Why Metal Gear Solid V Deserves a Director's Cut - VRGyani News and Media


Thursday, August 26, 2021

Why Metal Gear Solid V Deserves a Director's Cut

Metal Gear Solid V: The Phantom Pain left players with a feeling of their own “phantom pain” back in 2015. The bad blood between Konami and creator Hideo Kojima reached an all time high when the final installment in the mainline Metal Gear Solid series was forced out unfinished. The game, which received rave reviews for it’s open world and ability to do almost whatever you wanted, was also found lacking in the story department. In what seemed like a rush job with most of the ending cut out and the second half featuring recycled content and missions, players couldn’t help but feel something was missing; a phantom pain of what Kojima’s game could have been.

Now, with the recent trend of “Director’s Cuts” being released for video games, the discussion of Kojima getting another chance at this final story should be opened up again. Games like Ghost of Tsushima and Death Stranding have both received upgraded Director’s Cut versions this year, with the latter being a game made by Kojima himself, under his new creator owned studio Kojima Productions. These re-releases for next-gen consoles feature improved graphics and brand new post game story content for players to enjoy. Not a remaster and not a remake, these self proclaimed new cuts of video games gives the feel of something like a rerelease of a film.

With that being said, the opportunity for Kojima to return to the Metal Gear franchise is unlikely. However, it should still be considered for a myriad of reasons. Metal Gear Solid V is a game clearly missing an important piece of its ending and leaves certain plot threads unresolved. There is plenty of content capable of being finished and released, for a true Director’s Cut video game that manages to distinguish itself enough from the original release.

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The Lost Third Chapter: Peace

When datamining the game files of The Phantom Pain, fans discovered image files for a chapter not included in the game. Tilted “Peace,” this chapter would have followed after the chapter entitled “Race.” The second chapter comes to a sudden end, when Snake’s “child” Eli (soon to be known as Liquid Snake) escapes the mother base with a group of child soldiers and Metal Gear Sahelanthropus. What follows is a tragic mission which has Snake killing his own soldiers due to an epidemic on base. The dark undertones of the mission come to a head when Snake finally discovers what really happened at the beginning of the game, the night he escaped from the hospital. It’s at this point that players are forced to replay the first mission from the beginning of the game. It is then revealed the Snake you have been playing as has been a duplicate this whole time, with the real Snake in hiding. With that shocking twist, the game comes to an abrupt end, with this third chapter entitled “Peace” nowhere to be found.

One could assume the content of this “cut” chapter was instead spread over the two chapters included in the released game. This could be seen in missions and cutscenes that involve a character named Paz, which translates in English to Peace. The symbolism laced throughout the first chapter “Revenge” and second chapter “Race” point to themes involving peace, but it’s still unknown at this point what the third chapter could have involved.

If anything, a Director’s Cut of Metal Gear Solid V could restructure the content both old and new to incorporate all three chapters. This would not only provide a clearer vision of what Kojima planned for the final Metal Gear game, but also give a new experience for players familiar with the franchise and truly live up to the name of Director’s Cut.

“Kingdom of the Flies”

To get a better understanding of what was cut, players can look at content that was a part of the Phantom Pain’s Collector’s Edition. In what would have served as a much more fitting conclusion for the game, cut content and cutscenes reveal an entirely new mission and boss fight. Displayed through narration, unfinished cutscenes, concept art, and text description, this final mission is drastically different from what was received in the final product.

This unfinished final mission saw the resolution of a cliffhanger in the released game, which saw child soldier Eli steal Metal Gear Sahelanthropus from Snake and Mother Base. Following Eli and his child soldiers to a remote island, concept art and mostly finished cutscenes saw Snake engage with Eli in the metal gear, in a boss fight similar to the first time you fight it previously in the game. This whole new location, boss fight, and much needed plot resolution would have given Metal Gear Solid V the satisfying conclusion it so desperately needed. Instead, due to time constraints and tension between Kojima and Konami, the game was released as is

The cut mission, entitled "Kingdom of the Flies" is the biggest piece of the Metal Gear Solid V puzzle, and would be a welcome addition to a director’s cut of the game. All of this cut content is no secret either, as the controversies surrounding the development of the game have been widely publicized. With the rising popularity of re-releasing games with new content, Metal Gear Solid V would have a real opportunity to take this “Director’s Cut” angle and run with it. Pair that with the fact that most of the cutscenes were nearly finished, and you have the opportunity to put on display the final Metal Gear story the way Kojima wanted it to be told. The advertisement of an entirely new ending would alone boost the popularity of the game.

With all of that being said, the likelihood of a Director’s Cut of Metal Gear Solid V is very slim. Any sort of chance players had to resolve the phantom pain of what could have been with this game went down the drain along with Kojima and Konami's working relationship. That doesn’t mean The Phantom Pain doesn’t deserve the release though. What could be considered the Snyder Cut of video games, Kojima’s sendoff for his most iconic creation will forever live in infamy for what it could have been. While it was still a fantastic video game overall despite the cut content, there’s always the potential for it to be more. In a world where another Kojima game is getting a Director’s Cut, one can always lament and think about the potential that Metal Gear Solid V: The Phantom Pain has in a new console generation, to be re-experienced with a new definitive ending. Never say never, though...

KEEP READING: 'Metal Gear Solid 2': 20 Years Later, Still a Controversial Masterpiece

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