The Story of Metal Gear, Part 2
The Zanzibar Land Crisis
Metal Gear (including the official sequels) is one of the most innovative games ever created. Hideo Kojima wanted to focus on covert action instead of open assault, and this meant creating a game where the best way to reach the goal is not eliminating the enemy, but avoiding him altogether. He then combined this with a great storyline. Even today this concept remains new, fresh and ultimately more rewarding. The plots are intense and confusing, some actions can only be understood after the fact, thereby increasing the replay value of the games. It should be noted that the abomination known as Snake's Revenge: Metal Gear 2 is not an official continuation of Metal Gear, but was rather produced by the US licensee for the US market only, without the knowledge or approval of Kojima, who refused to acknowledge it as part of the official continuity. So, surprised it remained unnoded, I present to you the official Metal Gear 2: Solid Snake, which was only available in Japan on the MSX system..
While the first part was still very simplistic in both story and gameplay, the second game went full throttle. It introduced many of the features also available in MGS, such as the crawling movement option, special operations of various weapons, and the radar. The graphics were greatly improved as well, as was the soundtrack, which integrated the player into the setting. Controls were improved as well, so this game was a lot more playable than it's predecessor.
Set in 1999,with the cold war thawing, the large powers set their sights onsettling local conflicts, and an era of peace seems to be at hand. The nuclear threat is also swiftly becoming a dark memory. But there are also those who do not accept this peace...
In the Middle East, there is still a lot of instability. In this chaos, Zanzibar Land, a small republic just next to Russia, China and the Arab nations, sets up a military government. In covert para-military operations, it raids sites for Disposal of Nuclear Arms around the world to take possession of weapons not yet disabled and at the same time begins non-discriminate invasions of nearby countries.
In this world of nuclear disarmament, Zanzibar Land's nuclear buildup is swiftly perceived as a real threat. As oil resources are also quickly growing scarce, the world is facing a serious energy source crisis with no alternative supply to oil. So, when Czech biologist Kio Marv invents a micro-organism called OILIX capable of producing crude oil naturally, he is kidnapped by Zanzibarian radicals on his trip from Czechoslovakia to America.
Concerned about the situation, the United States ordered Roy Campbell, commander-in-chief of hi-tech special forces unit Fox-Hound, to rescue Dr. Marv. Campbell was a former member of Fox Hound. He brought back Solid Snake, the man who single handedly brought down the armed fortress nation of Outer Heaven 4 years ago, and asked Snake to bring back both Dr. Marv and OILIX.
Successfully infiltrating Zanzibar Land with the help of CIA agent Horry and others, Snake was able to go deep into the fortress and once again encountered Dr. Petrovich, the chief engineer of Metal Gear at Outer Heaven. He too had been abducted to Zanzibar Land and forced to develop another Metal Gear. But he had an even more shocking fact available for Snake: Big Boss, the man Snake had defeated at Outer Heaven, turned out to be the general commander of Zanzibar Land as well.
Together with Natasha, Dr. Marv's guard and former Czech International Secret Police agent, Snake rescued Dr. Petrovich and headed for the confinement facility deep in the fortress to save Dr. Marv. But when Petrovich and Natasha crossed a narrow suspension bridge over a deep valley, a missile blew the bridge away, killing Natasha. Unable to help, Snake heard a voice he knew very well:
Hey Snake. We are good buddies. I can let you go. Just leave this place at once!
Gray Fox, who had disappeared after the Outer Heaven Affair, was controlling the new and improved Metal Gear, and once again took Dr. Petrovich into custody.
After a series of intense battles with various mercenaries, Snake finally made it to Dr. Marv's confinement facility, but it was too late. Dr. Marv was dead, and Petrovich, unable to do anything. Petrovich told Snake that Dr. Marv was tortured repeatedly, and finally died because of his weak heart.
Snake then received an emergency call from Horry, who told him that Petrovich had not been kidnapped, but had been visiting Zanzibar Land voluntarily to develop Metal Gear. Petrovich had also directed the kidnapping of Dr. Marv. Realizing his cover was blown, Petrovich attacked Snake, but formed no challenge for the combat-trained Snake.
Obtaining the structural plan to OILIX, he tried to escape, only to be confronted by Metal Gear again, again controlled by Gray Fox. After a tremendous battle, Snake succeeded in destroying Metal Gear once again. However, Gray Fox did not submit and challenged Snake to the final battle. In the midst of a mime field, Snake and Fox fought without any weapons.
A fist-to-fist duel involving no hatred or murder intent, a weird moment of purity, during which the two were bound by forces transcending words and emotion.
In the end, Snake remained victorious, but Big Boss was still waiting for Snake, just like 4 years ago at Outer Heaven. Big Boss tried to convert Snake by appealing to his warriors instincts, but succeeds only in infuriating Snake further:
"There is only one battle I have to fight. To free myself from you, to shatter the nightmare...Big Boss, I will kill you!"
Killing Big Boss, Snake and Horry escaped Zanzibar Land on a rescue helicopter, carrying the structural plan of OILIX. Snake once again saved the world, but there was no smile on his face. Big Boss's last words kept ringing in Snake's head. "Whoever wins our battle does not end. The loser is freed from the battlefield, but the winner must remain there. And the survivor must live his life as a warrior until he dies." Snake then disappeared into the white lands of Alaska, alone...
Official Metal Gear Games List:
Metal Gear - Metal Gear 2: Solid Snake - (Metal Gear: Ghost Babel)
Metal Gear Solid (see also Twin Snakes) - Metal Gear Solid 2: Sons of Liberty (Substance) - Metal Gear Solid 3: Snake Eater