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The Metal Gear Solid 3 Instruction Manga is a manga that is included in the instruction manual for Metal Gear Solid 3: Snake Eater. As its name suggests, it is a manga that covers gameplay elements in the form of a short narrative. In this case, it contains a portion of the Virtuous Mission.
Naked Snake is chowing down on an Arowana as well as roaring when he receives mission orders from his commanding officer, as his infiltration was a success. He then spotted an enemy soldier, and proceeded to give pursuit, eventually crawling through the grass to ambush him. While his CO is running through various aspects of how to proceed through his mission, he then notices that Snake isn't wearing a shirt, and tells him to put on camouflage to blend in. Snake briefly attempts to move to another tree, but a KGB soldier becomes alerted, forcing Snake to duck back and crawl through the grass. Snake then proceeds to get hungry, with his Commanding Officer tells him to locate various foods, which included birds, fruits, snakes, and mushrooms. Snake eventually settles on a snake and kills it, and eventually managed to tranquilize a soldier. He then captured a Gavial alive and proceeded to consider using either a venomous snake to scare the enemy or otherwise leave a poisoned mushroom for the soldier to unknowingly eat. He then entered a battle with the soldier and restrained him. He then relaxed and proceeded to chow down on the snake he captured earlier, satisfied with its taste.
There are several differences between the game and the manga:
- The person giving commands through Snake's radio is never actually identified in the manga, while the game reveals it to be Major Zero.
- Like in the Metal Gear Solid 2 Instruction Manga before it, Snake's commanding officer gives a briefing while Snake goes through the motions, while in the actual game, Zero and The Boss only gives the basic briefing before Snake actually commences his mission.
- Like in the Metal Gear Solid 2 Instruction Manga before it, Snake's reason for his presence in the jungle is never actually explained, while the game reveals it was to rescue the defecting Soviet researcher Nikolai Stepanovich Sokolov.
- The soldiers Snake encounters aren't actually identified other than being his enemies, while the game reveals they were KGB soldiers. Likewise, the reason why they were present beyond guarding the jungle isn't elaborated on in the manga, while the game mentions they were trying to guard Sokolov from Colonel Volgin.
- In the manga, the method in which Snake infiltrated wasn't revealed other than it apparently going off without a hitch, as well as being relaxed enough to catch an Arowana and eat it from a river. In the game, Snake infiltrated via HALO jump, and his infiltration had been delayed a bit after his backpack ended up snagged by a tree branch before landing, forcing him to climb up a tree to retrieve it before officially beginning the infiltration mission. In addition, he never gets an opportunity to catch Arowana until Operation Snake Eater, which occurred following the Virtuous Mission.
- Snake apparently starts off the mission without wearing his Olive Drabs (having presumably removed his top before fishing for an Arowana), only putting it back on when his commanding officer pointed out that he wasn't wearing a shirt. In the game, he starts off in full uniform, and wearing the naked option is optional.