Slightly different format here, instead of focusing on one particular Metal gear character or piece of technology, I’ll focus on some of the many organizations that play big parts in the series.
The Philosophers is the granddaddy of them all.
After World War I, a group of wealthy, intelligent people from the United States, Soviet Union, and China pooled their resources together to work together to form the Philosophers-a group dedicated to World peace (This initial line up of Philosophers was known as the Wiseman’s comittee). However, like their successors, the Patriots, things got out of hand by the 1930s, and soon the Philosophers became involved in the very thing they tried to stop in the first place….and it created divisions among them, especially during the second World War.
Their influence and vast wealth funded several projects. While their backing of the Manhattan project was made public, they also experimented on soldiers, forming the Joy/ boss’s cobra unit. In addition, the Joy/The Boss’s father was one of the original “Wisemen”, so she was knowledgeable about their influence. They also ran schools to train spies, like Eva.
However, a member of the Philosopher during World War II-Boris Volgin-made away with a huge chunk of the group’s funds, and scattered it throughout various banks. The location of the banks was concealed on a microfilm, and the money and the microfilm were known as “The philosopher’s Legacy”, giving most of it’s power to the Soviet Union-and it’s vast wealth allowing Volgin’s son to build his massive fortress of Grozny Grad and the Shagohod weapon.
However, a faction of American philosophers still did exist, and manipulated the life of the Boss, taking her child (the future Ocelot) away from her, and holding him as a form of leverage, as well as blaming her for various missions-a NASA test flight, a mix up including a double agent-and forcing her to kill The Sorrow. (Her apprentice, Jack/Snake remained unaware of this).
During the Virtuous mission, the Boss’s mission was to get the Legacy back from Volgin, under cover of defecting to the Soviets. She hoped that grabbing it for the US would help to reform their organization and united the world once more.She eventually succeeded, and the microfilm was later passed on to Snake himself, while Ocelot managed to get part of it as well. A third copy, gained by Eva for the Chinese faction of the philosophers, turned out to be a fake.
Eventually, those who were part of Operation Snake Eater obtained the parts of the legacy themselves. They used the vast wealth and networks of the Philosophers to form the Patriots-dedicated to the Boss’s dream of a united world and the original goal of the Philosophers. But like them, things soon got warped. But that’s another article.
The original philosophers still had a small role to play-as a distraction. The Big Shell inciddent orchestrated by Solidus Snake in 2009 was an attempt to learn the actual names of the Patriots. However, the AIs which now ran the organization planted a false lead-the names of the Wiseman’s comitee-confusing Otacon and Solid Snake.
Otacon : Snake, you there? It’s me. I’ve finished going over that disc.
Snake : Did you find the Patriots’ list?
Otacon : Of course. It contains the personal data of twelve people. There
was a name on it — Snake, it was one of our biggest
Snake : What’s going on around here?
Otacon : I don’t know…
Snake : Anyway, where are they?
Otacon : Well, we were right about them being on Manhattan, but…
Snake : But what?
Otacon : They’re already dead. All twelve of them.
Snake : When did it happen?
Otacon : Well, ah…about a hundred years ago.
Snake : What the hell?