.
      /slips him in the car and whispers to the driver “He’s on again about clash of clans, so just agree that the clashes of clans did it and get him home ok?

  7. Yargh says:

    Unfortunately, at least as far as I can tell, you only have the most general control over how your defenses are setup. No placing traps manually or anything that neat.

    • David Bliff says:

      Players could probably easily make the FOBs impregnable if you could set it up manually.

      • XxBrentos9xX says:

        I’m not sure I think that is a bad idea, if the people played long enough to where everything was unlocked.

  8. amateurviking says:

    I really don’t like doing people over like that. With Dark Souls you could still get back to your bloodstain and retrieve everything (apart from the 1 humanity it cost to reverse hollowing) so no-one really properly lost out. Here it just seems like a huge pain to be invaded, and invading seems like an active douche move. So, Nein Danke.

  9. ErrantRogue says:

    I love the FOBs mode, but I hate stealing from other players. The thing with FOBs is that it’s the most challenging element of the game. For me, the setup of the FOBs feels closer to the old stealth map designs of the older MGS games.

    The way I deal with invasions is by giving myself major handicaps. I don’t use a minimap or any on-screen icons, or any HUD elements. So, I can’t mark and track enemies, and pills that let other players see through walls don’t do anything for me.

    Also, when I invade, I don’t let myself steal resources and I almost never kill staff. I also try to choose difficult targets — not players who look like they never play FOBs.

    On that note, though. You can “train” on your own FOB or on your allies’ FOBs. In this mode, you don’t take anything from them, you don’t get anything, and you don’t lose anything. The AI FOB is also a nice target — I ransack that place.

  10. oingy_boingy says:

    I’m yet to get up to the mission that forces a FOB and I’ve completely stopped playing. I’ve burnt myself out just getting this far.

    Which then makes me fear FOB’s even more as it is likely to take me months to get to the end of the game and I don’t want the time I do dedicate to it to just be rebuilding what I already had.

  11. X_kot says:

    The FOB stuff actually derailed me from the campaign: I’ve stopped playing single player and have only logged in recently for the invasions. Mind you, I’ve yet to be attacked myself, and it’s been about a week since I’ve bothered with it. Part of the problem is that there’s a huge gulf between the small FOBs with weak defenses (and correspondingly small rewards) and the max sec bases swarming with S-rank guards and tech.

    • David Bliff says:

      I’m in the same boat. Ever since I unlocked FOBs (just the other day) it’s all I’ve been doing when booting up the game. It’s challenging to the point of frustration sometimes but the knowledge that I’m irritating other players, and the ability to scope out a target and pick vulnerable people means I just keep going back to it from the ACC every time. Also, they’re really quick missions.

      • ButteringSundays says:

        “but the knowledge that I’m irritating other players”.

        Someone didn’t get enough hugs from their mum.

  12. Lord Bandog Ablegate the Wiser says:

    Been invaded several times, and enjoy reviewing past attacks and figuring out the best way to set up defences for next time but I haven’t bothered invading anyone. I figure it’s safer and easier to extract resources from the field, where I can bring a buddy and don’t have to pay a ransom if I die.

  13. silentdan says:

    Personally, I dislike “invasion” mechanics in primarily single-player games so much that if it can’t be disabled, I won’t play the game. I’m justing trying to build a sandcastle, here, and when you let passing sociopaths kick it over, it really ruins my fun.

    I really think invasions should be opt-in, not opt-out. Opt-in, and everyone knows what they’re getting themselves into, and although there’s a much smaller pool of unwilling, unwitting victims to harass, I think most players would rather fight a willing opponent than just stab unarmed people in the back.

    • Vapor_Strike says:

      My experience in MGSV? People are more than happy to take advantage of unwilling, unwitting opponents for free stuff. I left my defenses untouched and I was ransacked as often as I could be, but the moment I upgraded them, even to just S and a few defense options, I was down to 2-3 invasions a week.

  14. yogibbear says:

    Nope. Up to Mission 42 (main game is more important!). Have no invaded or defended a FOB. I do build it up and stuff for the extra people giving me better R&D etc. but no one has ever invaded me and I have zero inclination to invade anyone else.

  15. Ufofighter says:

    I’ve tried it, the first 8-10 ones were challenging, next 10 ones began to feel repetitive, and then I saw a video explaining the best way to do it and I lost all interest, once you know how to do it there’s almost no variation or risk (except some drone catching you while climbing a ladder or something else). You can easily infiltrate without triggering the alarm in any level 1 to 3, the 4/4 are a bit challenging but mainly because time restrictions.

    I have to say that the game mode feels completely empty, I’ve been invaded only 6 times, never by someone trying to retaliate, and all of them ended with the attacker dead before 3 minutes. I also have many players marked as allies so in case they are invaded I should be able to enter their base and defend it… but nothing for now. It doesn’t helps the fact that there’s nothing to obtain from infiltrations that you can’t obtain in single player so…

    In my opinion another problem is that PvP encounters are horribly unbalanced, there’s no middle point because the best weapon/item setup to infiltrate is terribly bad against players whom, on top of that, have all the npcs to help them, can make all the noise they want and have endless respawns.

  16. Mungrul says:

    I have invaded and been invaded.

    However, after a certain point, it quickly becomes more “profitable” to play certain areas of the single player game.
    In general (everything developed, all missions S-ranked), it costs me more GMP to invade an FOB than I get back if I successfully complete it.

    Also, it’s very easy to upgrade FOBs to the point that they are almost impossible to crack. I haven’t checked in a couple of days, but the last time someone successfully invaded one of my platforms was a couple of weeks ago, before everything was maxed. And even then, I’m pretty certain the guy in question was using hacks, as his stats were VERY suspicious.

    And at the end of the day, there is no reward other than the challenge for doing FOBs.
    Why would I be interested in buying another one if I’ve already researched everything?
    What benefit does it offer me?
    And above all, while you may think you get a lot of MB coins for simply logging in, the second FOB costs, at minimum, 1,100. This pretty much dictates that you need to shell out real-world cash to buy further FOBs.
    With no benefit to my game and an identical layout to my previous FOB, what on Earth is the point?

    I think that in the original design, you probably didn’t even have FOBs, and all the invasive action centred around your Mother Base. It feels as if the original idea has been butchered in order to become a source of revenue, and resource costs inflated in order to extend the amount of time things take to develop.

    I love the idea, but it has been ruined by blatant attempts to monetise it.

  17. Fenrakk101 says:

    I ended up invading a bunch of people to get the resources to build a nuke on my FOB. I actually find it quite appealing; sneaking through the FOBs required a good amount of skill and experience. I couldn’t successfully infiltrate anyone for a while, thinking it was just stupid difficult, but after an amount of time I got pretty good at it.

    The problem is that it’s not even worth the time it takes to do it. There’s absolutely no reason to steal resource containers; online resources take so long to process that unless you’re only playing the game once a week, it’s not worth the risk, effort and GMP to extract them. You’re much better off just invading the platforms that give you the materials you need as a reward, so that you don’t have to wait to use them. And those rewards are also quite pitiful; not only do you get few materials, you also hardly get any GMP – nowhere near as much as you lose for failing the infiltration, either.

    There’s also a lot of bugs in FOBs, I’ve been detected numerous times through walls, or because my Hand of Jehuty would randomly not be able to grab a soldier who’s spotted me. The reflex time in FOBs is also significantly shorter than in the main game, which just makes those problems worse.

    My biggest complaint of all, though, is that FOBs have all sorts of cool defenses – why aren’t any of them in the main game? A lot of missions could have been improved, or at least made more interesting, with the inclusion of things like UAVs or anti-theft devices or laser tripwires.

    • Ufofighter says:

      What’s the point in having a nuke? Supposedly it prevents attacks from other players except the ones with hero level, but anyone playing in a stealthy way should reach the hero status before ending the game (I did it and haven’t finished the campaign yet).

      • Vapor_Strike says:

        Because people like me gave up on stealth after mission 10 or so because everything got so incredibly stale. I’m only halfway to the heroism I’d need to invade a nuke. I’m not really worried though, considering I uninstalled it months ago.

  18. ackondro says:

    I’ve been invaded a few times, but I’ve never gotten a retaliation chance against a successful invasion, only the clowns who failed their invasion. Invasions never really caused much disruption to me, the biggest disruption was Konami moving all my banked vehicles and weapons to the FOB’s, I was fultoning those to bank GMP for later.

    If they had a “non-lethal” invasion mode, I would be interested. Basically, if I could sneak through the base, not fulton or kill anyone or steal any containers, then I should get a choice to “steal a trophy”. Stealing a trophy basically means I get a good amount of Espionage points and token GMP, while the other guy just loses Heroism/Espionage. If they retaliate, then stealing/killing on my base would void their retaliation and they would have to abandon their attack. Also, if I fail an invasion and didn’t fulton/kill anyone, I should be able to pay a restitution fee in GMP so they can’t retaliate.

    Basically, I want to be “Master of Stealth” Snake instead of “Kleptomaniac” Snake. I can already be klepto snake whenever, I would like the chance to do something different.

    • Premium User Badge

      phuzz says:

      I can already be klepto snake whenever, I would like the chance to do something different.

      And in the game.

  19. yan spaceman says:

    I have finished all the main missions, but I still haven’t tried robbing anybody elses FOB. I just find the idea of having my hard earned resources get nicked by some faceless rotter too hard to bear, so I figure if I keep a low profile no one will see me. I have not had anything lifted yet.

    I did have one random chap ally with me and I have spent GMP on security so I just hope that will be enough to deter trespassers.

  20. Andy_Panthro says:

    Hated the invasion mechanic in Dark Souls, and although I haven’t reached this point in the game yet, I will probably avoid it. I’m much more interested in the single-player game.

  21. Sensation says:

    I was number 10 on the PC leader boards as of last night, so yes, quite a bit of invasions. Fighting other players? No not much of that, the attack/defend nature is far too stacked against the invader to make confrontation with the defender fun. Thankfully the solution to defenders ruining the fun is to perfect stealth/no-kills/no-property-damage their base, which is great deal more challenging than anything else in MGSV; and thanks to the somewhat random nature of base layouts and guard patrols the challenge is different enough every time to stay interesting.

    For those who have avoided FOBs entirely: the resources gained or lost are insignificant, containers on FOBs are all “online raw materials” which are generated and processed while not playing VERY slowly. The staff lost are also mostly insignificant, if you lose anything it will be security team staff who aren’t good enough for the real teams anyway. Finally, if you haven’t figured it out yet GMP is basically a non-factor, you have nearly infinite of it from selling excess resources (rare metals), so don’t be afraid of spending a ton on defense devices.

  22. Cheeetar says:

    I’ve been doing FOBs, mostly because they’re an extraodinarily good source of the materials needed to build expansions to mother base. Sorry, other people!

  23. MemePolice says:

    I feel bad about raiding random people’s FOBs, I know how hard it was to track down their highest level guys and it must suck to lose them.

  24. Thulsa Hex says:

    I agree with those who say that the resources aspect of FOBs is pretty insignificant, both for defenders or attackers. Losses/gains are only ever skimmed off the top of the “excess pile,” so to speak, so it never comes down to “THEY’RE RUINING EVERYTHING I’VE BUILT”. There’s a reason why this happens exclusively on the FOB (or, excess pile) and not on main Mother Base. Rather, the ability to steal just adds a tiny bit more risk/reward to tempt invaders into compromising their stealth run. The only actual risk I’ve encountered was for the invader, where I learned the hard way that if you play as one of your staff members, instead of Snake, they suffer perma-death if you’re killed on-FOB.

    This is all to say that if you’re worried that online play messes with your single-player game, it really doesn’t. And if you don’t invade others, the consensus seems to be you’re at very little risk of being invaded yourself.

    The real point of FOBs seems to be a simple test of your stealth skills. You feel good about yourself if you get in undetected. If you’re spotted, you’ll likely be identified, so the defender gets a chance to try the same against you. Therein lies the game. Treat it like the VR missions from MGS1.

  25. KastaRules says:

    How does FOB work ??? I see no option to do anything like that and I am 70 hours in. Is it something you have to unlock in game ???

  26. Bobtree says:

    FOBs are essentially post-game hard-mode content (the Mosquito event is a cakewalk though). IMHO the online participation should have been optional. If you don’t fancy invading others, you can still train against your own FOB platforms at no cost. I will need to practice soon to rescue 32 soldiers who were captured by a high rank invader in two consecutive runs, and their FOB + security is maxed. I’ve done my share of invading, leaving me around rank 5k, which makes me a lucrative target. It’s a shame the PvP part isn’t more worthwhile, but I’m looking forward to MGO3.

  27. racccoon says:

    Still have bought it yet :( I been playing far too many other games to force a reason yet.
    I think its like chocolate you see it on the shelve and go shall I or shan’t I? but Its two for the price of one! chocolate that is.
    I don’t think that was good comparison as I bought the chocolate. lol

  28. Toadsmash says:

    The entertainment value of the FOB gameplay is kind of a moot point as long as the game servers keep exploding multiple times a day. They can’t seem to make up their mind whether they actually want people to play their online game or not. We’re going on two months out from release now and the game’s online infrastructure is still in complete shambles.

    I personally enjoy it when I can connect to the servers long enough to play, but it probably speaks strongly of how lackluster the general opinion on them is that Konami isn’t getting a hell of a lot more negative press for how broken the state of the online is — there just aren’t enough players participating to generate that negative feedback that it so badly deserves. We’re talking SimCity 2013 levels of bad and the improvement at a month and a half out is marginal at best from the release state.

  29. Premium User Badge

    keithzg says:

    Frankly I hate the story missions too much (the worst is the parts where you’ll be frantically told “run away from this undefeatable enemy!”, so okay I’ll quickly jump on D-Horse and gallop over this way—oh wait, “you’ve left the mission area and failed the mission!” well of course I left the area I was TOLD TO GET AWAY) so after many many hours of playing by roaming around Afghanistan I’m still not nearly at the point which I’d have access to FOBs.

  30. Unruly says:

    Disclaimer – I’m playing on PS3.

    No, I haven’t been invading bases. I’ve been tempted to do so by the current bonuses that are on offer, but I suck at it if the Event FOB is any indication. I did try a couple invasions on players right after I unlocked FOBs, but they went just as poorly. I honestly don’t know how some of the videos I’ve seen of people invading FOBs have gone so smoothly. There’s no planning in them, no spotting or anything, and they just seem to practically run straight into the core without any hassle, despite the base being guarded by drones, IR sensors, and high ranking troops.

    That aside, I do hope that they keep Event FOBs around. I like being given the opportunity to do an FOB here and there without having to worry about screwing it up and suffering retaliation.

  31. wombat191 says:

    did the main missions replayed quiets missions to actually get her some clothes ( stupid ass annoying design decision) and built the fob they made you but then ignored it and the multiplayer side because frankly didnt need the resources

    the game is fun at the start but when i started using hot LZ’s to make it interesting i knew it was time to call it quits

    interesting game although i would of liked less batshit crazy stuff (first game of the series ive played) and more of building a PMC from the ground up also giving the AI the ability to call in heavy reinforcements from bases like choppers and tanks.. having convoys traveling round that get better defended the more you do

    but in the end raid on outpost and it stays the same. the world is to static

  32. Spacewalk says:

    I’m not that far yet and Deus Ex: Revision got me.

  33. haldolium says:

    I don’t like it, since I didn’t even knew it was there (yeah I know… could’ve informed myself beforehand). Although MGSV is disappointing overall, so I may get into it anyways since the actual gameplay is the only high point of the entire game.

    … or I just get myself a MGS ROM and go through the first title again, which I still consider the best.

  34. Donaldson Jones says:

    Not really interested, too many other games do multi player better. Taking stuff just doesn’t interest me in this game, I want the single player story from this game not some half-a$$ed attempt at Thief.