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Missile silo cargo elevator, 1970.

Elevators, also known as lifts, are a type of transportation equipment used primarily in multiple storied buildings, vessels, or other related structures for the transportation of goods between floors. They are normally powered by electric motors that either drive traction cables or counterweight systems such as hoists or pump hydraulic fluid to raise a cylindrical piston like jacks. Although they are generally as large as a small room, some are also designed to be large platforms for large amounts of equipment.


Operation Snake Eater

See also: Virtuous Mission and Operation Snake Eater

In September 1964, GRU Colonel Yevgeny Borisovitch Volgin activated a large elevator platform meant for delivering supplies for developing or maintaining vehicles in the hangar area of Groznyj Grad to use as a makeshift "ring" to fight Naked Snake in.

San Hieronymo Incident

Main article: San Hieronymo Incident
Warning: The following information is from outside Hideo Kojima's core "Metal Gear Saga." It has some level of canonicity within the continuity, but reader discretion is advised.[?]

During the San Hieronymo Incident in 1970, Big Boss and his resistance had to locate and deactivate a cargo elevator to prevent the transportation of nuclear warheads for the ICBMG. Eventually, they resorted to destroying the power source. However, they failed thanks to Python. They later discovered that they had in fact failed to stop the delivery of the nukes since before they even knew about it. Likewise, Big Boss later fought Cunningham on a cargo elevator in the silo complex that was used to deliver IRBMs, or in this case, the ICBMG, to the main launch pad of the silo.

Non-"Metal Gear Saga" information ends here.

Peace Walker Incident

Main article: Peace Walker Incident

During the Peace Walker Incident in 1974, the Crater Base utilized a massive cargo elevator for Peace Walker in the Crater Base and the Mine Base. Likewise, Big Boss and the Militaires Sans Frontières themselves would utilize a room-sized cargo elevator in the latter location when infiltrating it, as well as another elevator when trying to press through to the communications tower at the U.S. Missile Base in Nicaragua to prevent Peace Walker's activation.

MSF itself also possessed a large freight elevator on the ZEKE deck of Mother Base, which they used for Metal Gear ZEKE. This elevator ended up activated by Pacifica Ocean during the latter's hijacking of the walking tank.

Phantom Pain Incident

See also: Hospital Escape and Phantom Pain Incident

In 1984, Ahab and Ishmael attempted to escape a hospital that was being attacked by multiple groups via an elevator (referred to as a lift, due to the hospital being British-owned), as the former's reduction of body mass and the delayed effects of digoxyn to restore his system made the stairs no longer an option. However, before they could board, the lift exploded in fire, shortly after they witnessed a child in a gas mask levitating through a wall. This, as well as a near run-in with a "Man on Fire" later forced them to evacuate to the emergency stairs.

OKB Zero contained a functional elevator, which the XOF and their leader Skull Face later used when escorting the captured Venom Snake to the real location of Metal Gear Sahelanthropus.

Outer Heaven Uprising

Main article: Outer Heaven Uprising

During the Outer Heaven Uprising in 1995, Solid Snake had to utilize elevators throughout his mission in Outer Heaven. There were two elevator systems in Building 1 of the Outer Heaven fortress, one of which skipped the second floor.

Zanzibar Land Disturbance

Main article: Zanzibar Land Disturbance

During the Zanzibar Land Disturbance in 1999, Solid Snake utilized elevators just like in Outer Heaven to access various parts of the Zanzibar Fortress. In addition, because Snake did not heed Gray Fox's warning to leave Zanzibar Land, he also fought the Four Horsemen assassination squad on the elevator in the Zanzibar Tower. He eventually defeated them, although the fight likewise resulted in severe damage to the elevator.

Shadow Moses Incident

Main article: Shadow Moses Incident

During the Shadow Moses Incident in 2005, Solid Snake frequently utilized elevators to access various parts of the base. Likewise, he utilized a large-scale cargo elevator to travel down to the Snowfield in Communication Tower B after Liquid Snake damaged the stairs with his Hind D, although it had seemingly broken down, requiring Dr. Hal Emmerich to fix it due to the weight alarm going off. In actuality, it breaking down was actually the result of Dr. Emmerich unknowingly foiling an assassination attempt on Snake by four stealth-camouflaged soldiers hiding on the elevator, of whom Snake later defeated. Snake also utilized a two-part freight elevator to go down to the Underground Maintenance Base that Metal Gear REX was stored inside, although he ended up having to fight a squad of four enemy soldiers who boarded the elevator just as it was taking off. The freight elevator system was originally going to be a single freight elevator. However, they had to split it up due to structural complications with the bedrock below the first set. The Underground Base that REX was stored inside also utilized a freight elevator to carry REX up to the supply route, which Liquid later activated upon REX's activation to fight Snake with.

The Manhattan Incident

See also: Tanker Incident and the Big Shell Incident

During the Tanker Incident in 2007, Snake utilized various elevators throughout the Tanker to access the various decks of the USS Discovery. Two years later, during the Big Shell Incident, Raiden would access some elevators throughout the Big Shell. In addition, he also had to disguise himself as a Gurlukovich soldier to find Secret Service agent Richard Ames, in order to bypass a surveillance camera-monitored elevator.

Guns of the Patriots Incident

See also: Liquid Sun, Solid Sun, Third Sun, Twin Suns, Old Sun, and Naked Sin/Naked Son

During the Guns of the Patriots Incident against the Patriots in 2014, Solid Snake utilized elevators on Shadow Moses Island and Outer Haven to access various parts of the locations, the former to access Emmerich's lab to reactivate power throughout the base as well as locate the ruins of REX in the underground maintenance base after Vamp sealed the way to the freight elevators, and the latter to rush to the GW control room to deactivate it.

World Marshal Incidents

See also: Raid at World Marshal, Ambush in Africa, Abkhazian Coup, Investigation in Guadalajara, Raid in Denver, and Operation Tecumseh
Warning: The following information is from outside Hideo Kojima's core "Metal Gear Saga." It has some level of canonicity within the continuity, but reader discretion is advised.[?]

During the Raid at World Marshal in 2016, Samuel Rodrigues utilized cargo elevators and freight elevators during his infiltration at World Marshal Inc.'s headquarters. At least one freight elevator ended up stopped due to Sam's presence onboard. Two years later, Raiden utilized a cargo elevator to get to the rooftops during his Raid in Denver in an attempt to get to World Marshal's HQ building, and later utilized an out-of-service elevator by cutting the cables to access an abandoned train tunnel. Upon arriving at World Marshal, Raiden managed to access the elevator from the lobby with help from both Doktor and Blade Wolf due to it being locked down due to Raiden's earlier actions in the Denver cityscape. In addition, Raiden also utilized two freight elevators to get to the computer room at World Marshal, one of which had been destroyed due to extensive damage caused by various Tripod UMGs.

Non-"Metal Gear Saga" information ends here.

Behind the scenes

Elevators were frequently used throughout the series since the original Metal Gear. The first one, however, primarily utilize sidescrolling elements for the elevators. It also requires the player to use arrow keys and similar controls to actually move the elevator to the required floor. The non-canon sequel to Metal Gear, Snake's Revenge, utilizes a similar gameplay mechanic, although it also utilizes miniature elevators for the player to use. Elevators made a return in Metal Gear 2: Solid Snake, although with a revamped gameplay mechanic to make them more similar to how they are utilized in real life, where the player has to access the elevator and then press a button to access the floor. The gameplay change is also commented on in-universe by Holly White.

In Metal Gear Solid, its remake The Twin Snakes, and Metal Gear Solid 2: Sons of Liberty, accessing regular cargo elevators also acts as a subtle method of transitioning scenes due to gameplay limitations during that time of actually interacting with elevators, the only exception to that rule being boss fights onboard elevators as well as the freight elevators in Metal Gear Solid and The Twin Snakes. It wasn't until Metal Gear Solid 4: Guns of the Patriots and the PlayStation 3's processing power that the player can both utilize an elevator and interact with it as it is moving around. Metal Gear Solid: Peace Walker has the player accessing elevators in a manner similar to that of the Solid games prior to 4, however, although Metal Gear Rising: Revengeance utilizes a similar method to Metal Gear Solid 4.

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