This article lists the anachronisms in the Metal Gear series. An anachronism describes chronological inconsistencies in a fictional story. In the Metal Gear series, anachronisms mainly occur in the form of technology and other items appearing prior to their existence in real life, or in some cases, referring to real events as having taken place earlier or later than in history.
- The Ration designs for every Metal Gear game set in the 1990s-2000s (with the exception of Metal Gear Solid 4) were designed after Meal, Combat, Individual rations. In real life, the MCI rations were retired by the 1980s.
Metal Gear Solid 2: Sons of Liberty (set in 2007 / 2009)
- When Solidus Snake reveals Raiden's past to him and Revolver Ocelot, he mentions that the First Liberian Civil War occurred in the 1980s. In actuality, although the war began in 1989, the brunt of it actually took place during the 1990s.
- During his speech on the roof of Federal Hall, Solidus states that George Washington became the first U.S. President exactly 200 years ago. In The Document of Metal Gear Solid 2, the timespan mentioned is 223 years. Both are incorrect, as Washington took office on April 30, 1789, making the correct timespan 220 years.
Metal Gear Solid 3: Snake Eater (set in 1964)
- Major Zero's love of James Bond movies shows the opinions of a modern fan of the series; at the time, there had only been one "gadget," a briefcase with a variety of equipment in it seen in From Russia With Love, and their status as a series staple would not be cemented until Goldfinger, which came out on September 17, 1964; Operation Snake Eater is dated on August 30.
- The energy bar CalorieMate was not manufactured until 1983.
- In an optional radio conversation with Major Zero during the Virtuous Mission explaining The Boss's history, he mentions that in 1957, she trained several soldiers at the JFK Special Operations Center at Fort Bragg. However, not only was the facility itself not even created until 1982, but the name itself, which is also incorrect as it was the JFK Special Warfare Center, is also anachronistic because John F. Kennedy would not be the President until four years after this event.
- Para-Medic, when explaining the Instant Noodles, states they were invented "just recently", which implies they had been invented around 1964. In real life, they were invented by Momofuku Ando in Japan and was first marketed under the brand name Chikin Ramen by Ando's company, Nissin, on August 25, 1958, at least six years before the events of the game.
- Various vehicles appear in the game prior to their production (or lack thereof) in real life. It is implied with some of the vehicles that their early development was the result of funding from the Philosophers' Legacy:
- The Lockheed D-21-drone used for Naked Snake's infiltration of Tselinoyarsk during Operation Snake Eater, conducted its first flight around four months after OSE.
- The Mil Mi-24 (NATO reporting name: Hind) was not produced until 1969.
- The Bartini Beriev VVA-14 was not developed until 1972, and the project was scrapped after two prototypes had been built.
- The Objekt 279-tanks (in real life called Obyekt 279s) actually were never produced at all due to a variety of factors, namely costs.
- Although not directly seen, it was mentioned that the Shagohod fired SS-20 "Sabre" IRBMs for launch. In reality, such a missile system did not enter development until 1976, twelve years after the events of the game.
- In Snake Eater 3D, Para-Medic tells Naked Snake about Yoshi during an optional radio conversation, saying that "he must be getting popular in the Soviet Union." In reality, Yoshi debuted in Super Mario World, which was released for the Super Nintendo Entertainment System in 1990. This was around the time the Soviet Union started to collapse.
- During the ending, Lyndon B. Johnson, when speaking, sounded closer to how he sounded late into his presidency nearing 1968.
Metal Gear Solid: Portable Ops (set in 1970)
- Sigint and Naked Snake will talk about the Metabolic Dominance project during an optional radio conversation, should the former be recruited. The project in question actually occurred in 2004, about 34 years after the events of the game.
Metal Gear Solid: Peace Walker (set in 1974)
- During their first meeting with the Militaires Sans Frontières, Ramón Gálvez Mena and Paz Ortega Andrade claim that they are representatives of the University of Peace (as a professor and student, respectively). In real life, the University of Peace wouldn't be established until 1980. A briefing file with Paz implies that the university itself had not actually been sanctioned yet and that Gálvez was pushing for it to be sanctioned.
- A briefing file for Grenada has Kazuhira Miller referencing Prime Minister Sir Eric Gairy of Grenada requesting a facility to study the occurances of aliens thanks to tabloid magazines with the implication that Chico's Chrysalis photo was responsible for his request. In reality, Gairy does not make the request until 1977, three years after the events of Peace Walker.
- In Peace Walker, the Walkman is featured in the game, and claimed to be a prototype. In real life, the Walkman wasn't introduced until 1979. Later Walkmans are progressively more anachronistic, with the final one a modern MP3 player.
- In the original PlayStation Portable version of Peace Walker, Metal Gear ZEKE and the AI weapons utilize VOCALOID software for their dialogue called "Vocaloid-Flex." In real life, VOCALOID wasn't introduced until 2004.
- In the Japanese version of Peace Walker, Pepsi NEX is featured in the game. In real life, Pepsi NEX wouldn't be released in Japan until 2006.
- In the Japanese version of Peace Walker, AXE Body Spray is featured in the game. In real life, AXE didn't exist until 1983.
- In the Japanese version of Peace Walker, DLC related to the manga Arakawa Under the Bridge was released. The DLC included six T-shirts and two magazine items. In real life, Arakawa Under the Bridge was first serialized on December 3, 2004.
- In the Japanese version of Peace Walker, Doritos is featured in the game. While Doritos did exist during the events of Peace Walker, it wasn't introduced in Japan until 1987. In addition, the specific flavor featured, Fish Taco, didn't exist until the 2000s.
- Like the above, although Mountain Dew did exist during the events of Peace Walker, it wasn't introduced in Japan until the 1980s. In addition, the Mountain Dew logo featured didn't exist until 2005.
- Most of the Hobby Magazines (Weekly Famitsu, Dengeki Games, Dengeki PlayStation, and Famitsu Xbox 360) in the Japanese version of Peace Walker did not even exist until well after the 1970s (with some being released in the late 1980s, and even originating as late as the 2000s).
- Several of the guns, equipment, and vehicles that are developed in Peace Walker either were not developed until a couple of months after the events of the game, or were well after the events of the game. In addition, some vehicles shown had actually had their production cancelled well before the events of the game.
- Huey Emmerich is seen smoking electronic cigarettes. In real life, these were not developed until 2003, although they were patented in 1963.
- In a briefing file, Paz, when discussing the stone spheres of Costa Rica, claims they were discovered "over fifty years prior", implying that they were discovered in 1924. In actuality, the stone spheres were discovered in 1939.
- In a briefing file, Chico will allude to chupacabras, although only by description and not by name, in a topic regarding UMAs. Chupacabras were never officially designated a UMA until 1995.
- The flashbacks between The Boss and Naked Snake had Snake wearing his sneaking suit as well as wearing his eyepatch, as well as their fighting in Rokovoj Bereg, although several of the lines of dialogue uttered by Snake and The Boss indicated that it was actually during the Virtuous Mission and very early into Operation Snake Eater.
Metal Gear Solid V (set in 1974 / 1975 / 1984)
- In the ending, a passport for Big Boss' new identity was issued in 1980 and is set to expire in 1986. In real life, passports issued during the 1980s actually had a five-year lifeline, not a six-year one.
- The Walkman featured in Ground Zeroes and The Phantom Pain is the WM-R55 which in reality was released on July 1, 1985. A Walkman of the same model is given to Chico by Skull Face in the opening cutscene of Ground Zeroes which is set in March 1975.
- Some of the licensed songs featured in The Phantom Pain are anachronisms. In real life, they either didn't exist in 1984 or they were released later in the year. They are: a-ha's "Take on Me" which was released in October 1984, Dead or Alive's "You Spin Me Round (Like a Record)" which was released in November 1984, Europe's "The Final Countdown" which was released in 1986, and The Cure's "Friday I'm in Love" which was released in 1992. In addition, many of the songs featured are remastered versions of the originals, which were released sometime after 1984.
- In the cassette tape "World Affairs Over the 9 Years", which is implied to have been recorded after Venom Snake and Ocelot escaped from Cyprus, but before their arrival at Spugmay Keep (sometime between March 13 and March 21), Ocelot mentioned that a news article was published which revealed that the Soviets were planning to boycott the 1984 Summer Olympics. However, such plans weren't made public until May 8, 1984.
- One of the enemy conversations among Soviet soldiers in Afghanistan indicates that George Orwell's novel Ninteen Eighty-Four was released in 1954. In reality, it was first published on June 8, 1949.
- Metal Gear's name itself is an anachronism, as it was named after the Sahelanthropus, a perceived ancestor of the human race, but the first skull was not found until 2001, almost two decades after the events of the game's setting. A cassette tape from Huey addresses this anachronism by revealing that its true discovery was covered up by Cipher. This is at least partly in-keeping with real history, as it is known the Sahelanthropus skull had been reburied.
- In the "The Parasites Gave Us language" tape, Code Talker mentions the "forkhead box protein P2" ("FOXP2"), which in reality was discovered in 1998.
- The Triumph Bonneville Big Boss rides on in the ending has the license plate 3B71 0512 on the back, implying it is the same model that EVA, later known as Big Mama, would use in Metal Gear Solid 4. However, that model is a post-2001 remake of the T100, which wouldn't be made until a little over a decade after the events of The Phantom Pain.