ID-tagged equipment is a convenient way for The Patriots to control precisely when and where conflicts can occur, effectively allowing them to maintain Forever War scenario.
Liquid's personal army is named the FROGs. At first, it seems stupid that Liquid named his army after an animal that has a given history of being eaten by snakes, but it might as well be foreshadowing of Ocelot's plan all along.
David Hayter is mocked for his line "You were the lightning in that rain. You can can still shine through the darkness" he gives to Raiden. The truth is that it completely fits the situation as Raiden is Japanese for "lightning bolt." After the revelation that Raiden used to be Jack the Ripper, Raiden stated he found himself unsuitable to live a proper life as he was a killer. However, Snake states that back in Solid 2 Raiden stood out in Big Shell as Raiden, not Jack the Ripper. Raiden appears to accept Snake's claim later as he says "I am lightning. The rain transformed." when he saves Snake from the FROGs.
The muscle suit that Old Snake uses to be able to even continue doing the stunts he does throughout the game (combined with a bit of old-fashioned willpower) was built into the Octo Camo sneaking suit isn't really something notable, but then look back to Metal Gear Solid 2: Sons of Liberty - Solidus Snake not only had graying hair due to his advanced aging compared to Liquid and Solid, but was also packing the equivalent of an advanced exoskeleton that bulks him up and allows him to do superhuman feats. While it's not quite the same thing, Otacon probably took inspiration from the exoskeleton so that his Snake could have at least some sort of stabilizing equivalent in his own aging situation.
Everyone likes to complain about the whole "nanomachines being used to explain everything in Guns of the Patriots". But in an example of Completely Missing the Point, the reliance of nanomachines is a big part of the game's story. PMC's and the Rat Patrol 01's reliance on nanomachines show the dark future ahead and how lost they are without them. People disregard their own SENSES (MGS4's major theme) in favor of technology.
The identities of the Patriots being Naked Snake's former support crew from Metal Gear Solid 3: Snake Eater seems like a bit of an Ass Pull, until one realizes that it was Major Zero who coined the name of the organization, as well as the use of the term "La-li-lu-le-lo" (although the Director's commentary in the aforementioned game mentioned that "patriots" in that case were more a reference to the term rather than the name of the organization). It's also worth remembering that they aren't revealed to be the Patriots anyway, only the founders; it's just that the current Patriots, the AI system, aren't seen after the end of Sons of Liberty.
One of the more subtle callbacks of the game—when Raiden makes his first appearance, he holds his sword out in front of Snake and Naomi in exactly the same way that Olga did when saving him in the second game. As if to say "You will go no farther."
In Metal Gear Solid 3: Snake Eater, The Boss made EVA and Ocelot swear never to kill nor aid in killing Naked Snake (the former was explicitly stated whereas Ocelot was more implied). When taking that into account, it's really no wonder why EVA and Ocelot ended up betraying (the former openly, and the latter covertly) the Patriots and attempting to destroy them after Zanzibar Land.
The nationalities of the three most prominent founders of the Patriots ( Big Boss (American), Revolver Ocelot (Russian), and EVA (Chinese)) corresponds to the three countries that founded the Philosophers. This is fitting, since the Patriots used the Philosophers as their cover to make it look like they had been around longer than they really had.
Since Liquid was a clone just like his brother, he would have eventually fallen victim to the same accelerated aging that Snake did. This means that had Liquid survived the Shadow Moses takeover, he would probably look a lot like the seventy-something year old Ocelot does in MGS4. When you think about it, this makes Ocelot's masquerade just that little bit more believable: he looks just like Liquid would look if he were still alive.
In Metal Gear Solid 3: Snake Eater, we learned that Major Zero is a huge fan of the James Bond movies. Here, we see how much he resembles a James Bond villain himself. He's an affable, witty British man with an evil-looking scar over his eye, and he takes over America with supercomputers. But unlike a classic Bond bad guy, his plan actually succeeds. His Bond-like nemesis (Big Boss) doesn't defeat him until over fifty years later...when he's an invalid old man, and he only needs to unplug his breathing machine. Maybe watching all those Bond movies make him Genre Savvy enough to succeed.
In Chinese Big Boss translates as Taipan, which is also the name of a group of the most deadly poisonous snakes in the world. (Though it's unknown if this was intentional).
This game represents Kojima's last attempt to duct tape every errant thread in the cloth of the pre-existing Metal Gear continuity into a coherent whole, therefore an iota of contestable confusion was inevitable. That there aren't more is a testament to Kojima's writing skill.
Jack (Raiden) was presumably named by Solidus. Therefore, Jack was probably named after the diminutive form of Big Boss' real name.
The question has been asked as to why Snake has to go through the Microwave Hallway at the climax of the game, since it certainly appears that the Mark III does all the work anyway. Simple: the door at the end of the hallway (not the big one that Mark III unlocks, but the one before that) opens automatically, and it doesn't respond to something as small as Mark III. Snake needed to be the one to deliver Three to the to GW core, simply because the door at the end of the hall had an entirely sensible method of preventing infiltration by remote-controlled drones.
The impression I was under was that Snake had to be there to protect the Mk. III. How was Snake going to know that there wasn't going to be something that could destroy Otacon's drone? Snake's assistance was necessary because otherwise the drones that shock him would have destroyed the Mk. III.
It has stealth camo.
Even then, wouldn't the stealth camo short out after the corridor? It's shown that the Mk. III was barely able to sustain being in that corridor as long as Snake was, and the corridor shorted out his muscle suit and (presumably) his Octo Camo. Even then, the drones would figure out there was only one port that could be used there. Snake HAD to be there.
Snake's support team in Metal Gear Solid chide him for harming himself by smoking. When he said he didn't care about the risks of smoking compared to the risks of being a soldier, they responded that he hurt others with second hand smoke. So in MGS2, he has cigs that give off no second hand smoke. When Otacon complains that he's still littering with his cigarette butts, Snake starts to carry around a portable ash tray in MGS4. And after his life is free from battle, he quits smoking altogether.
Some consider Naomi's death after stopping her nano-machines to not make any sense, since she died very quickly afterwards. But the MGS4 database manages to fill in the blanks. Her nanomachines only work around injuries, healing things only to the point that they're whole, but not very healthy as we saw with Vamp. Naomi was one of the new targets for Foxdie, and contracted it as soon as she met Snake in the Middle East. But because of her nanomachines her heart kept working even after FOXDIE went at it. Once they're stopped, there's no work around for the fact that most of her organs are cancer-damaged and she has another set of nanomachines eating away at her heart. It's even subtly implied in the game itself; when Big Boss says that FOXDIE killed Eva and Ocelot, the flashbacks show Eva, Ocelot and Naomi.
Can someone explain where exactly it was stated that Naomi was one of the second FOXDIE's targets? The FOXDIE article on the Database only covers the first strain.
The Beauties. At first I thought they were cheesecake, but then I realized that the contrast between their attractive outsides and their horribly, horribly damaged insides made them even creepier. -Jonn
Laughing Octopus did that for me- during the second playthrough, her lines about people hurt and dying being hilarious sound muchcreepier when you know what she was forced to do. -Regiment
Additionally, they thematically fit with the growing themes of nature vs technology in the series. Compare and contrast say, Crying Wolf with The End. One is a sniper with an almost symboitic relationship with nature and uncanny talent which was honed through years of developing technique. The other is a machine mockup of an animal who barely adheres to proper tactics because the technology that made them allows them to do so. It goes on. Compare how the Fear could run on water to how Vamp is eventually theorized to. Or just Fortune's powers in general. The progression of bosses in the series (chronologically) traces a shift between natural talent with a tad of mysticism tossed in to full on, technologically dependent, VR trained soldiers.
How about the fact that Old Snake's namechange makes him fit the naming scheme of the Beauties? Snake was the other member of FOX-HOUND, and the 'emotion' he carries into battle is "End", signified by his "Old"-ness. He used to be gorgeous, but now he's ugly and dependent on his suit to fight. Makes Drebin's suggestion that Snake's just like the Beauties a bit more than just a generic Not So Different line.
This Troper saw the "Octopus" advertisement as an interesting aside. However, in the codec conversation about it, Snake mentions that you have to use what you have. Octopi are some of the most adaptable creatures in the ocean. And how do the members of the Beauty and the Beast Corps adapt? By using nanomachines! The ad has a second layer, saying that adaptability is better than raw power. This sums up the gameplay of Metal Gear
It took me until my second playthrough of the fourth game to realize that, likely as a byproduct of the nanomachine control or similar, that some people are unable to hear or speak The Patriots as such and can only say or hear it as a bunch of garbled letters - La Li Lu Le Lo. It made the president's confusion at Raiden in the second game make a lot more sense, too.
It's worth noting that A-I-U-E-O is the way that many East Asian nations learn their vowels and the combinations of consonants and vowels. To Japanese players, this is most likely seen as the Chinese way of learning L sounds as a child.
In MGS4's microwave hallway, one of the sequences on the top of the screen near the end is Sunny making eggs, and being happy at the result. It was a sharp contrast to every other scene which were 'sad' and 'downers', but then I remembered one of the conversations Sunny had with Naomi. It was her "sunny-side up fortune telling" - if the eggs came out well, something good was going to happen. And as such, something good did happen: the Patriots were destroyed, and the entire conflict ended.
Cynthia wasn't her real name. It's a reference to a real spy. Call Zero after the cutscene.
At first, the revelation that Major Zero and Naked Snake's support crew were the founders of the Patriots seemed like a random retcon in an attempt to shoehorn the supporting cast of Snake Eater into the Patriots conspiracy in Sons of Liberty. But if you go back to the beginning of Operation: Snake Eater in MGS3, the password Zero tells Snake to use on ADAM was "Who are the Patriots?" and "La-li-lu-le-lo".
I kind of felt the opposite way. Like the cast of Snake Eater was created specifically because Kojima didn't know where he had intended to go with the Patriot's storyline before then. Since he hadn't intended to make another MGS game after 2, he created these characters in 3 specifically so he could have a twist to reveal in 4.
In the second game, Otacon almost exclusively referred to his stepsister Emma as "E.E." Emma's wish was that Otacon respect her as a woman and refer to her as "Emma," which he failed to honor before her death. Come the fourth game, he only refers to her as Emma; not once is her old nickname referenced.
So I was listening to Love Theme. It's got a very, very slow tempo, but it has a pattern of building up tension, pausing, then releasing all that energy in one euphoric go, gathering more and more tension as it goes (go to 3:50 for the climax of the song to see what I mean). Eventually I noticed that when I listen to the song, I actually breathe in time with it, breathing in as the song goes up and breathing out as it goes down - i.e. the song is basically sighing, which fits the weary tone of the game fairly well. However, the true Fridge Brilliance came when I realised this matched up perfectly with Snake's smoking habit.
The Patriots were composed of five AIs. Four (GW, TJ, AL, TR) are named after four famous American presidents, the ones that are engraved into Mount Rushmore (George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, Abraham Lincoln, Theodore Roosevelt), and the fifth is JD, which supposedly stands for John Doe. So what's the Fridge Brilliance here you ask? It may be unintentional, but JD is also the initials of Jefferson Davis, first and only President of the Confederate States of America.
There's also some fridge poetic justice in the USS Missouri, a World War II battleship and a bunch of Marines and sailors, themselves without the benefit of SOP, taking on Outer Heaven and winning while Snake does his job. The ship and soldiers represent in a sense the world as it was before Zero, Big Boss and the Patriots got into the picture. And once all of them are out of the picture, humanity would effectively be brought back figuratively to that point in history to move forward. Although as Revengeance reveals, that doesn't exactly stop business from going on as usual, albeit without the Patriots' influence.
The symbolism of Big Boss killing Zero is rather ironic if you think about it. Zero made FOX and Big Boss made FOXHOUND, and as we all know foxhounds are specifically used for the purpose of hunting foxes. In that sense Big Boss (the FOXHOUND) killed Zero (the FOX).
The flashbacks we experience during the final battle with Liquid Ocelot? They're Ocelot's own memories between his Liquid persona and his true self gradually returning to him. Note the order in which the fight takes place: he's referred to as Liquid in the first phase, Liquid Ocelot in the second, and Ocelot in the third before he reverts back to Liquid Ocelot for the final one. He goes from keeping his facade as Liquid, to the split persona he had in Sons of Liberty and finally, his original identity as the fight goes on.
At the end of the game Snake has destroyed the Patriots, but that does not mean the Metal Gears have been destroyed and nothing will stop them from being rebuilt as long as the blueprints are still around. This was Snake's last hurrah, I don't want to live in a world without Solid Snake!
Very oddly confirmed in Metal Gear Rising: Revengeance. Gekkos and Metal Gears still continue to be made, and war continues like business as usual. And the most Snake can do is have his soul empower a wooden, non-lethal sword for Raiden to utilize, as a bonus weapon that has no bearing on the story. At the very least, Raiden seems to be capable of destroying a few by himself.
After being defeated and either sleeping or dead, Crying Beauty is taken away by a wolf. It's all very symbolic given that she was known as Crying Wolf and all, but what normally happens to people taken by wolves...?
Made somewhat better by the fact that the wolf that picked her up was rumored to be the spirit of Sniper Wolf. She's likely carrying her fellow Wolf to a peaceful resting site.
The whole thing behind Naomi's death. Whether it was just powerful nanomachines by themselves, or they were the same or a variant of Vamp's nanomachines, they held back and suppressed the lethal terminal cancer to the point that throughout the entire game up to that point, she'd basically been like any other healthy individual. Then she disables the nanomachines and diesalmostimmediately from the cancer, albeit not without a dramatic death speech even as everyone's leaving minutes later. But Vamp's nanomachines don't make all of his pain go away, and didn't even remotely heal his scarring from years previous at the Big Shell. Even if Naomi's nanomachines were improved somehow, cancer causes one's organs to fail and extraordinary amounts of pain - neither of which she exhibits traits of at all over the course of the game. Even with the Hand Wave of nanomachines being able to seemingly do anything by this point in the series, there's literally nothing the "magic cancer" makes sense for when having Naomi catch the second strain of FOXDIE from Snake could've solved just about every single plot hole involved.