The Metal Gear Solid series is filled with insane moments ranging from a fight with an octo-president to a freak who telepathically reads your memory card data. While these instances are unforgettable, they don’t match the heart-warming rally shared between longtime partners Snake and Otacon after a tragic loss on the Big Shell.

Warning, Metal Gear Solid 2: Sons of Liberty Spoilers Ahead

Players experience a huge chunk of Metal Gear Solid 2 playing as pretty boy and series newcomer Raiden. This is long before developer Hideo Kojima gave the dweeb his bad-ass cyber ninja makeover, and many players were bummed the focus shifted away from Snake and Otacon’s story. While frustrating at the time, withholding these two stars from the story made a shared moment between them late in the game even more impactful.

After working solo for awhile, Raiden eventually unites with the heroes from Shadow Moses. Somewhere amidst the chaos, Otacon’s sister, Emma, is murdered. He cradles his sister’s body in his arms while Snake reminds him that he’s the only man that can fly a slew of hostages from the coastal facility. Grieving will have to wait.

Otacon understands, leaving Emma’s corpse but taking her pet parrot with him. The three heroes dramatically walk towards the camera in slow motion, suggesting Otacon, even with Emma’s blood still fresh on him, can pull it together long enough to save a few lives. But when they reach the elevator, something happens that shatters Otacon’s stoicism. Emma’s bird chirps his name, causing Otacon to break down. Snake shelves his tough guy act to give Otagon a rousing pep talk, exchange a handshake more convoluted than the Metal Gear Solid storyline, and share a brief hug. 

No game has ever made my cry before, but this brief moment forced a lump into my throat. Snake and Otacon’s first meeting involved the scientist soiling himself, and any friendship that forms following a scenario like that is bound to be strong. This moment of warm consolation reinforces that Snake and Otacon are more than allies – they’re friends.

Just watch Raiden in the video below. Even a man with no friends can recognize a true bond when he sees it.