Follow TV Tropes


YMMV / Metal Gear Solid

Go To

YMMVs for both the original game and The Twin Snakes

  • Awesome Music: Several of its tracks can be found here.
  • Bootstrapped Theme: "Encounter." It's eventually used for the first part of the Snake/Ocelot Final Boss battle in Metal Gear Solid 4: Guns of the Patriots as well as one of the themes for the Shadow Moses Island stage in Super Smash Bros. Brawl.
  • Breather Boss: Vulcan Raven is pretty easy once you know where to set the mines or find a area you can fire the Nikita without him spotting you.
  • Advertisement:
  • Continuity Lock-Out: Many a player will be confused with the incidents of Outer Heaven and Zanzibar Land if this game's their first. Kojima added dossiers in the main menu to bring newbies up to speed, and Snake's in-game dialog does a good job of expositing without being too obvious, unlike in later games.
  • Ensemble Dark Horse: Quite a few, which tended to get a lot of references in later games:
    • Cyborg Ninja, for being utterly badass, clashing with the aesthetic of the game, having a hell of an Establishing Character Moment, and his tragic past. The concept would later be revisited with Raiden.
    • Psycho Mantis for his clearly supernatural abilities in comparison to his allies, his ingenious boss fight and fourth wall breaking, and his strangely heartwarming final speech. Metal Gear Solid 4 even brought him back as a One-Scene Wonder, in addition to making the Screaming Mantis boss fight a big reference, to say nothing of his appearance in Metal Gear Solid V: The Phantom Pain.
    • Advertisement:
    • Sniper Wolf for her engaging Sniper Duels and emotional death scene, to the point that Crying Wolf is fought in the same location in Metal Gear Solid 4.
  • Evil Is Cool: FOXHOUND completely steals the show. It helps that half of them are Recurring Bosses.
  • Evil Is Sexy: Sniper Wolf due to her Absolute Cleavage, and Walking Shirtless Scene Liquid Snake.
  • First Installment Wins: For some. It's probably the most consistent fan favorite after Metal Gear Solid 3: Snake Eater and remains in the public conscious more than the other games.
  • "Funny Aneurysm" Moment:
    • Taking into account Snake's physical state by Metal Gear Solid 4, there's this bit from Campbell just after you reach the helipad, provided you clear the Dock without much hassle:
    Campbell: Excellent Snake! Age hasn't slowed you down one bit!
    • Liquid desired to murder Big Boss in revenge for either allegedly being knowingly given the inferior genes by Big Boss or being told by Big Boss repeatedly that he was inferior, and hated Snake partially for stealing that chance. Liquid's voice actor, Cam Clarke, would later voice a character who attempts to avenge his father after discovering that he was murdered by his uncle in Kingdom Hearts II.
    • Advertisement:
    • Naomi Hunter calling Snake out for smoking and pointing out he could develop cancer becomes this in Metal Gear Solid 4 when it's revealed that Naomi had been diagnosed with terminal cancer.
    • If you call Master Miller on the Codec during the interludes between your torture sessions, he'll appeal to your Heroic Resolve and tell you that you are no ordinary soldier and he doesn't want you to crack or tell Ocelot anything. The revelation that he was really a disguised Liquid Snake means that he was really just hoping you'll give Ocelot an excuse to torture you to your limit, and is actually an example of Liquid's own sadism and petty grudge against Snake.
  • Genre Turning Point: Before Metal Gear Solid, action games traditionally had nothing more than Excuse Plot. This began changing after the game became a critical and commercial smash hit, with its story particularly being pointed out for praise, and noticeably making the gameplay and action segments more intense than almost anything else on the market. For games as a whole, the production values, strong voice acting (at a time where most voice acting in games ranged from mediocre to awful) and gripping story showed the potential video games had for cinematic storytelling, and brought a possibly permanent shift in the acceptable Gameplay To Story Ratio.
  • Genius Bonus: Sniper Wolf's use of "Saladin" for Big Boss is both this and a bit of Accidentally Correct Writing; it was an epithet given to a well-known Muslim Sultan of Egypt in the Middle Ages who fought against Crusaders. Its actual meaning (Sallah Al-Din, "The Rightness of Faith") means little for Big Boss. The fact that Saladin was perhaps the most famous Kurd in history makes Wolf's use of it poignant.
  • Growing the Beard: Before Solid, the Metal Gear franchise was a mildly popular stealth action series completely taking cues from other popular action movies of the time. With Solid's advent, the franchise exploded into a massive juggernaut thanks to its far more complex and deconstructive plot, qualities that later Metal Gear games would follow.
  • Harsher in Hindsight:
    • After defeating Sniper Wolf, Snake ends up talking with her and then, at her request, shot her in the head to euthanize her. In Metal Gear Solid 3, his father, Naked Snake/Big Boss, does something very similar to The Boss late into the game.
    • Otacon's established backstory and even Metal Gear REX's design take on a darker, more tragic tone in The Phantom Pain given that not only could REX be based on subconscious memories of Metal Gear Sahelanthropus, but that Otacon's own father planned for him to be a guinea pig and used on it.
    • Liquid's insinuation that soldiers like Big Boss are no longer valued in the modern day, and that in the Cold War, warriors were valued - even desired - becomes bitterly laughable in subsequent games. The treatment of The Boss in particular is a smack in the face to Liquid's notions.
    • Cyborg Ninja is the first of Snake's allies to die onscreen. His Japanese voice actor, Kaneto Shiozawa, was the first of the main cast to die in real life at only 46.
  • Hilarious in Hindsight:
    • Remember the Yoshi doll in The Twin Snakes, the one that, unlike the Mario doll, doesn't actually do much for you when you shoot it other than having it cry its name? Well, with Snake Eater 3D, the Yoshi doll will have a bit more use this time.
    • Remember when Gray Fox tells Snake "You haven't aged well"? Becomes extremely true by Metal Gear Solid 4 where the genetic alterations made when he was cloned cause Snake to age so rapidly that he looks like an old man.
    • When Psycho Mantis reads your memory card in The Twin Snakes, one of the games he can read is Super Smash Bros. Melee. Snake would show up in the third game four years later.
    • In one of the Mystery stages in VR Missions, Snake picks up and dons a hairpiece to resemble Liquid. He's also a dead ringer for Raiden, or Raikov if you prefer.
    • Sniper Wolf orders Otacon to be quiet before her final fight with Snake after Otacon begs them to not fight through Codec. Then The Phantom Pain arrives, and there is a female sniper codenamed "Quiet", who can also be given the exact same attire Sniper Wolf wears in battle.
    • One of Hideo Kojima's original ideas for this game was to make Game Over into a Final Death, either by deleting your save file or making the game disk unusable. Almost twenty years later, the PlayStation 4 game Hellblade: Senua's Sacrifice uses a similar concept for its Final Death mechanic, where dying too many times will erase your save file entirely.
    • Mega Man X8 has Dark Mantis, who is also fought at the end of a stealth-based level.
    • During his Dying Speech, Vulcan Raven says that Decoy Octopus, disguised as the DARPA Chief "could not deceive the Angel of Death." Years later, the DARPA Chief's voice actor, Greg Eagles, would actually voice (The Angel of) Death himself.
    • In the original, but not The Twin Snakes, Psycho Mantis will have a comment if you have Castlevania: Symphony of the Night on your memory card. Fast-forward to 2018, and Snake, Simon, Richter and Alucardnote  are all in Super Smash Bros. Ultimate.
  • It's Short, So It Sucks!: The most common criticism of the game, especially at the time. A typical player will finish the game in about 10-11 hours, well over half of which is cutscenes and Codec conversations. This is mitigated by the ranking system, multiple endings, and New Game+ bonus items, but that still smacks of Fake Longevity.
  • It Was His Sled:
    • The one scene described in great detail whenever anyone tells someone who hasn't played it is Psycho Mantis' boss fight and the trick to beat him.
    • Solid Snake and Liquid Snake are clones of Big Boss.
    • The Cyborg Ninja is Gray Fox.
  • Magnificent Bastard: Liquid Snake. Revolver Ocelot doesn't get there until the next game.
  • Memetic Mutation:
    • "Five-five sixers and pineapples."
    • "A surveillance camera?"
    • "Snake, did you like my sunglasses?"
    • "This is just like one of my Japanese animes!"
    • "Tu veux qu'on se tire l'oreille ?"note  has become a legendary line in the French dub.
  • Narm Charm:
    • Just about every cutscene has at least a few moments like this. Repetitive, heavy-handed dialogue with clunky exposition? Check. Villains so over the top and gimmicky with various violent fetishes that have little chance of being taken seriously? Check. Said villains having melodramatic death scenes that stretch on for at least over 5 minutes just to explain their tragic backstories? Again, check. All topped off with some of the most ridiculously unsubtle and long-winded speeches in a game even by today's standards. Whether or not all of these are flat-out Narm or contribute to the charm and the cheesiness of the series is up to you. In either case, all of this would become a part of and escalate even further in future installments.
    • The over-the-top action scenes in The Twin Snakes go around from being unintentionally hilarious to absurdly awesome. The Twin Snakes may have taken this to the logical extreme, but the original Metal Gear Solid wasn't far behind in this regard.
  • Polished Port: The PC version is a port of the Japan-only Metal Gear Solid: Integral and features updated graphics, improved sound quality, and a number of extras not present in the original PS1 version. The game is known to have some graphical hick-ups on modern PCs, but these are easily remedied through some unofficial patching.
  • Recycled Script: Several plot elements and set pieces used in Metal Gear and Metal Gear 2: Solid Snake reappear in Metal Gear Solid with no comment from anybody. Meanwhile, the game's script itself is intentionally recycled for Metal Gear Solid 2.
  • "Seinfeld" Is Unfunny:
    • The stealth gameplay may seem rather crude and simplistic compared to later entries in the genre, especially to players who have only played the likes of Hitman or Splinter Cell. The story, which was highly praised at the time, nowadays is considered by the standards of modern gamers as an Info Dump train wreck with way too much Parrot Exposition; though it can still hold up as part of the overarching mythology of the series, and is still fondly regarded by many fans of the series.
    • The Psycho Mantis fight was groundbreaking at the time, but most new players nowadays don't get what was so mindblowing about it.
  • So Bad, It's Good: Many French players like to make fun of the French dub, notably some of its weirdly translated lines and at times tone-deaf delivery. Others, however, consider that its badness is highly exaggerated and that it was actually quite good for the time.
  • Superlative Dubbing: The game is still praised for having one of the best English dubs in the history of video games. Even back in the late '90s where most English dubs and voice talent were based in Japan, Metal Gear Solid was already ahead of its game with a Los Angeles union cast and some of the greatest performances ever to grace The Fifth Generation of Console Video Games.
  • Tastes Like Diabetes: The good ending has almost nothing but sappy lines between Snake and Meryl.
  • That One Boss:
    • Sniper Wolf, since the sniper rifle is so annoying to control. Though the second battle can be easy if you use the Nikita.
    • The Hind D is pretty tough since you get a limited window to hit it and the final attack can take a good chunk of your health away, or even one-hit KO you if on a higher difficulty. Hope you didn't waste your rations beforehand. Also, you are supposed keep track of the Hind by listening for it with stereo speakers on the television, but god help you if your TV only outputs mono audio.
  • The Un-Twist: Liquid's identity, and to a lesser extent, he and Snake being twins, isn't hard to figure out hours before the characters do, considering Liquid doesn't really bother to change his appearance or voice in any way, and he's conveniently there to give Snake advice just as Liquid's presumed escaped or dead.
  • Visual Effects of Awesome: Although PS1 games haven't aged well at all, the title is considered to be one of the best-looking games on the console, due to its realistic lighting and high level of detail. It was even one of the first games ever to avert Going Through the Motions in cutscenes, with characters expressing unique and highly specific body language throughout cutscenes depending on what they're doing or talking about, which was something that was incredibly rare before the advent of motion capture.
  • They Wasted a Perfectly Good Character: Decoy Octopus, FOXHOUND's resident Master of Disguise, who disguised himself as the DARPA chief to pass along false information to Snake, only to succumb to FOXDIE immediately afterward. This makes him the only member of FOXHOUND not to get a boss fight. His very existence isn't revealed till much later, and then it's only acknowledged in passing before being forgotten.
  • The Woobie: Poor Otacon got tricked into programming a nuke-toting weapon. He thought that he was working on a nuclear deterrent. He's also pretty awkward and pathetic in this game, which only serves to make the player feel more sorry for him.
  • Woolseyism: Most of the script was modified during the localization into the English version:
    • Mei Ling originally quoted only Chinese proverbs in the Japanese version. She would say the original proverb in phonetic Chinese and then repeat the same proverb in Japanese. This proved to be rather difficult to localize, since she simply ended up saying the same thing twice in English, so Jeremy Blaustein expanded Mei Ling's expertise to include Western literature and proverbs as well. This is one of the few changes retained in the remake The Twin Snakes.
    • Before dying, Psycho Mantis says that using his power to help someone for the first time ever "[felt] kind of nice". In the Japanese version, he says "It feels so... nostalgic".note 
    • Ocelot's line about making bullets go wherever he makes them was not in the Japanese script. It's totally in-character, though.
    • Snake's explanation about how Liquid would be "chopped up faster than an onion in an infomercial" had he ejected from the Hind was not in the Japanese script. The Japanese script, as well as the rewritten English script for the GC version, was more technical in nature, simply stating that Liquid would be chopped up by the rotor blades.
    • In the Japanese version, Dr. Clark's gender was alluded to only once, when Naomi responds that it was Gray Fox who killed Dr. Clark (she uses 彼 "kare", a masculine pronoun). The English version added in more references to Dr. Clark being a male. Dr. Clark's gender was retconned in later games. The novelization, which was released a couple of weeks prior to Metal Gear Solid 4, lampshades this by having Colonel Campbell simply assume Dr. Clark is a man, only for Naomi to quickly correct him.
    • Liquid's reference to Big Boss always telling him that he was a failure as his reason for hating Big Boss was not in the Japanese version. The original script, as well as that of The Twin Snakes, simply had him exclaiming outrage that Big Boss seemingly chose him, knowingly, to be the inferior one.
    • Liquid's mention about Big Boss being in a coma, when explaining the history of the Les Enfants Terribles project, was also a Woolseyism. Originally, he simply stated that Big Boss was sterile. Like Mei Ling's use of Western quotes, this was retained in The Twin Snakes. Unlike other changes, it would actually then get retconned into canon, although since it’s this franchise, it’s not so simple.
    • The Spanish dub of the original PS1 game, considered to be one of the best dubs ever made for a video game in Spain, translated Snake's "What the...!" into "¡Pero qué coño...!" ("What the fuck...?!"). Thanks to the performance of Alfonso Vallés, Snake's Spaniard voice actor, the phrase got full blown Memetic Mutation status among Spaniard gamers, which it maintains even up to this day.

YMMVs exclusive to The Twin Snakes

  • Awesome Music: Some consider The Twin Snakes soundtrack to be superior to the original one. It's certainly longer. Unfortunately, it's not available by retail, though you can find it pretty easily for download.
  • Big-Lipped Alligator Moment: In The Twin Snakes, during the Psycho Mantis scene when he's forcing your controller to move, he begins laughing. A second later, three photos in the back, which show real people in them (specifically, Hideo Kojima, Ryuhei Kitamura, the game's cutscene director, and Denis Dyack, head of Silicon Knights), come to life and begin laughing in extremely high pitched voices that serves as both frightening and quite hilarious. That's never explained nor mentioned again, though it's not entirely out of the realms of possibility that it's all an illusion created by Mantis.
  • Broken Base: Worthy and improved remake or insult to a masterpiece? Those who like it like some of the improvements featured in the re-dubbed script, the redone voice acting, and Rob Paulsen providing the voice of Gray Fox. Detractors dislike the gameplay changes and the cutscene being really over the top. The fact that it hasn't been re-released only adds more fuel to the fire.
  • Hilarious in Hindsight:
    • Prior to his battle with Snake, Psycho Mantis creates an illusion of a massive firestorm. Fast-forward to The Phantom Pain and as a young boy he was partnered with a pyrokinetic that could actually conjure such infernos.
    • Many of the stunts Gray Fox performs during the cutscenes would not be out of place at all in Metal Gear Rising: Revengeance.
  • It's Easy, So It Sucks!: The Twin Snakes included many features originally introduced in Metal Gear Solid 2: Sons of Liberty, but the level design was hardly changed at all to match the new features, leading many players to complain about how much easier the game is when you can aim in first-person view and guards attack in finite amounts - as opposed to the endless waves that would swarm you until you ran out of ammo or died in the PS1 original, not to mention the fact that Snake starts out with full health instead of gaining health incrementally after beating each boss. It's worth noting that the enemy AI in The Twin Snakes is vastly improved over the original, making them much more difficult to run from, hide from, and fight.
  • Mis-blamed: It's a common misconception among The Twin Snakes detractors that Kojima disliked the various changes that were made by Silicon Knights and/or Ryuhei Kitamura without his permission. In reality, Kitamura made faithful recreations of the cutscenes before the changes were requested by Kojima because he admired Kitamura's cinematic style and wanted them incorporated into the game.
  • They Changed It, Now It Sucks!:
    • Most of the criticism of The Twin Snakes come from this. Specifically, it's the over the top Cutscene Power to the Max, the unbalanced mechanics from Metal Gear Solid 2 and the new soundtrack.
    • An accidental result of having Tranquilizer weapons in the game, Snake's mercy kills come off quite a bit worse in hindsight. Sniper Wolf's in particular; even with the cut scene finale to the battle if you never grabbed the regular sniper rifle then you're basically murdering an unconscious woman who needs a bit of medical attention for a collapsed lung and exhaustion from being hit with Tranquilizers while downing pills like candy.
    • The redone voice acting. A major point of contention were the removal of Mei Ling's Chinese accent and Naomi's British accent, which fans of the PS1 original thought made them really stand out and either sound cuter (Mei Ling) or sexier (Naomi). Retconning the accents was intentional though as the characters' backstories made their original accents moot as the former was born in America, while the latter had been raised in America since her childhood. When Metal Gear Solid 4 later made the American accents canon, PS1 purists either blamed the remake for "ruining" Mei Ling and Naomi, or just went ahead and reluctantly accepted the new canon accents.


How well does it match the trope?

Example of:


Media sources: