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Metal Gear Solid 2 and 3 pulled from stores over licensing issue

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Konami hopes to work this out and put them back on sale shortly

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Snake holds up a guard in Metal Gear Solid 2 Image: Konami

Metal Gear Solid 2, Metal Gear Solid 3: Snake Eater, and any anthologies containing those games are no longer for sale online because of expired licenses for historical footage used in cinematic sequences. This also means that Metal Gear Solid HD Collection will be leaving the PlayStation Now game streaming service.

Konami informed fans about the marketplace takedowns in a statement on Monday morning. The following games are no longer for sale beginning Nov. 8:

  • Metal Gear Solid 2 Sons of Liberty HD Edition for PlayStation 3 and PlayStation Vita
  • Metal Gear Solid 3 Snake Eater HD Edition for PlayStation 3 and PlayStation Vita
  • Metal Gear Solid HD Edition for PlayStation 3
  • Metal Gear Solid HD Collection for PlayStation Vita and PlayStation Now
  • Metal Gear Solid HD Edition: 2 & 3 for Xbox 360
  • Metal Gear Solid Snake Eater 3D for Nintendo 3DS

Additionally, Metal Gear Solid 2 Substance will be taken down from GOG.com, and Metal Gear Solid 2 HD and 3 HD, for Nvidia Shield TV, will be taken down from mobile storefronts.

Konami called the removals “a temporary decision” and said it will “work towards making these products available for purchase once again.”

Konami didn’t specify what footage, specifically, is causing the takedowns. Eight years ago, YouTube’s KefkaProduction spliced all the cutscenes from Metal Gear 2 and Metal Gear 3 into two films, the former more than four hours long, the latter more than five.

Metal Gear Solid 2: Sons of Liberty launched Nov. 13, 2001 on PlayStation 2, so it’s possible Konami had a 20-year license to sell games with certain scenes, and that was as good as infinity in the days of disc media. Metal Gear Solid 3 launched Nov. 17, 2004, perhaps with clips covered by the original license. This has been an issue for a few all-time great games that have been remastered, re-released, or anthologized over the years, particularly Rockstar Games’ Grand Theft Auto series, well-known for the music of its in-world radio stations.