Psycho Mantis in 2005.
|Born||c. 1970  |
|Died||February 2005 |
Shadow Moses Island, Alaska, USA
|Height||190 cm (2005) |
|Career and family information|
Sons of Big Boss
|Metal Gear series information|
|Appearances||Metal Gear Solid |
Metal Gear Solid 4: Guns of the Patriots
Metal Gear Solid V: The Phantom Pain
|Created by||Hideo Kojima|
|Designed by||Yoji Shinkawa|
|Voiced by (English)||Doug Stone|
|Voiced by (Japanese)||Kazuyuki Sogabe (MGS) |
Shozo Iizuka (MGS4)
Hiroshi Yanaka (MGS DGN)
Psycho Mantis was a psychic member of FOXHOUND, who assisted in the armed takeover of Shadow Moses Island in 2005. He wore a gas mask to help prevent people's thoughts from "forcing their way into his mind," which also concealed the burn scars on his face.
Early life and careerEdit
Psycho Mantis was born in a small Russian village before the collapse of the Soviet Union. His mother died giving birth to him, which made his father resent and hate him. He discovered his powers and his father's true emotions one day while accidentally reading his mind. He wondered if his father would kill him, and the shock of this revelation awoke his subconscious. He used his telekinetic powers to burn down the village that he lived in, killing all residents. This release of psychic energy caused severe burns across his body, particularly his face.
Mantis later joined the KGB and was part of its psychic intelligence division. After the collapse of the Soviet Union, he moved to the United States and began work for the FBI. He would enter the minds of suspected killers and uncover the truth about their crimes. However, during one interrogation in the year 2000, Mantis dove too deeply into the mind of a serial killer and subsequently adopted the subject's personality, becoming psychotic.
Mantis eventually left the FBI and became a freelance psychic, offering his services to the highest bidder. During his travels throughout the world, he read thousands of peoples thoughts, and became disgusted with humanity for, as he called it, their "selfish and atavistic desire to pass on one's seed." He was eventually enlisted by FOXHOUND, becoming the unit's psychic expert and its psychological warfare specialist. By this time he had taken to wearing a gas mask, partially to hide his deformed facial features, but also to prevent the thoughts of others from entering his mind. At some point, Mantis received barcode tattoos on each of his shoulders and on the right side of his head, along with a large scar across his head.
In 2005, Psycho Mantis and the other members of FOXHOUND grew tired of their roles as puppets to the government and they took over Shadow Moses Island. Mantis used his psychic powers to brainwash those soldiers that didn't support the insurrection into participating in the revolt.
While on Shadow Moses, Mantis attempted to read Donald Anderson's and Kenneth Baker's minds but failed due to the surgical implants in their brains that provided them with "psychic insulation." When Revolver Ocelot "accidentally" killed Anderson during a torture session, Mantis came up with the idea of tricking Solid Snake into getting the PAL Key from Baker and using the keys to activate Metal Gear REX, while making Snake think he was de-activating REX. They made Decoy Octopus disguise himself as Anderson to talk Snake into the act.
Psycho Mantis later managed to take over the mind of a rookie soldier, whom Snake had encountered in the holding cells, and had the soldier fire at Snake shortly after Decoy Octopus's death from FOXDIE. Shortly afterwards, Snake experienced a brief hallucination, in which he saw the FOXHOUND psychic himself, resulting from psychometric interference emanating from Mantis's actions.
As Snake and Meryl Silverburgh made their way through the island, Mantis managed to gain control over Meryl's mind. He turned her against Snake and tried to make her shoot him, though Snake was able to knock her unconscious. Mantis then revealed himself and fought Snake himself. On the edge of defeat, Mantis decided to awaken Meryl and try to make her shoot herself in the head, having anticipated that this was Snake's weak point. However, Snake managed to both prevent Meryl from killing herself and defeat Mantis.
Close to death, Mantis's mask was removed by Snake, allowing him to speak his final words. He told of his tragic past, comparing it to that of Snake's, and explained that his past experiences had shown him that all humans were fated to bring each other pain and misery. He stated that he never really agreed with Liquid's revolution, only that he wanted the chance to kill as many people as he could. However, he went on to say he was "not so bad," in comparison to Snake, saying that the legendary soldier was even worse than Liquid himself, stating that Snake is true evil. Mantis also revealed that he had read Meryl's mind and that Snake had a large place in her heart, though he did not know if their futures lay together.
Mantis then asked Snake to put his mask back on, as he wished to be by himself in his final moments. Using his powers, he opened a secret passageway that led to the communications towers and Metal Gear's underground maintenance base. Right before he died, Mantis said that this action was the first time in his life that he had used his power to help someone, and that it felt "kind of nice."
After Mantis's death, Meryl utilized lingering remnants of his memory from the earlier mind possession, to help Snake and herself safely cross a minefield in an underground passageway. In addition, the effects of his brainwashing on the Genome Soldiers began to wear off, and they began to lose morale. Revolver Ocelot later theorized that Mantis had been included in the programming of the FOXDIE assassination virus, but that his mask may have shielded him from infection.
When Liquid Ocelot was building up his PMC forces, Psycho Mantis's psychic remnants were somehow harnessed with nanomachines. Liquid wasted no time putting Mantis's harnessed psyche to use, with it playing a vital role in the creation of the Beauty and the Beast Unit. Mantis's psyche integrated into the mind of BB Corps member Screaming Mantis via nanomachines and hypnosis, which made it possible for her to channel her constant state of fear so that she could use it in battle, although in time, her psyche was ripped out almost entirely. Using Screaming Mantis and the nanomachines as a medium, Psycho Mantis's psychic powers were also used to control the minds of the other BB Corps. members so that they could be effective in combat as well. Like Psycho Mantis, Screaming Mantis had what seemed like a form of psychokinesis, but in reality she was only able to manipulate the nanomachines inside the bodies of soldiers—both living and dead—by using dolls fashioned after Psycho Mantis and The Sorrow. Effectively, the spirit of Psycho Mantis was the leader of the BB Corps. Consequentially, as a result of Screaming Mantis' fusion with Psycho Mantis' psyche via nanomachines, the former also reacted to Snake's presence as if she had encountered him before.
In 2014, after Snake infiltrated Liquid Ocelot's Outer Haven, he was confronted by the final member of the Beauty and the Beast Unit Screaming Mantis. After defeating Screaming Beauty, Screaming Mantis's suit reformed and floated in the air, with Psycho Mantis's spirit appearing behind it. Psycho Mantis once again showed Snake his telekinetic powers. Afterwards, The Sorrow intervened and sent his ghost back to the grave for good.
Personality and traitsEdit
Psycho Mantis was a powerful practitioner of psychokinesis and telepathy. He was capable of moving objects with the power of thought, spinning them around himself to create a makeshift barrier, or throwing them towards an opponent. He was also capable of generating a ball of psychic energy, as evidenced during his battle with Solid Snake. Through telepathy, Mantis could read people's minds and learn about their pasts. This power could even be extended to mind control, which he used to sway members of the Next Generation Special Forces into joining FOXHOUND's revolt, and to force Meryl Silverburgh to attack Snake. However, his telepathic abilities could be rendered ineffective if his subject was either strong willed or possessed surgical implants in their brain, as evidenced by his failure to defeat Solid Snake in battle, and to read Donald Anderson and Kenneth Baker's minds, respectively. Because of his constantly wearing a gas mask to ensure he focused on his psychic powers, he frequently had a rasping breath accompanying him.
Psycho Mantis was shown to be significantly deranged, having nihilistic views on humanity. He also had disgust towards humanity's ultimate desire to simply reproduce, referring to the passing on of one's genes to be "selfish." Despite his insanity, Mantis also displayed superb skills at strategizing, as evidenced by his being the one who originated the idea of using Decoy Octopus to disguise himself as the (then-recently) deceased DARPA Chief, in an attempt to trick Solid Snake into activating Metal Gear for them, a plan that, FOXDIE aside, experienced success.
|The following information has been detailed in official Konami-licensed media, which were written by various external authors. Its status in the Metal Gear canon is therefore unconfirmed.[?]|
Around the time he ended up burning his home village, Mantis unwittingly developed a split-personality known as the "parasite," formed from his inner-guilt that he could not shake as a result of them being different facets of his conscience. The destruction of his village via his mental powers resulted in his recruitment by the KGB. While studying how to hone his psychokinesis, he suppressed his "parasite" persona within himself so that it wouldn't result in his self-destruction. His later FOXHOUND codename, Mantis, was derived from a nickname he gained during his time in the KGB, in reference to his parasite persona. In addition, he managed to stop himself from descending to insanity (a problem very frequent with genuine psychics) by mentally living with the parasite half of his persona. Mantis's choice of attire, restrictive tight clothing, was also another way to keep his persona in check. He became a full-fledged KGB member shortly after controlling his abilities, although his employment was short-lived due to the fall of the Soviet Union. Because of his attempts at honing his ESP abilities and his psychic channeling, his physical body also became emaciated, necessitating him to wear his KGB trenchcoat both in and out of duty.
Mantis's primary job in regards to the FBI was learning the locations of victims' bodies from the minds of serial killers. However, his mind became linked with all those of the killers he had read, resulting in his loss of control over the parasite, which subsequently urged him to commit horrific acts of psychic manslaughter. His ability to correctly point out the actions of an individual by looking at their paths in life also ended up even shocking Liquid Snake. He also sought his own death as he believed that only with that would the parasite fade away, allowing him a brief period of peace, and thus be mentally cleansed.
Behind the scenesEdit
Psycho Mantis (サイコ・マンティス Saiko Mantisu?) appears in Metal Gear Solid as an antagonist to Solid Snake, and is fought by the player during a boss battle. His spirit later makes a cameo appearance in Metal Gear Solid 4: Guns of the Patriots, where he is revealed to be the controlling influence behind the Beauty and the Beast Unit.
Psycho Mantis was chosen as the #3 best boss fight ever by GameSpot. He also ranked eighth in IGN's recent "Top 100 Videogame Villains" poll, beating out fellow FOXHOUND members Sniper Wolf, Liquid Snake, and Revolver Ocelot; even beating Big Boss.
Metal Gear Solid Edit
The boss battle with Psycho Mantis in Metal Gear Solid is widely remembered for him "displaying" his mental powers through breaking the fourth wall. This includes making the controller move by activating the rumble feature, and making players think the TV channel has changed by turning the screen to black, with the green caption "HIDEO" displayed in the top-right corner. He also "reads" the player's memory card, commenting on the number of saves that have been made in the game so far, and the presence of other saved games, first noting their genre, then mentioning specific examples (e.g. "You like Castlevania, don't you?"). In the original game, Mantis mentions Azure Dreams, Suikoden, Castlevania: Symphony of the Night, and Vandal Hearts (plus Policenauts and Snatcher in the Japanese version), while in the 2004 remake, he references Super Smash Bros. Melee, Super Mario Sunshine, The Legend of Zelda: The Wind Waker and Eternal Darkness: Sanity's Requiem.
Psycho Mantis's powers were inspired by another fictional psychic character from the 1978 film The Fury, with director Hideo Kojima telling his motion designer to go see it. During the battle, the player is forced to plug the game controller into another port in order to avoid Mantis reading Snake's mind. Kojima took inspiration from various Japanese animations, in which masters would advise their students to clear their minds to prevent their enemies from reading their thoughts. The only way he could think of to show this idea was the controller switch, though the younger members of his development team did not like this idea.
After the battle with Mantis, he states that he is unsure whether Snake's and Meryl's futures lie together, alluding to the game's two endings; one in which Meryl survives, and the other in which she dies. Additionally, the script for the original Japanese release had Mantis mention that his helping Snake on his deathbed felt "nostalgic," though this was changed to "it feels pretty nice" in the English version (nevetheless, the original dialogue is maintained in the remake The Twin Snakes). According to Hideo Kojima, Mantis's nostalgia was due to him sensing his own mother's emotions during childbirth, where she had used the last of her dying strength to help her son survive; similar to Mantis's own actions towards Snake upon his death.
According to Hideo Kojima's Grand Game Plan for Metal Gear Solid 2, there was originally supposed to be a mask based on Psycho Mantis's likeness (called the Mantis Mask), that allowed Raiden to read the thoughts of other characters. One example would be using the mask to discern a SEAL's identity as Solid Snake. This item ultimately never made it into the final version.
In the 2004 GameCube remake, Metal Gear Solid: The Twin Snakes, Mantis creates fiery hallucinations using his psychic powers, though he is unable to affect Snake. In addition, he uses a technique that appears to cause the room to "tilt"; this is a reference to one of the "Sanity Effects" of Eternal Darkness: Sanity's Requiem, a game made by The Twin Snakes' developer Silicon Knights. Following the battle, the player can shake Mantis's body to procure his dog tag.
During his trip to Dubai in January 2013, Kojima revealed that Mantis is his favorite villain in the series.
Later appearances Edit
Psycho Mantis is also mentioned in Super Smash Bros. Brawl. Roy Campbell can feed Snake data on Ness if he uses his Codec taunt. During the talk, Snake will recall his encounters with Psycho Mantis, to the point of even asking if Ness can also read minds. Campbell assures him that Ness is "a good kid" and would not use telepathic powers to scan Snake's mind against his will, whether he had such powers or not.
The manner in which Solid Snake defeats Psycho Mantis in the Metal Gear Solid novelization is portrayed differently to the game, with Snake tricking Mantis into levitating all the contents of the commander's room and making himself vulnerable to attack (Mantis used his psychic abilities to prevent Snake from even touching his holstered gun). Mantis is also successful in placing Snake under his mental control for a brief period of time, causing him to hallucinate the appearance of Master Miller. The illusion involved both Miller and Snake visiting a theme park from Snake's childhood, where he attempted to save Meryl from the funhouse, later encountering her reflection in the funhouse's mirrors, along with that of Otacon and Big Boss himself. The Digital Graphic Novel of Metal Gear Solid depicted Psycho Mantis's fight with Snake in a similar fashion to the above, where Miller apparently takes out Psycho Mantis and leads Snake to the hangar, only for Liquid and Ocelot to ambush him. Snake deduced that it was all an illusion projected by Mantis after he noticed that Ocelot retained both arms (Gray Fox had amputated Ocelot's right arm earlier).
The fight against Screaming Mantis in Metal Gear Solid 4 is designed to play off the player's memory of fighting Psycho Mantis in the original Metal Gear Solid, right down to the music being a recreation of "Mantis' Hymn." After Screaming Mantis screams "Blackout!" the screen turns to black and displays a green caption saying "HIDEO2." If the player switches the PS3 controller over to Controller Port 2, Snake will call Otacon saying that he can't move, with Otacon telling him that the trick won't work this time, much to Snake's chagrin. Roy Campbell also suggests that Snake try either swapping controller ports or destroying the mask on the bust of Mantis's face, but Rosemary and Snake rebuke him, stating that neither of those strategies is applicable in the situation. After the battle, when Mantis himself appears, he attempts to read the memory card once more, but fails due to the PS3's hard drive-based memory system. He also tries to repeat his controller-moving trick, but is unsuccessful due to the lack of rumble feature in the SIXAXIS controller. Enraged, he disappears after The Sorrow sends his ghost back to the grave. However, if the scene is played with a DualShock 3, Mantis will perform the trick successfully and gleefully declare that vibration is back before disappearing.
Mantis is also referenced in two trophy upon downloading the trophy patch for the game. The first was "That Tune Is His Mind Control Music", unlocked after playing "Oishii Two-han Seikatsu" on the iPod with at least one of the Beauty and the Beast Unit members and thus made her dance, which referred to Naomi's in-universe acknowledgement of his theme song, "Mantis' Hymn." The second was "Can You Feel My Power Now!!??", unlocked after the player defeated soldiers with either the Mantis Doll or the Sorrow Doll, referring to his line to Snake upon using his psychic powers to read the player's memory card and move the player's controller.
Although Mantis himself does not reappear in Metal Gear Online, his gas mask can be obtained as an accessory for the player. Unlike most items stated to have formerly belonged to a main character, Psycho Mantis's Gas Mask has colored variations rather than it being a fixed color.
Psycho Mantis later appeared as a participant in the Konami sponsored event E3 Battle, where he defeated Sheena E. from the 1994 game Contra: Hard Corps in the first round. He proceeded to face off against, and defeated Django from the Solar Boy Django series in the second round. He then faced off against Naked Snake in the third round, to which he lost.
- "PSYCHO MANTIS
FIRST APPEARED IN:
Metal Gear Solid (1998)
Psychic member of the FOXHOUND unit. Previously employed for both the KGB and the FBI. Capable of psychokinesis and telepathy."
- — Psycho Mantis' bio from E3 Battle
A gas mask-wearing child who demonstrates supernatural powers similar to Mantis appeared in the GDC 2013 trailer for Metal Gear Solid V: The Phantom Pain. The child appears before Big Boss and Ishmael in front of a hospital elevator, before rising through the ceiling and disappearing; Mantis performed an identical action in The Twin Snakes, via psychometric interference experienced by Solid Snake (in the original Metal Gear Solid, he simply disappears in a flash). This child also reappears in a later scene, after Big Boss got out of an overturned Ambulance that got into a severe crash, where the child apparently summoned an apparition resembling a white blue whale engulfed in flames, which proceeded to consume the accompanying chopper.
- Metal Gear Solid/Metal Gear Solid: The Twin Snakes
- Metal Gear Solid 4: Guns of the Patriots
- Metal Gear Solid V: The Phantom Pain
See also Edit
- ^ a b Metal Gear Solid official biography, Konami Computer Entertainment Japan (1998).
- ^ Metal Gear Solid, Konami Computer Entertainment Japan (1998).
- ^ Metal Gear Solid 4: Guns of the Patriots, Kojima Productions (2008)
??? [Screaming Mantis]: It has been a long time, Snake. // [The figure reveals itself to be Screaming Mantis - the puppeteer of the Beauty and the Beast unit. It can be seen to be holding a doll of psychic masters, Psycho Mantis and The Sorrow.] // Solid Snake: You... Psycho Mantis...? // [Snake looks up at Screaming Mantis and sees a ghostly image of Psycho Mantis behind it. Flashbacks of Psycho Mantis from Shadow Moses appear.] // Screaming Mantis: No, that was another me. Can you hear the screams? They cry for battle! Let me hear you scream! Howl! Roar! From the very depths of your soul!
- ^ a b Metal Gear Solid Official Mission Handbook, Millennium Books (1998).
- ^ Metal Gear Solid by Raymond Benson, Del Rey Books (2008),
- ^ Top Ten Boss Fights. GameSpot. Retrieved on 2008-05-26.
- ^ Top 100 Videogame Villains. IGN. Retrieved on 2010-05-28.
- ^ a b "Hideo Kojima: Game Guru, Movie Maniac," by Steven Kent, Gamers Today (1999).
- ^ http://muni_shinobu.webs.com/mgs/commentary2.html
- ^ I interviewed Hideo Kojima in Dubai ~ The Arab Gamer - Gaming from the Arab World
|Metal Gear Solid 4: Guns of the Patriots characters|
| Old Snake — Otacon — Raiden — Naomi Hunter — Big Mama|
Liquid Ocelot — Vamp — Drebin — Solidus Snake
Roy Campbell — Sunny — Rosemary — Mei Ling — Little John
Meryl Silverburgh — Ed — Jonathan — Johnny
Laughing Octopus — Raging Raven — Crying Wolf — Screaming Mantis
Psycho Mantis — Zero — Big Boss