Metal Gear Solid V: The Phantom Pain is finally in our hands and everyone is no doubt dying to get stuck into the world of Venom Snake. Whether you are a veteran of the series or a first time Diamond Dog, we’d thought we give you a few tips and bits of advice which will help make your time with The Phantom Pain a little bit smoother as you get used to Kojima’s latest epic.

Embrace being silent but deadly

In previous Metal Gear games, you would be actively punished for taking the lethal option by usually causing an alert face or reducing your chance of getting a S Rank overall. In Metal Gear Solid V, while you do miss out on getting the ‘No Kills’ or ‘Perfect Stealth’ bonuses at the end of a mission, you are not docked points for killing enemies. You actually get rewarded for pulling off tricky headshots so go for the head wherever possible. The main thing to keep in mind is that being silent will probably determine whether you get spotted or not. Suppressed weapons are a godsend when you are trying to infiltrate a base, so make sure both your lethal and non-lethal options are silenced in some way. Even firing an un-silenced sniper from a vantage point 200m away will alert the enemy. Be very selective about when you, or any of your buddies decide to go loud.

Mark everything

I’m serious when I say marking targets will save your life in more than one occasion. If you ever roll up to a base looking to break in, take some time to mark absolutely everything from a nearby hill or rocky outcrop. Almost every location you would want to infiltrate in the game has some nearby vantage point to scope it out from, so just spend a minute looking around with your Int-Scope to locate every guard, weapon and lootable item before you bust in. D-Dog and Quiet help out in the marking process once you unlock them but it’s a good habit to get into at the earliest possible opportunity.

Reflex Mode is a double-edged sword

For new players who are coming to Metal Gear for the first time, Reflex Mode is a great safety net to help you get used to the stealth and allows you to correct mistakes. However, it can end up botching an otherwise perfect infiltration, should you be doing the wrong action when the mode kicks in. If you are aiming down sights or are just moving about, the slow mo of Reflex Mode gives you ample opportunity to tranq the enemy whose caught sight of you or quickly CQC them before running away. However, if you are reloading your weapon or climbing into a vehicle when Reflex kicks in, it will slow that animation to an absolute crawl and take up all the time that could have been used to get rid of that guard. So, while Reflex can be a life saver should you be in the right position, it can activate at the complete wrong moment and cause you to enter a combat alert. You can always turn it off should you wish in the options.

Good friends are hard to find

Keep you and your house clean