"Ever since the success of Metal Gear Solid, Hideo Kojima had avoided making the kind of sequel typical of the games industry. MGS2 intricately paralleled MGS with a self-reflexive structure that collapsed by design: the first postmodern video game. MGS3 avoided the problem entirely by being a prequel. But with Metal Gear Solid 4: Guns of the Patriots, the pressure was finally too much to bear."
Editor's note: many spoilers lie ahead for the entire plot of Metal Gear Solid 4.