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Is there room for a Metal Gear Solid sequel?

Hideo Kojima and Konami
Hideo Kojima and Konami's split was a big deterrent to Metal Gear Solid V's development (Image via time magazine)
Rahul Bhushan
ANALYST
Modified 26 Mar 2021
Feature

The Metal Gear Solid franchise has not only been at the start of the revolutionary stealth genre, but it has also been a driving force behind the power of narratives and storytelling in video games.

Perhaps one of the biggest public fallouts ever in the games industry's history was legendary game maker Hideo Kojima and publisher Konami parted ways. Kojima's departure from Konami wasn't exactly cordial as their issues soon became public knowledge, and the production of Metal Gear Solid 5: The Phantom was tumultuous.

This is a shame since Metal Gear Solid 5 attempted to neatly tie-off every story arc and plot point from the entire series, and a rushed development didn't help its cause. Reports and even footage emerged of planned but unfinished levels and a whole third act that would have tied off many loose ends.

Alas, even with how brilliant Metal Gear Solid 5 was across the board, fans of the series felt it fell just short of the mark in terms of narrative quality. While Kojima would surely have loved to have more time to work on the story, the studio was forced to push the game out.


Is there room for a Metal Gear Solid sequel to exist?

Amidst the news of Bethesda having been acquired by Microsoft (Xbox), many felt that it sets a precedent for Sony to acquire Konami. While that isn't exactly how the industry functions, the thought of the industry giant acquiring rights to Metal Gear Solid was enough to send fans into a frenzy.

Soon after, theories of a potential Metal Gear Solid sequel began to circulate online. With Oscar Isaac set to star as Solid Snake in an upcoming Metal Gear Solid film, it does look like the franchise's immediate future lies in the medium of film and not video games.

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More recently, a cathartic restoration of Zack Snyder's Justice League sparked fan interest in a Kojima cut for Metal Gear Solid 5. This is mainly because they are well aware of the brutal separation between Konami and Kojima.

But ultimately, while fans would love for Kojima to return to the franchise with a sequel to Metal Gear Solid 5, or even a prequel, does that universe have more stories to tell?

What would a new Metal Gear Solid game accomplish?

Only one person in the world has the definitive answer to whether the Metal Gear Solid franchise has more stories to tell, and he has been distanced from the franchise itself. But as it stands, it seems like the Metal Gear saga has managed to tie off most loose ends and complete every arc through all the mainline entries.

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Regarding the main characters, Solid Snake's arc came to a definitive and satisfying conclusion with Metal Gear Solid 4. Its ending is perhaps as definitive a conclusion as there ever has been, with Snake having given his all in service of the country and the mission.

Raiden, who has perhaps one of the most gratifying arcs in the history of video games, evolves into a compelling character. Raiden even received his own spin-off title, the wonderfully ridiculous and over-the-top Metal Gear Rising: Revengeance.

Big Boss, aka Venom Snake, whose origins and an unlikely descent into "villainy" have been covered extensively, probably doesn't have any more meaningful stories to tell. From the MSF to Diamond Dogs to Zanzabar and the Mother Base, fans have seen just about everything Big Boss has to offer.

With every villain and bad guy either in dirt or in questionably deceased circumstances, is it too much of a reach to suggest Metal Gear Solid has come to an end?

A sequel should ideally explore ideas and stories that come to the creators naturally and organically, and simply manufacturing a story that needs to be told results in a thoroughly unimpressive piece of work (read: Metal Gear Survive).

At this point, the perfect thing to do with regards to the franchise is to let it rest and for both Konami and Kojima to explore other stories and games. Which shouldn't be a problem for Hideo Kojima as the brain that birthed both Metal Gear and Death Stranding probably has a thousand more impactful stories to tell.

Published 26 Mar 2021, 16:51 IST
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