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Summary: “Campbell” is Raiden’s main mission support for the Plant Chapter. In reality he is part of a computer program within GW that manipulates the signals going to Raiden’s brain in order to create the illusion of a person – in this case, Colonel Roy Campbell. As Otacon puts it:

GW was most likely stimulating cortical activity in the dormant part of your brain through signal manipulation of your own nanomachines. The Colonel is in part your own creation, cobbled together from expectations and experience...

“His” job is to get Raiden to complete his role in the S3 Plan. He is essentially a software personification of the Patriots. He pressures Raiden to continue his mission, and detours any of his concerns with simple evasion tactics. After the virus is inserted into GW, he appears to malfunction, causing him to constantly call Raiden with ridiculous messages. Apparently, this program can control everything Raiden hears and sees, as evidenced by the appearance of the “Fission Mailed” screen while Raiden is still alive. Whether this bizarre behavior is truly because of a malfunction, however, is uncertain. It is possible that it is simply another test within the S3 Plan.


Symbolism: While obviously filling the role of Colonel Campbell from the previous two games, the character of “Campbell” could more appropriately be called a representative of the Patriots and the S3 Plan. He is manipulative, but on an inhuman level; and not only in the sense that he is completely shrewd and unsympathetic. He is inhuman in the sense that he can technically manipulate the signals going to Raiden’s brain – and therefore, our screen as well.

Following the S3 Plan, the Patriot AI is predicted to become responsible for deciding what to censor on the Internet. It will rule by “creating context”. This is another way of saying that they will use the same method they used to create the Big Shell incident in order to regulate information globally. They will not “lie” to anybody, but rather, they will set up a circumstance that will cause people to regulate themselves in a desirable way. The circumstance would create incentives and deterrents to replace direct action; it would pressure people to conform, rather than demanding it; it would trick people into “choosing” what the Patriots want, just as they demonstrated they could in the Big Shell incident. Everyone technically had free will, but they were “invalidated before execution”, as Ocelot says.

The fact that this "Colonel Campbell" never existed, but was believed to be real by Raiden (who represents the player), could serve as a warning to be realistic with our own hopes, lest we be manipulated through delusion.

Because we can see the “Colonel’s” methods in our society (think: advertisements, slanted news, Public Relations…) we should avoid simply believing what we are told by those in power, and decide for ourselves what is needed, and what must be done to accomplish that goal.

He represents manipulation, as well as digital fantasy.



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