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Konami Gives One-Handed Gamer a Real Robot Arm Inspired by 'Metal Gear'

Metal Gear publisher Konami announced The Phantom Limb Project, which is helping one "Metal Gear" fan who lost his arm in an accident.
November 10, 2015, 4:19pm

One of the most iconic images in Metal Gear Solid V: The Phantom Limb is of series protagonist Snake with his red robot arm covering his his face. It's not just a replacement for the limb he lost, but a more powerful tool than his original arm ever was. Also, it looks cool.

On Tuesday, Metal Gear publisher Konami announced The Phantom Pain Project, which is helping one fan of the series who lost his arm in an accident get a real, functioning prosthetic inspired by Snake's robotic arm.

"Inspired by the prosthetic limb seen in Konami's Metal Gear Solid V: The Phantom Limb, Konami is working closely with renowned prosthetics artist, Sophie De Oliveira Barata and a team of engineers, roboticists, and product designers, to produce a highly stylized and multi-functional limb for 25-year-old James Young, drawing from the Metal Gear Solid aesthetic," Konami said.

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Young lost an arm and a leg when he was dragged onto the tracks between two carriages of a train in London. According to Konami, he has learned how to play games one-handed, and was selected by De Oliveira Barata for the project as a candidate who was comfortable with the idea of a stylish prosthetic, and someone who could benefit from its capabilities.

De Oliveira Barata is the director of The Alternative Limb Project, which produces prosthetics that aren't just functional. They're also designed to be beautiful and reflect the user's personality. You can see some of her amazing work here.

If you're a Metal Gear fan, you might be a little mad at Konami right now for closing its Los Angeles studio and the company's apparent split with Metal Gear series creator Hideo Kojima (though Konami still insists he's just on vacation), but it's hard to be mad at this. Konami said it instigated the project, which is a good bit of public relations and promotion for the game, but it's still pretty cool.

If you want keep track of Young and see the arm come together, Konami will put up a documentary that will follow the process here.