With Metal Gear Solid V – The Phantom Pain leaving a bad taste in the mouth of almost every hardcore fan (myself among them) I am still waiting for Chapter 3 and I firmly believe it was going to be something magnificent.
This isn’t because I think Chapter 3 is coming… hell, it isn’t because I believe mission 51 will be finished and/or released. It isn’t even because I think Konami would all but totally redeem themselves. No… it’s because the last part of The Phantom Pain made me think we were going to the only part of Metal Gear that wasn’t ‘Solid’. I thought we were going to hear David Hayter’s ‘Solid Snake’ arrive in the jungle in search of Metal Gear and Gray Fox. When I first played through TPP and finished learning ‘The Truth’ I saw the tape for Operation Intrude and my heart skipped a beat.
This was the greatest game ever made and I was going to get to finish where I began as a kid. Then the credits rolled and there was no chapter three… there was nothing. A broken mirror with more questions than answers.
Metal Gear as a saga may have ended just before the lines of the circle met. This leaves so many questions among the fans that really aren’t as important as the story and filling the holes that The Phantom Pain left. I understand from the obvious message of literal Phantom Pain being felt by Venom Snake and his missing limb, and even our pain of feeling like the story remains unfinished. Yeah… we all get the message.
What left me in this still somewhat annoyed state was the feeling that I missed out on the last part of a story. It reminds me of James Caan in ‘Elf’ when he approves the story about the puppy and the pigeon although it is missing the last few pages. I saw chapter three coming… I saw Solid Snake creeping through the mist into Outer Heaven. I saw that first sleeping soldier next to a jeep… I saw it all ripped from me. I felt betrayed and yes even a bit angry.
‘What the f**k? That’s it? It’s over?’
I want so badly to join the believers out there that think there is more hidden for us in TPP. However, I also know better than to waste my time with trying to uncover something that isn’t covered to begin with.
The Phantom Pain is an unfinished epilogue and prologue in the same work. At this point we have to let it go and move on to whatever we decide to do next.