Hideo Kojima really wanted Solid Snake to have some rat friends. In the 1998 classic Metal Gear Solid, they had originally planned for Snake to befriend and name rats. Unfortunately for all of us, this feature ultimately got cut before the full version of the game launched.
Metal Gear Solid’s cut content
In a video by DidYouKnowGaming?, this fun fact got revealed as some of Metal Gear Solid’s cut content. The voice of Snake himself narrates the dive into the series, discussing facts fans might not yet know. One such fact centers around the rats in the game, which Kojima wanted to add more of. Players then would’ve had the ability to give them names and praise them as pets.
Snake encounters rats as the first form of life while in Alaska. The rats play a small yet significant role throughout the game, such as following them through air ducts. Hideo Kojima comments on their importance in a statement, read by David Hayter:
“The rats were a way of adding reality to the game and to create the atmosphere within the base. The enemy soldiers eat food and they have leftovers, which attracts the rats… I actually wanted to put more rats in. Another thing I wanted to do was assign names to individual rats, and then these rats could then be raised as pets. Alaska is a very cold place, and when Snake first goes into the base, the rats are the first life forms he encounters, so I think they’re a very important element in the game.”
The franchise references this in the Shadow Moses level of Metal Gear Solid 4. Snake calls the rats his “little furry friends” to Otacon over the Codec. While this highlights the rats helping Snake in the vents, it might also nod towards the cut feature of befriending them.
They even had a rat-based Easter egg in the Sniper Wolf boss fight, where shooting the rats originally caused them to grow bigger. Though the feature remained for awhile, they ultimately cut it because it “felt like too much of a joke.”
Solid Snake tells all this and more
Of course, Metal Gear Solid stands as a PlayStation classic despite being unable to befriend rats. It’s hard to make a game perfect, after all. All these facts come from an interview back in a 1999 issue of Computer & Video Games Magazine. For more Metal Gear Solid facts and more, check out the full video. Sit back and enjoy the voice of Solid Snake telling you all the different ideas that could’ve been in this beloved series.