After the Soviet Union dissolved, Boris was discharged from the army for letting his emotions get the better of him on the battlefield and forced to take up work as a mercenary doing "gray area" jobs, something he deeply regrets. In 2014, after the fall of the Patriots, Boris founded Maverick Security Consulting and strove to make a PMC that would keep its actions clean.
The Atoner: He regrets some of the "gray area" jobs he took after being discharged.
Big Damn Heroes: When Sam has Raiden dead to rights, Boris rolls in firing a .50 cal machine gun, forcing him to retreat. He also tries to shoot down Desperado's VTOL with Stinger missiles, but didn't count on the aircraft having counter measures (or that the missiles were outdated enough for flares to fool them).
Gratuitous Russian: Uses the Russian word for comrade, "tovarich", and occasionally drops articles despite otherwise speaking exclusively in English.
Reasonable Authority Figure: Despite being the president of a PMC, he treats Raiden more like a friend than an employee, and even puts himself at risk to save Raiden in the opening chapter.
Retired Badass: He's ex-Soviet military and still proficient in a wide range of weapons.
Screw the Rules, I'm Doing What's Right: Officially, he recognizes that Raiden going after World Marshal is illegal. Unofficially, he ups the encryption on the codec so that he, Kevin, and Courtney can assist Raiden as much as they can alongside Doktor, Bladewolf, and Sunny.
A non-combatant responsible for research and strategic planning at Maverick Inc. and a member of Raiden's mission control team. He had worked in DDR* Disarmament, Demobilization, Reintegration at a non-governmental organization affiliated with the United Nations. After seeing Boris's kind nature first hand, he joined Maverick to help out any way he could. He has a wide range of knowledge in geography, culture, and international sociopolitical conditions, which he provides to help Raiden understand the local cultures and histories of his opposition.
Only Sane Man: He's the only member of the Maverick support team who objects to Raiden mercilessly cutting down enemies. He changes his tone when Raiden fights Senator Armstrong. Calling him over codec during the final phase of Armstrong's boss fight has him yell out "Cut him, Raiden!"
"Energy consumption, check. Damage levels, check. Blood pressure, brain waves, blood sugar - check, check, check. All this monitoring equipment, I got a better view than if I was standing next to you."
Courtney is a data analyst for Maverick Security Consulting. She monitors the information sent from Raiden's cyborg body to keep tabs on his condition. While at university, she studied business administration, but was more interested in doing her part to help relieve social unrest and decided to join Maverick on the advice of Kevin, a graduate from her university. She wanted to experience a clean private military security company from a civilian perspective.
Big Eater: Her codec conversations tends to have her focused on the local cuisine of the countries Raiden visits. It's almost a Continuity Nod to how Para-Medic was often exasperated at how Naked Snake inevitably questioned the flavor of the wildlife. She briefly considers getting cyborg conversion so she can eat whatever, whenever (Raiden makes an off-color remark that liposuction would be cheaper).
The Heart: In numerous codec conversations, Courtney gives unwavering emotional support to Raiden. Especially touching is her acceptance of his split personality, believing he still has a sense of right and wrong despite the things he's done.
The Klutz: Kevin keeps moving her coffee mug away from the edge of the table. She knocks it over in the ending cutscene (and also in an optional codec call).
Save Point: Though, not as necessary as in previous games, due to the auto-save mechanic.
"I see... you deny your weapon its purpose! It yearns to bathe in the blood of your enemies, but you hold it back!"
A mysterious cyborg working for Desperado Enforcement. He is a master swordsman of the Brazilian "New Shadow School" technique, with a high frequency blade similar to the one used by Raiden. Early on, Sam is quick to point out that Raiden's view of his sword as a "tool of justice" only hinders his ability to fight effectively, before defeating and almost killing him. In keeping with the Theme Naming of the Winds of Destruction, he is occasionally referred to as "Minuano", the cool winds of Brazil; also, a jet stream is a fast flowing air current found in Earth's upper atmosphere.
Afraid of Blood: Not quite "afraid" considering he carves up nearly as many people as Raiden, but during N'mani's death and the beginning of his DLC, he brushes himself off when he gets blood on him and has a disgusted look on his face.
An Arm and a Leg: He has a cybernetic right arm. The Jetstream DLC reveals how he lost it.
Ancestral Weapon: Sam's Murasama sword has apparently been in the Rodrigues family for generations, and Sam personally inherited the blade from his father.
Awesome by Analysis: In the Jetstream DLC, during his fight with Armstrong, he analyzes the speed his nanomachine-armor comes out so he can sever his hand.
Badass: He beat the crap out of Raiden at the end of File 0.
Badass Normal: His backstory involves killing ten mob enforcers armed with automatic weapons with nothing but a sword, years before cyborg technology became available. While he has a cybernetic arm, the rest of his body is real and is covered by an enhancing nanosuit to rival cyborgs. Even before he lost the right arm, he was capable of doing some amazing feats, including taking down a RAY, a which was a Degraded Boss for Raiden when he had his original cyborg body.
Badass Biker: That bike that Raiden "borrowed?" The DLC story reveals that it was Sam's.
Bare-Handed Blade Block: If you knock his sword out of his hands during the rematch, one of the button-tapping events results in him doing this. This trope actually becomes subverted, since Raiden overpowers Sam during the QTE and cuts a gash on his armor, through which Sam is stabbed and killed at the end of the boss fight.
Broke Your Arm Punching Out Cthulhu: The Jetstream DLC he fights and apparently beats Armstrong only for him to get back up and with no real damage. After getting pummeled, Sam manages to cut his hand off, but all that does is cause Armstrong to real for a amount before impaling him with the sharp stomp of his arm and then reatches his severed hand.
Blood Knight: With quite a bit of a Spirited Competitor as well, he just wants a fight against someone as good or better than he is... and he finds such a foe in Raiden. Kevin likens Sam to one of those Wild West cowboys that would only get into gun duels with people they felt were skilled enough to challenge them, there wouldn't be a thrill otherwise. In fact, Sam's song lyrics outright state that he only feels alive when he sees death face-to-face.
The Jetstream DLC campaign expands on this. Before encountering Raiden, he wandered the earth and tested his skills by single-handedly taking down various criminal organizations. There was no one who could land a single blow on him, with the exception of Senator Armstrong, and that was after Sam had managed to cut through his nanomachine armor and sever his hand.
Expy: Not only does he look like Mitsurugi, both Sam and Mitsurugi's fighting styles are based off of the same style, and they also duke out battoujutsu shots. This is most obvious in Sam's first cutscene in his story when he's approached by two officers.
Facepalm Of Doom: When Raiden knocks his sword out of his hand during the battle with him, Sam switches to an unarmed fighting style and starts charging around the battlefield with his fist raised; if he hits Raiden, he grabs his face and slams his skull into the ground in a spray of blood and rubble.
Fallen Hero: As revealed in his DLC. Early on, he destroyed criminal groups, but as time wore on, he became disillusioned by his seeming inability to singlehandedly make the world a better place. By Rising, his defeat by Armstrong makes him give up completely and join Desperado's plot simply because he sees no other way to get things done.
For Great Justice: Picked a fight with World Marshal because of its brutal reputation. Of course, it also gave him a chance to further hone his skills.
Genre Savvy: Unlike the other bosses, he decides that both him and Raiden have heard enough lectures about ideals and whatnot and chooses to just get to the fight.
Hoist by His Own Petard: Possibly subverted. Raiden points out point-blank during a codec call that if Sam hadn't had his attempt to Mind Rape Raiden backfire spectacularly, Monsoon would have killed him... assuming that was his intention. Instead of faltering completely, Raiden comes to terms with his Jack the Ripper self and is that much deadlier because of it.
Played straight in the Jetstream DLC, where his use of his quick-draw slash manages to sever Armstrong's nanomachine-hardened arm, leaving a sharpened stump that Armstrong uses to sever Sam's own arm.
Hopeless Boss Fight: At the beginning of the game, you fight Sam, but don't expect to win... or leave with all your body parts for that matter.
Sam had his own Hopeless Boss Fight against Armstrong, which convinced him no matter how hard he tried, he couldn't make the world a better place.
Iaijutsu Practitioner: When you see him sheathe his sword, move. His scabbard was even built with this in mind: it fires the sword outward like a gun, allowing for Sam to catch it mid-launch and draw his sword at incredible speeds.
Impossibly Cool Weapon: There is basically absolutely no way Sam's gun-scabbard would work in real life considering it would require stupendously precise reactions and probably also rip the arm off the user. That being said, it is really cool. Sam does have a cyborg right arm, which might justify the technique, if not for the fact that he can do the same thing in his DLC chapter, before losing his arm.
The DLC reveals that his Winds of Destruction designation is "Minuano," a cold wind that blows in the South of Brazil.
I Shall Taunt You: While playable, his VR mode is replaced with a taunt that enrages enemies that are engaging him. This causes them to attack recklessly and with more strength behind their swings, but also increases the damage they take.
Master Swordsman: Comes from a family of Brazilian sword martial arts practitioners. He was skilled enough to kill enemies armed with guns using nothing but his sword even before becoming a cyborg. Or rather, not becoming one, as it turns out.
Mix-and-Match Weapon: Not his sword, but the scabbard for it. The scabbard in question has the lower receiver of an M-16 built into it, not to shoot bullets, mind you, but to help him "fire" his HF sword out and allow him to slash people at high speed.
Noble Demon: Unlike the other bosses, Sundowner in particular, the fight with Sam is a straightforward sword fight. No gimmicks, no assistance from mooks or obvious pattern that you can exploit. Just Raiden, him and Bladewolf as a spectator. Best man wins.
Furthermore, he does not have the option to instantly dispatch of enemies from behind as Raiden does. This may be because he is a samurai, which favor honorable battle, while Raiden seems to focus more on being a ninja.
Not in This for Your Revolution: Joined Desperado in search of a Worthy Opponent, and doesn't even bother trying to ensure that the Winds of Destruction's plan will succeed after realizing halfway through the game Raiden may be that opponent.
Older Is Better: Bladewolf comments that the effectiveness of high frequency blades is directly proportional to the blades used in their construction. As Sam's sword is made using one of Murasama's swords, it's obviously by far the best sword in the game.
One-Man Army: Sam made a name for himself killing ten heavily armed mob enforcers early in his career. He then wandered the world destroying whole criminal organizations. When that got boring he launched a direct attack on World Marshal's Denver headquarters. Later in Africa he charged an APC head on, slicing its gunner in half and defeating the rest of N'mani's security detail easily.
Only Known by Their Nickname: It's always, "Jetstream Sam" or just "Sam"; the only character to call him "Samuel" is Bladewolf and the only time his full name is spoken during the entire game is during a codec call with Kevin.
Pet the Dog: When Raiden meets with him for their final duel, he catches a glimpse of Sam petting Bladewolf. Beyond this literal example, Raiden notes that had Sam really wanted to he could have killed Sunny and every single person over at her aerospace testing center, therefore making it impossible for Raiden to get to Pakistan in time to stop Desperado's plans. Raiden thanks Sam for this courtesy.
Considering Sam wants to make the world a better place and he was going to fight Raiden anyway (he probably left that bike there on purpose), even if killing everyone at the launch site wouldn't have made the outcome of their duel irrelevant (due to Raiden not being able to reach Pakistan in time without the ride), Sam probably would've considered slaughtering a bunch of innocent civilians and an innocent teenage girl more than a bit much even for him, and it wouldn't have been any fun for him anyway — he prefers targetswho can actually fight back, such as Raiden. And besides, putting some important stake on the outcome of the duel is way more interesting, especially since Sam sympathized with Raiden's ideals and wanted to give him a fighting chance to take down Armstrong and succeed where Sam himself failed. Even if Sam does some dickish things at times, he really is a good guy at heart.
Playing with Fire: Stabs his sword into a fuel tank during the train fight at the start of the game, causing his blade to light on fire as he swings it at Raiden.
Practical Taunt: His taunting causes enemies to glow red, attack more aggressively and makes their attacks do block damage along with making them uncounterable, but it also makes them more predictable and greatly lowers their defense, allowing Sam to do double damage to most enemies and cut weaker enraged enemies apart with his normal attacks. This also works on bosses, but the effect only lasts for a few seconds and you must taunt them again each time. Doing this on bosses also allows them to use a special taunt-only maneuver, such as Armstrong being able to do a flaming shoulder tackle.
Razor Wind: One of his charged quick draw attacks in the DLC, though he doesn't use it during his battle with Raiden.
Ronin: His previous "job" before the events of Revengeance.
Shadow Archetype: The Jetstream DLC reveals that he was rather similar to Raiden. Though instead of protecting the weak, he sharpened his skills by delivering justice to criminal organizations around the world.
Simple Yet Awesome: Essentially how he handles stunned enemies during the quick time event that makes them vulnerable. Instead of the acrobatic stuff that Raiden does, he just kicks them really hard.
Sword Drag: He does this during one of his special attacks. In the intro, he drags it cross a fuel tank on the train. The Sword Sparks from the drag ignite the fuel, briefly turning his blade into a Flaming Sword before the fuel tank explodes.
Take Up My Sword: Before his final duel with Raiden, he instructs Bladewolf to give Raiden his sword should he die. Raiden later uses the blade in the battle with Armstrong.
You Killed My Father: Sam's father was the head of a Dojo, where he ended up being murdered by one of his own students. Sam left the country, trained himself to be a Master Swordsman, came back and personally butchered the guy.
IF Prototype LQ-84i "Bladewolf"
"My exoskeleton resembles a canine; canines enjoy bones. Amusing on two levels."
A Desperado Enforcement Unmanned Gear (UG) equipped with an advanced artificial intelligence and a prototype interface that allows for verbal communication. It claims to have a supreme intellect that it is unable to use to its full extent, as anytime it disobeys a direct order its memory would be wiped. It is also for this reason that it reluctantly tries to fight Raiden to the death at Desperado's orders. It later becomes an important character that holds the key to the story.
Cool Pet: Sunny thinks that Bladewolf is pretty cool, and encourages Raiden to keep him. Raiden however dismisses the idea of Wolf being his "pet", and notes that Wolf can leave any time he wants to. Interestingly Wolf never takes offense to being called Raiden's pet, nor does he correct Armstrong when he calls Raiden his master.
Cuteness Proximity: Simply seeing Bladewolf once made Sunny act the same way most children do when their parents bring home a new puppy. It even veers into wanting him as a Cool Pet as seen above.
Though Bladewolf's loyalty is to Raiden above all else, when Raiden asks why Bladewolf is helping him he responds that he owes a debt to Raiden that he plans to repay. Bladewolf even sticks by Raiden when he leaves Maverick to deliver vigilante justice against World Marshal; Wolf is clearly even willing to break the law to help Raiden.
He also grows to respect Sam after being defeated by him, as shown in the DLC.
Fragile Speedster: Stealth and dodging factors in quite a bit more in the Bladewolf DLC compared to how Raiden or Sam play.
Heel-Face Turn: Goes from a member of the antagonistic Desperado Enforcement PMC to Raiden's ally.
Hot Blade: His knives are hot enough to penetrate and melt stone, as shown in his intro cutscene.
Humans Are the Real Monsters: Believes this to be why he is a failure as a combat AI — as he is not human, he is incapable of true human brutality.
Despite extensive conversations on human freedom and what people decide to do with that freedom, Bladewolf determines that there is no easy answer for why men fight. He wonders if there is any sure fire belief system that can bring lasting peace. Raiden suggests that Bladewolf is better off discovering his own personal philosophy, and then trying to pass it on once he has found it.
I'm Taking Him Home with Me!: Sunny thinks that Bladewolf is cute and expresses an interest in bringing him home with her, so long as Raiden is OK with it, of course. Raiden makes it known that Wolf isn't really his "pet" and that Wolf follows Raiden around of his own free will, Raiden does nothing to make Wolf help him. Ultimately it is Wolf's decision to make... and judging by the ending, Wolf decided to take Sunny up on her offer.
Interspecies Friendship: Has a partnership with Raiden but shows degrees of hostility towards Raiden's behavior. He eventually warms up to Raiden. On the other hand he seems to trust Sam and shows more open affection around him than he does with Raiden. At one point Bladewolf even interacts with Sunny on a fairly friendly basis.
Beyond the whole human and dog dynamic, Bladewolf is also an AI. To that effect a lot of Wolf's dialogue centers on the moral and philosophical implications of relationships between AIs and humans. Judging by his interactions with Raiden, friendly interactions between AIs and humans are certainly possible.
Kick the Dog: Bladewolf never does this, but he is the recipient of this trope. At the ending of the game Senator Armstrong punts him like a football, making this a literal example.
My Master, Right or Wrong: During Raiden's more outrageous moments Wolf does take moments to pause and question his motives, but afterward continues to support Raiden in his decisions. Even during moments where Raiden explicitly points out that things are going to get rough and that he is welcome to leave any time, Wolf continues to stay.
Not So Different: Raiden posits this idea if you call your support team during the boss battle with Bladewolf. They discuss Bladewolf's claims that his memories would be wiped if he were to disobey an order, which for an AI is the equivalent of death. Raiden muses that fighting back to keep himself alive means that he has no choice either; in that sense neither party wants to fight but they have to if they are going to survive.
Pet the Dog: Bladewolf shares several moments with Raiden that involve the both of them trying to understand each other, and during difficult emotional moments they provide reassurance. At one point he becomes the literal recipient of this trope when Samuel pets him.
Robot Dog: It's a prototype AI in the body of a robot wolf. Kev even calls him "K-9000."
Spell My Name with an "S": One word. Complicating matters is the fact that Bladewolf's own DLC campaign is entitled "Blade Wolf."
Sugar and Ice Personality: Heavy on the ice. He's a bit of a dick towards Raiden, refusing to show any affection to him even though he does to others, and generally treating him with hostility. The only accommodation Wolf gives Raiden is that he is a "capable fighter." Despite this, his loyalty to Raiden is absolute even though he has no programming to encourage him to work with Raiden.
During the final boss battle Bladewolf does concede that he owes a debt to Raiden and that he has learned much from Raiden's example so he does warm up to Raiden... as much as a robot can warm up anyway.
Super Prototype: Is more durable and intelligent than any of the mass-produced LQ-84 Fenrir UGs you encounter elsewhere in the game.
Bladewolf: "The stock LQ-84 Fenrir. Unable to speak. A real dog has a far greater intellect."
Super Speed: It is noted by Raiden during their battle that Wolf is faster than he is. Raiden decides based on this fact to wait for Wolf to come to him rather than try to outpace him. Also when you see the two of them running side by side Wolf is always noticeably in the lead ahead of Raiden.
Wake-Up Call Boss: Despite being the boss of the first stage, LQ-84i can absolutely destroy a player unless they're already comfortable with all of parryingnote most of his attacks can't be dodged, and perfect parries create 90% of counterattck opportunities, manual Blade Modenote more reliable to deflect his knife attacks, but he throws at diagonals Button Mashing won't cover, Zandatsunote the only way to refill health during the fight is by stab-and-grabbing his reinforcements, even lock-onnote in a very subtle Interface Screw, he telegraphs his deadliest attack by jumping back and forth faster than the player can manually move the camera and daring Raiden to keep up.
Weaksauce Weakness: Not in battle, but in the way his sophisticated neural AI was made to copy a human brain as close as possible. This, and a lack of any sort of database memory, means he inherited some of the gray-matter shortcomings as well. For instance, he admits that since he usually identifies people by XIFF and only has basic symbol analysis, he's even worse at remembering faces than the average human.
Weaponized Animal: It's a combat-oriented robot wolf equipped with military-grade weapons.
We Can Rebuild Him: After LQ-84i is destroyed, Raiden has Doktor rebuild the UG with a few "adjustments" as the more fearsome looking Bladewolf,◊ complete with upgrades to its arsenal like an extra manipulator appendage in its new mouth and blades under its limbs.
What Measure Is a Non-Human?: As an AI, Bladewolf was considered below even third party contractors and as such was left almost entirely in the dark about Desperado's operations.
Even Raiden has degrees of this sentiment towards Bladewolf at first, expressing amusement at the idea that Bladewolf could even think of something like freedom. You get the impression that Raiden still has a distrust towards AIs because of the evil done to him by the Patriot AIs, more than once alluding to the Patriot AIs' actions in Bladewolf's presence. Eventually Raiden begins to trust Wolf and gives him true moral consideration, claiming that Bladewolf has the right to decide for himself. Far more consideration than Desperado ever gave him.
Win Your Freedom: Desperately wanted to do this but had no way of disobeying orders or else he would be deleted, the equivalent of death for an AI. Raiden ultimately wins Bladewolf's freedom for him by bringing Wolf home in the aftermath of their duel and repairing him. For this Raiden has earned Bladewolf's loyalty.
"We're just suppliers. We don't create the market for war. Didja think that every battle in history was all part of some big ol' conspiracy? BULLSHIT! War is just part'a who we are. Why fight it?"
The leader of Desperado Enforcement, he is known by the code name of "Sundowner", named after the hot, dry winds of California. As one of the dreaded Winds of Destruction he uses any powerful, specialized cyborg body, different from the ones used by typical contract. He dual-wields a pair of high-frequency machetes, collectively called "Bloodlust."
American Accents: Speaks with a heavy Texan accent, though he's actually from Alabama.
Sundowner: "We've already commenced VR training, same one ol' Georgie-boy used on the kids in Liberia. Kids you can mold, manipulate into performing all kinds of atrocities, and there's nothing like a good atrocity to keep a war going."
Combat Pragmatist: While none of the Winds would win awards for fair play, Sundowner is particularly bad at fighting dirty. His arena is ringed with attack helicopters that will open fire on you while fighting him. In fact, when the fight starts turning against him, he resorts to "Battlefield Acquisition", AKA, "tearing down massive light towers ringing the helipad to use as makeshift bludgeons." When he decides "Playtime's over", he simply orders the helicopters to destroy the helipad outright.
Co-Dragons: He and Monsoon appear to be Senator Armstrong's right hand men.
Corrupt Hick: He's a complete and utter psychopath from Alabama.
Dirty Coward: He talks big about war, but his accomplishments in the story includes killing an unarmed, un-enhanced civilian, and tormenting orphans. When fighting him, he can't even keep up with Raiden without stacking the odds in his favor with "gimmicky shit" and back up (unlike Sam). In other words, he's a bully pretending to be a soldier.
Famed in Story: A codec conversation with Kevin in R04 reveals that he built up quite the reputation in his pre-cyborg soldier days.
The Heavy: The de facto leader of the Winds of Destruction and the main villain affiliated with Desperado that Raiden pursues. At least, until he finds out about Armstrong.
Hoist by His Own Petard: He can be damaged and killed by the missiles of the helicopter that's meant to support him.
Hypocrite: Sundowner's rather dubious claims of Desperado and World Marshal only being suppliers, rather than the creators of the market for war. When you keep in mind the fact that Desperado's plan, under Armstrong's guidance, was to instigate a terrorist incident while the U.S President was in Pakistan in order to create another war on terror, thus increasing the market for war big time, then you can tell that Sundowner is full of crap.
Impossibly Cool Weapon: Two giant machetes that can turn into a pair of giant scissors? Damn right. Also, explosive shields.
Villain Ball: If Sundowner hadn't gloated to Raiden about already being "too late" to stop Tecumseh and that he wouldn't make it "even at Mach 2", He and the rest of Maverick wouldn't have been able to deduce that they were planning to assassinate the president on his trip to Pakistan.
"That's when I realized... I am a killer too. And a good one at that. I slaughtered dozens in Iraq, in Afghanistan... I'd found my calling."
A cyborg, and commanding officer working for Desperado Enforcement, she is one of the four cyborgs called the Winds of Destruction along with Sundowner, Monsoon, and Khamsin. Her codename, Mistral, comes from the cold regional winds along the Mediterranean coast of France. She wields the "L'╔tranger", a dual-bladed staff, made from the arms of Dwarf Gekkos, that doubles as a whip.
Ambiguous Cyborg: While her arms, legs and back attachment are obviously mechanical and her head seems to be augmented, it's unknown whether her torso is organic or high-quality cyborg parts that have Jiggle Physicsfor some reason. Given that every other cyborg in the game (apart from some red shirts in the prologue, Sam, George and Armstrong) is clearly bulky cybernetics from the neck down, this would make Mistral something of a rarity in either case.
Ax-Crazy: When she found those who murdered her parents, she "butchered those fuckers" and discovered that she's quite a good killer herself.
Bad Boss: Just look how she treats Bladewolf in his DLC, as well as her Dwarf Gekkos.
Batman Gambit: Pulls off an impressive one in the Blade Wolf DLC, in which she exploits his desire for freedom to trick him into killing Khamsin.
Blood Knight: Definitely, as she only feels alive in a battlefield.
Evil Is Petty: Planned for Khamsin's death because he annoyed her.
Femme Fatale: Here and there. When she spots Raiden, she blows a kiss his way (complete with pink hearts) and later removes her coat rather suggestively before their battle. Factor in the aforementioned Combat Sadomasochist tendencies and her use of a whip, and...
She spends most of the Blade Wolf DLC sitting in a "chair" made of Dwarf Gekko, highly reminiscent of human chairs in BDSM.
Flunky Boss: Her arenas can be positively swarming with Dwarf Gekkos running interference if you're not careful about them.
Go Out with a Smile/Worth It/Pet the Dog: Dying without regret since she knows how it feels to have something worth to die for, and giving Raiden encouragement to continue fight for his ideals. Dolzaev himself lost itwhen she died. However, in a Codec call, Raiden and Kevin speculates that the message was likely meant for someone else, hinted to be Armstrong.
Interplay of Sex and Violence: Long story short, thanks to her upbringing, there's a strong sexual undercurrent in Mistral's need and enjoyment of battle.
Jiggle Physics: Downplayed. Her massive breasts are apparently natural and do jiggle a little during cutscenes. During battle, she uses one of her many pairs of arms to support and shield her chest. The Jiggle Physics are a clue to Doktor that her torso is probably human, and not cybernetic.
Kick the Dog: She's rather cruel to her Dwarf Gekkos, ripping their arms off without mercy, stomping them in half, and forcing them to form a throne for her while they visibly quiver from the strain in the Blade Wolf DLC. A Dwarf Gekko split in half in that scene seems to indicate she punished it for not performing its job properly. Mistral also plays a fairly cruel Batman Gambit on Bladewolf, making him believe he had gained freedom before snatching it away and almost breaking his spirit. Her comments about making him "shake hands" like a dog and forcing him to do so are icing in the cake.
Ms. Fanservice: While more modestly dressed than previous holders of this title within the Metal Gear verse and, until her boss fight, covered up in bulky overcoat, that bodysuit doesn't leave much of her figure to the imagination, never mind her personality and mannerisms in battle.
Multi-Armed and Dangerous: Has various Gekko arms attached to her back, though their only purpose is to give her more arms to rebuild her weapon with.
Not So Different: Tries this with Raiden as they're both Child Soldiers. To be fair, Raiden does seem to sympathise with her... until she brings up the whole butchering of her family's murderers thing...
And even that is still similar to Raiden, considering he also ended up killing the murderer of his family.
Red Eyes, Take Warning: In the TGS trailer, her right eye glows red at one point, hinting that, like Raiden, Mistral possesses optical implants. In-game, her eye glows after attaching the Dwarf Gekkos to her body.
Self-Disposing Villain: Halfway, at least — her breaking of a container full of liquid nitrogen freezes her in place, and Raiden uses this opportunity to finish her off.
Statuesque Stunner: Although not much is made of Mistral's stature in-game (and while she does appear to be taller than Raiden when they cross paths, her high heels factor into that), her height is officially listed as 190 cm — just a bit shy of 6'3".
Super Senses: Her intro scene subtly demonstrates that Mistral has enhanced eyesight thanks to cybernetics. Raiden uses his optical enhancements to scan over an area before noticing her. After she finishes her conversation with Dolzaev, she then looks over directly at Raiden and blows him a kiss, showing she has powerful observational enhancements as well.
We Hardly Knew Ye: Dies in her first level, not counting a brief glimpse of her in the prologue. The Blade Wolf DLC subverts this to a degree, showing her interactions with LQ-84i.
"Wind blows, rain falls. The strong prey upon the weak. Don't be ashamed. It's only nature, running its course."
A cyborg, and commanding officer working for Desperado Enforcement, he is one of the four cyborgs called the Winds of Destruction along with Sundowner, Mistral, and Khamsin. His codename is Monsoon, referring to a seasonal wind that brings rain in tropical areas, especially in Southeast Asia. He wields a pair of Sai called "Dystopia", and has the ability to separate his body into pieces using an advanced system of magnets.
Battle in the Rain: He fights Raiden in the middle of a heavy thunderstorm. It's rather fitting, given Raiden's codename is based on lightning and Monsoon's is based on seasonal rain storms.
Body Horror: Judging by how he's able to magnetically break his body apart, then he likely lost his entire body from the neck down, almost to the same degree as Raiden. Concept art additionally shows that, behind the mask, Monsoon's eyes are surgically hooked up to cables connected to his helmet's interior space.
Extremity Extremist: Because he wields sais in his hands, most of his attacks not involving Dystopia involve kicking.
The Faceless: Concept art aside, Monsoon's Cool Helmet covers everything but his lower face, unlike the other Winds of Destruction.
Famous Last Words: Depending on how aggressive Raiden was during his battle, his last words are either a defiant "Do your worst!" or a horrified "Stop! Stop it!"
Foe-Tossing Charge: Can use a spinning tackle similar to the Psycho Crusher, only it's magnetized, has Monsoon zipping back and forth for multiple hits, and involves all of his limbs floating around in the air.
Gratuitous English: In the Japanese version, he uses both the English version of his name and says "winds of destruction" in English amidst a speech that is otherwise refined Japanese.
Hidden Depths: There are a lot of hints to him being a Nature Lover. Even when ignoring his Social Darwinist speeches, the guy even tends to get a little poetic when describing the rain or admiring the cherry blossom trees.
In a Single Bound: Similar to the fight with Bladewolf, it's easy to loose track of Monsoon if he's leaping on top of walls and pillars and crossing from one side of the battlefield to another in mere seconds.
Interface Screw: Getting trapped in the Red Phosphorus grenades he throws results in your lock-on being disabled, forcing you to orient yourself in Monsoon's direction manually each time he attacks you through the smoke.
Ironic Echo: Monsoon claims that it's simply the law of nature that the strong prey upon the weak, it is just nature running its course when war happens. After Raiden defeats him by cutting off his head, Raiden throws it back in his face: "Don't be ashamed. It's only nature running its course."
Lean and Mean: When compared to other cyborgs, such as his fellow Winds of Destruction members. He's also the tallest of the group at 202 cm (roughly 6'8'').
His main trait shown is the ability to separate his body into pieces, levitating and reattaching them at will and even being able to fire his detached body parts at you like bullets. Curiously, despite your blade (and most of your body) being metal, even up close these magnets can't affect or hurt you.
At certain parts during the fight, he leaps to a higher area of the stage, and starts picking up tanks and helicopters to chuck at you. Then in the same vein, he can take a bunch of those tanks and helicopters, mash them together,and try to roll them over you in a gigantic wheel of death.
Wall Crawl: The Jetstream DLC shows he's capable of using his magnetism to attach his body to sheer surfaces, such as walking along the underside of a support beam on a hangar ceiling. However, it's also treated fairly realistically; with the magnetic power needed to grip the metal with just the soles of his feet, he can at most walk at a pace just below a slight amble, so he mostly uses it to maintain a safe talking distance.
Weaksauce Weakness: Oh boy, Monsoon sure is clever, designing his body to be immune to sword attacks. Looks like the only thing you can do is try and parry all his attacks to force him into his vulnerable state. Wait, are those EM Grenades being dropped when you slice up his thrown debris?
His primary weakness is even worse, part of the activation of his immunity/detachment mode is the pushing out of a cylindrical area from the front of his helmet... which counts as a huge "punch my face to make me vulnerable again" button.
"If you don't know freedom, then I can't expect you to get our cause."
"Buckle the fuck up, little doggy. Remember this, we're bringin' freedom here if it kills us. Or better yet: them."
A cyborg, and commanding officer working for Desperado Enforcement, he is one of the four cyborgs called the Winds of Destruction along with Sundowner, Mistral, and Monsoon. His codename is Khamsin, referring to a hot, dry, desert wind in the Middle East. He pilots a large, mech-like suit with a massive, rocket powered chainsaw axe. He believes in freedom and bringing it to the people of Abkhazia.
Blondes are Evil: Subverted; though he is by all means a jerk (relatively speaking), Khamsin is one of the more moral members of the Winds of Destruction and fights for an ideal, albeit an ideal he may follow blindly.
Cluster F-Bomb: Lets one of these loose as he's close to being beaten.
Doomed by Canon: It should be clear that considering how he isn't around or even mentioned in the main game, Khamsin doesn't survive the DLC.
Eagleland: Type 2, of course. He spouts a lot about "freedom," but is very willing to spread it through force, something which American government was criticized for during the second Iraq war, which he fought in.
Final Exam Boss: Seeing as though Bladewolf's DLC is much more stealth focused than the rest of the game, his fight also has a stealth section along with the spectacle fighting.
Foil: To Bladewolf, appropriately, as the final boss of its DLC. Bladewolf seeks to free itself from Desperado's control, while Khamsin blindly spreads "freedom" on Desperado's orders. Both use the only notable chainsaw toothed weapons in the game, and both are "leashed" to Desperado like attack dogs: Bladewolf by its memory wipes, and Khamsin being literally attached to a war machine.
Jerkass: Enough of one to be discharged from the Marines. And his obnoxious attitude earns him enough of Mistral's ire for her to set up a Batman Gambit resulting in Bladewolf killing him.
Unwitting Pawn: He was misled into believing that Desperado's mission in Abkhazia involved giving freedom to the people.
Voiced by: Benito Martinez (EN)
"You've heard of chloroform? A potent anesthetic in smaller doses. But breathe too much of it... And... adios, muchachos."
The chief researcher at a Desperado-owned lab in Mexico responsible for the removal of brains from young orphans and their encasement in cyborg cranium canisters so Desperado and World Marshal can train them via VR training.
"I must admit, I once thought of groups like yours as opportunists - enablers of war. But you've trained our new army well - order has returned sooner than expected. Perhaps I was wrong about these 'private military companies'..."
The Prime Minister of Montenegro. He takes quite a liking to Raiden. He is later killed by Sundowner.
"Ich liebe Kapitalismus! Had the wall come down a few years earlier, I would have a Nobel Prize on my shelf."
Though his real name is Wilhelm Voigt, he prefers to be called "Doktor." He researched advanced weaponry in the GDR (East Germany). He had no job after the fall of the Berlin Wall, but thanks to his studies on myoelectric prosthetics, he found pay working on cyborg technology. Maverick contracted him to remodel and perform maintenance on Raiden. He also uses his vast knowledge of cyborg technology to provide additional support for Raiden during missions. His company is probably TransHominid Systems GmbH, whose brand is clearly visible on Raiden's combat visor.
Action Survivor: Despite his job normally being providing upgrades to Raiden, he still braved the field of battle when Raiden went for World Marshal, piloting a helicopter to get him out of there.
Collector of the Strange: He asks Raiden to collect the left hands of any cyborgs he kills, as that's where their combat data is kept. This is manifested as a BP bonus for cleanly dismembering enemies while in Blade Mode as well as certain limbs containing secret Patriots data that can be collected for unlockables.
Cool Old Guy: Very cool old guy, despite being a Mad Scientist. He remains one of the friendliest and good-natured characters in the game, even going as far as offering field support to Raiden in Denver, and outfitting kidnapped orphans and brains with cyborg bodies to try and lead normal lives.
Deadpan Snarker: Apparently Germans do have a sense of humor, as lampshaded by Raiden.
Gratuitous German: Throws in bits of German while speaking, despite being fully fluent in English.
Herr Doktor: He's a brilliant German cyborg engineer. Also lampshaded by his call sign "Doktor."
Mad Scientist: Keeps a collection of severed cyborg arms in his workshop. It's mostly averted though, as he's quite nice and sane. Also, he actually didn't much care about whom he supported, as long as he got work. At least,at first.
Pet the Dog: Built a firm to ensure the cyborgified children could have as close to a normal life as they can get.
Suspiciously Similar Substitute: Looks like Dr. Madnar without a mustache and is a scientist that specializes in cybernetics. Note that Dr. Madnar was the one who turned Raiden into a cyborg between the events of MGS2 and MGS4 and the original canceled version of Rising, which was meant to cover said events, would've presumably featured Dr. Madnar as part of Raiden's support crew.
Transhuman: Considers cyborg technology the next stage of evolution, and the only reason he hasn't gotten himself a cyborg body yet is because he doesn't trust anyone else enough to implant his brain into one since he's obviously unable to do it himself.
Verbal Tic: He likes to ask a lot of rhetorical questions, you know?
"Built with Russia money, to make Russia money. It is no plant for Abkhaz — It is their prison!"
An Abkazhian terrorist affiliated with Desperado.
Small Name, Big Ego: Considers himself Abkhazia's savior against Russian domination and thinks Mistral is interested in him. In reality, he "barely registers as a blip on Russia's radar," Mistral is actually fixated on Raiden, and Dolzaev is merely just a pawn in Desperado's game.
Taking You with Me: After being trapped in the refinery, he decides to blow himself up along with it in a final act of resistance against the Russians. Raiden begrudgingly respects Dolzaev's dedication, but concludes that killing yourself when backed into a corner is merely suicide.
Cyborg: What he ultimately becomes. He doesn't seem to mind it. He still retains his original head and left arm, and Doktor remarks that Raiden preserved his lower half, thus meaning he will still be able to have children.
Damsel out of Distress: Gets kidnapped and held hostage at gunpoint, but tells Raiden to cut down his captor regardless of what happens to him. He even gives him an opening to slice through.
Shoot the Hostage/Half the Man He Used to Be: Jesus... A Desperado doctor holds George at gunpoint is taken down when Raiden (with George's consent, mind you) cuts them both in half half. Judging by where the blade cut, it went through both lungs and his heart. He gets better, but still, yeesh...
Taking You with Me: The reason he allows Raiden to do the above is that he'd be "taking [The Doctor] to hell with [him]". Damn... this kid is a Badass.
Translation Convention: He speaks with a thick (and hilariously bad) Guyanese accent, but the subtitles translate it to normal English.
Steven Armstrong (Spoilers)
"I'm not one of those beltway pansies. I could break the president in two with my bare hands!"
"Nationalism! Unilateralism! Materialism! Welcome maxims for those with no faith — without guiding principles of their own. Give yourself up to the whole. No need to better yourself — you're American! You're number one!"
A Senator for Colorado, and a candidate for the US Presidency, Steven Armstrong is the backer of Desperado Enforcement and the main villain of the game. He uses nanomachines to enhance his body to freakish levels, granting him drastically increased strength, durability and speed during combat.
Affably Evil: Between all his threats, he also polite and respectful to his opponents, even when he's winning. Particularly in the Jetstream DLC, where he's gently smiling while completely schooling Sam in a fight.
It's to the point where he, during Raiden's I Surrender, Suckers moment, immediately helps Raiden up and dusts him off when he thinks Raiden will join him.
Ambiguous Robots: Thanks to his nanomachines, Armstrong is a fusion of man and machine on the cellular level.
An Arm and a Leg: In the Jetstream DLC, Sam manages to sever Armstrong's right arm, but his body-hardening nanomachines keep the stump sharp, allowing him to sever Sam's own arm in return, as well as reattaching his.
Anti-Villain: Though he isn't above using child soldiers and using Desperado to create conflicts in nations that are recovering from war, he is a man that wants what's best for his country... Or at least what he thinks is the best. Being one of the only antagonists in the series that doesn't want to use nuclear weapons is also a plus. He also genuinely believes in Defeat Equals Friendship, has genuine respect for Raiden and really wants him on his side.
Awesome, but Impractical: His nanomachines, they make him nigh-invulnerable and give him enough strength to make the ground explode with his fists, but require a huge amount of power to activate. He has to drain the remaining energy from the destroyed Excelsus to fight against Raiden, and in the Jetstream DLC he destroys several helicopters and armored vehicles in order to hulk out.
Badass Bureaucrat: With the "Badass" part including physical badassery unlike most examples of the trope.
Badass Boast: The entire fight with him is riddled with these. Everything coming out of his mouth is this in spades. It's weird to hear that the man didn't write his own speeches. Then again, everything he says makes him sound crazy.
Badass in a Nice Suit: Though he drops the jacket when he pilots Excelsus, and the shirt when he gets serious with Raiden.
Empowered Badass Normal: He was athletic and strong enough to play pro-football straight out of college before becoming a Navy SEAL. The nanomachines he uses bulk him up enormously, make him stronger than Raiden, and nearly impossible to kill to boot.
Hidden Badass: No one saw it coming that a Senator would be one of the most powerful combatants in the Metal Gear universe to date.
Bare-Fisted Monk: Unlike other enemies, he doesn't use an HF weapon, just his fists.
Big Bad: He's the ultimate backer of Desperado and the Winds of Destruction.
Body Horror: Has giant veins coming out of a massive scar on his chest from which his nanomachine armor expands. Even Raiden looks shocked when he first sees it. His arms also gets covered with burn marks and scratches from using his nanomachines to generate massive amounts of heat for his punches.
Blood Knight: Loves a good fight and says things like "Hah, that one hurt!" when he takes a lot of damage in the latter half in the fight. His biggest blood knight line of them all is probably "Hahaha! This is the greatest fight of my life!"
Curb-Stomp Battle: The fight with him is initially this, Raiden manages to get some hits in, but Armstrong mostly shrugs them off and gives him the worst beating his ever endured, up until Blade Wolf gives Raiden the Murasama. Also, his fight with Sam in the Jetstream DLC. The whole fight he was just testing him, and when Sam attempts another go, Armstrong gets serious and beats his face, even losing a hand barely slows him down.
The Cynic: Outright says the "average joe" only cares about money. He also thinks people don't care about information control, or right and wrong, as long as the information is spun well enough to make them feel comfortable.
Determinator: In the Final Battle he gets buried under rubble repeatedly, and if the player gets the Quick-Time Events right, kicked with enough force you can hear his ribs crack, punched repeatedly in the midsection, backhanded and smashed in the face with the full force of Raiden's fist hard enough to make him fly back several feet, yet still gets back up to kick ass. In the final part of the fight Raiden jabs the Murasama right through his midriff and Armstrong still tries to overpower him one last time!
The Jetstream DLC, Sam cuts his hand off, and he uses the sharp stomp of his arm as a weapon.
Dystopia Justifies the Means: Wishes to make America a nation based on Social Darwinism, where everyone is free to fight and kill for what they believe in.
Even Evil Has Standards: He┤s disgusted by what the Patriot AIs did to the world, and when he reveals his plans before the Final Battle, he straight up says that his "Second War on Terror" is only out to kill extremists, madmen and the like. Of course, when he talks about his "Second War On Terror" he is pretending to be a stereotypical Corrupt Politician and has just gotten through a speech on how easily manipulated the masses can be and profiting on war. So, it is likely he was referring to "extremists, madmen, etc." as labels that can be used to justify attacking other countries and starting war for profit. As he reveals after Raiden destroys Metal Gear Excelsus and fights him hand-to-hand, Armstrong actually despises war as a business and how the masses can be manipulated through government, labels, media, etc.; he is a Corrupt Politician, but he actually is also a Well-Intentioned Extremist who wants to give freedom to America from control by corrupt government, media, etc. ... by creating a Social Darwinist "utopia".
Evil Is Petty: Calls cherry blossoms and other forms of transient beauty "sissy crap." Even mentions that he'll fire one of his executives for constructing the Japanese garden seen inside World Marshal, and that the guy will be lucky if he can even carry his box of personal belongings out of the office.
Final Boss: He's the final enemy of both the main game and the Jetstream DLC.
Final Exam Boss: His tactics echo those of the Winds of Destruction, making all of their battles a lead up to him. This is taken further in the Jetstream DLC, where he also has Monsoon's Selective Magnetism. If you haven't mastered every single mechanic of the combat system, Armstrong will wreck you.
Friendly Enemy: As he admits, he actually rather likes Raiden and would rather have him on his side. He wouldn't have spent all that time debating philosophy if he didn't want to convince Raiden. Even more evident in the Jetstream DLC, where he keeps offering Sam ajob.
Forehead of Doom: According to the character designer, while Armstrong's original design made him look more intelligent, his forehead and chin were later emphasized to be more fitting with his character. Specifically, that of a man of action, not just words.
Genius Bruiser: He is both a nigh-invincible juggernaut and a University of Texas graduate who can easily pilot an extremely advanced Metal Gear.
Heads I Win, Tails You Lose: The fight with him in "Jetstream". Despite apparently losing by the end of the fight with Sam, in the cutscene afterwards he gets back like nothing happened (and from the look of him compared to other bosses when defeated, very little did) and beats the tar of out him.
Healing Factor: He can heal himself in the middle of a fight, though it also leaves him vulnerable. He can also reattach severed limbs.
Humongous Mecha: Shows up in the gigantic Metal Gear Excelsus to slaughter Raiden with.
Hidden Depths: Twice. Like a good politician, he keeps his real motivations hidden very well. The first time you meet him, he gleefully admits to be a sort of neo-Patriot who's set on restarting the War Economy to maintain America's Superpower status. When Raiden points out the hypocrisy of his speech and his "politician persona", Armstrong admits even that is just a pretense, and is actually filled with extreme loathing of the shallow, sensationalist, materialistic culture he earlier claimed to support, and is actually planning to destroy America and rebuild it as a Darwinist utopia.
Hulking Out: He uses a massive amount of electricity from either several helicopters or what┤s left of Metal Gear Excelsus to activate his nanomachines. This causes him to temporarily bulk up to a huge degree.
Human Hammer Throw: In "Jetstream", he pulls off a Giant Swing on Sam near the end of the battle.
I Let You Win/Hopeless Boss Fight: It becomes apparent by the final part of the fight that if Armstrong had fought seriously from the start, Raiden wouldn't have stood the tiniest of chances.
I Know Madden Kombat: Played college ball, ya know. Hence he likes to punt people around as if they were American-style footballs.
I Am Not Left-Handed: Raiden thought it was over when he destroyed Metal Gear Excelsus... then Armstrong activates his Super Mode. He was also holding back the first two rounds, only using his Magma Man powers for the final round, once Raiden has a weapon capable of actually hurting him.
Instant Armor: His nanomachines harden in response to physical trauma, allowing him to casually shrug off just about everything Raiden throws at him.
Irony: A lot of fans have pointed out that his plan would essentially create the lawless Hell that is the world of Fist of the North Star, albeit one that isn't plagued by nuclear holocaust. The irony is that when powered up he looks and fights like Raoh, the very person in that world trying to bring about order and law.
Of course, that also ties into what he said earlier. In his vision of a new America, if someone's views conflict with your own, you fight until one fighter's beliefs are rendered void. By punting Bladewolf, he was trying to assert that his own views were superior to Wolf's.
The Juggernaut: For the first two phases of his fight, Raiden can barely put a dent in him.
Kick the Dog: A literal example. He punts Bladewolf away after the latter gives Raiden the Murasama.
At the end of Jetstream Sam's DLC, he extends his hand to shake Sam's. That is to say, the one he just cut off.
Knight Templar: Claims he's a hero out to save America, despite being a "batshit insane" monster, according to Raiden.
He also has an attack where he creates smaller magma streams that chase you. It's possible that he's focusing superheated Nanomachines into the ground to cause fiery explosions. Or something.
Manipulative Bastard: Adjusts Raiden attempts to interfere with his plans to his advantage, framing his actions as terrorist attacks to justify starting a war, allowing him to pull his plan off without kill the president like he originally intended.
Meaningful Name: He has large, muscular arms. And that's not even getting into when he uses his Nanomachines.
Meet the New Boss: Thirteen years after George "Solidus Snake" Sears's resignation from US Presidency over the Shadow Moses Incident and nine years after his insurrection during the Manhattan Incident, Presidential candidate Steven Armstrong expresses a similar desire to reboot the United States by instigating a revolution within the American homeland. The similarity to Sons of Liberty led to rumors that Solidus actually appears in this game; actually, the "Sears project" is mentioned in connection with plans to recruit child soldiers, just like Solidus did in Liberia.
Motive Rant: Gives off one as he's pounding Raiden into the dirt:
"'I have a dream.' That one day every person in this nation will control their own destiny. A nation of the truly free, dammit. A nation of action, not words, ruled by strength, not committee! Where the law changes to suit the individual, not the other way around. Where power and justice are back where they belong: in the hands of the people! Where every man is free to think — to act — for himself! Fuck all these limp-dick lawyers and chickenshit bureaucrats. Fuck this 24-hour Internet spew of trivia and celebrity bullshit! Fuck American pride! Fuck the media!FUCK ALL OF IT! America is diseased. Rotten to the core. There's no saving it — we need to pull it out by the roots. Wipe the slate clean. BURN IT DOWN! And from the ashes a new America will be born. Evolved, but untamed! The weak will be purged and the strongest will thrive — free to live as they see fit, they'll make America great again! ... In my new America, people will die and kill for what they BELIEVE! Not for money. not for oil! Not for what they're told is right. Every man will be free to fight his own wars!"
A more straight example is his apparent full belief in Defeat Means Friendship. While fighting Sam, he never gives up trying to recruit him, even while pounding his head into the concrete, even after Sam cuts off his arm, and always with that confident smile. When Raiden starts to look like he'll go the same route Sam did, Armstrong actually helps Raiden stand up and shakes his hand, and even gives him a Man Hug... which opens him up to giving Raiden the perfect opening to attack.
No Sell: In the first two rounds, he's pretty much ignorant of all the Scratch Damage Raiden is doing to him. His sword is demonstrated to be useless after Armstrong effortlessly breaks it in half, and the best that Raiden can do after his Rapid-Fire Fisticuffs is send him back about a foot with only a slight flinch as a result. Bonus points for his and Raiden's health bars remaining visible throughout the scene, which continue to deplete as appropriate; these attacks that might do anything between a quarter to a half of the previous bosses' health do just a little over five percent to Armstrong.
Rated M for Manly: A mega-buff former football player-turned Navy SEAL turned senator who Hulks Out with ridiculous charges of electricity to become stronger than Raiden and able to create giant pillars of fire and lava with his punches.
Rule of Symbolism: When claiming to be acting in the interests of the War Economy, you fight him as he pilots the multi-billion dollar Metal Gear Excelsus. When you pull him out of that "shell", he reveals his Social Darwinist agenda and proceeds to beat you down with his sheer strength.
Raiden fighting for his belief system's right to thrive over Armstrong's Social Darwinist ideals is reminiscent of a Presidential debate. Fittingly, Armstrong intends to be President in the year 2020, so Raiden is his first great debate opponent in the way of his Presidency; if he wins here, then he's already symbolically guaranteed his right to the future of America. Raiden's eventual victory over Armstrong symbolically has placed him as the leader of the new America, where his ideals will now be glorified instead. If you wanted to be more blatant about it, you could apply the business suit costume to Raiden during gameplay.
On another level, Raiden fighting against Armstrong is symbolic of the struggle between the weak and the strong who prey on them. Raiden is symbolic of the citizens of America who for too long have been manipulated by politically powerful and wealthy men who dominate the way they live their lives, and Armstrong is symbolic of those crooked politicians. Raiden is symbolically representing every citizen who ever wanted to punch the politicians they hated in the face, and "fight the power" as the saying goes.
Selective Magnetism: In the "Jetstream" DLC, he demonstrates Monsoon's ability to levitate vehicles and toss them at his enemy. Possibly because he doesn't have any Excellus wreckage to throw at Sam.
Sir Swears-a-Lot: Easily the most foul-mouthed character in the Metal Gear franchise.
Spanner in the Works: Raiden certainty wasn't expecting the backer of Desperado to waiting for him in Pakistan with a giant robot and nano-machine enhancements that made him even stronger than his cyborg subordinates.
Super Strength: Strong enough to make the entire Metal Gear Excelsus explode with a single punch.
The Social Darwinist: Wants to create a new America where the strong survive and the weak die. His motivations are very similar to the Patriots who wanted to socially engineer American evolution, only difference being is that instead of information control he intends to use violence to enforce this new world.
Take Up My Sword: Upon his death, he tells Raiden he considers Raiden his successor, and Raiden should do what he thinks is right, regardless of what anyone else thinks.
The Unfettered: Claims that things like laws and lives cost in the pursuit of your goal don't truly matter in the long run. In his words, "In making the mother of all omelets, you can't worry about a few eggs", basically meaning that in reaching the mother of all utopias, you can't worry about what you sacrifice to get there.
Villain Has a Point: Raiden admits he's right regarding people being forced to fight in wars they don't believe in and for causes they don't understand, judging by him echoing his words in The Stinger.
Villain with Good Publicity: At least partially because he doesn't write his own speeches. Hell, he's even a candidate for the 2020 elections.
Visionary Villain: Wants to destroy and then remake the United States so it can be a place where every man, woman and child can fight for they believe in, without being told by anyone else what is right or wrong.
Walking Spoiler: Everything related to his role in the end of the game is not what you expect when you first see him.
We Can Rule Together: After Armstong is finished with his rhetoric, Raiden appears to relent, realizing he's not dealing with a mere criminal but a true believer. Armstrong extends his hand as a gesture of goodwill... but Raiden hasn't completely lost his moral compass just yet.
Well-Intentioned Extremist: He really does want to make America great again and give the people true freedom. However, he plans to do this by creating hundreds of child soldiers, starting a war with Pakistan on false pretenses, and then burning the US government to the ground once he's in control of it.
He sums up his intent at the end of the Jetstream DLC with:
"Organized violence, waging war as business. We're gonna put an end to all that bullshit."
World's Strongest Man: When he's hulked out, he's the single strongest character in the entire Metal Gear universe. He's also the strongest combatant of the most powerful PMC in the world.
Worthy Opponent: Considers Raiden to be this. During the final boss battle he actually says that "this is the best fight of my life."