Top 7... Definitive MGS moments

We recount the seminal action-stealth series

5) Metal Gear - the machines

Dating back to the originals on NES, each game pits you solely against a zillion foot-tall, nuclear-equipped, roving death mech - hence the series’ name. Horrifying truths about these menaces are foreshadowed through sepia-toned cutscenes, before plopping you in a large-scale battle with little knowledge of how to defeat said monstrosities. In a series that values human life (or at least gives you the option to), Metal Gears represent the absolute destruction of such.

The Gears themselves have evolved over the course of the series, usually to stamp out the preceding mech. MGS1 introduced REX, the saurian, bi-pedal war machine held hostage by Liquid Snake (and accidentally activated by Solid) complete with rail gun, lasers and Godzilla catcall. MGS2 brought in both RAY - an amphibious, lizard-like metal monster - designed by the US government to destroy REX, and also Arsenal Gear - a UFO-sized clumsy mech which housed a device made for controlling the internet. Prequel MGS3 introduced the tank-like Shagohod complete with ballistic missiles. Naturally, it served as a precursor to the more versatile bi-pedal machines in earlier games' futuristic settings.

MGS4’s trailers haven’t alluded to one singular Metal Gear/nuclear threat, as they all seem to be about the control of war between corporations and nations. But it appears the new breed of Gear is the “GEKKO”: a jumpy half-mech, half-organic creature that bounds over enemies, bleeds and makes loud “mooing” noises, possibly to lure you into a false sense of security. Is the GEKKO - a sign of the mass-production of war - a bigger threat than information control or nuclear warheads? Is there another unseen menace in store for us?