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Biggest Boss: Metal Gear Solid V's Hardcore Mod


Metal Gear Solid V: The Phantom Pain [official site] is a fine game, but is not a difficult game - at least, not unless you want it to be. Sure, you can roll through everything with big guns and a murderbot or Quiet without breaking a bloodsweat; the challenge comes in following weird whims and trying strange ideas with its arsenal of guns and gadgets. Or I suppose you could install a mod.

If you want everything to be tougher, the Hardcore mod by 'JRavens' ups the difficulty by pushing it more towards realism, with enemies more aware and you weaker.

Beating The Phantom Pain does unlock tougher challenges as you go, and you can turn off aids like the slow-mo 'reflex time', but you might want to make some more fundamental changes. JRavens explains the mod's main tweaks:

  • Increases enemy hearing and vision ranges approx 50%
  • Adds additional benefits to utilizing weather and camouflage during stealth.
  • Decreases enemy knockout time by about 50%
  • Increases bullet damage by roughly double default.
  • Decrease the players health and regeneration significantly to make him only slightly better than a standard soldier.
  • Decreases ammo and item capacities by around half default.
  • Changes the empty magazine gadget from unlimited uses to 6 uses (can be restocked by calling in a resupply)

I do like the sound of making weather cover and camouflage more effective to help balance the changes and nudge you into traditional sneaking. I think I'll stick with vanilla Phantom Pain for now, as I'm nearing the end of my first playthrough, but maybe next time I'll try this.

JRavens does warn not to use the mod when going anywhere near multiplayer, because who knows what it might do - or what Konami might do if they detect it.

The mod first come out a week or two ago, but comes to our attention now through a new version released yesterday. Head on over Nexus mods to download it.

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About the Author
Alice O'Connor avatar

Alice O'Connor

Associate Editor

Alice has been playing video games since SkiFree and writing about them since 2009, with nine years at RPS. She enjoys immersive sims, roguelikelikes, chunky revolvers, weird little spooky indies, mods, walking simulators, and finding joy in details. Alice lives, swims, and cycles in Scotland.

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