Konami and Kojima might have split, but a lot has been pulled collaboratively for this to happen.

Many things have happened since the confusion that surrounded the initial release and development of this open world stealth action-adventure video game. At least now everyone is very clear on what MGS V: Ground Zeroes was, and what MGS V: TPP will be about. Kojima has also stated that the game will be 200 times the size of what Ground Zeroes was, which must be a welcome addition for anyone who’s waiting for it.

But the controversies never stop – whether it is about Quiet and her character and the way she looks, or the clear split between Konami and Kojima which resulted in the removal of the latter’s name from the game cover, and everything else associated with MGS V: GZ. It led to tensions rising once again, and even the whackier theories went awry, with real-life surgeon Sergio Canavero threatening to sue Konami for ‘unauthorised use of his likeness’. It’s been a bumpy ride already, and not particularly fun to be honest, since the antics that led up to it are no longer to be remembered as fondly as what happens in the aftermath of its release. But Kojima is still a part of The Phantom Pain, and this is what you should know about it.

The game makes Venom Snake a.k.a. BigBoss more relatable, so that anyone new coming to the game will not have troubles with the character. How is this achieved? Amnesia! Snake will not be privy to any of the happenings during the nine years he spent in coma. On the other hand, people who’ve played Ground Zeroes can import their saved data to avail some special perks this time around. You can now play the game in any order you like, and still achieve the same ending that you’re supposed to, keeping the world open-ended and the story coherent.

There’s a new day and night cycle, which changes the weather and the time of the day depending on fast travel, or when Snake lights a ‘phantom cigar’. It has been achieved by a pop-up watch panel, which can be used to meter movements and see how long it takes for shifts to change, and calculate your own moves accordingly. Any changes in the weather will have a direct effect on the environment that you play in, and the open world overhaul of playstyle will allow for stealth options. You could end up interacting with anything in this manner, opening up new routes and splits that were that unavailable previously. For example, smuggling a bomb inside an enemy base to take a radar tower out will allow you to sneak past more areas. The game also lets you take a non-stealthy approach if you want to, where you can just mount a brash assault with a gunship, and that’ll work just as well.

The game still encourages its non-lethal play, so subduing opponents without killing is still at the helm. Assault rifles and explosives aside, you should be using tranquilizers more. Snake has AI companions to come to his aid: Quiet who is the female sniper, D-Horse with a customisable saddle to carry more equipment if required, D-Walker which is a manned and highly mobile heavy artillery platform when you need ballistic support of that magnitude and scale, and finally, DD who is a trained wolf raised as a pup on the new base. Remaining on cordial terms with your companions is key to ensure that their skills remain sharp and their attitude towards you does not detriment you. There is the Fulton system, so surface-to-air recovery will be possible, amongst other things, like getting random animals to your base, and turning it into a zoo eventually.


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