Hideo Kojima Explains the Meaning of The Names of Snake, and Why There Isn’t a “Gas” Snake

on March 6, 2014 2:13 AM

It’s always interesting to get a glimpse of the mind of a genius, and legendary Metal Gear Solid creator Hideo Kojima just gave an explanation on Twitter about the philosophy that led to the naming of the multiple “Snake” that appeared in his games.

The reason I used Snake as a code name in Metal Gear is that a snake was the most appropriate symbol of a living being that hides his presence, and sneaks without making any noise. The reason why I didn’t use any specific snake names like cobra, anaconda or viper was because the protagonist is the player. The reason why I use SOLID was to give opposite impression of something soft.

Like for of all endings of the any series, the appearance of strongest enemy was a must in Metal Gear Solid. It’s the Snake who can surpass the Snake. Thus I brought about a “clone.” The struggle between SOLID and LIQUID. That was Metal Gear Solid.

As I developed a sequel, a third snake was needed. Since both solid & liquid express an actual natural state. Obviously the next would be “gas” but Gas Snake would be like a human made of gas, and that’s not a nice name. So I borrowed from the physics terms “solidus/liquidus”. SOLIDUS is not a real state but indicates the border between liquid and solid.

That’s quite complex reasoning (besides the part about “gas” Snake being one ugly name, I guess), but we’ve known for years that Kojima-san loves complexity. What about you? Would you have liked a “Gas” Snake? Personally, I’m quite happy that Hideo Kojima decided to look for an alternative solution.

As an added bonus, we also get to see the iPhone cases that will be launched in Japan together with Metal Gear Solid V: Ground Zeroes.

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 /  Executive News Editor
Hailing from sunny (not as much as people think) Italy and long standing gamer since the age of Mattel Intellivision and Sinclair ZX Spectrum. Definitely a multi-platform gamer, he still holds the old dear PC nearest to his heart, while not disregarding any console on the market. RPGs (of any nationality) and MMORPGs are his daily bread, but he enjoys almost every other genre, prominently racing simulators, action and sandbox games. He is also one of the few surviving fans of the flight simulator genre on Earth.
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