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The five-year quest to remove all nuclear weapons from Metal Gear Solid V

The video game character Solid Snake, famous for violence, is shown to meditate.
Grow / The whole Serpent is saying that he “gives peace a chance.”

It’s been almost five years since Konami started Solid Metal Gear VThe nuclear disarmament metagame, tasked the game community with removing every single nuclear weapon created by players on game servers. This week, players on the PS3 version MGSV he seemed to have achieved that sought-after goal, opening a cut scene that congratulates them on a day when the character Master Miller says he “thought … never arrives.”


Now, excited players after the disarmament are waiting to see if Konami officially recognizes their achievement and perhaps release some new content of long-term understanding for the five-year game.

The long push for peace

Organized MGSV Nuclear disarmament efforts have been going on and on for many years, first through the now-off Metal Gear Philanthropy subreddit and more recently into the MetalGearAntiNuclear subreddit. There, players come together to discuss the shipping of the Forward Operation Bases of nuclear-armed opponents. MGSVonline servers to steal and then disassemble those weapons to lower the total number worldwide.

But interest from disarmers has been sporadic, and the effort has faced opposition backed by players interested in each other who are encouraged to create nuclear weapons as a form of protection and deterrence in gambling. Both the official Konami count (which the company stopped updating publicly years ago) and the unofficial count via a GitHub server scraper show a historic disarming progress that has either stopped in the long run or is actively going backwards. time, depending on the platform and server (the PS4 and Steam versions of the game are still a long way from the full disarmament of this writing).

For a brief moment, such a scene was impossible to see on PlayStation 3.

For a brief moment, such a scene was impossible to see on PlayStation 3.

“I think a lot of people just shifted and the fun was drawn to it after a long time,” the indie VR player and game dev Stefferp told Ars on Discord. “I think the whole thing is a great missed opportunity, people were really into this minigame” nuke in 2015, but Konami’s interest in it waned over time and they were very eager to talk about it eventually. “

Find the band together

The last downward sprint to full disarmament on PS3 began back in March, when Reddit user TheHungHorse used coronavirus quarantine as an excuse to start a Discord server organizing a serious boost among dedicated players. “At first, nothing was done because we just didn’t have the numbers. But slowly, our numbers grew to 60, 70 … It was shocking that everyone came together for this purpose. Me and a few other members in fact they bought a PS3 copy of[of[ta’[ofSolid Metal Gear V]just to help. “

Eventually, 20 hardline disarmers started a group direct messaging group to coordinate their efforts and schedules. “We’ve all been disarmed at the same time over the last month so we don’t have to worry about people bringing the numbers back to what they were before,” TheHungHorse said.

“This time it was like ‘right,’ let’s do just that mindset, ‘maybe because the game is approaching its fifth anniversary,’ Stefferp told Ars.” I guess it brought that fun back, supposedly. . “

Thanks to group coordination, initial progress was rapid, with the number of PS3 nuke dropped from more than 800 on July 10 to less than 100 in less than a week, according to the GitHub scraper. At that point, however, the group scored what TheHungHorse suspects were determined hackers to keep the nuke count high.

“Sometimes we get the number to just 40 to get it back to 60,” he said. “So everything was a lot of patience and trial and error. Considering we don’t have access to those tools used against us, it’s really a miracle that they went down to zero.”

The cut scene that followed the disarmament of PS3, as posted by Stefferp. Note the list of usernames greetings at the end.

Hackers aside, normal players also caused headaches for the disarmers. “I was surprised at how active the PS3 player base is still,” Stefferp said. “We figured nukes would be easy but people retaliated all the time [striking back against the player who had stolen their nuclear weapon]. It is an old console but is still used by a few people. I think the hardware is pretty nice … 2006 but still irrelevant. “

The disarmament group was also faced with a set of “invincible nuks” apparently caused by an error in the game’s server code. These weapons appear on the server as the property of players who do not have a Forward Operating Base – a logical impossibility that also prevents others from stealing and disarming ghost weapons.

“My personal theory is that people had nukes, and then reset their saving data, to reset your FOB to zero,” Stefferp tells Ars (this, Stefferp suspects, is why the GitHub nuke counter has never shown a “full drop” to zero moment “).

Waiting for confirmation

Phantom looking or not, the disarmament group was surprised to find its efforts rewarded this week with the activation of a cut scene announcing full disarmament. “We knew we had it close the day it happened, but we didn’t think we would actually do it,” TheHungHorse said.

Konami, for its part, has not yet confirmed the community’s victory so far. “A nuclear abolition event has occurred in the PS3 version of MGSV: TPP as of July 28, Japan time, but we are currently investigating this issue, ”the official Japanese Metal Gear account tweeted earlier this morning.

That investigation may be justified before players celebrate too much. This is because previous “full disarmament” cut scene activations were later considered false alarms – once for PC players in early 2018 and again for PS4 players at the end of 2018. .

“We … can confirm that the event was started while the nuke count did not reach zero,” Konami said days after the disarmament of the fake PC in 2018. “We would like to apologize for the inconvenience and assure us that we will investigate the matter as well as take the necessary action to prevent it in the future.”

Is peace the key?

Konami confirmation may also be more important than just a pat on the back. This is because many players are convinced that disarming in the game is the exciting event that leads to the release of new content in the game.

The evidence for this theory is circumstantial but difficult to ignore. Back in 2016, for example, Konami Community Manager Robert Peeler said he “would rather not stipulate what would happen, if anything, to nuclear disarmament.” Peeler, who no longer works for Konami, recently tweeted that he “[n]ot sure if / how Konami will celebrate, but if legitimate, that’s great. It comes on that 5th anniversary! “

Although MGSV It has only two chapters, the data miners have also found a title card for “Chapter 3: Peace” hidden in the game files. Some have linked this to a series of three cryptic tweets with three themes made up of Solid Metal Gears creator Hideo Kojima back in 2016. While no actual “Chapter 3” content has been found hiding on the game disc, some suspected Konami may use confirmed disarmament as the patch trigger in the content.

Securities card data mined by <em>MGSV</em> a code introducing a chapter that some believe could arise after disarmament.  “src =” https://cdn.arstechnica.net/wp-content/uploads/2020/07/che3peace.png “width =” 618 “height =” 378″/><figcaption class=

Securities card data mined by MGSV a code introducing a chapter that some believe could arise after disarmament.

Such a method of getting out for opening the DLC does not give out the character Solid Metal Gears creator Hideo Kojima, who is somewhat known for his strange gameplay experiments. “I think there’s definitely something to the disarmament thing about, otherwise Konami won’t have to‘ investigate ’every time it fires,” Stefferp said.

TheHungHorse, in turn, thinks the actual trigger may involve disassembly and then keeps the server disarmed for the duration of the eight-minute cut scene that runs. Then, TheHungHorse suspects, there may be a “secret cut scene that plays Ocelot instead of telling you” Welp, someone is doing nukes again. “

“For me personally, I just want answers to these questions. I want a debate about age MGSV“They cut the content to an end once and for all,” TheHungHorse continued. “For now, our next goal is to get the nukes back to zero but for a long period of time in order to test a few things … For now, though, we’re all taking a break. We deserve that.

“In addition there were other fans picking up where we left off on‘ Peace Day ’,” he added. “Glad to see this game being relevant again.”

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