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It’s probably pointless to delve into a meticulous dissection of The Phantom Pain‘s infamous Spike Video Game Awards trailer. It’s been done to death already and by those much more emphatic. The possibilities of Moby Dick Studios’ (if that is your real name…) title are clearly enticing though. We still don’t really know what the hell it is though. Is it a hype machine for the upcoming Metal Gear Solid: Ground Zeroes? Or is it more likely a stealthy reveal for Metal Gear Solid V? Either way, The Phantom Pain wowed all who watched its reveal. For the sake of this article, let’s just all agree that this still cryptic game is indeed a Metal Gear entry, and presumably Metal Gear Solid V.

Other than what was revealed in its initial trailer, there is little we know at this point. We are assuming the title is still deep in development, thus a next-generation console release is probable. The gorgeous engine it’s sporting only helps to solidify this assumption. Also, Ground Zeroes is still slated for a PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360 release, this newer title should arrive afterwards and logically will be the first in the Metal Gear series to release on Sony and Microsoft’s next consoles.

If you weren’t aware, Moby Dick Studios’ head director, Joakim Mogren, was not in attendance at the reveal. And, suspiciously, Joakim happens to be an anagram for Kojima – Konami’s director and creator of almost all things Metal Gear. Kojima acknowledged the game and said he was impressed by the trailer and that the unnamed protagonist is clearly inspired by the design of Big Boss and Solid Snake. Kojima remained coy, and stated he wasn’t involved with the project. Although, it’s well known that Hideo Kojima and fan-deception go hand in hand.

As you watch the trailer it’s jarring at times to see how horrific the setting is. A hospital filled with helpless patients is infiltrated by militia and they waste no time getting to work. Patients are drug around pleading for help, then shot point blank in the head. At one point a large group are herded into a single corridor, then once trapped on both sides, the militia opens fire and mows them down. Brutal.

Big Boss? Or just an homage?

Big Boss? Or just an homage?

It’s impossible to know at this point what the general feel of the game will be. But what’s obvious is that “Moby Dick Studios” is incorporating a vibe that toys with the players psychosis. The player is going to have to be dealing with a violent military whilst sorting out whether the events unfolding are reality or just the figment of their imaginations.

What happened? Where am I? Am I in a dream? Is this real? What is going on? Do they want me dead? What are they after? Why is this happening to me? Have I going to hell? These are all quotes pulled from text in the trailer. All of which have you question reality (or lack there of)  during the situation at hand. The trailer starts with a doctor informing us that we’ve been in a coma for quite some time. Then kicks into high gear with a car accident that could have been the root of it.

At the end of the trailer our protagonist is flipped over and has a guard point at his face with a rifle. It’s here that we get a quick glimpse of our character and further cements the fact that we’re most likely playing as Big Boss. We see the iconic mullet and a bandage acting as an eye-patch, then the camera quickly pans up and we get a glimpse of a character floating overhead – possibly fan-favorite Psycho Mantis. He’ll be right at home with all these possible hallucinations and overall craziness. Other notable appearances include Colonel Volgin, possibly seen entering through a fiery doorway in his classic reddish-orange and black attire. Towards the end of the trailer there is also a glimpse of a fiery unicorn running at the camera, hinting that The Boss may have a role to play as well. Again, pure speculation at this point.

Colonel Volgin?

Colonel Volgin?

For what we do know from the trailer, there’s still tons that we don’t. How did Big Boss loose his arm? Why is this hospital and its patients being wiped out? How did our character get here in the first place. We know that Konami plans to unveil a bit more of Ground Zeroes at next month’s Game Developers Conference. We can only hope that Konami and Kojima plan to showcase a bit more of this game at E3. If not, it may be quite a while before we hear from it again. And that, my friends, would be a real pain… Keep checking OnlySP.com for all the latest in the Metal Gear series, and let us know in the comments what you think about The Phantom Pain.

Jeff Scott
A life long Nintendo fan and lover of all things games, Jeff Scott, couldn't be more excited to be writing for OnlySP. When he isn't working the dreaded 9 to 5, he enjoys catching up on movies, great television, and oh yeah - family time when he can fit it in (kidding, honey!). He hopes to blossom from occasional to full time writer at some point. If he doesn't embarrass himself on this site first...

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