What’s Up With The Phantom Pain?

There were a host of new trailers and exclusive looks at games unveiled at the VGAs last week. Among them, we got a new look at Castlevania: Lords of Shadow 2, The Last of Us, and even the surprising announcement of Dark Souls II.

But perhaps the most intriguing and hotly-contested discussion of late has revolved around a new trailer and a possible new IP unveiled during Spike’s feature.

The trailer has the title of “The Phantom Pain,” and is presented to be a new IP from the Stockholm-based Moby Dick Studios under founder and CEO Joakim Mogren.

The Phantom Pain’s trailer sees you in first person initially, waking up in a hospital as a doctor informs you that you’ve been asleep for a long, long time. Your character looks over to see a hooked hand where your arm once was. And after a tense moment, you realize that things aren’t all hunky dory in this mysterious hospital. In fact, they’re downright creepy, and the hospital atmosphere reeks of some classic survival horror goodness. Add in a collection of gruesome deaths and a few seemingly hallucinatory occurrences, and you’ve got one hell of a trailer. See it below:

On the surface, this looks like an amazing new game with some interesting concepts. But there are some internet super sleuths out there who happened to catch on to a few things in the trailer they found suspicious.

So, what exactly did they find? Among other things, the aesthetic of the world and the character himself look hauntingly familiar, and some of the other aspects of the trailer have led many to one conclusion: This is not a new IP. It’s an epic troll job by Hideo Kojima as a veiled look at a new Metal Gear Solid game.

Now, whether or not it’s the recently revealed Ground Zeroes, the actual Metal Gear Solid V, or even a completely separate game under the Metal Gear banner (unlikely) remains to be seen. But for all the speculation and conspiracy theories people have, there does seem to be a suspicious amount of parallel that lends some credibility to the idea.

First off, the main character has the mullet of Solid Snake and the eye patch of Big Boss. He has the same build as Snake, and even executes an army crawl in the same style as Snake himself. Even the man in the beginning refers to Snake as “solider” when escaping the hospital room.

The supernatural elements of Metal Gear Solid make a strong appearance in the trailer as well, as we see with the weird images and happenings all around our mysterious character.

Outside of that, even the name of Moby Dick Studio’s supposed CEO Joakim is an anagram of the name Kojima.

Many theories have been created out of this mess of ideas; some think the classic boss Psychomantis has to do with the entire scene, creating a dream-like sequence in Boss’ head; some think of this as a teaser for an entirely new Metal Gear game we haven’t seen or heard of yet; there are theories that this takes place alongside the events of Ground Zeroes; and there are even some who seem to think that the whole scene means nothing to the Metal Gear universe as a whole.

No matter which side you fall on, though, it’s still an interesting development…and we all know the internet simply wouldn’t be the internet without  crazy speculation.

What are your thoughts on The Phantom Pain? Tell us in the comments below!