A bionic arm based on the one used by Venom Snake in Metal Gear Solid V: The Phantom Pain has been fitted for an artist by the name of Laiken Olive. Designed by Open Bionics, the "Venom Snake" arm is now available for amputees throughout the US. Laiken was born without a right hand, and is now the first person in the country fitted with the arm. The news was announced on Konami's official Metal Gear Solid Facebook account, in a post that can be found right here. On Facebook, the artist compared their experience to Venom Snake's journey in the game.
"...in Metal Gear Solid, the main character wakes up from being in a coma for nine years, and I’ve been waiting a decade to have a prosthetic that is functional and intuitive to my needs."
An image of Laiken with the bionic arm can be found in a Tweet from the official MGS Twitter account embedded below.
It was a difficult journey for Laiken to receive the Venom Snake arm. The 21-year-old artist from South Louisiana was unhappy with a lot of the other options available, and only wore a prosthetic growing up "to hide my difference." Laiken has stressed the need for greater access to prosthetic limbs.
"The first time my insurance claim was denied for a bionic arm, I was offered an arm with a heavy body harness most commonly known to be worn by military men. It was so heavy and put a strain on the whole body which seemed so counter-intuitive."
After "an emotional roller-coaster" of an appeals process, Laiken was able to get their prosthetic. It was a long journey for Laiken to get a prosthetic that suited their needs, but they seem very happy with the results! The artist is now regularly asked to do Metal Gear Solid cosplays on Tik Tok. Given the massive popularity of the series, that comes as little surprise!
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