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Characters / Metal Gear Solid 3: Snake Eater

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Main Character Index | Metal Gear (Solid Snake | Big Boss / Naked Snake) | Metal Gear 2 | Metal Gear Solid (FOXHOUND) | Sons of Liberty (Raiden) | Snake Eater | Portable Ops | Guns of the Patriots | Peace Walker | Revengeance (Senator Armstrong) | The Phantom Pain | Acid | Ghost Babel | Snake's Revenge

Remember, Naked Snake/Big Boss debuted in the original Metal Gear, and tropes for him should go on his individual page, and Ocelot in Metal Gear Solid in that page as well. This is only for characters that debuted in Metal Gear Solid 3: Snake Eater.

This page lists characters who first appeared in Metal Gear Solid 3: Snake Eater.

Warning: All spoilers for the game's Prolonged Prologue, the Virtuous Mission, will be unmarked. You Have Been Warned.

For other characters in the franchise, see the Metal Gear character index at Characters.Metal Gear.

Characters that debuted in Metal Gear Solid 3: Snake Eater:

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Snake's Team

     In General 
The support team assigned to Naked Snake during both the Virtuous Mission and Operation Snake Eater, who form the majority of the supporting cast for the game. Major Zero, Sigint, and Para-Medic would later go on to found the Patriots and begin their campaign of information control before eventually being superseded by the A.I.s they created to contain all the information.
  • Bunny-Ears Lawyer: Let's be honest here, they're all pretty weird people, even by the standards that this series has set. Doesn't stop them from being some of the most frighteningly competent people in the series if creating the Patriots is anything to go by.
  • Five-Token Band: The group includes Snake (white male), Zero (white male, British), Para-Medic (white female), Sigint (black male), and EVA (female, Chinese). When Snake left the Patriots, Zero became the White Male Leader.
  • From Nobody to Nightmare: Started out as your quirky support squad in MGS3 that would provide helpful hints and shoot the shit with Snake about movies over the Codec, and would then go on to found the Patriots, with all of the future nastiness that that entailed for the series going forward.

"This fox is still one step ahead of the hounds."

Click here  to see Zero in MGS4
"Did Zero really hate me? Or did he fear me? It's too late to ask him now."
a.k.a.: Major Zero, Major Tom, David Oh, Cipher
Voiced by: Banjo Ginga (JP), Jim Piddock (EN, Metal Gear Solid 3: Snake Eater), Time Winters (EN, Metal Gear Solid V: The Phantom Pain)

"A world of electronic intelligence built on codes. And at the center of it all, a zero."

Naked Snake's Commanding Officer and the originator of FOX. Zero (also known — very briefly — as "Major Tom") manages to convince Langley to allow a test run of their new, covert unit in enemy space. At long last, opportunity comes knocking when FOX is called in to retrieve a defector scientist from a Soviet laboratory. Things get sticky when Snake is betrayed and the lab is nuked to destroy the evidence, causing an international incident. The CIA is out for blood, and the only way for Snake and Zero to clear their names (and save their heads) is to return and finish the job.

In Metal Gear Solid 4, we learn retroactively that Zero is the founder of the Patriots. Zero, having grown old and vegetative in the present day, is no longer capable of comprehending the full extent of what the Patriots have done. Big Boss's desire for a confrontation with Zero is thwarted when he instead finds a catatonic old man, and he compassionately shuts Zero's life support off.

  • Action Politician: Becomes one in Metal Gear Solid: Portable Ops if you recruit him to your team either by beating the game while having Metal Gear Solid: Digital Graphic Novel saved into your memory card, or using a secret code. He even has "politician" as one of his perks.
  • Alas, Poor Villain: At the end of Metal Gear Solid 4, Big Boss felt compassion and brotherly love for Zero shortly before killing him; tenderly hugging him in his death throes to ease the pain of his passing.
  • And I Must Scream: By Guns of the Patriots, he's been reduced to a catatonic vegetable. Which is revealed in The Phantom Pain to be a result of Skull Face turning Cipher against him and incapacitating him with parasites.
  • Animal Motif: Zero is compared, and compares himself if the above quote is of any indication, to a fox quite frequently, most obviously in the name of his FOX Unit. During it's meltdown, the Mammal pod also indirectly refers to Zero and Snake as a fox and a hound, respectively.
    "The lonely fox chases the one-eyed hound."
  • Audience Surrogate: Basically acts as this when calling Zero in two conversations regarding the Raikov mask/disguise. Specifically, he acted as the surrogate for the audience who disliked Raiden.
  • Bad Boss: According to Peace Walker. Paz Andrade Ortega/Pacifica Ocean was terrified of failing him and considered incurring his wrath a Fate Worse than Death. While a secret tape in The Phantom Pain shows that he was rather amiable to her, he makes some rather ominous comments about how the other candidates for Paz are "resting" in the other room.
  • Badass Normal: During World War II, he was in the SAS, so he definitely qualifies. He can demonstrate this in Portable Ops if Snake recruits him into FOXHOUND.
  • Berserk Button: Don't say you dislike James Bond, say that you prefer coffee to tea, and DON'T hurt Big Boss. Apparently, he seems to get irritated at Raikov for some reason (evident if you trigger an Alert phase before knocking him out, and if you wear a complete Raikov disguise).
  • Bunny-Ears Lawyer:
    • He's a fan of James Bond films, goes apeshit at the mere suggestion of drinking coffee and panics when his tea and scone mysteriously go missing. His plans end up creating the Big Bad of the entire franchise.
    • This is still the case in The Phantom Pain, particularly in meeting Paz for the first time before the events of Peace Walker, though in that case it becomes more Affably Evil.
  • But Not Too Foreign: He's a British-raised man living in America and has a Korean surname (Oh), although doesn't seem to have any Korean features.
  • The Comically Serious: Some of his radio conversations have him geek out about Bond movies all while maintaining his Stiff Upper Lip.
  • Cool Old Guy: If a bit dorky. Though he's still a wealth of knowledge about the geopolitical landscape and how things are playing out during Metal Gear Solid 3, and he attempts to carry on the legacy of The Boss once she defects to the Soviets.
  • Crazy-Prepared: Paz reveals to Skull Face that his hideout is in a windowless apartment in the middle of New York, located on the Missing Floor in an unremarkable building accessible only through a hidden door. In addition, the whole city block is filled to the brim with surveillance equipment and every single inhabitant of the block is a Cipher agent. Skull Face still takes him out by sending him a poisoned replica of an item he asked him to fetch.
  • Dead Guy Junior: His real name is listed as David Oh, suggesting that Solid Snake was named after him. That said, he didn't actually die until decades after Solid Snake's birth.
  • Deadly Scratch: Zero's vegetative state was initially caused by him pricking his finger on a pin badge that Skull Face had infested with parasites.
  • Despair Event Horizon: If his visit to Big Boss in the Cyprus hospital is any indication. You know he's dying, he knows he's dying, and all he wants is for his old friend to just wake up…and Boss never does, at least not until it no longer matters. One can feel Zero's despair crushing him in that moment. If the aftermath of Metal Gear 2: Solid Snake is any indication, he may have lasted longer to mourn over his fallen friend before he went braindead.
  • Does Not Like Spam: He has a vocal dislike of coffee and considers it “foul mud”. He also doesn’t like hamburgers according to his codec info.
  • The Dog Was the Mastermind: Subverted. While Metal Gear Solid and most of its sequels hint at this, Metal Gear Solid V reveals that Zero only set the plans in motion. Eventually they went completely out of his control and well outside of his intended goals. He became just as much a victim as anyone else.
  • Dramatically Missing the Point: He gravely misinterpreted what The Boss wanted after the end of Metal Gear Solid 3. The Boss wanted a world that was unified, which led Zero to creating an AI capable of information control where there would be no more wars and no more conflict. What she meant was a world where people could be free to pass the torch, doing what they wanted, and living up to their own ideals.
  • Early-Bird Cameo: Sort of. His real name, David Oh (which is only revealed in supplementary materials such as the Metal Gear Solid 4 Database and a leaked voice casting sheet for Metal Gear Solid 3), was on one of the collectable dog tags in Metal Gear Solid 2.
  • Et Tu, Brute?: Briefly felt this way regarding The Boss when she apparently defected to the Soviet Union, and to Skull Face when he infected Zero with parasites.
  • Evil Brit: Given that he founded the Patriots.
  • Evil Old Folks: He's at his most antagonistic during the Peace Walker era where he's in his mid-to-late 60's, and he's over a hundred years old in Guns of the Patriots. Granted, by that time, he doesn't have the brain function to really be considered evil. He also wasn't as evil as Big Boss made him out to be.
  • Expy: As the stuffy British superior to a puckish secret agent, Zero serves as the M to Big Boss' James Bond. At least at first. Within the Metal Gear series itself he resembles Colonel Campbell.
  • Face Death with Dignity: Zero is awfully calm when speaking to a comatose Big Boss; knowing full well that he may as well be dead before Big Boss wakes up. He even manages to crack a joke here and there before his untimely demise. Zero doesn't even care that much about his condition; it's always been about Big Boss and hoping that he would live.
  • Fallen Hero: He eventually became the Greater-Scope Villain and would go onto indirectly create the real Greater-Scope Villain; the Patriots' AI system.
  • Fling a Light into the Future: Inverted. His actions nearly doomed the world on multiple occasions, via laying the foundations for the creation of the Patriot A.I.s, the information control channels they used to manipulate the world, and the creation of Liquid Snake and Solidus Snake. Ironically, they were also thwarted by the other clone created by Zero's Les Enfants Terribles project, Solid Snake, who managed to defeat Liquid, helped stop Solidus, and managed to dismantle the Patriot AI's and completely disrupt the information control channels.
  • Foil: becomes one to Colonel Campbell. While Campbell is depicted as being regretful over lying to Solid Snake, Zero, while genuinely being fond of Big Boss, doesn't let his friendship get in the way in using him for his own purposes.
  • Friendly Enemy: Played With. While he never considered Big Boss an enemy, Big Boss was convinced that Zero wanted him under control or dead. His true colors are finally revealed to Venom Snake (Big Boss's body double) in a taped recording that proves it was Zero who ordered his men to RESCUE Big Boss during the attack on Mother Base, and the attack was actually orchestrated by Skull Face and XOF, a rogue cell of CIA.
  • The Ghost: By the time that Ground Zeroes has come to pass, nobody has seen the guy for years. Except for Paz, it seems.
    • Also applies to the larger series as a whole. For a character that is integral to the existence of the Patriots, and has shaped the plot of the entire series by his actions, Zero has surprisingly little screen time in the series. His last physical appearance in the Big Boss saga was in MPO, and in the Solid Snake saga Zero doesn't even appear until the end of MGS4, well after the storyline conflict had already concluded, and even then, he's nothing but a helpless, wheelchair-bound vegetable.
    • Neither does he show up in person in The Phantom Pain, given how he's incapacitated by Skull Face. That being said, his presence still looms over the game, his voice appearing in the various tapes. Not to mention, it's revealed as well that in order to maintain security, he was sent to a windowless safehouse in an unknown location. Which thus explains why no one's seen him in Peace Walker.
  • Good Scars, Evil Scars: Has a prominent facial scar running from his forehead down to his left cheek. This became his only recognizable feature as a bald, elderly man.
  • Greater-Scope Villain: The founder of the Patriots and thus responsible for a great deal of the events of the series. He can't be considered the absolute Big Bad as his actions don't drive most of the plot (his network of AIs ran things instead) and he is never actually encountered either (until The Stinger in 4).
  • Hidden Depths: In addition to his love of movies specifically the James Bond films, his codec info reveals that his other hobbies include hunting and rugby.
  • Hoist by His Own Petard: His downfall and vegetative state were caused by Skull Face and the XOF, a clandestine CIA group that Zero himself had created to originally support the FOX unit's operations. His schemes also alienated his best friend, accidentally ensuring that the two remained separated until it was too late.
  • Insistent Terminology: As part of his aforementioned hyper-Britishness, an MGS3 codec conversation implies that he frequently rants at his subordinates for using Americanisms such as "cookie" or "snack"
    SigInt: Those little round cookies the Major is always snackin' on.
    Major Zero: They're not cookies. They're scones.
    SigInt: Major!
    Major Zero: And it's not a snack. It's afternoon tea.
    SigInt: Snack, tea, same thing.
    Major Zero: (indignant) No, it's not! Look here, afternoon tea is a fine old English tradition.
    SigInt: Uh-oh. Here we go again. Talk to you later, Snake.
  • Invisible Parents: He has parents and a sister according to his codec information, but nothing is really known about them.
  • Lonely at the Top: The recording of his conversation with Paz in The Phantom Pain reveals that Zero went underground and spends most if not all of his time in a windowless safe-house with little to no direct contact to the outside world. Ironic; the leader of Cipher — and perhaps the most powerful man in the world — can't afford to go outside to look at the stars.
  • The Man Behind the Man: For Peace Walker.
  • Mercy Kill: How he finally dies. Over 100 years old, vegetative due to a parasitic infection given to him by a former lieutenant, almost all his plans having backfired horribly, nearly destroying the world he sought to unite, and his best friend thinking he was his worst enemy, all due to a desire to see an old friend's final wish come true, leading to numerous misguided decisions that ended up making things worse. His story was thoroughly tragic. It was finally put to an end by the man he considered his best friend when Big Boss turned off his life support and put the Major out of his misery.
  • Mission Control: In 3, he serves as this to Naked Snake.
  • My Hero, Zero: Zero momentarily changed his handle to "Tom", thus dooming the Virtuous Mission. The irony did not escape him; he switches it back for Operation Snake Eater. Subverted in later games, when Zero becomes obsessed with control. Even the A.I.s he sought to use to guide the world ended up backfiring and controlling the world, making everything go From Bad to Worse.
  • Noodle Incident: When calling Sigint about the Active Sonar, Sigint will remark that Zero must have lived in the Stone Age, and that he bought a brand new washing machine, but Zero cuts him off. It is never revealed what exactly happened.
  • Not Me This Time: Discussed in the cassette tape "Cipher's Will" in The Phantom Pain. Venom Snake ponders whether or not Zero truly was responsible for the attack on MSF in Ground Zeroes, remarking that "the man [he] knew" wouldn't want that. Zero himself claims the attack on MSF and destruction of Mother Base was entirely the product of Skull Face's rebellion, and he was horrified to discover what had happened.note 
  • One World Order: His goal after Big Boss leaves The Patriots borders on this. As he puts it in a trailer for The Phantom Pain:
    "This world will become one. I have found the way. Race, tribal affiliations, national borders... even our faces will be irrelevant. The world that the Boss envisioned will finally become a reality, and it will make mankind whole again."
  • Order Versus Chaos: His conflict with Big Boss ultimately boils down to this. Big Boss's goal is to establish an anarchic perpetual battleground where soldiers are free to serve as mercenaries and do battle without allegiance to any government, ideology, or creed, whereas Zero hopes to unite the world under a One World Order government run by Big Brother AIs.
  • Precision F-Strike: Zero is not known for being very foul-mouthed in the games, as the worst he'll ever say is the occasional "hell" or "crap". In one of the Truth Tapes, he calls Snake the "toughest son of a bitch" he's known, marking it the strongest cuss word he's ever used.
  • Quintessential British Gentleman: A dapper Brit with an obsession with James Bond, tea time, and scones.
  • Scars are Forever: To the very end, he has a scar running from his forehead to his left cheek.
  • Sophisticated as Hell: He can go from talking like a British gentlemen to suggesting to Snake to “beat the crap” out of Raikov if he ever encounters him.
  • Straw Nihilist: After the Boss's death due to political manipulations, and Big Boss later leaving the Patriots, he loses faith in humanity.
  • Sweet Tooth: If his love for scones is anything to go by.
  • Trademark Favorite Food: He gets really worked-up over tea and scones. Although subverted; his codec info reveals his favorite food is actually Shepard’s pie.
  • The Evils of Free Will: Seems to believe that humanity cannot be trusted to make their own decisions. His reasoning eerily echoes how the A.I.s will later justify themselves.
    "We must rely on information control. People need an appropriate context for their lives."
  • The Unfought: Justified. By the time Solid Snake encounters him in Metal Gear Solid 4, he is in a permanent vegetative state and is over 100 years old.
  • This Is Unforgivable!: As revealed in one of the cassette tapes detailing his secret visit of Snake in the hospital in Cyprus during The Phantom Pain, this is his reaction regarding Skull Face's attack on MSF which resulted in Big Boss ending up in a coma.
    "I don't mind about myself. But what he did to you, I can never forgive."
  • Walking Spoiler: He quickly became this after the release of Guns of the Patriots, alongside SIGINT and Para-Medic.
  • Walking Techbane: Implied in several radio conversations to Sigint, which is incredibly ironic, considering he is mentioned to believe in the coming of the electronic age and he ultimately masterminds a system of supercomputers, AIs, and nanomachines to rule the entire world for him.
    • Or maybe not so ironic. The one time he funds an AI capable of working, it goes a little too well, and against his wishes anyway.
  • Villainous Rescue: Sends the men still loyal to him to rescue Big Boss and any MSF survivors of Skull Face's attack. Then has said survivors moved to a hidden medical facility to safely heal.
  • Well-Intentioned Extremist: Was one, along with Big Boss, when they co-founded The Patriots to honor The Boss's legacy. Then he and Big Boss had a violent falling-out, his worldview became increasingly bleak and cynical, and he eventually lost all control over The Patriots when his AIs began to run amok while he slipped into a vegetative state as a result of an attack by a former lieutenant, Skull Face.
  • You Are Too Late: Pretty much everything regarding his plans. He was too late to stop the destruction of the MSF (though he did manage to save Big Boss's life), and he couldn't get Big Boss to awaken from his coma before he himself fell into a permanent vegetative state as a result of Skull Face's attack.
  • Younger Than They Look: He has a wrinkled face and full-grey hair making him look like he could pass off for an elderly man, despite being in his 50's during Snake Eater. Naturally, he ends up looking pretty ancient by the time of Guns of Patriots.

"Between you and Para-Medic, is everyone but me that is hooked up with the Major strange?"
Click here  to see Donald Anderson in MGS1.
"Suppose the legs help the tank travel bad roads...? I don't see the logic in that. Isn't that what treads are for? I mean, anyone who'd seriously consider making a thing like that has got to be a wacko."

The CIA's best tech specialist. Between the technophobia of Washington, D.C. and the casual racism he faced in the private sector, Sigint's career was at a loose end when the Major poached him for FOX. Sigint developed most of Naked Snake's on hand equipment and is the one Snake talks to about said equipment.

The end of Metal Gear Solid 3 strongly implies (and Metal Gear Solid 4 confirms) that Sigint would later join DARPA under his real name — Donald Anderson (a founder of the Patriots) — and help develop Metal Gear REX. He's kidnapped during the Shadow Moses Incident and replaced with an imposter, Decoy Octopus, who falls dead after being exposed to the FOXDIE virus. Snake later learns that the real Anderson was murdered by Ocelot in a supposedly-failed interrogation, which even later turns out to have been part of a plot to dismantle the Patriots' command structure.

  • A Day in the Limelight: The Secret Theater short "Metal Gear S...", where he ends up one-upping Snake in almost every major moment in the game.
  • Black and Nerdy: He's a Gadgeteer Genius who designed a lot of the gear Snake goes in with, such as his motion detector and tranq pistol. He notes that his skin colour prevented him from finding work for a long time.
  • Black Dude Dies First: In Metal Gear Solid. Heck, he dies before the game even starts!
    • Subverted in the overall chronology. He was actually the second of the Patriot founders (particularly those still loyal to Zero) to die, the first being Dr. Clark, a.k.a. Para-Medic, who is white.
  • Captain Obvious: When the player calls Sigint, he comments on the weapon they have equipped, the item, or the camouflage they are wearing, and some of them are so obvious it's just plain stupid. Here's one:
    You're wearing the snow face paint. Snow face paint was originally invented for arctic operations. If you want to use it efficiently, wear it in a snowy environment.
  • Dead All Along: The "Donald Anderson" that Solid Snake meets is actually Decoy Octopus in disguise, and he is quickly killed by Snake's FOXDIE virus. The real Donald Anderson was already dead; killed by Ocelot.
  • Death by Secret Identity: A non-villainous example. While being interrogated by Ocelot in Metal Gear Solid, he discovers who Ocelot is, and is killed to Make It Look Like an Accident.
  • Doomed by Canon: Once we know he's Anderson, we also know that he's destined to be killed by Ocelot in the original Metal Gear Solid.
  • Every Man Has His Price: As the head of DARPA, he gladly accepts bribe money from arms manufacturers; one of these payments was to secure rights to Metal Gear REX.
  • Greater-Scope Villain: Sigint helped Zero mastermind the Peace Walker Incident, and personally created and uploaded the Patriots' AI. In addition, The Phantom Pain reveals that he became the leader of Cipher following Zero's incapacitation, so the latter’s actions during the '90s as recalled by EVA in Guns of the Patriots can now presumably be attributed to Sigint instead, although how many of them he is personally responsible for is debatable since the AI would gradually develop its own will and run itself.
  • Hypocritical Humor: He often complains about being the only normal person within the FOX Unit, but has some of his own quirks.
  • Impersonation-Exclusive Character: This was originally the case with him, since the DARPA Chief that Snake met at the beginning of MGS1 was actually the enemy spy Decoy Octopus in disguise while the real chief was literally rotting in a cell the whole time. Sigint later became an important Mission Control character in MGS3.
  • Irony: Shortly after Snake gets a nightmare after Para-Medic tells him about Dracula, Sigint tells him about the worst dream he's had, which bore various similarities to Metal Gear, and then asks Snake not to let his dream come true. Snake ends up not being able to keep his promise later in life. Bonus points come in when Metal Gear Solid 4 reveals that Sigint was actually Anderson, the one who had REX developed in exchange for bribe money, meaning he didn't even allow himself to prevent his nightmare from coming true, and if we go by Peace Walker, he apparently had a hand in developing the AI Weapons, meaning he made his nightmare come true even before Snake did.
  • Invisible Parents: He has parents and a sister according to his codec information, but nothing is really known about them.
  • Kindhearted Cat Lover: He's part of Snake's support group in Snake Eater, and his codec information reveals that his favorite animal is cats. Subverted in that he later joins the Patriots under Zero and is responsible for developing Metal Gear Rex, making him a major villain in the franchise.
  • Mad Scientist: Has shades of this. Namely, he developed a mask of which what he views as his proudest achievement is that it was the first mask that could blink, and it was referred to as a crackpot a few times. It's also implied in The Phantom Pain that he took the reins of AI development from Strangelove after her death, which in time lead to the Patriot AI.
  • Not So Above It All: While he's normally weirded out by his co-workers' quirks, he has some odd tendencies himself. For example, he developed a Latex Perfection mask with the ability to blink... but failed to see why moving lips might've been useful.
  • Only Sane Man: Sigint seems to think everyone else in FOX are nuts. He may be right.
  • Significant Birth Date: Was born on Veteran's Day.
  • The Straight Man: Attempts to be this to the entire FOX team, at least.
  • Unfazed Everyman: He even lampshades it at one point.
  • Unwitting Instigator of Doom: After Strangelove's death, it's implied that he took over in developing what became the Patriot AI.
  • You Are in Command Now: The Phantom Pain reveals that he was in charge of Cipher after Zero's brain death due to Skull Face's parasite attack, but Skull Face then hijacked the organization.

"Are you serious? You mean you've never heard of zombies? You guys don't know anything."
Voiced by: Houko Kuwashima (JP), Heather Halley (EN)

"Just think — even if your body dies, you survive and go on to bigger and better accomplishments. If you think about it, it’s kind of an honor."

Another member of Zero's motley crew of misfits. Naked Snake's mission control who gives Snake information on the edible flora and fauna in the Russian forests, as well as medical advice. She's also quite the movie buff, telling Snake about all kinds of popular movies from the time.

Metal Gear Solid 4 revealed that she, like the rest of FOX, went on to found the Patriots. Under her real name, Dr. Clark, she was put in charge Les Enfants Terribles project as well as the sequencing of the soldier genes. She met a violent end at the hands of her newest toy, the Cyborg Ninja a.k.a. Gray Fox.

  • Action Girl: She is a playable unit in Portal Ops where she can use the same CQC techniques as Naked Snake.
  • Arc Welding: She wasn't intended to be "Dr. Clark" until Metal Gear Solid 4 revealed she was.
  • Bunny-Ears Lawyer: Loves her movies and Japanese pop culture. Said quirk eventually got her killed.
  • Composite Character: Her whole characterization in Metal Gear Solid 3 is like a combination of Otacon, Naomi Hunter, and Mei Ling. She even shares the same Japanese voice actor with Mei Ling.
  • Death by Irony: She was so obsessed with B-movies and Japanese pop culture that it wasn't surprising when her finest humanoid creation turned against and killed her.
  • Does Not Like Spam: She really does not like crabs.
  • Evil Old Folks: She was in her late 60s when she experimented on Grey Fox turning him into the cyborg ninja we know in Metal Gear Solid. Fox kills her for this.
  • For Science!: Actually admits that while she can't condone things like cloning on moral grounds, she is fascinated by the possibilities. Guess what happens later on?
  • The Ghost: She (technically he, given the information at the time) didn't actually appear on-screen until Metal Gear Solid 3, but was given a few mentions in Metal Gear Solid as the one responsible for the creation of the gene therapy as well as the creation of the Genome Soldiers.
  • The Heart: Served this role in Metal Gear Solid 3.
  • Hospital Hottie: A medical doctor who is quite easy on the eyes.
  • Invisible Parents: She has parents and two brothers according to her codec information, but nothing is really known about them, and the only time they're ever mentioned is during a call with Snake.
  • Irony: Despite telling Snake that he should get out and try new things at one point, Para-Medic becomes so recluse that not only that anyone has met her, barely anyone even know of her gender.
  • Karmic Death: Killed by Grey Fox, the man she used as a guinea pig for genetic research.
  • Large Ham: According to the novelization for Metal Gear Solid (which also acted as the first clue to Dr. Clark actually being a woman), she pretty much became this (it mentioned she acted Shakespearean in the first chapter taking place during Solid and Liquid Snake's birth).
  • Mad Scientist: Became one sometime after the events of Metal Gear Solid 3.
  • The Medic: Her name is "Para-Medic". It's right there. Even so, she's Naked Snake's go-to source for injuries, as well as how eating various things he finds will affect him. After Snake gets injured in the Virtuous Mission, it's Para-Medic who keeps Snake talking and conscious, and instructs him on how to address his own wounds until he can be air-lifted to a hospital.
  • Motor Mouth: She was even called "Quack" because she talks so much and that's the only reason to call a doctor "quack."
  • The Movie Buff: After every save, she'll ask Snake if he's seen a particular movie and make reference to it.
  • Nice Girl: For the early years of her life anyway... later however...
  • Not Even Bothering with the Accent: She's voiced by somebody from California and sounds like she'd be right at home there, but we're told that Para-Medic lives in Boston, Massachusetts, where she was also born.
  • Occidental Otaku: She's got quite a bit of a Foreign Culture Fetish for Japan.
  • Present-Day Past: Her general look (especially her hairstyle) is far more fitting of 2004 than 1964.
  • Promoted to Playable: In Portable Ops, she becomes a playable unit functioning identically to Naked Snake.
  • Retcon: Dr. Clark was originally meant to be a man, until Raymond Benson's novelization, which may make this an early bird spoiler.
    • Given a nod in The Phantom Pain where Dr. Clark is referred to as a "he" in one of the cassette tapes. It's explained that almost no-one knows who Dr. Clark is - to the point where they don't even know "his" real gender.
  • Samus Is a Girl: Guns of Patriots reveals that Para-Medic is actually Dr. Clark, the scientist who turned Gray Fox into the Cyborg Ninja. Back then, Dr. Clark was referred by Naomi as a man. Huey Emmerich reveals that Dr. Clark was so secretive that barely anyone knows of her gender.

"Scholars tell us that the first spy in history was the snake in the Book of Genesis."
Click here  to see Big Mama in MGS4
"It was you, not I, who was created from the rib of man."

EVA voiced by: Misa Watanabe (JP: MGS3, MPO, MGSPW), Suzetta Miñet (EN: MGS3, MGSPW), Vanessa Marshall (EN: MPO)
Big Mama voiced by: Mari Natsuki (JP), Lee Meriwether (EN)

"I've been trained to make even the most severe falsehood sound like the honest truth. Weren't you?"

An American codebreaker who defected to the USSR. Now working for Volgin, she is tapped by the U.S. to assist Operation Snake Eater and prevent the threat of war. At the end of the game, EVA reveals that she's an agent of the hitherto unseen Chinese Philosophers, and that it was Ocelot who was Snake's intended contact. Though her plan was a success, the microfilm she pinched from Snake turns out to be a fake.

She later joins the Patriots and serves as the surrogate mother for the "Les Enfants Terribles" project. She also shows up again in Metal Gear Solid 4, this time as the rebel leader "Big Mama".

  • A Mother to Her Men: All members of the Paradise Lost Army refer to her as "Mama", and she calls them her "children."
  • Almost Dead Guy: Near the end of the game, after crashing her bike, she gets Impaled with Extreme Prejudice by a tree branch, complete with Blood from the Mouth. Though Snake gives her medical attention, she doesn't just walk it off either; she can barely walk, and is still bleeding throughout the subsequent Escort Mission.
  • Badass Biker: She's very capable on a bike. Some of her best moments in action occur on a bike, most notably when she uses it as an Improvised Weapon against Ocelot.
  • Battle Couple: With Naked Snake in MGS3. Especially during the escape from the base and the battle against the Shagohod, with EVA driving and Snake gunning (later with EVA drawing the Shagohod's fire so Snake can Attack Its Weak Point). They do have their earlier moments tho. One of EVA's first actions upon meet Snake is to save him from a Spetznaz ambush. Then later they double team Major Ocelot.
  • Big Eater: During an escort mission with her, her stamina goes down very quick. Made worse by having lost all your food a bit before and not much of a chance to replenish it. Though it's partially justified given how she was injured during the motorcycle crash which preceded this section.
  • Bond Girl: Deconstructed and Inverted. In Bond films. Bond always seduced the girl, before using her and abandoning her by the next movie. In MGS3, EVA is the one seducing Snake, before using him for her own ends and abandoning him.
  • But Not Too Foreign: She's a bottle blonde and wears heavy makeup and eyeliner, implying she's trying to "pass" as a white woman. She is a Chinese agent, but her birthplace is in Meridian, Idaho, America. It's strongly implied in her message to Naked Snake in the ending that she was taken by the Philosophers at a very early age alongside other children across the world to be trained as a sleeper agent. The end implication is that she's at least partially Chinese. Even worse, Snake's genetic heritage can't be used to determine her ethnicity, as Big Mama mentions during her opening monologue that the donor of the egg which became Les Enfants Terrible was from "Dr. Clark's assistant, a healthy Japanese woman." She may have borne Snake in her womb, but she is not genetically related to him.
  • Clark Kenting: Her "Tatyana" persona, in spite of being nothing more than a change of clothes and a pair of glasses, convincingly portrays her as being a different person due to a huge change in body language.
  • Covered with Scars: She bears several scars across her back from masquerading as Volgin's lover.
  • Custom Uniform of Sexy: In her Tatyana disguise, her otherwise formal military uniform has a miniskirt.
  • Double Agent: She is introduced as a codebreaker who defected from the NSA to work for the KGB, but is actually an agent working for China.
  • Died in Your Arms Tonight: At the end of Act 3 of MGS4, she dies peacefully in Solid Snake's arms.
  • Drives Like Crazy: During the motorcycle chase from the Shagohod... let's just say that EVA's skills at not crashing leave something to be desired.
  • Everyone Has Standards: In spite of her hatred of Volgin, she isn't too pleased with the way he got incapacitated.
  • Fake Boobs: Her medical history reveals she has had 'Breast Enhancement', presumably to make her better at distracting her targets.
  • Flanderization: Between Snake Eater and Guns Of The Patriots her personality trait regarding the Eve symbolism is exaggerated, as in the original game the symbolism behind her name and role in the story is more subtle. In Snake Eater, the Eve symbolism is a thing she came out on the spot (as Snake was waiting for Adam) and she jokes about how she tempted the snake; by Guns of the Patriots, she takes the symbolism very seriously.
  • Flipping the Bird: She does the European version towards Volgin.
  • Gangsta Style: She shoots this way with her Mauser, using the recoil to sweep the weapon's muzzle in order to acquire her next target quickly. It's one of the first indications that she's actually an agent for the Chinese.
  • Honey Trap: She seduces Snake with the intention of using him to further her own agenda, and even plans to kill him once her mission is completed as He Knows Too Much. She does however genuinely fall in love with him over the course of the story.
  • In Love with the Mark: While her seduction of Snake was initially part of an attempt to get him to let his guard down so she could use him for her own ends, she does end up developing genuine romantic feelings for him. This still doesn't stop her from ultimately screwing him over by stealing the (unbeknownst to her, fake) Philosophers' Legacy microfilm as well as Shagohod's missile launch data and abandoning him in the name of completing her mission, though she regrets doing so enough to leave a taped apology behind for him and she also decides against killing him despite having orders to eliminate anyone who knew about her mission.
  • I Gave My Word: According to the tape she left behind for Snake to find, she had standing orders to kill everyone who knew about her mission, but she chose to spare him because she had promised him not to kill him. But at the same time, it is rather heavily implied that her own feelings for him also played a part in the decision.
  • Luke, I Am Your Father: Snake, I Am Your Mother. Surrogate Mother to be precise.
  • Made of Iron: She doesn't go through the survival hell and violence that Naked Snake had to struggle with, but Volgin puts her through a fair amount of torture and implied rape mostly for kicks and sadism, on top of the mission stress and her Double Agent work. She still becomes instrumental to the defeat of the Shagohod and bikes like she's unstoppable. Becomes Dented Iron when she ends up impaled on a tree branch shortly thereafter, which effectively cripples her for the rest of the operation as all of her injuries add up.
  • Missing Mom: She was absent from the lives of both her children, Liquid and Solid Snake. As far as we know, she never met Liquid after giving birth to him, and only met Solid Snake again when he was 42. And dies the same night.
  • Ms. Fanservice: Has a habit of leaving her biker suit unzipped, which Naked Snake certainly appreciated.
  • Navel-Deep Neckline: Constantly leaves her motorcycle suit unzipped to expose her bra and midriff.
  • Never Mess with Granny: At 78, she's still a Badass Biker who Drives Like Crazy. Solid Snake has to ride on the back of her bike to keep drones away from her, and she's perfectly capable of driving while distracted.
  • Paper-Thin Disguise: To the player anyway, it should be at least reasonably obvious that she's Tatyana, even before the game zooms in on her scuffed biker boots while otherwise in disguise.
  • Precision F-Strike: In the Japanese version, after EVA (as Tatyana) was discovered to be the spy within Volgin's ranks, she says "Fuck you!" to Volgin before attempting to shoot him with the Kiss of Death. This was toned down during localization to "Go to Hell!"
  • Redemption Equals Death: In Metal Gear Solid 4.
  • Saved by Canon: Any instance of her death in Metal Gear Solid 3 will bizarrely trigger a Time Paradox despite this being our first introduction to her. As the series reveals there are two mayor reasons for this:
    • In Snake Eater itself EVA is the only character that realizes the truth about the Boss and is willing to tell Snake, paving the way for him to become the Big Boss we would later see, without her history might have turned out very differently.
    • Metal Gear Solid 4 reveals the second reason: She's the surrogate mother of Solid and Liquid Snake.
  • Shout-Out:
    • Her appearance in Metal Gear Solid 4 is a tribute to ultimate BondGirl, Honor Blackman a.k.a. Pussy Galore.
    • Her name being EVA makes one to the main Humongous Mecha in Neon Genesis Evangelion which is also named EVA and they're also mothers of the main protagonists.
    • Also an inversion of the Eve / Serpent dynamic in christian mythos. Instead of the snake seducing Eve into taking the forbidden fruit, its EVA seducing Snake so she can steal a forbidden treasure.
  • Silver Fox: In the fourth game, other than some wrinkles, she still has her youthful figure at 78, even wearing an outfit with a plunging neckline.
  • Sir Swears-a-Lot: Although most of the characters swear in the series, only two (one in the English version) actually went as serious as dropping the F-bomb.
  • Statuesque Stunner: She's 5'10 and a half.
  • Stripperific: In MGS3, she's usually seen with her suit unzipped to show off a Navel-Deep Neckline.
  • Trademark Favorite Food: Instant Noodles. She even moans wanting some in her sleep.
  • Trojan Prisoner: She posed as the KGB officer Tatyana as early as a few weeks before the Virtuous Mission, and was later captured by Volgin. Given Sokolov's comments on her to Snake, its implied that she deliberately allowed herself to be captured in order to infiltrate Groznyj Grad.
  • What Measure Is a Non-Human?: Unlike Para-Medic who sees the Sons of Big Boss as experiments, Zero seeing them as the legacy of Big Boss, and Big Boss' immense contempt for them, EVA is the only one who showed motherly love to them after she gave birth to them.

The Cobra Unit

     In General
A team of some of the greatest Alied soldiers, led by the Boss.. Each legendary warriors in their own right, their supernatural powers allowed them to win the Second World War for the Allies in the Metal Gear universe... and Snake has the misfortune of having to fight them. They consist of The Pain, who can control hornets; The Fear, an animalistic hunter with a crossbow; The End, the world's oldest sniper; The Fury, a pyromaniac cosmonaut, and The Sorrow, a person who is both a ghost and a medium.
  • Ambiguously Human: They all look human, but most of them have supernatural powers and very inhuman features that would suggest otherwise. The Fear can climb up trees like a spider and has a snake-like tongue and cat-like eyes, The End has a spiritual connection to the forest, The Fury survived re-entry to Earth's atmosphere without a spaceship and turns into a fireball upon being defeated, The Pain is basically a walking beehive, and The Sorrow was a medium in life. The Boss is the only remotely normal member of the bunch, but even then, her scar is shown to have magical properties.
  • Anthropomorphic Personification: Each and every warrior of the Cobra Brigade represents the definition of the emotions felt in battle, condensed within a lethal physical personification of the concept they represent.
    • They also could represent Snake's emotions during the game. He felt pain, fear, fury, and joy on the battlefield. Yet he was overcome with Sorrow when The Boss died never leaving until he met his END.
  • Cool Old Guys: Most of them are in their fifties, and The End is over a century old.
  • Defeat Equals Explosion: With the exception of The Sorrow and The Boss, all of the Cobra Unit members exploded upon being defeated, regardless of lethality or lack thereof. It's Hand Waved by Zero and Sigint explaining that they carried microbombs to detonate in the event that they fell during battle so as to deny the enemy even the chance to retrieve their body and personal belongings. Unfortunately for the rest of the world in the 1980's this doesn't work as intended; as Code Talker is able to retrieve The End's remains which is rife with parasites and are used towards creating a biological weapon capable of eliminating language and was nearly successful.
  • Driven to Suicide: It is heavily implied via various radio conversations that the reason why the surviving members of the Cobra Unit (barring The Boss) still carried a microbomb, even when not being in enemy territory, and also why they are even fighting against Snake is because they wanted to die in battle.
  • Fallen Hero: Not really.
  • Gameplay and Story Segregation: You still get their camouflages if they're defeated via stamina-kill. And in The End's case, his gun as well.
  • Multinational Team: Led by an American, at least two of them are Russian. The Pain, The Fear and The End's nationalities are unknown, but The Pain's use of a Tommy Gun possibly suggests American and The End's use of a Mosin-Nagant means he could possibly be Russian.
  • One-Man Army: Each is considered such.
  • Punch-Clock Villain: Blood Knight tendencies aside, they're not really bad people - just mercenaries who loyally follow The Boss wherever she goes.
  • Quirky Mini Boss Squad: Even quirkier than previous entries. Their already formidable combat abilities are enhanced by surgical-modifications and/or Pulp-Novel-Era Weird Science funded by the 100 billion dollars of the Philosophers' Legacy rather than Hard-Science of the Universe's later-years.
  • Spell My Name with a "The": All of them are referred to as "The". The Boss even states at one point "I leave him to you, The Fear."
  • Super Empowering: Metal Gear Solid V: The Phantom Pain explains that parasites attached to some of the Cobra Unit were able to give them their powers; for example, The End was infested with a parasite that gives him the ability to thrive off photosynthesis, and that parasite was later ingested by Code Talker to give him the same ability. It's also heavily implied that The Fury and The Pain were infested with parasites as well; two additional parasites found included one that forced the brain to produce extra adrenaline upon feeling pain, the other allowed the user to secrete hormones that controlled insects.

     The Boss
"There is no need to prove that you are 'virtuous' here. This isn't America."

AKA The Joy/Voyevoda
Voiced by: Kikuko Inoue (JP), Lori Alan (EN)

"Ridiculous, isn't it? Yesterday's ally becomes today's opposition."

Naked Snake's mentor and a war hero who led the Cobra Unit, a multinational team of elite Supernatural Warriors who practically won World War II for the Allies. During the early events of Metal Gear Solid 3, she defects to the Soviet Union with her fellow Cobras, causing a dramatic power shift between the East and West. This is bad news for Khrushchev, whose political rivals are secretly conspiring with The Boss' new employer. Enraged, Khrushchev threatens war, and D.C. is left with no choice but to slay The Boss and her leader as recompense. Snake now stands accused of colluding in the Boss' defection, and must cooperate in her assassination to save himself and the Major from execution.

The Boss continues to haunt the narrative in the prequels, much like Big Boss does in the present day.

  • The Ace: One of the greatest soldiers who ever lived with a mastery of hand-to-hand combat, firearms and infiltration, charismatic, extremely wise, unparalleled emotional strength, and is respected by just about everyone.
  • Action Girl: A huge one. She regularly beats the snot out of Naked Snake and fought in World War II, while hugely pregnant, and became a legendary war hero.
  • Action Mom: During the game itself.
  • Animal Motifs: A horse. Snakes too, to a lesser extent- while she is never associated with snakes herself, her C-section scar becomes a snake after her death (Just go with it), and she references snakes in her speech at the end. The snake symbolism is likely meant to reflect on her being a "mother of snakes", being the surrogate mother of Naked Snake—from whom the other snakes were born. She's also the leader of the Cobra Unit, which is a major reason why the mission to eliminate her and her unit is known as Operation Snake Eater.
  • Anti-Villain: The Villain in Name Only variant; even though she's one of the game's main antagonists, she's strangely kind and compassionate. This is because she turns out to be a Hero Antagonist. She's only an "enemy" because the U.S. Government essentially screwed her over after her fake defection backfired due to Volgin and presumably the CIA's influence. It's also worth pointing out that, despite the many clashing personalities and agendas in Snake Eater, she's the only person that everyone respects (in Volgin's case, it's more due to fear, but considering that he's Ax-Crazy, that's still saying something).
  • Badass Cape: For much of MGS3, she wears a black poncho over her sneaking suit, which she dramatically tosses aside just before her final battle with Snake.
  • Badass Normal: Compared to her supernaturally empowered apprentices, she is still the greatest warrior amongst them all. She's even able to intimidate Volgin.
  • Battle Couple: With The Sorrow during World War II.
  • Big Good: One for the series as a whole. See Posthumous Character below.
  • Blood Knight: She claims to be one, but her trip to space and assassination of her own lover made her want to unite the world rather than fight it. Still, whether she is acting or not, she says she wants to make her final fight with Naked Snake the "best ten minutes" of her life.
  • Boyish Short Hair: During the Virtuous Mission, her hair is tied up in a way that it looks short. She lets it hang down for the rest of the game.
  • Cigar Chomper: According to a Codec conversation, she used to smoke cigars.
  • Close-Range Combatant: She and Snake created CQC together. In both cutscenes and gameplay, she is utterly devastating in close quarters, handily able to rapidly disarm a gun wielding opponent and plant him on his ass before he can draw a bead on her.
  • Comicbook Fantasy Casting: To actress Charlotte Rampling.
  • Death Faked for You: Twice, to two different people, as a matter of fact. The first was in the Virtuous Mission, where she had thrown Snake over a bridge nearing the end of the mission, knowing full well that Snake would in fact survive the fall. The second time was prior to Sokolov and Snake's torture at the hands of Volgin, where she apparently supplied him with a fake death pill.
  • Death Seeker: Strangelove comments that she thought the Boss was like this after hearing of Operation Snake Eater.
    The Boss: Life's end. Isn't it glorious?
  • Does This Remind You of Anything?: She has a habit of walking up to men she's angry with and forcibly dismantling their firearms.
  • Drill Sergeant Nasty: When Volgin begins torturing Snake for information about his objectives The Boss is the first to point out it's useless to interrogate him, since The Boss was the one who trained him in how to resist torture in the first place.
  • Even the Girls Want Her: EVA admires her a bit too much, so much that if the player knocks her out, they can hear her moan "Boss~" in her sleep. Metal Gear Solid: Peace Walker even has Dr. Strangelove develop an A.I. based on her idol.
  • Face Death with Dignity: She's eerily at peace with the idea of her own demise. It demonstrates how strong her spirit is, as a lesser person would have broken under the strain, while she barely sheds much tears.
  • Face–Heel Turn: At the end of the Virtuous Mission, she is revealed to have defected from the United States to support Volgin and his army. Actually Subverted in the game's ending sequence when it's revealed that she was actually a Fake Defector all along.
  • Fatal Flaw: For all the strength, courage and respect she's earned from others, she's blindly loyal to a country that continues to screw her over time after time and ultimately has her killed not because it was to save the country as first assumed, but just that she was becoming a nuisance.
  • The Fatalist: EVA discusses this in one of the Peace Walker Tapes, discussing the Boss's mission into space.
    EVA: (quoting The Boss) "Someone has to be first", she said. "If fate has chosen me, then I accept it. For my country. For the balance of the world." That was how she saw things. "I have accepted my fate."
  • Final Boss Preview: Naked Snake fights the Boss in numerous cutscenes before he finally battles her for real. During their first two encounters, Snake doesn't even land a blow on her. In their third fight, he shows signs of improvement. By the fourth battle, he's finally mastered CQC and turns it against her.
  • Gender Is No Object: Surprisingly, nobody ever gives her any guff for being a woman, despite this taking place in the sixties. It's possible nobody dares bring it up because she's that good. Her connection to the Philosophers probably doesn't hurt either.
  • Good All Along: Well not good, but as the game progresses, we can see that she clearly is kind and generally a good person, despite her still being an antagonist. Played straight by the ending, which reveals that she never pulled her Face–Heel Turn in the first place.
  • Good Scars, Evil Scars: Possesses a snake-shaped scar resulting from an emergency C-section deliverance of her baby, Adamska, a.k.a. Ocelot during the Invasion of Normandy. After her death, the scar transforms into a real snake and slithers away.
  • The Heavy: While Volgin's the one in charge of the enemy forces, she's the more personal antagonist towards Snake, and it's her defection that caused most of the game's plot to happen in the first place.
  • Hero Antagonist: She opposes Snake throughout the entire game but is actually on the good side.
  • Heroic Sacrifice: After it became apparent that an unexpected occurrence (Volgin bombing the Sokolov Design Bureau) will force her to have to give up her life at the hands of her disciple, she willingly does so to prevent World War III. Subverted in later games where it turns out that, although she did still intend to prevent nuclear war, her death was actually intended from the very beginning.
  • Hero with Bad Publicity: She posthumously becomes this. EVA even lampshades her tragic fate.
    EVA: In America, as a despicable traitor with no sense of honor. In Russia, a monster who almost unleashed a nuclear catastrophe...
  • Hidden Heart of Gold: It turns out that she didn't defect and aims to reunite a divided world.
  • Highly-Conspicuous Uniform: Her combat uniform is white in a game largely designed with camouflage in mind, which makes her stick out like a sore thumb among the jungles of Tselinoyarsk. It is, however, very effective to the point where infrared goggles are recommended when you fight her in her final battle, set in a field of white flowers.
  • Honor Before Reason: Even before her death in Operation Snake Eater, it's revealed that she put up with years of abuse and exploitation at the hands of the U.S. government; she was simply that loyal to her country.
  • I Cannot Self-Terminate: Naked Snake must be the one to kill her; otherwise, the USSR will have no one else but the United States to blame for the nuke detonated within their territory.
  • I Let You Win: Heavily implied to be the case during her final fight against Naked Snake/Big Boss and later confirmed by Snake himself in later games. She knows that she has to die in order to complete her mission and wants to die by her student's hands but she won't let herself fall until she deems Snake worthy by him completely mastering CQC.
  • Image Song: "Snake Eater" could be considered one, foreshadowing her motivations for going on what was basically a suicide mission.
  • Iron Lady: The Mother of Special Forces, she has a calm and collected demeanor, and such a strong and overbearing presence that she sent Volgin reeling back in fear when she questioned his mistrust towards her.
  • Ironic Name: Despite her old codename being The Joy, The Boss rarely rare smiles. Actually, this codename — along with the other Cobras' names — represent emotions that Snake must "kill" in order to succeed in his mission: he overcomes the Pain, the Fear, the End and the Fury, but unfortunately he also killed his Joy, and was left only with Sorrow, the only emotion he didn't kill — which left him a broken, embittered man for the rest of his life.
  • It's All My Fault: She blames herself for the Cold War, believing that if she had followed through with an assassination, even though it was actually a Soviet ruse, she might have been able to stop the Cold War, even if it meant sacrificing an innocent man.
  • Jeanne d'Archétype: She became a military leader at an early age during World War II, fought for her country, and once the truth about her fake defection comes out, she can be seen as a martyr.
  • Kill the Ones You Love: She was forced to kill The Sorrow in battle. And Snake was forced to do the same to her.
  • Lady of War: She has grace, reserve, and uses the efficient, bone-breaking CQC to execute fast field-strips and disarm opponents. She commands so much respect that she intimidates Volgin by just questioning him, and is very wise in warfare due to spending decades as a soldier.
  • Luke, I Am Your Father: Or more accurately: Ocelot, I Am Your Mother.
  • Magnetic Hero: She inspires Undying Loyalty in almost everyone around her to the point that fifty years after her death, the major conflict in the world is caused by differences in the interpretation of her will.
  • Mama Bear:
    • It was established that she and The Sorrow ended up fighting each other and she ended up killing him in 1962 at Tselinoyarsk, and the only "visual" aspect (a flashback from The Sorrow's memories) implies that The Boss killed him unwillingly. Peace Walker elaborates on the exact circumstances as to why she and The Sorrow fought: basically, the American and Russian Philosophers forced them to fight each other (in a manner that is eerily similar to Raiden and Solidus's fight in Metal Gear Solid 2) with the threat that if both survived the fight, they would murder The Sorrow and The Boss's child, Revolver Ocelot.
    • Even earlier, during an assassination attempt during World War II, The Boss protected her unborn child in a shoot out, causing her to take a grazing shot to the head.
  • Mirror Boss: Being Naked Snake's mentor, her boss fight reflects his fighting style by making use of CQC and camouflage. The player can invoke this further by wearing the black sneaking suit, which mirrors The Boss' own white sneaking suit. Based on flashbacks in Metal Gear Solid: Peace Walker, this is exactly what happened canonically.
  • Missing Mom: To Ocelot, born on Normandy on D-Day and taken from her by the Philosophers almost immediately. She never saw him grow up, making for a Dramatic Irony (in hindsight) as he ends up working for/alongside her during Operation Snake Eater.
  • A Father to His Men: Both to Naked Snake and to the other Cobras. It pains her that they fight each other to the death.
  • My Country, Right or Wrong: Even after being betrayed and used by the government multiple times, she still continues to fight for America.
  • Navel-Deep Neckline: One of the rare times this trope isn't played for fanservice, The Boss unzips her sneaking suit for her final bout with Snake, revealing the jagged scar on her chest from her C-section.
  • Nice Job Breaking It, Hero: The Boss's intention of getting the Philosophers' Legacy for America was to reunite the warring factions of the Philosophers and make it as it once was, an organization to revert the brutal aspects of warfare. Unfortunately, she not only forgot to specify that it was to stop war, but when it got to the United States, and the Patriots were founded, it arguably made the feuding even worse.
    • Also earlier. The CIA offered to take over mission control of the mission to exploit some Russian Philosophers who were dissatisfied with Moscow into sabotaging various Soviet projects (with the not to subtle reason of wanting to take the credit). The Boss let them do so. Afterwards, they cut the sleeper agent's pay by a large percentage, resulting in him defecting completely to the Soviet Union, and then falsifying several documents. The Boss got suspicious and decided to go in alone after the CIA refused to back her up. In other words, she really should have continued being directly involved in the operation a bit longer rather than let the CIA take over.
  • The Paragon: Deconstructed. The Boss was not only the greatest soldier of her time, but also a paragon of virtue and to her allies, including Snake and Zero, the very embodiment of what it meant to be a soldier. However The Boss was not perfect, she had her own flaws (including a particularly nasty case of Poor Communication Kills) but since she was so strong and charismatic everyone around her tended to overlook them and put her, and her ideals, in an unrealistic pedestal that no one would be able to reach, inviting inevitable discord among those who tried to fulfill her will such as Big Boss and the Patriots. In a sad case of Irony the only ones who were able to fulfill her will as a human were those that never met her and thus were free of the grip of her charismatic legacy as a soldier: her memetic "son" Hal Emmerich and her adoptive grandson Solid Snake.
  • Parental Substitute: In a conversation with EVA, Big Boss essentially describes The Boss as being like a mother to him.
  • Patriotic Fervor: Despite all that happens to her, she still remains loyal to America, both out of genuine patriotism and a hope for a better future.
  • Peaceful in Death: She even orders Snake to pull the trigger.
  • Perpetual Frowner: When she becomes Together in Death with The Sorrow, she can be seen smiling at Snake, however. She also a slight but noticeable smile after she's given her backstory to Snake.
  • Posthumous Character: Even after her death, she casts a long shadow over the franchise, and arguably counts as the Big Good in that everything that happened (everything Big Boss and the Patriots did) was an attempt to live up to her legacy.
  • Pregnant Badass: At the Battle of Normandy (and presumably earlier).
  • Pun: When describing The End to Volgin, she will end up with a pun: "He'll wake up when the time is right. And when he does, it will be The End for the boy." Yes, The Boss actually said that in-game before Hiimdaisy used that in her memetic spoof comic.
  • Red Baron: During her days as the leader of the Cobra unit she was called The Joy, Sigint remarks that it was probably because of the great joy she felt in battle.
  • Sink or Swim Mentor: Is this during the final fight of MGS3. She wants Snake to master CQC before she allows him to kill her. In order to push him, The Boss orders an air strike to hit Rokovoj Bereg, giving Snake 10 minutes to master CQC. He succeeds.
  • Sliding Scale of Anti-Villains: Unquestionably a Villain in Name Only variant. The only reason you fight her is because she's wrongfully branded a traitor, and revealing the truth would only compromise her mission.
  • The Smurfette Principle: The only female among the Cobras. Though mitigated by the fact she's their leader.
  • Spy Catsuit: In canon, she was the first to wear the sneaking suit, which she obtains after joining Volgin, likely making it a Soviet prototype.
  • Statuesque Stunner: Stands at 5'10.
  • Stealth Mentor: Through his mission to kill her, she provides her final lessons to her beloved student.
  • Suicide by Cop: Essentially, she knows she has to die and wishes for Naked Snake to be the one to kill her.
  • Super Strength: She certainly had enough strength to carry the container with two Davy Crockett warheads and the container with the launcher, which had a combined weight of 300 kg (700 lbs), and presumably use it by hand.
  • Suspiciously Similar Substitute: To Olga Gurlukovich, who was forced to lead her own men into slaughter by the Patriots, who were holding her child ransom. Adamska (a.k.a. Ocelot) was used as leverage to pit his parents against one another.
  • Team Mom: Frequently referenced as this in relation to the other Cobras.
  • Thanatos Gambit: She makes a big one.
  • Together in Death: Right after you beat her, press R1 and you can see her ghost holding hands with The Sorrow.
  • Too Good for This Sinful Earth: A good woman who died to prevent a third world war.
  • Training from Hell: It's implied that this was her method of training Naked Snake in Snake Eater. The Boss told Volgin that his methods of torturing Snake for information are fruitless, as he was trained by her to not break under torture. Now, take note of the fact that he was delivering electric shocks at Naked Snake that were heavily implied to be within the ten million volt range ("This is where the fun really begins! My body carries an electric charge of ten million volts! Let's see how you like this!") at the time she told him, so the mere fact that that wasn't enough to even break Snake due to The Boss's training speaks for itself.
  • Undying Loyalty: "Loyalty to the end", indeed!
  • Unwitting Instigator of Doom: The Boss' final will and her idyllic dream of making the world whole helped influence the later motivations of Big Boss and those who in time forged the Patriots.
  • Vasquez Always Dies: She's not exactly butch, but is considerably more experienced and less fanservicey than EVA, Metal Gear Solid 3's other Action Girl. Naturally, The Boss is the one that beefs it. However, this is a case of Tropes Are Tools since her death has next to nothing to do with her lack of femininity and forms one of the most heart-rending moments of the game, and perhaps the franchise as a whole.
  • Villainous Legacy: While The Boss herself was nothing less than loyal patriot who only wanted to leave the world as it was, almost every unspeakable action and monstrous organizations are attributed to trying to live up to her legacy and what she wanted. While all she wanted was to do was loyally serve her country and keep the world from killing itself, most Metal Gear villains distorted her motivations and only looked at her strength as a soldier and what ended up happening to her. Even when her A.I. ghost sacrifices itself, Big Boss the one man who was supposed to truly understand her, sees this as a betrayal of her own legacy rather than The Boss carrying out her own true desires.
  • Virtual Ghost: As the Mammal Pod in Peace Walker.
  • Warrior Poet: Quite possibly the most wisdom-filled character in the series. She gives many thought-provoking monologues on the nature of war, soldiers, governments and militaries as a whole.
  • White Shirt of Death: She wears a white battle suit amidst a field of white flowers in the most dramatic battle of the game.
  • World's Best Warrior: In her prime, The Boss was completely unmatched as a combatant.
  • Wrote the Book: The Boss originated the very concept of a "stealth mission". It was originally a tool deployed for "snatch missions" during WWII, in which her unit needed to extract VIPs and hostages from a war zone without being spotted. The first stealth mission on record was Virtuous Mission — an inauspicious start.
  • Zero-Approval Gambit: The end result of her role in Operation Snake Eater leaves her dead with her reputation permanently ruined, and the public dismissing her as nothing but a war criminal and a traitor.

     The Pain
"The new blood has been rejected."
Voiced By: Hisao Egawa (JP), Gregg Berger (EN)

A member of the Cobra Unit. Controls a nest of bees and hornets via the queen bee in his backpack, and also uses them to fetch and deploy weapons. The one with the least characterization, he interrupts Naked Snake's fight with Ocelot and subsequently confronts the former in the caves.

  • Acrofatic: Despite having a fairly large gut, he can still backflip like a professional gymnast.
  • Animal Motifs: Bees and hornets.
  • Bee-Bee Gun: The Pain's special skill is getting his pet bees (except when they're hornets) to carry grenades for him, tossing a special liquid at Snake that attracts the hornets, using them as makeshift armor, and even creating a duplicate of himself out of hornets. He also has an attack that involves spitting a "bullet bee" at Snake (which he keeps inside himself), which burrows underneath the skin and has to be removed via the survival window. They can also form a metal-and-wood Tommy Gun that actually fires. Feel sorry for the one that has to be the firing pin. The downloadable Metal Gear Solid 4 Database and the official Snake Eater website's character bio for The Pain explains it as him having a queen bee inside of his backpack that he has its sounds amplified. Metal Gear Solid V: The Phantom Pain further explains it as him having a parasite inside his body that produced a pheromone that allowed him to control insects.
  • Boss-Arena Idiocy: Let's just say that ambushing Snake in an area that's 90% water isn't really a smart idea on The Pain's part, as Snake is completely invulnerable to his bees while underwater.
  • Calling Your Attacks: He even gets little cutscenes whenever he changes his hornets into a different weapon, the name of which he (naturally) shouts. "Tommy gun!"
  • Doppelgänger Attack: One of his attacks is to make copies of himself out of bees, making it hard to tell which one's the real him.
  • Evil Is Hammy: He bounces around like an acrobat, striking dramatic poses while shouting his codename.
  • The Faceless: Subverted: He removes his balaclava halfway through his boss fight. And it's not pretty...
  • Facial Horror: His face (and other parts of his body) is covered with welts from the numerous stings he's endured.
  • McNinja: He'll make some Hand Seals while striking a ninja-like pose as he does his duplication attack, which is also an archetypical ninja technique. Plus, his balaclava also invokes ninja too.
  • Scary Stinging Swarm: It's his fighting style. He's able to control hornets to sting victims to death, swarm all over them, or just be a nuisance.
  • Turns Red: He removes his mask in the latter portion of the fight, allowing him to spit bullet bees.

     The Fear
"Come into my web."
Voiced By: Kazumi Tanaka (JP), Michael Bell (EN)

A member of the Cobra Unit, The Fear is named for his endless fascination with experimenting with and spreading fear. Is double-jointed and very animalistic. Likes to use booby traps and poison-tipped arrows. The joints in his body were surgically modified by the Philospher's Scientists to freakish flexibility for heightened combat-agility. He was also granted a prototype of the stealth camo, augmenting his already legendary hunting abilities.

  • Awesome, but Impractical: The Fear’s “Little Joe” pistol crossbow is quick to reload, but is noted by Sigint to have little stopping power. The Fear instead uses his more powerful William Tell, offsetting its longer reload time with his tree-hopping agility.
  • Big Eater: As the stealth camo he uses was just a prototype at the time of Operation Snake Eater, it is powered by his bioelectricity and thus drains his stamina very quickly. To compensate, he has to eat near constantly when using his stealth camo. It even makes him so hungry that he will happily scarf down food without checking to see if its rotten or poisoned first.
  • Body Horror: Long lizard tongue, double-jointed elbows, and RedEyes with Hellish Pupils.
  • Complexity Addiction: The whole 'strike fear in the hearts of men' rigamarole. The cutscene shows that The Fear could just as easily climb a tree and plug Snake in the head with his crossbow if he wanted.
  • Composite Character: Word of God states that his design came from a rejected design for Raiden and he has many tendencies and abilities (such as running on water) similar to Vamp. His boss battle is also similar to Vamp's, being that he is often running around above you and you must watch your footing while fighting him. His appearance is also highly similar to typical portrayals of Dracula.
  • Dirty Coward: His whole strategy is to hide, wear you down, and heal himself, and true to his name, he seems to be overwhelmed with fear right before he dies.
  • Expy: Of Predator, right down to the electric buzz when his camo shorts out. Also to Vamp, both being vampire themed bosses with super natural abilities (and both can run on water).
  • Flawed Prototype: He has a very early prototype of Stealth Camouflage. While it provides the same level of invisibility to the later models, it also rapidly drains his stamina. Meaning that he can only use it in short bursts, or has to constantly eat to replenish himself.
  • Hellish Pupils: He has catlike pupils.
  • Let's Fight Like Gentlemen: His strategy of being a Dirty Coward is somewhat inverted, since he also gives Snake a time-out to heal. Strange guy.
  • Overly-Long Tongue: Lengthened by the Philosopher's scientists to bestial-proportions to better frighten the enemy.
  • Terror Hero: This used to be his stock and trade.
  • Too Dumb to Live: He'll pick up any food lying around the area you fight him. Including spoiled food.
  • Trick Arrow: He uses poison-tipped, frag grenade, and white phosphorous grenade arrows. And for some reason, when he blows up after being defeated, a large number of arrows also explode out from him.
  • Wall Crawl: He can reverse his limbs, allowing him to climb without losing sight of a target behind him.
  • Weak Sauce Weakness: Sorry buddy, but no amount of camouflage or invisibility conceals your heat signature.

     The End
"You'll make a fine quarry for my final hunt."
Voiced By: Osamu Saka (JP), Grant Albrecht (EN)

The world's oldest and greatest sniper. The End is the inventor of all modern sniping tactics. He's clinically dead the majority of time, but the moss within his body will revive him when the time is right. He is also able to photosynthesize to recover health, though the beam of light betrays his location.

  • Animal Motifs: A parrot.
  • Anti-Villain: Out of all the Cobra Units, he's the least villainous with the exception of The Boss and by far the friendliest enemy that Snake has faced in the game. His ambush of Snake stems from the fact that it was his dying wish to face Snake in battle, and he accepts his death with grace once defeated. He also has a love for nature and his parrot companion. Also, unlike the other Cobra Units, he isn't out to actively kill Snake, but rather just slow him down by draining his stamina.
  • Been There, Shaped History: Described as the "father of modern sniping."
  • Berserk Button: If you shoot his parrot, he gets...well, as pissed off as he can given his age, and becomes much more aggressive.
  • Cherry Tapping: The End actually does this to the player. He only uses tranquilizer rounds, and if the player loses to him, then he must backtrack from the lab Snake visited earlier. The player can pull the same thing on him, by using the tranquilizer pistol he has been carrying since the beginning of the game. In fact, the player must do this in order to get his tranquilizer rifle.
  • Cool Guns: An M1891 Mosin Nagant, something of an anachronism by 1964, which has been customised with a pistol grip and folding stock. Most notably, it also fires tranquilizer darts. For those moments when you really want to reach out and touch somebody, but you don't want to rough them up too much.
  • Dirty Old Man: Was depicted as such in the Subsistence joke video "He's Still Got It," where he apparently has some sort of fascination for EVA/Tatyana for her "reviving" him. Throughout the clip, he stalks EVA as the plot progresses, and repeatedly tranquilizes Ocelot out when he goes to hurt her, culminating with him expressing his "disappointment" when he stows away on Snake and EVA's night in Alaska. EVA ends up running him over the following morning when he attempts to snipe her.
  • The Dying Walk: If you defeat him, a FMV begins of him walking away before suddenly collapsing.
  • Flawed Prototype: His abilities stem from a symbiotic nature with a species of parasites that live inside his body, allowing for a longer life span, the ability to photosynthesize, and to keep a similar level of physical capability to a man in his prime. But these abilities were just the start. After The End's death, a researcher named Code Talker managed to acquire samples of The End's parasites and improve them to also give the host super speed, strength, reflexes, and invisibility.
  • Friendly Sniper: He's an antagonist, but he's a kind old man with a love of nature who uses tranq darts.
  • A Good Way to Die: He goes out peacefully and with no regrets when Snake takes him out.
  • "Get Back Here!" Boss: For a zombie, he moves at a fast clip. He also lobs flashbangs over his shoulder so you cannot follow.
  • The Ghost: Has a non-canon voiced cameo in Peace Walker, where tapping the Codec near the spirits of the near-dead soldiers during Extra OP 62 will make The End call Snake, with a frequency of 000.00. This is the only way to acquire the Neo Moss Camo, a pattern based on his guillie suit from MGS3.
  • Guide Dang It!: To get his Moss camo, he must be "held up" at gunpoint like a normal mook — something you can't do to any other boss.
  • The Last Dance: He knows this will be his last battle.
  • Nature Hero: Intelligence agencies assume he has no spotter, because no one could possibly believe he uses a parrot and a variety of forest creatures as his spotters. He will also essentially pray to the forest itself to regenerate his health.
  • Non-Human Sidekick: His parrot.
  • Non-Lethal K.O.: Unlike other bosses, he won't kill you. Instead, losing to him entails being taken back to your prison cell. Unlike other bosses, doing this to him doesn't yield his camo pattern, but his Mosin Nagant instead.
  • Not So Stoic: Try killing and eating his bird. That will perk him right up. This is actually a good strategy, since the parrot acts as a spotter and is difficult to see. But the penalty is that The End becomes much more aggressive.
  • Old Soldier: Over 100 years old and still fighting.
  • Plant Person: This may explain his (admittedly limited) Green Thumb abilities and longer-than-average lifespan, among other things. And his photosynthetic camouflage.
    • Gets a couple of Expies and an explanation in Metal Gear Solid V: The Phantom Pain. One is Code Talker, who has similar abilities to The End due to the parasites that make up most of his body, implied to be the same ones that allowed The End to live as long as he did and photosynthesize. The other is Quiet, a sniper with the same parasites as Code Talker who has similar abilities to The End, including the ability to photosynthesize for sustenance, the ability to function as a sniper independent of a spotter, and a mastery of camouflage (albeit due to her parasites rendering her invisible rather than clever use of surroundings).
  • Skippable Boss: He can be sniped a while before you actually have to fight him. If you kill him early, another Ocelot Unit battle will replace him in the same area.
    • He can also be skipped by saving your game during the boss fight, put it off for a week, then return to get treated with a cutscene of him passing away from old age. Snake, understandably, will give himself a What the Hell, Hero? moment for not satisfying his desire for his last battle.
  • Sleepy Head: Due to his age, he spends a lot of his time sleeping. He also has the potential to frequently doze off during the actual boss fight, making it easier to sneak up on him. If the player holds up the Directional Mic to find him, hearing his snores is one of the audible cues to his location.
    • Funny enough, if you save the game and reload it (as long as it is within the week since the save), you will be treated of a cut-scene of Snake waking up from a nap, and then taken out by The End, with him scolding you for sleeping on the mission.
  • Stalker with a Crush: In one of the joke videos. See Dirty Old Man.
  • Technical Pacifist: Despite inventing modern sniping, he apparently refuses to kill anyone. If he defeats you, he drags you to a jail cell earlier in the jungle. His Mosin Nagant is custom-made to fire tranquilizer darts so he can snipe and be a pacifist at the same time.
  • The Worm That Walks: Implied by Code Talker's nature in Metal Gear Solid V: The Phantom Pain. Apparently Code Talker's body is mostly made up of the parasites he worked on with Skull Face, and he possesses some similar abilities to The End because of this; specifically his longevity and ability to photosynthesize instead of needing to eat. He even states that these parasites were used by The End, although the extent that they were used is unconfirmed.
  • Worthy Opponent: Views Snake as one. Unless you mess up in the boss fight, in which case he scolds you.
    The End: Reckless boy. You don't deserve to meet your fate yet.

     The Fury
"I came back from space. As I returned, I had one vision: the world set ablaze."
Voiced By: Masato Hirano (JP), Richard Doyle (EN)

A cosmonaut that survived re-entry into Earth's atmosphere in only his spacesuit, which he wears all the time. A member of the Cobra Unit. Notable in that he seemingly gains superpowers after being defeated.

  • Achilles' Heel: The knife. It's astonishingly effective against him, with the obvious caveat being that you need to sneak up to him to use it, and that's if he manages to not detect you. Granted, it makes sense given that you're slicing open his suit, but why that courtesy isn't extended to your guns or explosives, which should at least blow up his fuel tanks is beyond any of us.
  • Animal Motifs: Bats. They're all over the place where you fight him.
  • Ax-Crazy: Averted. He's fueled by a combination of rage and fire during the actual fight, but he's shown to be as calm as the Sorrow off the field, even a bit melancholic.
  • Badass Normal: The Fury has no powers, just a highly-resilient spacesuit, a jetpack, and an overpowered flamethrower.
  • Boss-Arena Idiocy: Not as extreme as other examples, but the tunnels where he's fought have water pipes which can be shot to release water that'll douse his flames, and explosive barrels which can be shot near him to deal tons of damage.
  • The Faceless: His face is concealed behind a mask, which is also concealed behind an astronaut suit.
  • Fire/Water Juxtaposition: Used to contrast him with the Sorrow, whose boss battle takes place immediately after his.
  • Kill It with Fire: His specialty is a flamethrower, and it was implied that this was his specialty since during World War II.
  • Man on Fire: When the Fury removes his helmet, his body mysteriously absorbs all of the flames in the boss arena.
  • No Kill like Overkill: You know his flamethrower? Well, unlike other flamethrowers, his flamethrower uses rocket fuel as its flammable source, thus ensuring that anyone who was hit with his flamethrower burns to death in an extremely slow fashion.
  • Playing with Fire With flamethower being his favorite weapon.
  • Pyromaniac: The Fury uses a rather nasty flamethrower that is so strong it can block the player's bullets. Hell, even his jetpack lights up the terrain he flies over.
  • Revenge Before Reason: The Fury's microbomb turns him into a pair of fireballs, each shaped like a screaming head. The first one misses Snake and explodes against the exit, jimmying the door open so he can escape.
  • Shell-Shocked Veteran: Strongly implied to be the case: He suffered from a Cosmonaut mission-related accident that resulted in most of his skin being burned and being incapable of feeling any pain. When killed, he is also seen "radioing" mission control, to which the director's commentary strongly implies is actually his reliving his memories of the day of his accident.
  • The Stoic: While he's far from stoic in battle, the Cobra's introduction scene, as befitting his status as a Shell-Shocked Veteran, shows him as incredibly subdued when he's not fighting. Notably, he's the only Cobra who doesn't say anything.
  • Toasted Buns: A variation. His jetpack weaponizes this concept, enabling him to burn people just by flying over them.
  • Tranquil Fury: For being literally fuelled on Unstoppable Rage, he has a disturbing tendency to slip into his stoic attitude mid-battle.
  • Turns Red: The Fury gets much more aggressive near the end of his fight. There's really no place to hide during this phase; the Fury jets overhead and floods the passage with flames. Even the various nooks and crannies aren't safe.

     The Sorrow
"Make no mistake: the dead are not silent.
Voiced By: Yukitoshi Hori (JP), David Thomas (EN)

A member of the Cobra Unit that is dead before Metal Gear Solid 3 begins. The Sorrow had psychic powers and could communicate with dead soldiers to gather intel. Following the war, he returned to his old job as a Soviet spy, and was consequently shot in the head by his lover, The Boss. Snake sees him as a ghost during his mission.

Has a plot central cameo in the fourth game, where he arrives to banish the equally dead Psycho Mantis back to the grave to protect Old Snake.

  • Animal Motif: Fish. It's done far more subtly than with the other Cobras aside from the large amount of dead fish in the river he's fought at.
  • Badass Bookworm: He doesn't look like a fighter at all. But tapes during Peace Walker shows he was just as good at espionage as the Boss was.
  • Big Damn Heroes: When Psycho Mantis is up to his old tricks again in the fourth game, The Sorrow pulls him back to the spirit world.
  • Call-Forward: If hit by his only "attack" several times, the pictures that appear include glimpses of Solid and Liquid Snakes. Furthermore, one of his lines is "You will all be killed by your own sons", foreshadowing Snake's fate in Metal Gear 2: Solid Snake or rather, Metal Gear Solid 4.
  • The Cameo:
    • Makes a brief appearance in Metal Gear Solid 2 : Bande Dessinée, expressing disappointment at Ocelot's lack of control over Liquid's spirit.
    • In Guns of the Patriots, he sends Psycho Mantis back to the afterlife. If you press L1 during this, you can see him with is arms crossed. Screaming Mantis even had a puppet made in his image.
  • Dead All Along: You can actually glimpse his body in the epilogue of Virtuous Mission. Seems The Boss executed him not far from the bridge where she nabbed Sokolov.
  • Death by Origin Story: He is long dead before the Virtuous Mission even begins.
  • Dark Is Not Evil: Dies to safeguard his family, helps his lover's adoptive son from beyond the grave, and is the only boss who never directly harms Snake. His attitude towards war is boundless sorrow about all the lives that are ended.
  • Eye Scream: It would seem that he was shot through the eye.
  • Face Death with Dignity: Because he knew death is just the beginning, he did not show fear at parting with his physical form. When the Boss revisits the waterfall where she shot him, he returns to her side, and later helps guide her into the afterlife.
  • Fire/Water Juxtaposition: Used to contrast him with the Fury, whose boss battle takes place immediately before his.
  • Heroic Sacrifice: The Sorrow willingly allows The Boss to kill him in their confrontation in Tselinoyarsk in an attempt to save their child, Ocelot (both the American and the Russian branches of the Philosophers said that they either fight to the death and kill the other side's soldier, or Ocelot dies by their hand).
  • Hopeless Boss Fight: Subverted. While you cannot kill him (his health readout is, hilariously and chillingly, already at zero) and the boss fight can only end with Snake "dying", the fight still has an attainable goal of surviving the entire river.
    • To elaborate, "winning" the boss fight requires you to lose, and take the Revival Pill at the Game Over screen. However, if you survive to the end of the river, Sorrow insta-kills you, forcing you to take the pill or start again. Taking the pill in this case, however, gives you the useful Spirit Camo, which isn't available if you take the pill at a different time.
  • In the Hood: Before the boss fight.
  • Jacob Marley Apparel: The Sorrow's actual skeleton is wearing the same army sweater. Also, everyone he revives is still wearing their fatigues or pilot uniforms.
    • If you slit a GRU soldier's throat, his neck is still spurting like a water hose. Likewise, the mooks killed in the mountains are still being harassed by vultures. The Sorrow himself is constantly bleeding from his eye, and The Fury and any enemies you kill with WP grenades are still on fire.
    • Enemies killed with Nutshots are still bleeding, clutching their crotch.
    • Perhaps most hilariously, enemies that you kill in the mountains and get their bodies pecked by vultures will have a vulture attacking them. If you killed and ate the vulture in question, the enemy screams at you, "You ate me!"
    • Raikov, should you take his life rather than resort to KO, is prowling the afterlife in his underoos.
  • Jump Scare: How he "attacks" you. If you get hit with one of his energy blasts, which is highly likely because of Snake's slow movement speed wading through the river, you'll be treated to the lovely sensory bombardment of a randomly-selected and terrifying ghostly image of events to come alongside a very loud, bloodcurdling scream. And no, you can't avoid the one that happens at the very end.
  • Kamehame Hadoken: Apart from sending his mooks after you, he can only fire drill-shaped energy waves. Snake's sluggish pace in the water, coupled with the encroaching ghosts, can make them difficult to dodge. Getting hit by one results in a brief picture flashing on the screen punctuated by a bloodcurdling scream, after which Snake takes damage and falls to the riverbed.
  • Marathon Boss: Potentially, well, as far as he can be considered a boss. The "fight" is you wading down a river while avoiding the ghosts of all the soldiers you have killed over the course of the game. If up to this point you have been largely or entirely non-lethal, it goes pretty fast. However, if you have been killing frequently, it can take a good while to reach the end. Of course, actually reaching the end is optional, you can simply let the ghosts kill you and then use the revival pill, but you don't get the special camo that way.
  • Our Ghosts Are Different: Appears throughout Metal Gear Solid 3 (as well as having a cameo in Metal Gear Solid 4) as a ghost that is invisible to all but the player character (provided that you are in first-person view).
  • Perpetual Smiler: Ironic, considering his codename.
  • Posthumous Character: The Boss shot him long before the events of the game.
  • Power Floats: He floats all around the river as Snake continues wading forward. If Snake manages to obtain the Spirit camo from him, it silences Snake's footsteps, enhancing his stealth abilities.
  • Psychopomp: He seems to serve the role of guiding spirits to the afterlife. The best examples are him leading the Boss into the afterlife, and sending the spirit of Psycho Mantis back to the afterlife.
  • Red Eyes, Take Warning: In the 3DS version, whenever he appears as a ghost, his eyes are unnaturally red. Also a subversion, as he's technically on Snake's side.
  • Spirit Advisor: Going into first person view in the cutscenes before the boss fight with Volgin shows him hovering around with a sign displaying the time left until the C3 explosives detonate.
  • Talking with Signs: He provides the player with the radio frequency to escape their cell and later a countdown to the C3's detonation. That's some impressive signage right there.
  • Tears of Blood: We see one of his eyes bleed just before the lens of his glasses cracks, possibly mirroring his death.
  • Together in Death: Shortly after you beat The Boss, pressing R1 will allow you to see The Boss's and his ghost reuniting.
  • Tranquil Fury: His speech to Snake about how "the dead are not silent" - he maintains his quiet tone throughout, but it's clear that he utterly despises the loss of so many lives to the machine of war.
  • Trickster Mentor: His ultimate goal is to help Snake, but not without showing him all the suffering he's caused/will cause.
  • Unwitting Instigator of Doom: The Phantom Pain implies that the circumstances making Volgin's reanimated corpse the way it behaves is in part his fault.
  • What Measure Is a Mook?: It's the Night of the Living Mooks! The bare minimum of enemies Snake can face is four - namely, the other four Cobras fought before The Sorrow, as they explode once you defeat them no matter how you do so.

Soviet Union

     Colonel Yevgeny Borisovitch Volgin
"The Boss was conniving enough to see things my way."
Click here  to see himself in MGSV.
a.k.a. Thunderbolt, The Man on Fire
Voiced by: Kenji Utsumi (JP), Neil Ross (EN)

"I think it's time I gave this marvelous new toy a try. But it won't be me that pulled the trigger. It will be our friend, the American defector."

A GRU Colonel nicknamed "Thunderbolt" and the primary antagonist of Metal Gear Solid 3. Demonstrably insane, he seeks to overthrow the Khrushchev government and force the USSR into a full-blown confrontation with the west.

His division is bought and paid for with the Philosopher's legacy, which he inherited through extralegal means; Volgin's father was entrusted with laundering the Philosopher's money and, in the aftermath of World War II, somehow ended up with the whole pie. Despite being an heir to the Philosophers, Volgin rejected the tripartite system and believed that Russia's rivals are too "pathetic" to lead. His electricity-based powers are kept in check by a rubber bodysuit hidden under his dress uniform.

While he ends up legally dead, his thirst for revenge coupled with experimentation by a Russian institute ultimately resurrects him as The Man On Fire.

  • 0% Approval Rating:
    • Implied in Portable Ops, where Jonathan reveals that after Volgin's death, Naked Snake/Big Boss, the person who killed him, was made a hero of the Soviet Union.
    • Apart from his lover Raikov, everyone else who is seen being close to Volgin is only there because they're actively conspiring to get their hands on the Philosopher's Legacy.
  • Ax-Crazy: He seems composed and collected in most of his appearances but can turn into a bloodthirsty sadist at the drop of a hat.
  • Badass Bandolier: Deconstructed. He wears a bandolier of rifle bullets that he pulls rounds out of from time to time to cook off so he doesn't need to carry a gun. However, when he gets struck by lightning, the rounds go off, adding multiple gunshot wounds to his other injuries.
  • Badass Driver: Just watch him in the Shagohod for the details.
  • Badass Longcoat: Like Solidus Snake, he burns it off when it's time to fight.
  • Bad Boss: Abuses his troops for fun. When he drives the Shagohod, he guns down countless grunts that are unlucky enough to inconvenience his chase.
  • Berserk Button:
    • Do not mess or harm Raikov, Snake found this out the hard way via vicious beatdown and torture (as seen in Disproportionate Retribution below).
    • Also, he doesn't react well to those who don't address him properly or show proper respect to his authority.
    Ocelot: Fight like a man, Volgin!
    Volgin: "Volgin?!"
  • Big Bad: Of Metal Gear Solid 3. It's important to remember that he's the reason The Boss's sacrifice became necessary; Operation Snake Eater was conducted in order to deflect responsibility from the United States for the Davy Crockett Volgin used to blow up Sokolov's facility and blame The Boss instead, and making it look like they themselves dealt with the problem by sending Snake to kill her. However, it's revealed in later games that, no matter what, the CIA planned The Boss' death from the get-go.
  • Bolt of Divine Retribution: How he meets his end. The entire game, he superstitiously says "Kuwabara, kuwabara"note  when near storm clouds, presumably just to be on the safe side. During his final boss fight, in the presence of another nearby storm, Volgin angrily sneers at it, foregoing his chant, and promptly gets fried by a freak lightning strike.
  • Bond Villain Stupidity: He tends to fall into this. It seems intentional on Kojima's part, especially considering his entire game plays a lot like a James Bond movie.
    • During his interrogation of Snake, he falsely believes that Snake is after the Philosopher's Legacy, and ends up telling him everything about what it is and where it is. Not only that but Ocelot, EVA (in disguise as Tatyana) and The Boss are in the room with him so they learn it too - and all three are spies plotting against him and he doesn't realise it. Hardly brilliant villainy there, Volgin.
  • The Brute: Acts both as this and the Big Bad. Though he is the main antagonist, his approach to fighting is typical of Brutes, commanding armies and relying more on raw physical strength than the other villains.
  • Burning with Anger: When enraged, his veins turn into neon lights.
  • Came Back Strong: While he was certainly no slouch in life, his charred and puppeted around shell in MGSV is probably the most powerful character in the franchise due to being able to No-Sell anything.
  • Cold-Blooded Torture: He often tortures people, although he is an extremely bad interrogator (bad as in skill). Basically, all the people whom he interrogates either die before giving out information, or they don't give out information, and usually (as evidenced with Naked Snake) the only thing he succeeds in is backwards interrogation (i.e., he gives the interrogatee information they didn't already know), also within earshot of other people. The commentary strongly implies that it’s because he failed to control his sadistic nature during his interrogation. As a bonus, he inspires the same tendencies for Ocelot.
  • Colonel Badass: A GRU colonel, with impressive fighting prowess to behold.
  • Covered with Scars: The electricity travels along specific pathways in Volgin's body, leaving behind glaring scar tissue. Most of these burns are accidental, which compelled Volgin to wear a protective rubber suit.
  • Crazy-Prepared: Implied a few times: For one thing, Groznyj Grad, his creation was built around the mountains of Krasnogorje, which he also arranged to have them be heavily fortified with anti-aircraft turrets to prevent the enemy (whether it be American or the pro-Khrushchev faction) from attacking them from the air, and he also arranged for helicopters to patrol Krasnogorje and have additional manpower just in case Naked Snake somehow managed to defeat the Cobra Unit members. Oh, and that tunnel Snake had to go through to get into Groznyj Grad? That was an underground air-raid shelter according to one of the guards at Krasnogorje, implying that Volgin took into account even the already very unlikely possibility that an air-raid would actually occur at Groznyj Grad/Tselinoyarsk and built the shelter for his personnel.
  • Cruel and Unusual Death: Was zapped by lightning and then had his bandoleers set off their bullets from the resulting flames. EVA actually turns away from the sight, while Snake doesn't particularly enjoy it either..
  • Cruel Mercy: After torturing Naked Snake, Volgin allowed Snake to keep his medical supplies so he could mend his wounds, although only because he wanted him to last long enough for the next torture session.
  • Death by Irony:
    • Was killed by a lightning bolt, which is especially ironic given the element he manipulates. However, there is some evidence that he knew the risks ("Kuwabara kuwabara...") and let himself be struck rather than let Snake escape.
    • His final death in The Phantom Pain is subjected to this as well, being powered by his need for vengeance against Big Boss, only realizing far too late he's been chasing the wrong man for the entirety of the game, causing his anger to momentarily dwindle and strip him of his supernatural abilities, allowing the damage he's accumulated to finally catch up and kill him.
  • Determinator: Maybe the biggest example in the entire series. Knocked out inside a hanger loaded with explosives? He manages to wake up and hop inside a nuclear armed tank to chase down his opponent. His nuclear armed tank has been shot to hell and disabled? He grabs the control cords to it and wrangles it back into the fight with sheer strength and his electrical suit. He has been shot up, struck by lightning, all the ammo on his bandoleer set off and fired into him point blank, caught in a nuclear explosion that destroyed his base, then left dead for 20 years? He brings himself back to life even stronger by sheer hatred, rage, and a desire for vengeance once his mortal enemy returns to the world stage.
  • Depraved Bisexual: He's in relationships with EVA (disguised as Tatyana) and Major Ivan Raidenovich Raikov, who are a woman and a man, respectively.
  • Dirty Communist: Volgin's shown to be a commited, if incredibly sadistic Communist seeking his own Soviet-inspired vision for world order.
  • Dirty Coward: While he's fighting Snake and losing during their initial fight (which had him punishing any attempt to take out a weapon with a serious electric shock, but kept his abilities running himself), he promptly orders Ocelot to shoot Snake. Ocelot refuses to do so:
    Ocelot: Fight like a man, Volgin!
    • He's also understandably afraid of The Boss, despite technically outranking her and being quite a bit taller. While he does insist that she prove her loyalty to him by cutting out Snake's eyes, he verbally and physically backpedals when she advances on him and accuses him of not trusting her.
  • Dirty Old Man: Both of his lovers are in their twenties whereas he himself is approximately fifty years old. In the case of Raikov, he's probably in his very early twenties or in his very late teenage years. Reinforced by EVA's very particular "medical condition" which you can discover when she partners with you at the end.
  • Disproportionate Retribution: You know those Flame Troops that arrive on Krasnogorje shortly after meeting EVA at the Mountaintop Ruins? Well, they were sent by Volgin with burn on sight orders specifically to repay Snake for killing off three of the Cobra Unit members.note  And then there's his No-Holds-Barred Beatdown on Snake upon capturing him after discovering that he disguised himself as Raikov, because of the implication that he hurt Raikov in order to do so.
  • Driven to Suicide: Some of his actions (such as responding rather starkly to a thunderbolt with "who's afraid of a little thunder?", and, just a split second before being hit by lightning, gave this grimace that indicated that he was either in pain or bracing himself) arguably imply that his being hit by lightning was actually intentional.
  • Despotism Justifies the Means: Volgin's exact plans after overthrowing Khrushchev and installing Brezhnev and Kosygin in his place, involving the Shagohod and the Philosophers' Legacy essentially amount to this: complete the Shagohod, mass-produce it to all countries within the Eastern Bloc and Communist Asia, and then constantly orchestrate uprisings in various third-world countries, all so he can take over the world in the ensuing chaos. He doesn't care if the nations are eternally locked in violence, as long as he owns Russia and the philosophers are back together, the world can burn.
  • Even Evil Has Loved Ones: His romantic relationship with Raikov is seemingly the only healthy relationship anyone has with him. Just before he grabs Snake-disguised-as-Raikov's crotch, he gives the man a seemingly genuinely affectionate smile. Likewise, Volgin prefaces his No-Holds-Barred Beatdown of Snake with a disturbingly quiet vow to make Snake pay for hurting Ivan.
  • Evil Is Hammy: "Kuwabara, Kuwabara..."
  • Evil Laugh: He has some throughout the game. For instance he gives one when he gets his hands on the Davy Crockett nuke that he shortly fires on his own country.
  • Fiction 500: With the Philosophers' Legacy, he's so ludicrously wealthy that he can afford to personally mass-produce the Shagohod. It's to the point that the U.S. was perfectly willing to sacrifice The Boss, the greatest soldier the world has ever known, just to get their hands on the Legacy.
  • For the Evulz: Volgin has an alarming habit of getting through situations just by picking whatever option harms the most people near him. Highlights of Volgin's epic dickery include nuking his own country, trying to destabilize the Cold War, stealing a ludicrous amount of money, randomly torturing people, and repeatedly slaughtering his own troops just because he can. It is also established that his lover, Raikov, is much the same and takes great joy in punching his men.
  • General Ripper: So bad not even the Soviets, who used to train dogs as suicide bombers, fully approved of his methods.
  • Genius Bruiser: A villainous example. Volgin may not be the sharpest tool in the drawer (as evidenced by his "interrogation" which consists mostly of answering his own questions), Volgin is still an heir to the Russian power elite. Basically, several of the weapons were implied to have been designed by him, and it is also strongly implied that, aside from using the money to have Groznyj Grad built, he was also the one who actually designed Groznyj Grad. In addition, as noted in the Crazy-Prepared entry, he also planned ahead of occurrences relating to Naked Snake's infiltration, and even a direct attack on Groznyj Grad via air raid, and his reason for nuking the Sokolov Design Bureau without fear of reprisal implies that he knew that the various intelligence agencies would blame The Boss instead. He's also very large and strong, and possesses electrical abilities from birth.
  • Good Scars, Evil Scars: His face, never mind his arms, possesses a lot of scarring. The director's commentary implies that the scars are the result of his electrical abilities backfiring on him without that rubber suit.
  • Hate Sink: Unlike Big Boss, he has absolutely no redeeming qualities, being a remorseless, violent psychopath, terrorist, tyrant, and torturer responsible for Snake's loss of an eye and psychological trauma and near-start of World War III. On top of all that, he's also a rapist and sadist, and actually gets sexual pleasure off of inflicting pain and humiliation on his enemies.
  • Horrible Judge of Character: With the exception of Raikov, everyone in his inner circle is actively conspiring against him. EVERYONE. Ocelot and The Boss on behalf of the Americans, EVA/Tatyana on behalf of the Chinese (and to a lesser extent Snake), the Cobras are loyal to The Boss. To be fair, all of them are extremely well trained Philosopher agents, but still, Volgin is being played like several different fiddles and never realizes it.
  • Husky Russkie: Fits the stereotype to a T. He is a tall, large, muscular and very brutal Russian man.
  • Karmic Death: The sadistic Psycho Electro is killed by being struck by a bolt of lightning. Snake even lampshades it:
    Snake: Fried by a bolt of lightning... a fitting end.
  • Knight Templar: Volgin explained that part of his motivation for the things he did was as a means to reunify the Philosophers and essentially heal the rift caused by their infighting. Of course, whether that's a genuinely redeemable excuse for his behavior is debatable.
  • Large and in Charge: He stands at 6'7'' (201cm). He is by far the tallest character in the game, and commands the army which serves as opponents to Big Boss throughout the game.
  • Last-Name Basis: Everyone calls Volgin by his last name except Ocelot, who calls him Colonel.
  • Laughing Mad: Most of his evil laughs absolutely reek of this. For one thing, according to the director's commentary, the reason why he was laughing for no apparent reason when he deduced that Tatyana was the spy and was considering executing her? It's because he was reliving memories of several low-class and despicable things that he did.
  • Logical Weakness: During the boss fight with him, you can shoot the pipes throughout the arena to sprinkle water on him, which can weaken him for a while.
  • Loves the Sound of Screaming: During World War II, he and the Russian units under his command were ordered to execute thousands of Polish citizens and soldiers; Volgin personally beat many such victims to death with his fists and took off their blindfolds so that he could enjoy the look of terror in their eyes as they died. While he's subjecting Snake to Electric Torture in the game proper, he's positively delighted.
    Volgin: That's what I like to see!
  • Man on Fire: Immolated by a lightning strike, causing his body to short-circuit like an electrical transformer and be torn apart by a series of small explosions. In a game filled with graphic violence, this is the goriest moment. Becomes the literal version of this trope in MGSV, including being named after the trope and still having all those exploded bullets embedded in his flesh.
  • May–December Romance: With Raikov, and to a lesser, non-romantic extent with Tatyana/EVA.
  • Mighty Glacier: It is easy to outrun him in his boss battle, but his attacks pack quite a punch.
  • No-Holds-Barred Beatdown: Gives a huge one to Naked Snake upon discovering him, just before throwing him in the brig. His reason is out of revenge for Snake "hurting" Raikov (referring to Snake's disguising himself as him). By the end, Snake is out cold in a puddle of his own blood.
    • In the non-canon Metal Gear Raiden: Snake Eraser, he gives a similar one to Raiden (the person Raikov is an expy of) for the same reason.
  • Not Quite Dead: As stated in The Phantom Pain, being riddled with hundreds of exploding bullets as a result of getting struck by lightning didn't even kill him off, he was simply rendered comatose. As he was still alive, he was able to harbor feelings of revenge against Snake, allowing him to revive as The Man on Fire.
  • Offscreen Villainy: Not shown in the game, but mentioned are: His killings of 20,000 Polish officers during the Katyn Forest Massacre, over 100,000 anti-communist activists during the Uprising of East Germany and the Hungarian revolution and torturing EVA.
  • One-Winged Angel: Sort of. Although he doesn't transform into a grotesque entity or the inverse, he does merge with the Shagohod's wiring in the final battle, which is the closest to the trope appearing in canon to organic living characters.note  And then he turns into the Man On Fire....
  • One World Order: Foreshadowing Zero's motives later on, he aims to unite the world under one will, through the Soviet Union and Communism.
  • Our Ghosts Are Different: He fires fireballs and melted bullets and is constantly and consistently wreathed in flames.
  • Power Limiter: He wears a rubber suit underneath his longcoat which is able to make him keep his electric powers in check. He removes the gloves of the suit before taking on Snake.
  • Properly Paranoid: He suspected that there was indeed a spy within Tselinoyarsk, and was accusing and even murdering his own men to find the spy. He's right in that there was a spy helping Snake.
  • Psycho Electro: Albeit only in that he is crazy, not so much regarding his powers, which he seems to have a firm grasp of.
  • Puppet King: Not him specifically, but he basically intended to run the country from behind the scenes with Brezhnev and Kosygin as the "official" leaders of the Soviet Union.
  • Rank Scales with Asskicking: He holds the high rank of GRU colonel and is the most formidable Russian foe in the game.
  • Rape Is a Special Kind of Evil: EVA's medical condition listings note that she not only suffers a number of electrical burns and lacerations from undergoing the torture at Volgin's hands, but there's also her suffering from a particularly nasty condition of proctitis (an inflammation of the anus, we don't recommend looking further into that), which in the circumstances heavily imply that Volgin violated her without ever coming out and saying it. And given his nature, probably tortured her during that too.
  • Rasputinian Death: This is one Colonel who just won't quit. The bout with Naked Snake leaves him hobbled and spitting blood, yet he still manages to climb into the Shagohod and keep up the pursuit. Volgin goes on to survive several head-on crashes (doing his internal injuries no favors), multiple RPG/anti-aircraft gun blasts, and finally a bolt of lightning... which merely stuns him before his bandoleers riddle him with rifle shell explosions, slowly finishing him off.
    • Even then, that failed to kill him.
  • Renegade Russian: A rare case of such a character existing during the time where the Soviet Union was still in power and in its prime. Volgin spent most of his career under Stalin, and it is implied that his wanting to overthrow Khrushchev and replacing him with Brezhnev was so he could get the Soviet Union back to the days where it was under Stalin.
  • Sadist: He gets so much joy out of others' suffering and torturing people that, according to the director's commentary, he actually gets high while doing it.
  • Screw the Rules, I Make Them!: His response to Ocelot after the latter told him off in regards to his methods at Groznyj Grad tells all.
    Volgin: I don't need your approval. I'm in command here.
  • Shock and Awe: He can do more with his lightning powers than simple thunder punches. He can shoot ammo without weapons and make streams of electricity throughout the ground, for instance.
  • Slasher Smile: Every single time he smiles.
  • The Sociopath: Sees people as nothing more than toys for own enjoyment and enjoys being cruel for the sake of it. His grandiosity shows itself through how he carries himself.
  • The Starscream: Acted as this to Khrushchev.
  • Stupid Evil: Perhaps unintentionally, but Volgin divulges all the secrets of his evil plan to Snake during his torture scene while getting no answers out of an ostensible interrogation — Word of God posits Volgin's unable to control his impulses during scenes of violence and is getting a little too invested in his torture.
  • Super Strength: It's unknown whether he was able to shatter concrete without his electricity, but it is clear that he at least had enough strength to not only carry the containers with the Davy Crockett warheads and the launcher, but also actually use them simply by holding it.
  • Tempting Fate: "Who's afraid of a little thunder?", unless one theorizes that he deliberately allowed himself to be electrocuted.
  • Torture First, Ask Questions Later: His M.O.
  • Unwitting Pawn: It is implied in the Plot Twist in Portable Ops that Volgin actually served as one to a single deviously cunning strategist within the American government, or at best an unwilling one. Peace Walker reveals the man in question was Hot Coldman, who is even worse than Volgin.
  • Unskilled, but Strong: The man's built like a truck, but it's clear he has very little in the way of actual fighting skills, relying solely on his brute strength and his electricity. Both Snake and the Boss are able to effortlessly subdue him in hand-to-hand combat, and during his boss fight, it is much easier to defeat Volgin with CQC than it is to use firearms.
  • When All You Have Is a Hammer…: Volgin only really has one superpower (besides his enormous size and strength), the ability to generate electricity. He finds a number of creative uses for it, though, most notably the ability to fire bullets held in his hands by cooking off the gunpowder. The aforementioned size and strength are probably required secondary powers since the kickback would really be rough on the palms.
  • Why Did It Have to Be Snakes?: He has a phobia of frogs, especially tree frogs. This can be used to the player's advantage in his boss fight. Bring along a tree frog and throw it at him to get a few extra seconds to lay into him while he's distracted.
    • Volgin is shown to have some fear of rain and water. Given the element he wields, as well as Word of God's statement about it interfering with his electrical abilities, his fear is perfectly justified. Also causes some questions as to how Volgin's even able to clean himself. He seems to get over the fear, though, as he fights against Snake and EVA for the last time while it is raining.
  • Would Hit a Girl: He passes the time offscreen by torturing EVA/Tatyana, leaving her back Covered with Scars.

     Major Ivan Raidenovitch Raikov
Voiced by: Kenyū Horiuchi (JP), Charlie Schlatter (EN)

The second-in-command to Colonel Volgin. Naked Snake had to strip him in order to infiltrate Groznyj Grad's West Wing. Is later found on the San Hieronymo Peninsula. Looks almost exactly like Raiden, but acts like a Jerkass.

  • Asshole Victim: Depending on the player’s actions, Snake could kill him or spare him. If the former, he fits in due to being rather abusive towards his officers.
  • Bad Boss: It is heavily implied in an optional call to EVA that the reason why Snake can get away with beating up soldiers and scientists without breaking cover is because this is exactly what Raikov does to them, and thus not make him suspect. This also acts as the reason why he ends up on San Hieronymo later on, although he presumably learned his lesson by the time Big Boss's group got to him and got better.
    • Portable Ops sort of makes his being this somewhat sympathetic and also somewhat tragic, where it implies that his sadistic behavior was the result of his trying to get into Volgin's good graces, and wasn't naturally sadistic.
  • Bigger Is Better in Bed: The specific reason how Volgin deduced that "Raikov" was actually Snake in disguise was because of the difference in their groin size. Going by what Snake commented on when EVA is inspecting his body, it's very likely that Raikov's groin was the bigger of the two.
  • Bookworm: Implied by one of his stops at the East Wing of Groznyj Grad being the library.
  • Butt-Monkey: Pretty much the reason for his existence. He's one of the only major characters Snake can kill without creating a time paradox.
  • Dirty Coward: If an alert is triggered, Raikov immediately runs into the lavatories and hides there. Assuming that Raikov was aware of the fact that the intruder (Naked Snake) was planning on trying to impersonate him alive or dead to get to the West Wing of Groznyj Grad and rescue Sokolov, it's probable that his hiding was realization that he most likely wouldn't stand a chance against Snake should he take him on, which is supported by the fact that when he is cornered in the bathroom, he attacks Snake with various CQC attacks (Raiden's own two-punch-two-kick combo from MGS2, in fact).
  • The Dog Bites Back: It was strongly implied that, shortly after being exiled to the San Hieronymo Peninsula, but before the FOX takeover, the Soviet soldiers got their revenge on Raikov for his abuse in rank, took advantage of his current exile, and imprisoned him.
    • Likewise, if the players free Raikov, it is also implied that his motivations for joining the resistance was also so he could exact payback on the people who imprisoned him.
  • The Dragon: He fits the technical definition for Volgin (he's Volgin's second-in-command) as Ocelot filled the role for Volgin in spirit in Metal Gear Solid 3.
  • Enemy Mine: One of the reasons why he teamed up with Big Boss in Portable Ops amounted to this; due to the fact that he was locked up and humiliated by Gene's men as soon as the Red Army turned on him (he was also presumably humiliated before FOX arrived as well).
  • Expy: He was created as a result of the backlash towards Raiden from Metal Gear Solid 2, hence why he has an uncanny resemblance to Raiden.
  • Goofy Print Underwear: Wears a rather revealing thong with a lightning bolt on it.
  • Groin Attack: Has it both ways. He inflicts this onto a disguised Snake if wearing a Raikov Mask (apparently even going so far as to unzip Snake's fly to do so), and at least one of the actions Snake does when disguised as him involves punching his "subordinates" in the groin. He himself apparently is on the receiving end by Colonel Volgin, as Volgin does this to test if Raikov is actually Raikov or an imposter, and the directors commentary implies that Volgin does this with Raikov a lot, since they mentioned that the scene where EVA's photograph was taken from had Volgin having his hand in inches reaches of Raikov's groin, but the action was cut off from the photo.
  • Jerkass: His behavior to his subordinates is quite despicable.
  • May–December Romance: With Volgin.
  • Luke, I Might Be Your Father: Even though Word of God was stated to be not related to Raiden at all (among other evidences), some fans still speculate that Raikov might have familial ties to Raiden, if not be his father due to his resemblance to Raiden.
    • Taken to even more strange levels, because of the name. "-ovitch" is a common Russian suffix for middle names, meaning "the son of". To take the middle name into translation, "Raidenovitch" essentially means "The son of Raiden."note 
  • Reassigned to Antarctica: He was exiled to San Hieronymo due to his abusive actions to his subordinates.
  • Reassignment Backfire: Potentially. Although it's not explicitly revealed whether the Soviets allowed him back for his involvement in stopping a nuclear strike against Russia, or if the Soviets would still keep him exiled (probably the latter, as it's implied that Russia was in fact already aware of Gene's real plan being to nuke America, and not Russia from Gene's call to Ocelot, and plus his potential involvement in stopping the ICBMG from being launched at America would probably be indicative of betrayal on his part).
  • Screw the Rules, I Have Connections!: It's strongly implied that the only reason the Soviet military allowed Raikov to be as abusive as possible to his subordinates prior to Operation Snake Eater was because of Volgin's influence.
  • The Stool Pigeon: Despite being Volgin's most trusted man (and lover), he apparently has a habit of squealing about Volgin's various weaknesses if interrogated by knifepoint, like the fact that he is weak against water.
  • Took a Level in Badass: In Metal Gear Solid 3, Raikov often fled into a bathroom during an alert, and only fought Snake when he was cornered. This changed as a result of Portable Ops making him a playable character, where he does fight the enemy efficiently.
  • Villainous Glutton: He's not fat, but a radio conversation with EVA, as well as his bio in Portable Ops Plus establishes that he is a glutton, although in the former game he apparently has a weak stomach (which explains why one of the places he stops at in Groznyj Grad is the lavatories).

     Nikolai Stepanovich Sokolov
"Missiles, rockets... what's the difference?"
AKA Ghost
Voiced By: Naoki Tatsuta (JP), Brian Cummings (EN)

"To be honest with you, I am tired. Every day, I help create things that should never be used - things that should never have existed in the first place."

A Russian rocket scientist who defected to the United States during the Cold War. As part of Russia's agreement to end the Cuban missile crisis, the CIA had to fork Sokolov back over to his captors, a memory which plagues Zero to this day.

Sokolov was promptly put back in charge of the Shagohod project, which later falls into Volgin's hands and becomes the linchpin of his coup d'état. Snake is tasked to rescue him at the beginning of Metal Gear Solid 3. He fails, which results in Operation Snake Eater. After completing the final piece of the Shagohod, Sokolov is killed by Volgin as a warm up for his torture of Snake.

In MPO, it is revealed that he used a fake death pill to survive, and escaped with the help of The Boss. He reappears in Portable Ops, using the alias Ghost, and helped Snake to destroy RAXA and ICBMG.

  • Bring My Brown Pants: Understandably wets himself when Ocelot plays with him a hardcore game of Russian Roulette.
  • Burn Baby Burn: His introductory cutscene has him burning documents that presumably related to the Shagohod project before he encounters Snake.
  • Defector from Decadence: The reason why he was to be rescued by America in the Virtuous Mission.
  • Despair Event Horizon: When the Shagohod was completed, Sokolov refuses to let Naked Snake help him defect, as he realizes that Volgin would most likely kill him as his usefulness was outlived, and even if he was going to be spared, Khrushchev will send him to the Gulags for similar reasons to Volgin's attempts to kill him, and even if he managed to successfully defect to America, he would end up being used by them to make weapons of mass destruction. He pretty much gave up.
  • High-Class Glass: Rather surprising for a communist to wear one.
  • Large Ham: Has a very dramatic manner of speaking, almost as if he were in a Shakespearean drama.
  • Lethal Joke Character: He is unlocked in the first version of Metal Gear Online by the player by getting the lowest score when playing as a KGB unit.
  • Mistaken for Cheating: The CIA assumes he's having an affair with Tatiana despite him being married. When Snake talks to him about it, however, he reveals he's still faithful to his wife and his feelings for Tatiana are srictly platonic; she's sleeping with Volgin, not him.
  • The Mole: He was working for Gene, but he leaked information relating to the ICBMG to Snake's group under the alias of Ghost. It's also implied that he got imprisoned for this until Snake's group rescues him in a side mission.
  • My Country, Right or Wrong: Kind of: Although Sokolov disliked the Soviet Union's policies enough to attempt to defect to the West three times (with the third time being successful), he nonetheless retained a small amount of love for Russia as he was unwilling to let the ICBMG be launched into it.
  • Nice Guy: He genuinely held people's best interests at heart and does not want to see people suffer, as evidenced by his interaction to Tatyana's abuse by Volgin. What cements this is that Tatyana wasn't actually Sokolov's lover, yet he still expressed concern.
  • The Queen's Latin: Sokolov appears to have a vaguely British accent. It fits with his monocle.
  • Took a Level in Badass: In Portable Ops. In Metal Gear Solid 3, the one time he was playable was in an expansion, and it was as a joke character (as the player had to get the worst score to play as him when playing as a KGB unit). Let's just say that that's not necessary anymore in Portable Ops.

    Aleksandr Leonovitch Granin
"You mean you've never heard of me? And you call yourself an agent."
Voiced By: Takeshi Aono (JP), Jim Ward (EN)

"These bastards will live to regret this. And when they themselves become the targets of my creation, they will know my true greatness."

A Soviet scientist and the original creator of the Metal Gear concept. After Granin repeatedly failed to deliver on his promises, Volgin finally lost patience and decided to invest in Sokolov's project. In revenge, Granin mailed his blueprints to his contact in the states, Huey Emmerich, who would go on to develop Metal Gear ZEKE. Volgin, sensing treachery from Granin (but unaware, ironically, of his secret sabotage), stuffs him into a kerosene barrel and tortures him to death.

  • Cruel and Unusual Death: Tossed into a drum and repeatedly struck with electricity and bullets until his body smokes. The final blow catapults his feeble form into the air and onto the pavement.
  • The Dog Bites Back: Granin backed the wrong horse and lost. In a drunken fury, he sends the design specs of Metal Gear to the U.S. in the hopes that they'll turn it on his own government. He also gives Snake a key that will get him into Grozny Grad.
  • Drowning My Sorrows: We never see him sober.
  • Dude, Where's My Respect?: Granin is clearly proud of his work in service of Russian society. His betrayal may be partly motivated by Volgin's war chest, not his own commendations and medals, mattering more to the government in the long run. Granin's drunken toast to Snake is an admission that the Soviet meritocracy has failed him.
  • Eagleland Osmosis: He raises his flask "to Capitalism!" when Snake is halfway out the door.
  • Glory Days: From what little we see of him, it's obvious that Granin's career has gone south since the end of World War II.
  • Gory Discretion Shot: Of the "blood seeping on the floor from a crack near the floor" variety, when Volgin kills him while torturing him inside of a drum canister.
  • Hazy-Feel Turn: Much like MGS1's Kenneth Baker, he's an arms manufacturer who is only helping Snake out of selfishness, but proves key to halting the villain's progress.
  • Insufferable Genius: He shows signs of intense narcissism and insecurity over other scientists stealing his thunder. Granin also claims responsibility for winning WWII. This has the ring of truth, as he's been awarded twice with the Order of Lenin and the Stalin Medal. All things being equal, Granin is an engineering genius who is decades ahead of everyone else, even Sigint.
  • It Will Never Catch On: Metal Gear is ahead of its time.
  • Irony: Despite Metal Gear being ahead of its time, it's the very thing that has more models than the Shagohod, and has the most threats. To the point even Big Boss has canonically commissioned three of them (ZEKE, TX-55 and Metal Gear D), but does not issue a nuclear threat.
  • My Country, Right or Wrong: A grey area. Despite being abused by its leaders, he confesses that he still has unconditional love for the Soviet Union. Therefore, he will not take the extra step of defecting to America like Sokolov did.
  • Non-Action Guy: Even an American spy barging into his office isn't enough to make Granin get up from his desk.
  • Small Role, Big Impact: Granin only appears in two scenes in the entire game, and is already dead the second time he appears, but is retroactively revealed to be the creator of the entire Metal Gear concept.
  • Suspiciously Similar Substitute: Granin shares a few similarities with Baker, the CEO of ArmsTech in Solid Snake's timeline. Both are elderly men who manufacture and mass-produce weapons; both fell out of favor with their government because of "peacetime", helped to develop Metal Gear, forked over a keycard to Snake, and ultimately were killed by their bosses.
  • They Called Me Mad!: His motive for helping Snake is to stick it to the people who nixed his Metal Gear project.
  • Unknown Rival: He has an intense rivalry with Sokolov, strong enough to ally himself with Volgin's forces simply because Sokolov found favor in Khrushchev, although it is strongly implied that only he has any negative vibes towards Sokolov.
  • Vodka Drunkenski: His first appearance has him drinking vodka. It's justified in this case, as he's drowning his sorrows from the fact that he is basically going to rot away in mediocrity, especially after Volgin cast him aside for Sokolov after it became apparent that his invention, the Metal Gear, did not possess the results needed to be immediately useful, thus essentially leaving him out of a job (he initially worked with Volgin specifically because Sokolov was hired by Khrushchev). It should be noted that he is the only Russian character to actually fit this stereotype (the main plot setting was the USSR, meaning the vast majority of the characters are Russian either by birth or via defecting from another country).
  • Wrote the Book: Apparently designed the SS-1C missile system, and if his comments are anything to go by, he was also directly responsible for some of the weapons used to drive out the Nazis from the Eastern Front.

Voiced by: Naoki Imamura (JP), Michael J. Gough (EN)

A prison guard at Groznyj Grad. Briefly befriends Naked Snake from being fed back meals that Snake was supposed to eat.

  • Because You Were Nice to Me: Johnny will stop to talk with Snake in his prison cell should Snake give him back the food he provided. Snake attempted to convince him to break him free, only for Johnny to quickly realize this and return to his post.
  • But Not Too Foreign: Johnny was born in Russia, but he left for America at some point and started a family, but then had to return to Russia, presumably because of it being his native land. He's consequently lonely, and if the commentary is anything to go by, he'd end up in big trouble from the Soviet Government (as in he'll pay a visit to the slammer) should they discover that he actually had a kid in America.
  • Disney Death: Implied in Peace Walker, when a character mentions that he "knows a guy named Johnny." He also reappears in Portable Ops Plus, but that's non-canon.
    • Concept art of an elderly version of him appeared in Metal Gear Solid 4: Master Art Works, reflecting an ultimately cut cameo at his grandson's wedding in the game's ending.
  • Fatal Family Photo: Averted. Canonically he survived the events of the game, though you can stab him with your fork.
  • Generation Xerox: Is the grandfather of Johnny Sasaki. They are also both prison guards, and both have bathroom problems (though this Johnny is constipated whereas his grandson has chronic diarrhea).
  • Nice Job Fixing It, Villain: He has a radio frequency written on the back of his family photo, which just so happens to be Snake's means of escaping, should he take a peek at it.
    • Also, he will open Snake's cell to check on him if he ends up vomiting.
    • Or when Snake fakes his death, but to be fair, he could not have known that was the case.
  • You Bastard!: Will shout this to Naked Snake if he discovers his escape.
  • You Have Failed Me: His implied fate for letting Snake escape, though canonically he survives.


Sokolov's magnum opus, the Shagohod is an armored mobile ballistic missile carrier. In theory able to launch a nuclear missile from anywhere on Earth, its small size and uniqueness make it a very powerful tool in the hands of the Soviet Union... And later Volgin.

  • Achilles' Heel: Much like with the legs on the later Metal Gears, the Shagohod's augers aren't as impregnable as the rest of its armour, making disabling its mobility, at least temporarily, a viable way to defeat it.
  • Awesome, but Impractical: It's the granddaddy of Metal Gears, so it has a few quirks. It's far less agile and mobile than the legged Metal Gears, being only able to go forwards in a straight line and turning with the grace of an oil tanker (until it sheds its rear component). Its small size also only allow it to carry IRBMs instead of ICBMs, reducing greatly its effective range until Sokolov finds a workaround. Lastly, it needs a 3 mile (4.8 km) stretch of flatland to reach its top speed and fulfill its role.
  • Boring, but Practical: Yes. Compared to Granin's Metal Gear project, the Shagohod is "just" an unusual combination of existing technologies rather than a pie-in-the-sky idea, so Moscow went alongside with it. In addition, its small size allow it to hide in a hangar and be carried by helicopter to its launch sites, making it harder to detect via spy plane or satellite.
  • Hover Tank: Only the front component uses augers to move around; the rear component rests on an air cushion.
  • More Dakka: Due to technological limitations, it doesn't have REX's laser or RAY's water cutter (although it carries machine guns and missiles like them). Instead, it has a 100-barrel machine gun.
  • Nigh-Invulnerability: Natch; a RPG-7 shot won't even chip the paint. It takes a bridge filled to the brim with plastic explosives and the resulting fall to stop it... And even then, the front component survives almost undamaged.
  • Nitro Boost: It has two large rocket boosters on each side, used to reach enough speed to act as the first stage of a rocket to catapult its nuclear payload away.
  • Non-Indicative Name: "Shagohod" in Russian means "Walking Machine". Among all the titular Metal Gears, it's basically the only one which does not walk.
  • Shed Armor, Gain Speed: Once the rear component is detached, the Shagohod loses a lot of its heft and its nuclear capabilities, but it becomes far more agile. Enough to keep track with Eva's motorcycle.
  • Turns Red: Once damaged enough, Volgin supercharges it with his own electricity, allowing what's left of it to perform at full capacity. It's only when Volgin gets struck by lightning that the Shagohod breaks down.