Metal Gear Solid V: Ground Zeroes may not have been worth its full price in terms of gameplay, but the title certainly stayed true to the series' history when it came to confusing us and introducing a whole lot of new questions. One thing that everyone is wondering about, is the identity of Skull Face, seen above.
Metal Gear Solid V: The Phantom Pain is a while away from us in terms of a release date for the Xbox One and PS4, though Konami and Kojima have stated that we may be hearing word from them soon in this department. I seriously hope it's not around Christmas though.
Metal Gear Solid V: The Phantom Pain & Skull Face
So who is this Skull Face? Is he a new character entirely for the series, or have we run into this guy in some capacity in the past? Is he someone in disguise? It's an exciting game to look forward to, one that will show us all how Big Boss finally formed Outer Heaven and became the villain that we thought he was up until Metal Gear Solid 3: Snake Eater.
It will explore his intense pain, furious anger and the endless betrayals that forced a great soldier to become everything that he hated. Keifer Sutherland is sure to do a great job at effectively conveying the descent into madness that this soldier undergoes, and there will be a lot of surprises on the way.
But now to this chap. As we're aware, Skull Face will be the antagonist for Metal Gear Solid V. However, he’s not just a plain old bad guy: The man's face has been stripped off of him revealing his skull. The skull represents the human side of himself that is now lost, and mirrors the loss that Big Boss undergoes as he himself becomes a 'skull' in his quest for revenge.
In Peace Walker, the MSF logo is also a skull. Snake and his allies fought under this symbol of a skull, and during his battle against Skull Face he forms Outer Heaven, which also uses the skull as a symbol. Allegedly there is a rather poignant story to be revealed here that I cannot wait to hear!
At last year’s E3, one of the key artworks the studio used was of an x-ray of Big Boss, showing just his bones and his skull. One of the themes in the game is race. If you look under the skin, at just the skull and bones, they are mostly the same for every human being, regardless of race. Skull Face also represents this, this faceless character. Perhaps he foreshadows the fact that Big Boss will become like him and be the villain in the next games.
It demonstrates Hideo Kojima's great use of symbolism in his games. Nothing is ever there just for the sake of it or a mere coincidence, everything is deliberate and well planned. But what exactly do we know about this character aside from his disfigurement?
Well, we've learned that he is in fact Hungarian (and I'm sure he also won't be the ultimate villain in the game, Kojima is going to save that for later) and was seriously tortured after escaping a bombing incident in a factory where in illegal weapons trading was being carried out. You can also hear him in numerous tapes you can find in MGS5: Ground Zeroes, feeding false information to others.
But one theory that I think could be very interesting, is that the man is in fact Ocelot, playing both sides. Now, of course this is hardly going to work if we see the two of them together in the campaign of MGS5, but I doubt we will. I mean Ocelot is also described as "A rival living a lie".
Kojima is known to play with voices a lot in his games, with certain characters even being played by the same actor but then altered in editing. I don't know why, but I get the distinct feeling that the voice of Skull Face (which has been a subject of great contention) is actually being voiced by Troy Baker. He's famous for being able to disguise his voice, but you can always hear him in his roles.
Perhaps he took on a voice that was completely indistinguishable from the other roles that he's played. But we shall see. What are your theories of the identity of Skull Face in Metal Gear Solid V: The Phantom Pain? Do you think the release date will reveal him to be Ocelot? Let us know in the comments!