While the rest of the internet goes crazy about chokehold selfies, little stuffed dogs, and miniature Metal Gears — all of which are cool — I can’t say I feel excited about the new Metal Gear Online trailer. Instead, I have a suggestion.
Ever notice how your brain gets a little bit excited and stupid whenever you hear the phrase? Like a quick injection of Metal Gear anticipation that makes you want to enjoy whatever comes next? Maybe that’s because we’ve been conditioned to associate it with our favorite memories and products, and now it’s being used to condition us as consumers to act like excitable children at the drop of a hat. Ravi Singh talks about how badly the phrase has been abused in the new article, “Kept You Waiting, Huh?” is a Corporate Meme.
Personally, I’m a cynical guy, and I’m aware of corporate social engineering, the co-opting of youth culture, viral marketing, and so on. Hell, I still think about how badly the “Now THAT’S how an assassin operates…!” phrase failed to catch on, with the Peace Walker cross-promotion with Assassin’s Creed:
Metal Gear Solid: Peace Walker – Assassin’s Creed
I think this is one of the worst examples of trying to force feed Metal Gear fans a meme. As the beginning of the video says, it was created for “rampant internet consumption”, complete with a big exclamation mark (!) and uses lazy repetition to try to make people go crazy for the novelty of a straw box that you can use to beat up guards with.
The cardboard box is even more iconic than “Kept you waiting, huh?” and we all know that Kojima is hyper-aware of its status in the gaming world thanks to the explosion of box-related items announced for The Phantom Pain not long ago. It’s much like how diving into a bunch of hay is iconic to Assassin’s Creed. So to make a collaboration combining these to elements is kind of funny and amusing, I’ll admit; but when you see a 6 minute video jamming the “meme” into culture it just feels gross. Almost as gross as Kojima and the dude from Assassin’s Creed wearing masks and sneezing, because GET IT, IT’S SUPPOSED TO BE “VIRAL MARKETING”. So now we’re viral marketing a running gag about how it’s a viral marketing video? How internet-savvy and meta. Oh and Kojima throws out “Didju rike it?” at the end, following by Kaz repeating “Now THAT’S how an assassin operates” just for good measure.
I really enjoyed Ravi’s article on the “Kept you waiting” corporate meme, and I recommend checking it out.
Kojima has confirmed that there is an entirely new Metal Gear Online in the works (presumably developed by KojiPro L.A.) and that invading bases is not all there is to it.
The full reveal of MGO will be seen at The Game Awards:
No matter how long it’s been since I first played the game, each Winter when it begins to snow up here in Canada I get deeply nostalgic for Metal Gear Solid. I begin to play the soundtrack in my mind as I walk, mapping my surroundings as if they were a sneaking challenge and guards were around every corner. Of course I’m too old to actually run around and play out the scenario these days, but I do want to keep that feeling alive. Something about seeing footprints in the fresh snow, hearing the crunch under my foot, and feeling that chill in the air makes me want to listen to that soundtrack again.
Which is honestly why I’m so appreciative of Rich Douglas’ newest soundtrack, Metal Gear Symphony. I’ve been listening to it all day, and I feel like I’ve been transported back to in 1998 all over again. The songs use awesome samples, spans 18 good length tracks(!) and stays in the zone from beginning to end. It only costs $8 on Loudr, but you can pay more if you want to support this kind of epic, professional work. (You can also get it on iTunes or Google Play, just follow the links on this page.)
Thankfully Rich Douglas is a veteran game composer for 10 years (Lifeless Planet, Shadowgate Remake, etc.), which means he did the right thing and got it officially licensed. That means royalties go to the original creators as well, and everything is mutually beneficial and legal. Walking around in the snow with this on your MP3 player will make you feel like a sneaky badass, I guarantee.
Again, check it out here.
Some guy at Reddit has conducted a survey on which theories people believe. I found the results interesting!
For example, more than twice as many people believe that Big Boss is replaced with a doppelganger at some point during the game than believe the “Quiet is Chico” theory. More people still believe that Quiet is related to Sniper Wolf, and the majority of people believe she’s related to The End! Of course that’s just one slice of the Metal Gear community.
Without nationalism, war loses its mask. Without patriots, war loses its most reliable tools. If we accept that Metal Gear is “anti-war”, do we accept that it’s also anti-patriotism?
With vengeful tool of justice in hand, the mysterious warrior “Solid Kenny” slices apart Metal Gear Rising: Revengeance in this epic article, which exposes the artificial insides of the gaming community’s gory little cyborg darling. It doesn’t get any more brutal than “Metal Gear Rising Sucks”.
Not only that, but brace yourself for an unthinkable TWO HOUR VIDEO dissection of the smash hit, with knowledgeable commentary, behind-the-scenes research, and endless razor-sharp arguments for anyone who dares to defend Rising as a worthy entry in the Metal Gear franchise! If you’ve never cared about the game before, you will after this.
Remember how I said there’s a war over gaming culture between the “softcore” and the “hardcore” gamers? Softcore gamers are desperate to have mainstream validation, while hardcore gamers only want to be catered to as the prime demographic of the industry — as the vocal consumer. The softcore part of gaming culture, which largely includes media personalities who want to become accepted by the mainstream for the sake of their careers if nothing else, hate the hardcore because they make gaming culture look unfriendly and uncool; they complicate the “games are art” and “games are becoming movies” narratives, and they demand higher standards from everyone in the industry, including the media.