Board 8 Wiki

Who is Big Boss?[]

The most important villain in the Metal Gear Solid series isn't Revolver Ocelot, MGS's Liquid Snake, MGS2's Solidus Snake, MGS3's Colonel Volgin, or even The Boss (if you can even call her that).

Instead, that honor goes to a character that does not even make an appearance as a villain in the Metal Gear Solid series, the greatest soldier of the twentieth century and genetic father of Metal Gear protagonist Solid Snake -- Big Boss, AKA Naked Snake.

However, being a villain is hardly the central role of Big Boss. Rather, he serves as a genetic and thematic template for his clone successors in the Metal Gear Solid series, and emphasizes the series' overarching concepts of Gene, Scene, and especially Meme through his words and deeds.

Chronologically, the first appearance of Big Boss is in Metal Gear Solid 3: Snake Eater. Set in the era of the Cold War, the operative under the codename 'Naked Snake' infiltrates the Russian jungle to extract a rocket scientist in control of invaluable information.

This is only the beginning, naturally, and what begins as a simple search-and-rescue mission balloons into a conflict with the fate of the world at stake, as Naked Snake's mentor betrays him and the United States. She kidnaps the scientist, gives a miniature nuclear launcher to the rogue Colonel Volgin, and leaves Snake for dead.

Snake survives, but after the Colonel uses the nuclear weapon on a Russian base, the whole thing is brought to a head, and Snake alone must neutralize the threat of mutual assured destruction by stopping both Colonel Volgin and assassinating The Boss. Torn between duty to his country and the world and to his only love and mentor, Snake is thrust into one of the most fantastic series of events in all of gaming. By the end of it, he has lost an eye, become romantically interwined with the mysterious spy EVA, destroyed Volgin's plans as well as his deadly nuclear delivery vehicle the Shagohod, uncovered the greatest source of wealth in the history of the planet, and forced to kill his mentor in one of the most heartwrenching sequences in Metal Gear history.

But that isn't all. Not only does EVA reveal herself to be a Chinese operative and betray Snake, but she reveals to him a crucial piece of information as well: that The Boss was no traitor, but was merely forced into her position by her own country, in order to obtain the wealth known as the Philosopher's Legacy. And ultimately sacrificed herself for that very same country that had betrayed her in almost every conceivable way, while the Legacy was used to revive the Philosophers into what would be known as the Patriots.

This final touch of guilt as he is given the title of 'Big Boss', beyond what most normal people could even comprehend, is a catalyst, which would give him his drive and philosophy. Soon after, he is also cloned, which would begin the lineage of cursed genes that would pass down to an entire new generation.

By the time we see him again in the original Metal Gear, he is the leader of FOX-HOUND, an elite special ops task force. He uses this power to manipulate the Western nations as well as form his own independent base, Outer Heaven, to which he would oppose the Western nations. He sends in his own genetic son, Solid Snake, to Outer Heaven in order create confusion amongst the West, but underestimates the will and drive of his son to survive. He tries to feed him misinformation as he draws closer to the core of the base, but Solid triumphs, forcing Big Boss to reveal himself and take him on in a battle to the death.

He loses and is left for dead as Outer Heaven burns to the ground, but is able through his will to survive, rebuild a mercenary country in Zanzibar Land, and start his dream anew. Solid is once again sent in to stop him, and it is then that Big Boss tells him that he is his father, passing down the same guilt to his son that his mentor gave to him. He gives Solid the fight of his life, but unfortunately for him ingenuity runs in the family, as Solid uses a makeshift flamethrower to burn him to death once and for all.

Even now Big Boss' genes are vied for in the Metal Gear universe, considered more dangerous than any weapon. He has made more of an impact in that world than any other character, and is spoke of as a legend in virtually every circle there is. Big Boss may have the same badass character design as Solid Snake, but it's hard to argue against his unique accomplishments, to the point where one might wonder if it's appropriate to mention his progeny in the same breath as him. What other character snaps his arm back into place after breaking it, shrug off a bullet wound to the eye as if it were nothing, and suffers the trauma Big Boss has -- and can come off as a realistic character in the process?

In other words, he is the perfect template, and the ultimate tragic character for the Metal Gear series. And without him, it might not even be worth playing.

"And you're forgetting one very basic thing. You don't have what it takes to kill me." -Big Boss

(Writeup courtesy of Karma Hunter)

Big Boss's Contest History[]

Win-Loss Record: 8-6

Summer 2005 Contest - Zebes Division - 7 Seed

  • Zebes Round 1 --- Lost to (2) Auron, 27000 [28.53%] - 67639 [71.47%]
  • Extrapolated Strength --- 56th Place [16.15%]

Though enough people got MGS3 to get Big Boss into a contest, he's hardly one that can hold his own. If anything, Metal Gear Solid 3 was more a blessing for Solid Snake himself than it was a boost for Big Boss into contest stardom. Their character designs are even exactly the same.

Though with this said, it's pretty cool that Big Boss actually managed to get into one of these things. The downside is that not enough of the voters care about him enough for him to be a strong character. The end result was Big Boss getting blown out in his one and only contest match in an appearance that he had no shot of winning.

Summer 2007 Contest - Division 3 - Third Group

  • Division 3 Round 1 --- 2nd place, 30234 [23.00%] - Mario, 76130 [57.91%] - Pac-Man, 13289 [10.11%] - Wander, 11819 [8.99%]
  • Division 3 Round 2 --- 2nd place, 33146 [24.89%] - Mario, 62062 [46.60%] - Magus, 23700 [17.80%] - Phoenix Wright, 14263 [10.71%]
  • Division 3 Final --- 3rd place, 15787 [11.00%] - Sephiroth, 65795 [45.85%] - Mario, 50341 [35.08%] - Fox McCloud, 11566 [8.06%]

Big Boss was put into a position to advance past the first round, much to the delight of MGS3 fans. The absolute ease with which he did it surprised people, beating Pac-Man and Wander combined. People blamed that on Mario SFFing Pac-Man, which is probably true. But Big Boss got his big break in the second round when he got a Naked Snake picture, the one thing that gave him any chance against non-fodder. People were anxious to see what he would do with it. Needless to say, he impressed beyond all expectations. He did nearly 2% better now with Magus and Phoenix Wright there and got nearly 25% of the vote with Mario in the poll.

However, this did not go without its fair share of complaint on the board. People said it was unfair that Big Boss got the Naked Snake picture because there was no way to predict if he would or would not get it when filling out the brackets. While they may seem to have a legitimate beef, I think it only helped add chaos and unpredictability to this contest, which it desperately needed. This performance by Big Boss proved that Naked Snake is an instant high midcarder because he looks just like Solid Snake (...or Solid Snake looks just like him, I guess I should say), so here's hoping he'll be allowed as a separate entry one of these days, though I doubt it.

Summer 2008 Contest - Division 7 - First Group

  • Division 7 Round 1 --- 1st place, 66033 [48.08%] - Kirby, 50515 [36.78%] - Jinjo, 13034 [9.49%] - Lucas, 7766 [5.65%]
  • Division 7 Round 2 --- 3rd place, 35307 [26.17%] - Kirby, 42464 [31.47%] - Master Chief, 40903 [30.32%] - Raiden, 16245 [12.04%]

Big Boss proved he was one of the most pic-dependent characters to ever grace the character contests, as Kirby was considered a favorite in round 1 even if Big Boss got his Naked Snake picture, and when he did, he not only pulled the upset, but did so in blowout fashion. Then in round 2, he got an old man pic, and suddenly he was gone and Kirby was back in first. True, Big Boss was facing LFF from Raiden, but Naked Snake probably could have pulled it off.

Winter 2010 Contest - Mushroom Division - 8 Seed

  • Mushroom Round 1 --- Defeated (9) Miles Edgeworth, 56904 [76.22%] - 17757 [23.78%]
  • Mushroom Round 2 --- Lost to (1) Mario, 21075 [36.84%] - 36136 [63.16%]
  • Extrapolated Strength --- 43rd Place [26.10%]

Big Boss has come a long way since the 2005 contest. Big Boss was able to score the biggest day vote gap in the entire contest with his win over Miles Edgeworth. This prompted some people to hype that Big Boss could have a Shadow the Hedgehog performance against Mario. This didn't end up happening, but he was able to get a decent score on the plumber.

Summer 2013 Contest - Division 3 - 5 Seed

  • Division 3 Round 1 --- 1st place, 17337 [74.89%] - (23) Captain Viridian, 3128 [13.51%] - (14) Peacock, 2685 [11.60%]
  • Division 3 Round 2 --- 1st place, 14931 [43.63%] - (2) Luigi, 14638 [42.77%] - (11) Ness, 4654 [13.60%]
  • Division 3 Finals --- 3rd place, 15096 [28.42%] - (1) Sephiroth, 20144 [37.93%] - (4) Kirby, 17875 [33.65%]

Big Boss again was able to show his strength as he scored the second highest percent of the entire contest, albeit against two of the weakest characters in the bracket. In the second round he was able to benefit from Ness and LFF to finish above Luigi who had the "Year of Luigi" media campaign going for him. Despite finishing in last in the third round he was able to put up a decent performance against Sephiroth and a rallied Kirby.

Fall 2018 Contest - Division 3 - 4 Seed

  • Division 3 Round 1 --- Defeated (13) Ridley, 56.66% [16855] - 12890 [43.34%]
  • Division 3 Round 2 --- Defeated (5) Crash Bandicoot, 16381 [52.87%] - 14601 [47.13%]
  • Division 3 Semifinals --- Lost to (9) Pokemon Trainer Red, 14431 [47.82%] - 15748 [52.18%]

Metal Gear underperformed all around the 2018 bracket, and the new series focus ended up being no exception. Sure, Big Boss was never threatened in the first two rounds. But come an arguably winnable match against a human Pokémon character, and the Nintendo boost made Big Boss lay an egg. And with Konami kicking Kojima out, who knows if there's ever another game to help Naked Snake?