After years of trying to unlock it, a secret ending to Metal Gear Solid V: The Phantom Pain has been officially triggered by a dedicated base of fans on the PlayStation 3.
The cutscene in question showcases Big Boss and his band of mercenaries declaring that all nuclear warheads around the world have been disarmed and destroyed. The secret cutscene can only be triggered in one way, by disarming every single nuclear warhead in the game.
This, of course, was once thought to be a near impossible task. Due to the multiplayer component of MGSV, every player in the game not only has the capacity to build a nuke at their personal base but can also invade other players bases to steal their nukes, and then disarm them.
Those who craft or steal nukes have the power to dismantle them, but every single nuke must be dismantled to trigger the secret ending, which is then shared with all players on the server. And now, in at least one place, it has happened.
The fact that the cutscene was triggered is an astounding feat. Players on the PlayStation 3 version of MGSV were finally able to achieve the ending, five years after the game was launched.
The ending has been seen before, but never accessed legitimately. The PC version of MGSV had the secret ending triggered due to a game bug back in 2018. Konami addressed the ending then and officially fixed the bug. Hackers have of course revealed the cut-scene since then, but no group has legitimately triggered it in-game until now.
Hideo Kojima was no stranger to social commentary coming from his mainstream titles. The Metal Gear Solid series has served to be a commentary on the proliferation of war, the rampant use technology and manipulation of the public, and finally the destructive power of nuclear weapons. The secret ending in MGSV also pays homage to Metal Gear Solid, which contained much of Kojima’s anti-war sentiment all the way back in 1998.
Considering Kojima’s most recent work, Death Stranding, as a commentary on togetherness and building relationships, it is also not surprising he would include one final bit of commentary in MGSV before he left Konami in 2015. In a way, it is appropriate that this final piece of Metal Gear Solid V is locked behind an achievement that can only be acquired through cooperation, coordination, and trust between players online.