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Headscratchers: Metal Gear Solid 2
  • Not about the story, but about the game itself: Why can't I play half of the game (the Tanker chapter) if I haven't played the first MGS? Granted, it only depends on how you answer the question after selecting the New Game option and you can lie to the game if you want to, but why would they put that question in anyway? To avoid spoilers? I'm playing the sequel first, I think I'm already prepared for spoilers.
    • It's all a part of the "Player = Raiden" idea. If you hadn't played MGS1, you, ideally, wouldn't know who Snake was. So the whole Snake being Pliskin thing would be a reveal to both, not just to Raiden.
    • Also, just to clarify, the Tanker isn't nearly half the game. It's the intro. The Big Shell is the bulk of the game, while the Tanker will take, tops, an hour the first time through.
      • Not really. The Big Shell is physically not that much larger than the Tanker, there's just loads of backtracking.
      • I was talking about how much gameplay is spent in each one, not physical size.
    • Was this only in the first release of the game? The Substance re-release let's you choose to play either or both right from the menu.
  • Why does the door to the mess hall in Strut C have a level one security clearance, when the door for the kitchen is unlocked? Obviously it's for the benefit of the blocking in the cutscene- having Pliskin enter the kitchen from the mess hall side when Raiden meets Peter Stillman. However, would it have killed the developers to have two versions of the scene- one where Raiden enters from the kitchen door and one where Raiden enters from the mess hall side? Otherwise, it would seem that low-level employees at the Big Shell are required to bring their own lunches.
    • The low-level employees probably were the people with Level 1 clearance.
    • Okay, that's valid. But it still does not answer the question of why just anyone can go into the kitchen, but a security card is needed for the mess hall. Also: if every employee is issued a security card of one level or another, why are all the doors in the Big Shell not security doors?
      • Cost.
  • Why are there mines in the flooded Shell 2 Core? Did the soldiers just leave them in the halls on the off chance the area would be flooded and someone would be swimming around in it, or did Vamp leave them there?
    • Probably Vamp.
  • What about Vamp's super regenerative nanomachines allows him to swim in buoyancy restricting water?
    • The out-of-story reason is that it was a boss arena for another character who was cut, and they decided to use it anyway.
    • In story, the water probably flushed him out under the struts to where we see him next time. He probably was technically dead while in the water, but after he got flushed into real ocean water the nanos fixed up his lungs to allow him to... well, make a huge annoying chunk of the game completely meaningless.
    • Also keep in mind that he didn't get those nanomachines until after MGS2. He always had a hell of a regenerative factor and could do impossible feats like running on water or all perfectly vertical walls. He could swim through that water because he was inhumanly strong and dexterious.
  • When you bring Emma up to the first floor of the Shell 2 Core, a guard comes out of the elevator after you've moved a significant distance away from it. Where did he come from? That elevator only goes to the flooded floor and there wasn't anyone down there.
  • How does Otacon get the hostages out of the Shell 1 core and to the helicopter pad on Strut E? The bridges out of the core were out on both sides.
    • Err, what? You walk across a bridge to get to the core!
  • Why does Fortune capture Snake even though she's only wanted to kill him the entire time and no one else has expressed any interest in taking him alive? And where did she get those handcuffs?
    • Nobody expressed an interest on screen, but Ocelot, who was sorta her boss, probably told her to grab him.
    • While we're at it, how did she get him up that ladder with his hands cuffed behind his back? She doesn't seem quite large enough to have carried him.
      • She uses a gun that if you set down vertically is almost as tall as she is. Assume that she has good upper-body strength.
  • When does Fortune's magic box get turned off? It was active during her fight with Snake, but they go upstairs, Ocelot says it's the source of her bullet deflecting powers, and then it's suddenly off.
    • Ocelot probably had a remote control for it.
  • If the magic box deflects bullets fired at the person wearing it based on an electromagnetic field projected around them, why doesn't it divert the path of bullets fired by them? Fortune's railgun might be long enough to bypass this, but Ocelot's revolver isn't.
    • The field is probably tuned to push bullets away from the wearer. If the gun is shooting the bullets away, they're not going to be affected by it so much. Alternatively, Ocelot might have been packing non-magnetic bullets just for the occasion.
  • Why are Snake and Solidus surprised by Ocelot's change into Liquid while he has control of RAY? Solidus has been in the room with Ocelot while he was having a "change into Liquid" spasm and referenced Liquid by name. Granted, he fought it off, so it's possible that Solidus only recognizes them as spasms and not a full takeover. Snake, however, is not only surprised by the change, but that it was Liquid on the tanker even though Liquid called out to and chatted with him before Ocelot took back over.
    • Been a while since I've seen it, but it might be they were surprised at how it was happening, or that it was happening just then. As you said, he'd fought it off previously, so maybe it asserting control like that was something Solidus wasn't used to, and Snake had only seen it once, two years ago.
  • How did Liquid choose Ocelot as a host for his disembodied arm? Why did Ocelot decide to graft Liquid's arm onto his body? A conversation with Solidus implies that he was the one that decided to put Liquid's arm onto Ocelot, but why Liquid's arm?
    • Ocelot may be a bit of a psychic, considering his pedigree. He might have 'talked' to Liquid between the games.
    • He didn't, it's revealed in MGS4 that the entire Liquid arm possession thing was an elaborate lie. Ocelot used hypnotherapy to turn himself into Liquid to fool the Patriots, why that was necessary is anyone's guess
      • No, he did. The hypnotherapy only happened after MGS2. In MGS2, it really was Liquid's spirit taking over, and Ocelot ditched him for a prosthetic arm and hypnotherapy afterward.
      • Depends on the source material, unfortunately when it is explained we didn't get a time-line. The MGS4 database and the MGS wiki go with the hypnotherapy thing, the MGS2 comic goes with the Ocelot is part psychic thing, this troper feels the hypnotherapy deal goes better with Ocelot's series spanning xanatos gambit. Ocelot is the son of The Boss and The Sorrow. So he's the son of a spirit medium, making his body ripe for possessing. After the events of MGS 2 he did the hypnotherapy, but during the events of MGS 2 he was possessed. This isn't spoilered out because You Should Know This By Now
      • That's only ever mentioned in the comic, if the MGS4 database on PSN is word of god then it's hypnotherapy.
      • Technically the database also says he removed the arm after MGS2 to "balance his psyche", but it's wrong on a million other things so it's hardly Word of God.
      • It's a bit of both actually, the actual Liquid is dead and gone, his ghost is still floating in REX's cockpit in MGS4, Ocelot used hypnotherapy to create a new Liquid persona entirely in his own mind which "possessed" him every time snake was around. So yeah A Liquid is possessing Ocelot, just not THE Liquid. Ocelot has no direct control over his actions, but it's part of his huge master plan. The point was to fool the Patriots into thinking they we're fighting Liquid and not Ocelot so they couldn't predict his actions. So his Ocelot persona is completely at whim of his Liquid persona, but it's got nothing to do with him being the Sorrow's son.
    • Okay, first off, the MGS4 Database was marketed by Kojima Productions as being canon, so unless proven otherwise it's the Word of God. Following that, he was possessed during MGS2, cut the arm off as soon as he got control again and got a new arm, then use hypnotherapy to continue with the ruse.
  • What was Solidus doing while Raiden was having that long codec call with AI Colonel and AI Rose before they started fighting? For that matter, what was Solidus doing while Raiden was having that long codec call with AI Colonel and AI Rose in the middle of the fight?
    • We can probably assume that the longer ones during fights are meant to take place as the character's fighting, sort of like talking on your cell phone while you're driving. Gameplay and Story Segregation.
    • Are you kidding? This is the Metal Gear series we're talking about here. The one that repeatedly breaks the fourth wall for shits and giggles (and to yell at the player once in a while). When you're using the codec, either everyone around you waits for you to be done or time literally stops.
    • Same thing Liquid was doing when Snake was talking to the Secretary of Defense; waiting for him to realise just how screwed over he is.
  • How did Snake get from the middle of the Hudson River to Federal Hall National Memorial swimming and on foot that fast? He jumped off well before Arsenal crossed under the Verazzano-Narrows Bridge. That's a big distance to cover at all let alone in that short time frame.
    • Maybe Otacon picked him up after dropping off the hostages. I mean, sure, he was all Hot-Blooded there, but eventually Snake's gonna realize he's not going to chase down a swimming mecha, and would call to be picked up.
  • Where is Raiden keeping that ration, cold medicine, and box when he's naked?
    • You don't want to know.
    • Women may have more hiding places than men, but men still have one good old reliable spot...
    • He did the same thing Snake did at the beginning of MGS and swallowed them. Foxhound agents are taught to regurgitate items on command.
    • Assuming it's any better than hiding stinger in skull suit.
  • Where are the missiles Solidus fires out of his tentacles coming from?
    • Probably from inside the tentacles.
  • Did Snake collect all the dog tags necessary for his headband while defusing bombs in Shell 2? He didn't have it during the tanker mission, so he couldn't have gotten it from Shadow Moses. Unless he just left it at home for the tanker infiltration, he could have only gotten it from dog tag collection.
    • My money's on him just leaving it home for that mission, since he intended to be stealthy, not go in guns ablazin'. Besides, Metal Gear Solid 4 shows that Meryl survived, so her ending is canon.
  • I am not sure what goes into testing on dead bodies, but, when Rose has the body of Snake tested to make sure he is really him, it comes up as Snake's DNA. This is later revealed to be Liquid's but my question is this; how did the examiners not notice that the body they were testing has been decomposing for 4 years not 2? Also it is stated that the body was missing an arm, we know that was removed for Ocelot, however because Ocelot could not know Snake would use it to fake his death, when he had the arm removed it would be done carefully and the results would be much to clean for the examiners to assume it was ripped off in the sinking of the tanker. So that should have tipped off those who were testing on the body. Sorry for the wall of text, and I realize that my questions somewhat contradict each other, but this always irked me.
    • Maybe they (Ocelot?) have been keeping the body on ice? He is the clone of the greatest soldier of all time, and the US government saw fit to preserve Big Boss in a similar fashion.
    • The answer is simple; Rose is working for the Patriots, so therefore the body was never exhumed. They just gave her a script to read off of, like how they told her to make Raiden fall in love with her. While Liquid's body was used as a stand in by Snake to fake his death at the tanker, the Patriots saw through it pretty much instantly but didn't care enough to correct anyone. So his body is probably somewhere that the Patriots control.
    • Metal Gear Solid 4 suggests that the Patriots used Liquid's body to rebuild Big Boss. Rose definitely lied.
  • Fortune's magic box and angst powers are stated to disarm explosives and deflect bullets (and seemingly all other projectiles), but nobody ever says why it's impossible to close the distance and punch her in the face. Unless the invisible wall you run into happens to be another manifestation of her powers, but that just makes it worse. (Seriously how does that magic box even work?)
    • Some sort of electromagnetism which both deflects bullets, and does...something to the detonators on explosives. As for closing the distance? That big honkin' railgun is probably the main reason.
      • She couldn't hit Raiden at ten feet, and the refire rate was pretty bad. I reckon he could make it if he really tried. And how did she capture Snake if she never engaged in hand-to-hand combat? I don't expect they make railguns with a "stun" setting.
  • Why were Snake and Otacon against the Marine corps' Metal Gear Ray project? Ray is an anti Metal Gear, designed to combat and destroy other models. In fact, it even lacks a Metal Gear's defining trait; Ray is not equipped or designed to fire nuclear warheads! By all accounts they should be on the same side.
    • Because at the end of the day Ray is still a Metal Gear. America is officially against the use of Metal Gears, so Snake and Otacon were going to release images of Ray to show just what the US government were up to. Plus, they didn't know the full details of Ray; for all they knew it had the ability to launch nukes too.
    • Snake and Otacon didn't know RAY's design until Snake reached the tanker's hold. at which point Ocelot shows up and they have other things to worry about.
  • A relatively minor one: Olga mentioned to Raiden that when she gave birth to Sunny, she was actually in a hospital being run by the Patriots, which resulted in Sunny being taken away from her. Assuming that the Patriots still had total control over every part of society after the ending of MGS2, why weren't they able to capture Rose and Raiden's son to raise him in a facility like they did with Sunny? Surely she would have also been in a Patriot-run hospital/medical facility? They clearly had some kind of interest in her, an example being the Patriot AI trying to take her and their unborn son hostage as leverage against Raiden so they could coerce him into defeating Solidus, and also replacing her with an AI counterpart after she confesses to Raiden that she's a spy.
    • The fact that Olga specifies that she gave birth in a Patriot-run hospital implies that there are hospitals and facilities that are not run by the Patriots. There's no reason to assume that every hospital and birthing facility in the US is run directly by them—or that Rose gave birth in a hospital at all.
  • If Raiden knows from Campbell that he can't use the weapons the sentries in the dock had, how come very shortly after in Strut B in Vamp's attack he forgets this and uses Pliskin's M4 without a second thought? I know that since Pliskin is Snake, it's probably not ID'd, but it's more Raiden's complete absent-mindedness about this that irks me.
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