MGS3 Speedrun FAQ

Q: Why do guards get tunnel vision when they call the radio and ignore Snake?

A: Enemy AI has stages of priority. If they get fired upon and go to call for backup, they’ll ignore most sounds around them and get tunnel vision. This is why Caution strategies are used in the speedrun. Once the radio is at their head, they will ignore what's going on around them.

Q: Why do guards get tunnel vision when they see a downed soldier and ignore Snake?

A: Enemy AI has stages of priority. If a guard sees someone go down (asleep or otherwise) they’ll enter a caution state. Also, if they are walking towards a downed soldier they’ll ignore snake in the cardboard box.

Q: How do I make a guard come quickly to a knock?

A: 3 knocks will make an enemy run towards Snake. 1 or 2 knocks will make them walk slowly.

Q: How do scientists/engineers react to Snake?

A: Scientists will tell you’re not one of them if they get too much of a look at your face. However, bumping into them resets their AI and gives you time to run away. Scientists and engineers will not react negatively to the cardboard box; they’ll just stare confused until it’s out of their line of sight. It’s worth noting also, enemy soldiers AI is a bit broken and if Snake attacks a scientist or engineer while in disguise, they will focus only on the scientist or engineer being attack, rather than register Snake as an attacker. Meaning, you can punch a scientist unconscious and the guards will not go into Alert against you.

Q: Do you need to remove the transmitter when you are captured?

A: No. If you don’t remove the transmitter in the cell, when you wake up from The Sorrow boss, the area will be full of Ocelot Unit guards. You can activate the scene with Eva, even in alert/evasion.

Q: How does the grace period work for alerts?

A: There's a small period of time when a guard goes into alert before the alert will be mandatory. If he is taken out before he finishes “Who's that,” the alert won't stick. When a guard is in Caution or evasion, there is no grace period between perceiving Snake & going into Alert. The grace period is much tighter compared to the MGS2 engine.

Q: What starting option should I pick? I Like MGSX?

A: The fastest to select are “This is my first time” or “I like MGS1” for European Extreme. If you select “I Like MGS2” you have an extra cutscene of Snake removing the Raikov mask. If you select “I like MGS3” you will start with extra “Subsistence” camos, the most notable of which being the AUSCAM camouflage, which reduces damage taken by 33%, useful for NG runs on higher difficulties. You get these camos by default when playing on NG+.

Q: What are the differences between NG/NG+?

A: New Game+ allows access to the Patriot, Grenades Unlocked camo, along with any boss camos that you picked up during the previous playthrough. The Patriot's infinite ammo and the fact that it allows Snake to move faster over bodies while firing makes it useful. The Patriot allows for an easy and fast Fear strategy, though this can be similarly achieved by picking up the AK-47 in Rassvet during Operation Snake Eater. Grenades Unlocked give you infinite grenades, allowing you to skip picking up grenades and opening up strategies in the early game. Being able to use camos unlocked in previous playthroughs allows for lethal Ocelot and lethal Volgin without losing out on their camos (Animals, Cold War). The latter is most useful for Extreme. Already possessing The Boss' camo saves some time on her fight, as she doesn't drop it.

Q: Is New Game+ faster than New Game?

A: It depends on difficulty. Overall, it appears that NG+ is faster than NG, at least on Very Easy and Normal. On Extreme, the difference doesn't seem to be in speed, but in ease (instant Cold War camo, easy Fear strategy).

Q: Why do runners use Snake Eater Camera? Subsistence cam is better!

A: Snake Eater (SE) Cam is the most favoured for most areas of the game. The reason being it offers more consistent visual cues and removes the need to control a camera & Snake. MGS3 challenges movement a lot, so removing an element of movement to control can help in more ways than one. Subsistence (3D) Cam is still used by some runners, but majority agree the SE cam is better for the majority of the game. Regardless, both are used throughout the run, it is therefore recommended to run on Subsistence (PS2) and HDC (PS3) as opposed to Snake Eater (PS2). Subsistence Cam is most useful for aiming at guards and certain navigation points that can be confusing with Snake Eater Cam. To put it another way, perspective can be confusing at times with Snake Eater. Unless you are playing on Android or Xbox One, Subsistence Cam typically introduces lag.

Q: Does the Language the game is played in matter?

A: Yes, but only slightly. Testing points to the Japanese version being slightly faster, but only by a few seconds. It is not something needed to have a good time. Raikov's call in is faster, and the Torture sequence is slightly faster. However, JP guards talk more quietly.

Q: What platform is the fastest?

A: Technically Android is the fastest version, but due to things such as input lag, most players tend to choose the HDC version for the PS3. Xbox One is very fast, and doesn't have the lag issues that PS3 has.

Q: What is loading trick?

A: Loading trick is a trick used to make the game load faster. If you play up to the torture prison cell Groznyj Grad South-East, die, and select exit, you can play the game up to this point with significantly faster loads. This is used by the majority of the top runners. This applies primarily to PS3, not other versions. You can also set up load trick by using saves to load into the various rooms.

For more information on loading trick, visit the Loading Trick page.

Q: How do I setup LT?

A: There’s two ways: For a partial LT you can load saves in key areas (where there’s large cutscenes, etc) to fill the cache with some of the bigger things. OR The standard LT setup, is to play from the beginning until after torture when Snake is in the prison cell. At that point, use the Fake Death Pill or open the cell door to get a game over screen and exit. IT IS VITAL YOU DO NOT SOFT RESET OR EXIT THE GAME THROUGH THE OPTIONS MENU THIS WILL CLEAR THE CACHE AND REMOVE LOADING TRICK

For more information on loading trick, visit the Loading Trick page.

Q: How do you swim quickly?

A: You can mash as fast as possible to swim quickly, but a more consistent method of swimming quickly is alternating between X and O. You can learn more with VPP's video investigation.

Q: Is killing The End early faster?

A: No. It was tested previously and determined to be slower. The main reasons being, extra menus, a hefty detour to grab the SVD (you can’t kill him at the Warehouse Exterior without it) & a longer route through Sokrovenno.

Q: Can't you just save and skip The End by advancing the system clock?

A: Only on a multi segment run. Loading a save file during a single segment run is not allowed.

Q: What is the quick headshot?

A: Be on the same level of terrain as your target, so that your height matches. Aim at them, go into first person (FPV) and hold the triggers (L2 and R2 on PS). You will stand up higher so your aim is directly on their head.

Q: Why do runners roll so much?

A: Rolling is an incredible tool throughout the run. Snake rolls very far, much further than Snake in the MGS2 engine. It can knock over guards indirectly (in other words, you don't need to roll through a guard to knock them over, just around them). It is faster climbing up terrain than running normally. The roll has a slow recovery animation, but a fast startup, thus it is very useful for rolling into loadzones. Additionally, you can roll over objects/terrain in interesting ways. Rolling is ideal for slopes that can be cleared in one roll. If one roll is not enough to clear the slope, using the box will be faster. Equipping the box loses 0.25 sec, unequipping the box loses 0.25 sec (for a total of 0.5 sec time loss each time the box is used), and rolling loses 0.33.

Q: Why do runners use the cardboard box so much?

A: Due to the outdoor setting, you’ll encounter a lot of steep or small inclines and hills, as well as stairs. However, due to how Snake moves while in the cardboard box, you can cancel out the slow uphill running animation that comes with running upward on a slope or stairs. The same strategy is used in Portable Ops too. However, be careful, as some rooms may require you to be slowed down by inclines and slopes due to guard cycles. Using the box is ideal for slopes that cannot be cleared with just one roll, such as the stairs behind the locked door in the Ponizovje Warehouse, going towards the End. Equipping the box loses 0.25 sec, unequipping the box loses 0.25 sec (for a total of 0.5 sec time loss each time the box is used), and rolling loses 0.33. It should be noted that running into a guard with the box equipped will unequip the box without any time loss. Additionally, Snake moves slower with the box equipped, and will lose 0.1 sec for every 1 second the box is equipped.

Q: Why are runners cooking a grenade without throwing it?

A: If you hold your weapon button to “cook” the grenade, it will cancel out the sound your footsteps make. Due to the way grenades function in MGS3, by not “counting down” or “cooking” until you throw them, you can keep the grenade cocked as long as needed, and simply put it away by tapping R2 or equipping a new weapon. The most notable use of this strategy is Dremuchij during Operation Snake Eater & The End boss fight loop.

Q: What is the Punch/Kick Cancel?

A: When punching or chaining a PPK combo, quickly equipping/unequipping a weapon on and off saves frames. The animation of holding the gun, grenade etc. overrides the punching animation.

Q: What is the bump roll?

A: Snake's roll has a large hitbox. Bump into an enemy, then roll after you take a few steps forward. It allows you to distract someone and then knock them down to an avoid an alert. Its most common use is before entering a loadzone or to cause a caution in areas such as the Warehouse. If a guard is shot with a tranquilizer dart before being rolled into, the guard will fall asleep.

Q: How do you angle the roll?

A: While rolling, you have some level of control over Snake during the roll. You can turn him sharply left or right, which can be used to roll into someone, roll towards a set of stairs, etc. This allows you to angle yourself appropriately to the situation, such as curving around a corner.

Q: How do you roll over rails/through windows?

A: You can abuse the roll to get over railings, go through windows, and onto the bridge in Dolinovodno. This avoids dropping from rails and opens up faster strategies based off of guard cycles. It is also the basis for any Warehouse strategy. You want to roll a few feet before the object you are rolling over. If you go too early, you'll roll into the wall, if you go too late, you'll go against the wall.

Q: What is the Box Rise?

A: Similar to MGS2's Coolant Rise, when you are going from prone to standing, you can cancel the animation by equipping your box and unequipping. Not a commonly used strategy, but it can save frames if you choose to use it.

Q: What is the 3rd person headshot?

A: This is probably the most difficult trick due to the timing being incredibly tight. It can be used against more or less any enemy, when one of them notices Snake, they bend down to inspect you closer. If you shoot right at the time, you can land a headshot. This strat is primarily multi segment.

Q: What is the Box headshot?

A: Another hard to pull off trick, when you exit a box after an enemy has noticed you and shoot right away, you'll land a headshot due to your position and theirs. A video showing off the strategy is here, and worth studying. The strategy is easier with the 3rd person camera.

Q: Wait, why did a Foxhound run kill guards with explosive barrels, or by knocking them into water?

A: MGS3 will disregard any “environmental” kills. So you’re free to blow up guards with barrels or shove them into the water. Basically, these are considered accidents.

Q: When is an alert counted?

A: It doesn’t matter if the enemy radios for backup, unlike MGS2 an alert is recorded on sight. Alerts will also stack. Meaning, if an alert clears into Evasion and you trigger alert again, you’ve now gotten two alerts. On European Extreme, you will obtain an alert and a continue if spotted.

Q: Why do some runners choose not to use Cold War camo?

A: Killing Volgin is the fastest way to do the fight. Fortunately, because your first encounter with him he does not actually die, it’s not counted as a kill. Fighting Volgin non-lethally is approximately 10 seconds slower than killing him with a lethal weapon. In addition, the game adds 10 seconds to the fight, to ensure that the player has enough time to collect the Cold War camouflage, making getting the Cold War camouflage less practical for a NG speedrun. The AUSCAM camo (selecting I like MGS3!) can be used to reduce damage by 33% during the bike chase as an alternative. However, as the bike chase can be completed without changing camos at all, using safer strategies, such as using Cold War, AUSCAM, or the Sneaking Suit, will always be slower.

Q: Wait, The EZ Gun? The Patriot? Are infinite ammo items not banned?

A: No. On Very Easy (and Easy on the 3DS version), the EZ gun is given to you at the start of the game, and the Patriot is not classed as a special item. Use of special items like Stealth Camo or Infinity Facepaint are banned. The EZ gun is banned for all difficulties except for Very Easy, or Easy on the 3DS version.

Q: Why are so many runs on European Extreme?

A: Historically, Metal Gear was primarily ran on the hardest difficulty, MGS3 being no exception. In 2019 work began for routing and optimizing lower difficulties, largely spearheaded by MiniOmegaKing & RaichuMGS. Since then, several runs were posted to the Very Easy & Normal difficulty.

Return to Metal Gear Solid 3

  • mgs3_faq.txt
  • Last modified: 2021/08/31 11:33
  • by PlatonicGuy