It didn't really come to many as a surprise that the game that was known for a while as The Phantom Pain has turned out to be part of the fifth installment in the Metal Gear Solid franchise. All the clues were there; brief glimpses of the title in the background, the studios official website, the general look and feel of the entire thing. What was perhaps unexpected was that Metal Gear Solid Ground Zeroes would also be a part of Metal Gear Solid V which means that the former game didn't actually really exist at all, but was rather just a facet of the larger project the entire time. Or maybe it's not, because now there seems to be confirmation that it is actually a different game (Ground Zeroes that is).
It was only yesterday that both a trailer and gameplay footage were released for the game, although both do have elements that we've seen before there's plenty of new content to mull over as well.
If these are any indication, then the speculation that this would be a story that looked at some of Big Boss' intervening years between the events of games like Peace Walker and the first Metal Gear game was correct. It looks like Big Boss is leading the Fox unit against a rival unit Xof whose lead by some guy that looks like he lost a fight with a blast furnace.
The details so far seem to indicate that Big Boss was in a coma for roughly nine years after something, somewhere went disastrously wrong. He also lost an arm in the process, if both the generic prostheses and the more advanced mechanized arm that he seems to have picked up later are any indication.
One of the men in the trailer looks suspiciously like Master Miller, although this would be set far too early for him to actually be around at this point. Whether or not this person might be Frank Jaeger a.k.a. Gray Fox a.k.a. the first Cyborg Ninja is up for debate, but completely unknown at this point. A person also shows up on horseback, and bares more than a passing resemblance to Revolver Ocelot. A child, or at least young person, who seems to be wearing the mask of Psycho Mantis also plays a role in the trailers; whether this is him or not is again, currently unconfirmed.
There are plenty of things being said right now. It's incredibly hard to known which are actually credible and which are just a load of crap. There's word of the game being a more open world endeavor than previous efforts, and if Twitter is to be believed then David Hayter, the American voice of Solid Snake, will not be given a role in this game, leaving the voice of Big Boss in the hands of someone else.
Right now there's simply not much to actually go on, which is probably the way Kojima wanted it to play out all along. I'm sure that more details will be coming down the pipe soon enough. My personal feelings are a bit complicated on this matter as well. A part of me is happy to see the series continuing and not actually forcing more to take place canonically after Metal Gear Solid 4, but with a great deal of potential changes being made this could be a very different beast from previous outings. One thing is for sure though, I'll probably be buying it either way.