Solid Snake (real name David), commonly referred to as Snake, and later as Old Snake, was a former spy, special operations soldier, and mercenary. He was a product of the Les Enfants Terribles project and "son" of legendary soldier Big Boss, along with his "brothers" Liquid Snake and Solidus Snake.
Possessing an IQ of 180 and fluent in six languages, he was known as "the man who makes the impossible possible" and his exploits made him into a living legend among the military black ops. Initially a Green Beret, Snake was later inducted into High-Tech Special Forces Unit FOXHOUND in the mid 1990s while it was under the leadership of Big Boss. Repeatedly tasked with disarming and destroying the latest incarnation of Metal Gear, a bipedal nuclear weapon-armed tank, Snake would thrice avert potential nuclear catastrophe, becoming a famed war hero.
Following the Shadow Moses Incident of 2005 and subsequent smear campaign by the Patriots, the secret organization behind American politics, Snake was labeled a terrorist. He faked his own death in the Tanker Incident of 2007, though he re-emerged two years later to assist Raiden in the Big Shell Incident. During this time, his cells entered a state of accelerated aging, causing his health to decline. The cause of his rapid aging was explained by Naomi Hunter, who examined Snake and determined that it was caused by planned genetic changes during the cloning process.
In 2014, Snake performed his final mission, during which he defeated Liquid Ocelot and destroyed the Patriots. After one last encounter with Big Boss, Snake chose to live his remaining days in peace.
Born in 1972 alongside Liquid Snake in Carlsbad, New Mexico, and lived under the care of Dr. Clark for the first seven years of his life, under the belief she was his aunt, and that he was an only child. In his teenage years he took up interest in the military, as he wanted to follow in his father's footsteps as told by stories by Dr. Clark in his youth. When he turned eighteen he joined FOX-HOUND under the command of Big Boss, who he had no knowledge of his parentage.
Outer Heaven UprisingEdit
Snake's first mission for FOXHOUND came in 1995, when he was tasked with infiltrating Outer Heaven; a military nation deep within South Africa, led by a feared and legendary mercenary. Snake was charged with rescuing Gray Fox, a FOXHOUND agent who was missing in action, and shed light on the "ultimate weapon" Metal Gear, which Fox had mentioned in a broken radio message prior to his capture. Shortly after arriving in the general vicinity of Outer Heaven, he was contacted by Big Boss via his radio and was reminded to prepare himself for his first real mission for FOXHOUND.
After infiltrating the fortress via an underwater insertion, he learned from the various prisoners of war after freeing them that Fox was being held in a high level prison cell in the basement, and the only way to find him was to get himself captured. After locating Gray Fox, he learned from him that Metal Gear was a bipedal nuclear-armed tank that can launch a nuclear warhead anywhere in the world. He was then told to locate Dr. Drago Pettrovich Madnar to find a way to destroy it.
With the help of resistance members Schneider, Diane, and Jennifer, Snake succeeded in rescuing Dr. Madnar and his daughter Ellen, and destroyed TX-55 Metal Gear. Big Boss, his mission commander, then revealed himself to be the leader of Outer Heaven, and confronted Snake in person within the 100th floor basement of the fortress. Snake defeated Big Boss in combat and escaped the base before its self destruction. However, Big Boss survived and promised Snake that they would meet again.
In December 1999, Snake was called upon by FOXHOUND’s new commander, Roy Campbell, for an operation into Central Asia. Apparently, a new highly militarized nation called Zanzibar Land had kidnapped Dr. Kio Marv, inventor of the oil refining microbe, OILIX. Not only that, but a new Metal Gear was believed to be under development in Zanzibar Land. Snake accepted the mission, in part to end the nightmares that he had endured since Operation Intrude N313.
Snake's mission objectives were to infiltrate the seemingly impenetrable wall that surrounded Zanzibar Land, and to recover Dr. Marv and the OILIX formula, as part of Operation Intrude F014. His radio support team consisted of Colonel Campbell, former FOXHOUND instructor Master Miller, and mercenary advisor George Kasler. Snake succeeded in the first task, but complications arose when one of his allies in the mission, a CIA war coverage spy named Holly White blew her cover, and required rescuing. After freeing Holly, Snake learned how to contact Dr. Marv by radio, but after discovering that he could only speak Czech and Slovakian, was forced to locate his STB bodyguard Gustava Heffner. However, the two were attacked by Snake's former comrade Gray Fox while attempting a rescue, after being betrayed by his supposed ally Dr. Drago Pettrovich Madnar, resulting in both Gustava and Dr. Marv's death. Despite these events, Snake succeeded in recovering the OILIX formula, utilizing the polymimetic nature of a special brooch key, bequeathed to him by Gustava on her deathbed.
Deep in the heart of Zanzibar Land, Snake destroyed Metal Gear D and defeated Gray Fox, successfully thwarting the ambitions of Big Boss. As the man behind Zanzibar Land's rise to power, Big Boss returned for a final battle against his former subordinate, the former also having expected that Snake would return ever since he was defeated in Outer Heaven. Snake ultimately defeated Big Boss with a makeshift flamethrower, consisting of a lighter and lacquer spray. Snake and Holly then escaped the fortress, fending off enemy troops in the jungle until they were extracted by helicopter. During the mission debriefing, Snake declined Campbell's request to rejoin FOXHOUND, stating that his nightmares were now over. Likewise, Snake also confirmed to Holly and Campbell that the cartridge he retrieved was indeed the one Marv used to store the OILIX plans, citing that Marv's signature was written backwards on the MSX loading screen when used. Despite promising to have Christmas dinner with Holly following the mission, Snake stood her up and disappeared shortly afterwards. Campbell also implied that this was not the first time Snake disappeared without warning.
Following the conclusion of Operation Intrude F014, Snake returned to North America and retired to an Alaskan wilderness retreat, Twin Lakes. By this time, the military had deemed that Snake had committed several acts of misconduct during his career, enough for him to serve a lengthy prison sentence, should he be brought to account. Through his retirement, Snake attempted to try and forget his war-torn past and recover from PTSD, as well as come to terms with the fact that he had "killed" his own father. During this time, he began heavily drinking. He later became a dogsled racer, taking care of 50 huskies, and competed in the Iditarod.
In February 2005, Snake was called back to the U.S. military when he was deployed by his former commander Roy Campbell to Shadow Moses Island. A rebellion had taken place at Shadow Moses by rogue members of FOXHOUND, who had threatened the U.S. with a nuclear strike and demanded that the remains of Big Boss be turned over to them. Unhappy at how Campbell had sent armed soldiers after him and had his personal effects confiscated, Snake reluctantly accepted the assignment on the condition that he only take orders from Campbell, and that he be given full disclosure of all mission information. Due to his resemblance to the terrorist leader Liquid Snake, Solid Snake had his hair cut shortly before departing to Shadow Moses, to avoid being mistaken for him. Snake was charged with ascertaining their nuclear capability and rescuing their hostages: president of ArmsTech weapons manufacturer Kenneth Baker, and the DARPA Chief Donald Anderson.
Snake infiltrated the base alone, but quickly gained help in the form of Metal Gear REX developer Hal Emmerich and new FOXHOUND recruit Meryl Silverburgh, Campbell's niece. Metal Gear REX was a nuclear-armed bipedal walking tank developed in secret by the U.S. Army and ArmsTech. Although he largely was in shape for the mission, he did end up exhausted after climbing the flight of stairs up to Tower A's roof, causing Campbell to briefly joke that Snake's mushing had him get out of shape. However, he ended up being tricked into activating Metal Gear due to misinformation supplied by Liquid (who had infiltrated Snake's support group by posing as Master Miller, having had him murdered three days prior). With the help of the two aforementioned, as well as his former comrade Gray Fox (now the Cyborg Ninja), Snake succeeded in destroying REX and defeating the members of FOXHOUND, including Liquid.
His mission, however, was a cleverly woven plot, prepared by the Pentagon. Through the secret, Pentagon-guided efforts of genetic engineer Naomi Hunter, Snake's body became host to the artificial virus FOXDIE. Snake was outraged to hear that his mission was a government conspiracy, and that he was merely sent as a carrier of the virus, which was programmed to kill Baker (for knowing too much about the project), and the FOXHOUND operatives just to ensure that the bodies of the Genome Soldiers and Metal Gear REX could be recovered undamaged. He was also reminded of the possibility that he had willingly returned to the battlefield because he enjoyed war, as commented upon by Meryl, Psycho Mantis, and Liquid Snake, and echoing Big Boss's words in Zanzibar Land.
Throughout the incident, Snake suspected that Campbell was concealing important information regarding the mission's true nature, although he later forgave Campbell after learning that the Pentagon had used Meryl as leverage in order to force him to cooperate with them (as they had deliberately sent Meryl to Shadow Moses the same day as the revolt). Snake also discovered that Naomi was the foster sister of Gray Fox, who desired revenge for what Snake had done to her brother and had modified the FOXDIE virus so that it would kill him in addition to FOXHOUND. However, she set the virus to a "wildcard" value, leaving him vulnerable at a later time.
Post-Shadow Moses, Sons of Jubal IncidentEdit
Following the Shadow Moses Incident, Snake and Meryl disappeared after leaving the base, after Campbell faked their deaths by claiming that they had died after their jeep crashed into the ocean. Because of his exploits at Shadow Moses, he also became a hero to the public, which greatly concerned the Patriots.
Revolver Ocelot, the sole surviving member of FOXHOUND, reported the events on Shadow Moses to U.S. President George Sears, for whom he had acted as a spy throughout the entire incident. He informed Sears, that it was the inferior clone Solid Snake, who had survived, stating that Liquid had wrongly believed himself to be inferior right until his death. Ocelot also reported that the FOXDIE in Snake would activate soon, although Snake would ultimately remain unaffected due to differences between his and Liquid's genetic codes. Three weeks after the Shadow Moses Incident, Naomi escaped from confinement at a high-security facility during debriefing due to someone breaking her out. As Nastasha Romanenko and the U.S. Government believed Snake to have been the one who broke her out (in actuality, it was Liquid Ocelot who did the deed), the U.S. military also added Snake's supposed involvement in her escape to his rap sheet.
Ocelot later sold REX's plans onto the black market, prompting Snake and Otacon to found the anti-Metal Gear NGO, Philanthropy. With the goal of eradicating all Metal Gear technology, Snake participated in investigating its development across the world, often by illegal means, which Philanthropy then exposed to the public via the Internet. His missions and activities in the group included data collection and various sabotage missions, and were also extremist in nature. During one of these operations in a facility, Snake, along with Otacon, also stole Liquid Snake's corpse, which was kept in cold storage. It was during time Meryl, who had unoffically joined Philanthropy left the group, as she saw it had become more of a terrorist group, and their goals becoming more destructive, she decided to go back to the US military and lead Rat Patrol Team 01.
In 2007, Snake was contacted by Bishop, the son of a US Senator who had commissioned the creation of Metal Gears to combat the ever growing threat from the fakes being created by various countries. Bishop hired Snake to rescue his father from ArmsTech from the Citadel in Georgia. Snake agreed, but Bishop revealed he had hired two snipers to assist him, Pierre Leclerc and Disgrace, although he didn't like the idea of help and preferred solo ops, he agreed to do it. It was during this mission he encountered the Gear Tamer, a man who enjoyed "taming" Metal Gears created by the rebels.
Upon rescuing the Senator, Snake and Pierre embarked on a mission to Africa where they combated the Sons of Jubal, a military unit being lead by a mysterious figure, who kept it's soldiers under a hypnotic state. Here Snake and Pierre discovered the prototype for the Patriot's AI in a mountain, which Snake destroyed to prevent anyone from getting their hands on it. After their mission, Pierre left for Paris to join a French PMC unit, while Snake and Otacon recieved an anonymous tip a new type of Metal Gear was going to be taken from the US Marines by mercenaries.
In August 2007, Otacon received a tip from his estranged stepsister Emma Emmerich that a new Metal Gear was being developed by the United States Marine Corps, and was being transported via a Marine vessel disguised as an oil tanker. Solid Snake would later reminisce that the intelligence had been suspicious, but Philanthropy had grown complacent due to its previous successes in sabotage. Snake boarded the tanker while en route to its destination, and quickly discovered that a group of Russian mercenaries led by Sergei Gurlukovich had their own plans for Metal Gear RAY, arriving shortly thereafter to takeover the vessel. Snake soon encountered Olga Gurlukovich (Sergei’s daughter) on board the tanker, and proceeded to defeat her in a gunfight, knocking her unconscious with his modified M9 tranquilizer pistol.
Snake quickly made his way into the tanker's holds and, as per his mission objectives, secured photographic evidence of the new Metal Gear. Neither he nor Otacon could have predicted the reappearance of Revolver Ocelot on the tanker, who proceeded to detonate Semtex explosives onboard the ship in order to sink it. While attempting to stop Ocelot, Snake was confronted by the spirit of his deceased brother Liquid Snake, who had apparently taken over the mind of Ocelot through an arm transplant (Liquid's arm having been grafted onto Ocelot, to replace the hand he lost at Shadow Moses). Snake's presence had seemingly released Liquid's personality, who went on to comment that he had evaded the accelerated aging that Snake was now undergoing. After Liquid escaped in the stolen RAY, Snake successfully escaped the sinking tanker and made his way the surface of the river, where he was rescued by Otacon on a small boat. The two also rescued Olga, and, taking advantage of the situation, decided to fake Snake's death by using the corpse of Liquid Snake as a decoy.
Thanks to the photographs taken by a U.S. Army Cypher, the Patriots framed Solid Snake and Philanthropy in a smear campaign for the tanker sinking, simultaneously exposing them to the public and destroying their reputation. It was widely believed that Snake had been killed in the incident, after Liquid's body was retrieved from the New York Harbor, its genetic similarity to Snake's providing apparent confirmation.
In April 2009, Snake infiltrated the Big Shell offshore facility, which was occupied by the Sons of Liberty, who entered by cutting a hole in the surrounding oil fence. He later knocked out several Gurlukovich sentries in the deep sea dock, and ascended to the roof of Strut A by elevator; Raiden, who had infiltrated shortly after Snake, briefly saw him, though his back was turned. Snake later disguised himself as Lieutenant Junior Grade Iroquois Pliskin, a member of the Navy SEAL Team 10 Alpha squad. He chose the alias as a reference to "Snake Plissken" of Escape from New York, and the name of a confederacy of Native American tribes headquartered in New York (also a Huron word meaning "Black Snake").
“Pliskin” first encountered Raiden in the Strut B transformer room, which was strewn with the bodies of SEALs who had been killed by Dead Cell member Vamp. Raiden was nearly attacked by Vamp, but only received a scratch from a bullet grazing his face thanks to an intervention from Pliskin. Vamp then went to attack Pliskin, but stopped short, remarking that Pliskin smelled just like "him." Raiden then picked up Pliskin's M4 carbine, which was not ID-locked like the other SEALS' weapons, and fired on Vamp to drive him off, who then left the area after being ordered to retreat. Claiming to have entered the Big Shell by a "fast rope descent from a navy chopper," Pliskin aroused Raiden’s suspicions after a sea louse crawled out of his clothes. Pliskin told Raiden about Vamp's origins, as well as Dead Cell, though he wasn't able to continue on because he needed a few moments to recover from Vamp's attack, having become disorientated from blood loss. However, he also exaggerated slightly to Raiden, as he intended to go separate ways and watch him from afar, until he could gauge whether Raiden was trustworthy enough for him to ally with. Before Raiden left, Pliskin provided him with a SOCOM pistol.
Pliskin later met Raiden and bomb disposal expert Peter Stillman within Strut C. Stillman provided the two with a coolant spray and sensor to disarm C4 explosives, which had been planted throughout the facility by Stillman’s former protégé Fatman of Dead Cell. Pliskin’s possession of headphones, usually worn by SEAL commanders off the battlefield, and his use of other military organizations' mottos ("Semper Fi" and "Who Dares, Wins" of the U.S. Marines and SAS, respectively), clued Stillman in to the fact that Pliskin wasn’t actually a SEAL. Pliskin then left to begin his bomb disposal of Shell 2, and located: the first C4 on the Strut H heliport behind some cargo; the second C4 on the ceiling of another strut (which required him to get onto a stand to reach it with the coolant spray); the third C4 planted on the back of a Gurlukovich mercenary; the fourth C4 in an area so narrow he needed to crawl inside to reach it; and the fifth C4 that required a much closer inspection to locate. Olga Gurlukovich became alerted to Pliskin's presence aboard the Big Shell, after seeing "a man in a cardboard box." This unorthodox tactic clued Solidus Snake in to Pliskin's possible identity. Raiden also briefly witnessed the same man in a cardboard box, and called Pliskin about it and inquired if the man in the cardboard box was a member of Dead Cell, unaware at the time that Pliskin had been that man in question.
At some point later, Pliskin was contacted by Peter Stillman and requested that he investigate Shell 2 in case there were C4 planted that the C4 sensors couldn't pick up. Pliskin managed to stumble upon a large cache of C4 explosives that both were vapor-sealed and didn't contain any of Fatman's cologne, at the bottom of Strut H, and contacted Stillman and Raiden. However, he also ended up inadvertently activating the same C4 cache when he disarmed the last of Shell 2's decoy C4 explosives due to the same cache being rigged to activate when all of the decoy C4 were disarmed. Pliskin ended up knocked out in the resulting explosion shortly after Stillman's final message warning Pliskin and Raiden about the proximity microwave trigger with a seven foot (two meter) radius, on the C4. He ended up surviving the blast with the help of Otacon. In addition, after Raiden questioned him about toxins being released after Shell H was heavily damaged, Pliskin revealed he never heard of that and decided to investigate, also revealing that Shell 2 did not contain any hostages, meaning they were most likely in Shell 1. He also implied that saving U.S. President James Johnson and the hostages wasn't his mission, arousing Raiden’s suspicion s further. Afterwards, acting on Raiden's tip, Pliskin conducted a thorough investigation of Shell 2, and managed to hijack a Kasatka helicopter, with Otacon acting as pilot. Afterwards, he then briefly introduced Raiden to Otacon, via Codec, although they had to cut the meeting short when Pliskin had to fight off several Gurlukovich Mercenaries who had spotted them and attacked.
Snake eventually met his genetic brother, the terrorist leader Solidus Snake, though he refused to acknowledge him as such. After aiding Raiden in his attack on Solidus’s Harrier jet on the Shell 1-2 connecting bridge, Snake revealed his true identity and mission to him, as the latter had overheard Solidus using Snake's name. He also once again met Olga and explained to her that it was in fact Revolver Ocelot who had killed her father Sergei. Snake later helped Raiden, Otacon and Emma install the reprogrammed computer virus, a digital counterpart of FOXDIE, into GW (Arsenal Gear's AI system), shortly before Emma died after being stabbed by Vamp. Snake worked together with Olga, using Raiden in order to gain access to Arsenal Gear and to acquire a disc that contained information on the true identities of the Patriots’s Wisemen's Committee. Once aboard Arsenal Gear, Snake gave Raiden Olga's H.F. Blade, and despite not being "a big fan of blades," he instructed Raiden on how to use it. He and Raiden then fought their way through an army of Arsenal Tengu soldiers. They were both eventually split up from one another, with Snake being captured by Fortune and brought to the top of Arsenal.
Atop Arsenal, Ocelot revealed his true colors to Solidus, Fortune, Snake and Raiden. But before he could kill them, Ocelot's right arm began to twitch, and Liquid Snake possessed him once more, revealing that he had leaked the information about Arsenal Gear to lure Snake out to the Big Shell so that Snake could "free him [Liquid]." Liquid (in Ocelot's body) then set off in RAY to kill the Patriots via his host, with Snake in pursuit. Although Snake failed to stop RAY, he placed a tracker on the Metal Gear and explained later to Raiden that his plan was for him to find the Patriots by deciphering the source code of Emma's worm cluster, admitting that the disc they gave Raiden was a decoy. He also declined Raiden's request to help Snake in Philanthropy and save Olga's child, as he suspected that even after the S3 Plan was complete, the Patriots would still monitor Raiden's vital signs and thus place Sunny in further danger of being killed should he try to help, and also hinted that Rosemary did indeed exist and that he should maintain his relationship to her before joining. He then slipped away unnoticed to Otacon's car and left, being long gone by the time Raiden remembered about Snake. However, the data recovered from Arsenal showed that all 12 members had been dead for over a hundred years, and Philanthropy had lost their only lead. However, Snake eventually deduced that the information was a fake lead (or as he put it, five years later, "a load of crap").