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Metal Gear Solid - Big Boss Character Profile
Its been a long time, some twenty three years, since we were first introduced to the Metal Gear universe. In that time game players have become accustomed to the plethora of memorable characters on offer in the numerous main plot based releases. This ever expanding narrative and continuity has two or three central characters at its core. One of these is the eponymous Solid Snake, who found fame in the 3D setting of the first Metal Gear Solid. Big Boss on the other hand, was thrust into the limelight during the third MGS installment, battling through a Cold War inspired Russian jungle.
Although other characters like Gray Fox, Liquid Snake, Revolver Ocelot and Otacon are integral to the overarching plot, none of these names provide the basis & scenario for the entire gameworld of Metal Gear Solid. Big Boss began everything, providing his DNA for the Les Enfants Terribles project, which led to the test tube births of the sibling trio Solid, Liquid and Solidus. This article looks into how, prior to Metal Gear Solid, Big Boss became the feared antagonist of the early series while also detailing his early days as Naked Snake.
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Metal Gear Solid - Naked Snake's Story
Throughout much of his early life John, later Naked Snake and then Big Boss, would fight in many conflicts leading him to become the apprentice of legendary warrior The Boss. This would serve as his education in the art of CQC. It would also get Naked Snake into the FOX unit, where he took part in Operating Snake Eater, covered in the events of MGS3.
Single-handedly destroying both the Cobra Unit and the Shagohod while also defeating The Boss, who had earlier defected to the Soviet Union, Naked Snake would be bestowed with the title of Big Boss. These events would be the start of his legacy and ultimately led up to his involvement in the birth of his sons. Joining Major Zero in his formation of “The Patriots", Big Boss would rebel against the organisation until a near-fatal accident left him in a coma, with Zero recovering the body to enact his Les Enfants Terribles project.
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Becoming Big Boss
With three clones now growing up, Big Boss decided to work on his ultimate goal, building Outer Heaven and defeating his now enemy - Major Zero. This was nearly accomplished when he forced Dr. Madnar to create the Metal Gear TX-55, simultaneously commanding the offensive with the FOXHOUND unit in a duplicitous ruse. Solid Snake would later destroy the machine however. Snake also defeated the traitorous double agent Big Boss in hand-to-hand combat.
Four years later Big Boss would again face Snake on the battlefield, in the autonomous Asian region known as Zanzibar Land, revealing that he was Snake’s father in the final confrontation of Metal Gear 2: Solid Snake. The plot line was further extrapolated upon in the first two MGS titles. Both Liquid and Solidus would explain the intricacies of gene splicing as well as the Les Enfants Terribles project in general.
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Metal Gear Solid - Big Boss' Revival
Big Boss’ defeat led to a hiatus for the character from the series - with hand drawn artwork being the only frame of reference in Metal Gear Solid. Big Boss would resurface in Metal Gear Solid 4, where his body would be re-animated by EVA and Paradise Lost, with the use of Liquid & Solidus’ remains. Explaining his conflict with Zero to Snake, he would be infected with a new FOXDIE virus and eventually die, saluting the grave of The Boss before he did so. A close to one of the most memorable and perhaps beloved members of the Metal Gear Solid pantheon, Big Boss was both a villain and hero, trying to replicate the ideals of his dead mentor.