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We're not tools of the government or anyone else. Fighting was the only thing... the only thing I was good at, but... at least I always fought for what I believed in. Snake... farewell...
~ Gray Fox's last words.

Gray Fox (real name: Frank Jaeger) is a former FOXHOUND agent that was once Solid Snake’s ally. He is a major antagonist of Metal Gear 2: Solid Snake and a villain turned anti-hero in Metal Gear Solid.

History

Past

As stated in Metal Gear Solid: Official Mission Handbook, Frank was born from unknown parents in 1970s, and was of Vietnamese and German-American descent. He spent his youth as a child soldier.

Prior to FOXHOUND

Gray Fox

Frank Jaeger as a civilian

Frank eventually joined RENAMO and took part in Mozambican Civil War, but ended up captured by FRELIMO. He was tortured heavily, eventually getting his nose and ears cut off, but after a few days, Big Boss came to his rescue. Around this time, Frank killed two people in the Rhodesian Civil War, not knowing they had a young daughter. He adopted her as a younger sister out of guilt and in 1980, Big Boss brought the two to America. Frank and Big Boss returned to Africa to continue fighting while the girl stayed in America. 8 years later, Frank was living under the alias “Frank Hunter” in Calgary during the Winter Olympic Games. He began a relationship with Gustava Heffner, a Czech champion figure skater and they tried to elope together. However the American government didn’t allow Gustava into the country and she was sent back to Czechoslovakia where she lost her competition rights. As a result, Frank developed a hatred for his superiors.

Joining FOXHOUND and Metal Gear

Gray Fox (MG)

Gray Fox at the time of the Outer Heaven uprising.

In the early 90s, Frank had received decorations 5 times and joined FOXHOUND as “Gray Fox”, becoming the only active field agent with the codename “Fox” (the highest commemoration in the unit). While he worked with FOXHOUND, Gray Fox’s real name became highly classified by “Classified National Security Codes”. In 1995, Gray Fox was assigned to gather information on the secret nuclear weapon being developed in Outer Heaven. After he infiltrated Outer Heaven, he scouted the first building in the fortress and took note of the locations of inner courtyard, cameras, elevators, weapons and equipment. Eventually Gray Fox found the information on the nuclear weapon, but he was captured though he sent the information he’d gotten back to FOXHOUND. His final words were just “Metal Gear” before his transmission was cut off.

A rookie FOXHOUND member, Solid Snake, was sent in to follow up on Gray Fox’s mission. He managed to rescue Gray Fox, who told him everything he’d learned, that Metal Gear was a walking tank weapon equipped with nuclear weaponry. They managed to destroy the prototype of Metal Gear being built in Outer Heaven. However soon afterwards, it was revealed that Big Boss was the one in charge of the operation in Outer Heaven. After the fortress was destroyed, Gray Fox left FOXHOUND and disappeared, following Big Boss, who had apparently died after fighting Snake. He took part in the Mercenary War so as to help Big Boss form Zanzibar Land, eventually becoming the commander of its Mercenary Forces, the “Dogs of War”.

Metal Gear 2

Metal Gear D (original)

Metal Gear D

In 1999, Gray Fox started to raid several nuclear disposal sites with Metal Gear D. Due to this, and that the Zanzibar Land’s kidnapped Dr. Kio Marv, FOXHOUND, now under Roy Campbell’s leadership, took action. They called Snake out of retirement and sent him in to take down Zanzibar Land. During his mission, Gray Fox sent him anonymous messages to help him overcome obstacles, simply saying he was “Snakes #1 fan”. After the bridge leading to the detention camp was destroyed by Gray Fox, he and Snake met again after 4 years. Ironically, destroying the bridge killed Fox’s love, Gustava, who’d become an Stb agent and was serving as Marv’s bodyguard, though he seemed unaware of this. Following this, Snake was trying to get into the 20th floor of the Tower Building when Gray Fox stopped the elevator, sending in an assassination squad to take Snake out.

Later on, Gray Fox took Snake on in Metal Gear D, but Snake managed to destroy the mech. However Fox managed to escape Metal Gear D, as well as steal the OILIX formula from Snake when his equipment caught fire. Snake pursued Gray Fox and eventually the two fought hand to hand in a minefield with Snake emerging the victor. Gray Fox explained his past with Big Boss, which was why he was so indebted to him. He went on to say that he didn’t like war, but needed it due to his past and also admitted to being the one who sent Snake the anonymous messages. Snake promised Gray Fox he’d meet Gustava again on the other side and left the facility, leaving a seemingly dead Gray Fox behind.

Cybernetic Upgrade

Grey fox

Gray Fox reborn as the Cyborg Ninja.

After Big Boss’ apparent death and the fall of Zanzibar land, Gray Fox’s body, which had been blown apart by a landmine, was taken by a clean-up crew. Dr. Clark, FOXHOUND’s main medical officer, used Gray Fox as a test subject for a new gene therapy experiment and he was drugged and experimented on for four years. He was equipped with an experimental cybernetic exoskeleton that was grafted onto his body to give him more mobility. While this increased Gray Fox’s agility and strength as well as endow him the him use of a new form of camouflage technology that hid him at will, it render him periodical onset of extremely painful spasms, accompanied by electrical discharges from his body, which partly the result of a side effect of imperfect nerve connections resulting from Dr. Clark's experiments

In 2000, his younger sister, now calling herself Naomi Hunter, became Dr. Clark’s assistant. In 3 years, she managed to help Gray Fox escape and he killed Clark, partly at EVA’s request since she’d been a founding member of the Patriots and partly out of revenge for the experimentation. Naomi covered this up as a lab accident and also made it seem as if her brother had died in that same accident.

Metal Gear Solid

Tts19

Gray Fox easily slaying the Genome Soldiers.

In 2005, Gray Fox infiltrated Shadow Moses island, seeking out Solid Snake, who’d been sent in to bring down the Sons of Big Boss, a renegade FOXHOUND unit led by Liquid Snake. Eventually they discovered Gray Fox’s presence after he killed three of their men while he was using his camouflage equipment soon before Snake arrived, resulting in an increase in security. Gray Fox first encountered Snake after he freed Kenneth Baker, the president of ArmsTech, and attacked Revolver Ocelot, cutting off his right hand.

Gray Fox confronting Solid Snake

Gray Fox confronting Solid Snake.

Later on, Gray Fox confronted Snake in Hal Emmirich’s lab after killing a large group of Genome Soldiers.

He demanded a final battle and though Snake didn’t know who he was fighting, he soon figured it out as they took each other on. He managed to start winning, but before the fight ended, Gray Fox started crying out in pain and retreated. Soon after this, he began aiding Snake in his mission by sending him anonymous messages under the name, “Deepthroat”. Later, as Snake battled against Metal Gear REX, Gray Fox attacked REX’s radome, interfering with the weapon’s sensory input. While Liquid Snake tried to find the two, Gray Fox revealed his past with Naomi to Solid Snake and that she was too young at the time to remember what happened.

412px-Gray fox

Gray Fox battling Metal Gear REX.

Gray Fox then asked Snake to tell her the truth, before leaving his hiding place to engage REX again and Natasha Romanenko speculated his adoption of Naomi and his habit of constantly participating in conflicts were a result of post-traumatic stress disorder he’d gained as a child.

Gray Fox getting his arm cut off

Gray Fox getting his arm cut off by Metal Gear REX.

As Gray Fox continued to fight REX, one of his arms was cut off by one of its weapons and he was eventually pinned against a wall by the weapon, but managed to destroy the radome completely, saying a "cornered fox was more dangerous than a Jackal". Liquid let him fall to the floor and Gray Fox told Snake to fire his stinger missiles, which could bring down REX, but Snake wouldn’t since it would kill Fox as well. Gray Fox just told Snake about how he was recovered from Zanzibar Land and was neither alive or dead, but he could now die in peace.

Liquid Snake made REX stomp on Gray Fox and though his exoskeleton protected him from the first stomp, the second was too much. As Gray Fox lay dying, he told Snake fighting was the only thing he was good at, but at least he’d always fought for what he believed in and wished Snake goodbye. After getting off of Shadow Moses island, Snake told Naomi that Gray Fox’s last message would be that he’d always love her, but didn’t tell her Fox killed her parents, because he had been her only family.

Other Appearances

Metal Gear Solid: Portable Ops

Kp34

Null as part of FOX unit.

The character's history is expanded in Portable Ops, at which Gray Fox is featured as a super-soldier known as Null

During his time as a child soldier fighting in the war for independence in Mozambique, he gained the notoriety for his ruthless tactics: Frank would trick his enemies into letting down their guard with the “frankness of a young boy”. He would then kill them with the “ruthlessness of a hunter” and killed dozens of Portuguese soldiers throughout the war. Amongst the enemy forces, Frank became called “The Frank Hunter” but due to his knowing a little German, his allies named him “Frank Jaeger” (Jaeger meaning Hunter in German).

In 1966, Big Boss met Frank, only knowing him as a nameless child soldier working with FRELIMO a Marxist faction in Mozambique. After taking him down in battle, Big Boss brought Frank to a child rehab center, where he thought the boy would be fine. While there, Frank was taken by the CIA, who made him part of their “Perfect Soldier Program”. It made him into an even better killer and stripped him of any sense of remorse. The process also increased Frank’s reflexes to the point he could deflect bullets and enhanced his agility. However it was not without its costs, due to the fact that he was kept in a sensory deprivation water tank that reset his memories and suppressed his emotions. Frank was the only test subject to survive the project and was considered a lost number, earning him the codename, "Null".

When he was a teenager, Null joined FOX unit, while it was under the leadership of Gene during the San Hieronymo Takeover. He aided the unit in capturing Big Boss and fought him, but he couldn’t defeat Big Boss. However time in his deprivation tank couldn’t take away Null’s memories of his loss. Eventually he broke out of the tank after Gene talked with Revolver Ocelot and killed a number of officers. Gene managed to stab Null in his hands and knees with knives and he was finally brought down with telekinesis. But Null’s determination to kill Big Boss remained and he broke out again, killing many of his allies.

He found his way to the Subpower Station where he fought Big Boss again and explained the thoughts and emotions he’d gained from the project. Null said his mind was “littered with corpses” and he’d practically become a nihilist and a fatalist. He asked Big Boss why he wouldn’t die and what he hoped to accomplish by living, before taking him on again. Null lost again and it was at this moment that Big Boss realized who he was, successfully convincing him to get help outside of the FOX unit. He was sent to a hospital and though he survived the events of the San Hieronymo Takeover, Null had suffered a great deal of physical and psychological damage. The doctors and Roy Campbell weren’t sure that he would ever be able to live a normal life after his release from the hospital.

The canonicity of Portable Ops is disputed, with Kojima having stated, "...the main story of Portable Ops is part of the Saga, is part of the official Metal Gear timeline, while some of the small details that are in Portable Ops are outside the Saga, not part of the main timeline of the game." The game even pointed out that Frank was already around in 1970s and even met Big Boss for the first time during that point, as opposed of the account in Metal Gear 2 which revealed that he met Big Boss when the latter liberated him from imprisonment at a forced labor camp after Vietnam War (which was after 1984).

Personality

According to Gustava, Frank Jaeger presented himself as a handsome, well-mannered and intelligent man, but always afraid at the same time. Behind his tenacity and cold-blood nature which earned him respect from Solid Snake and others in FOXHOUND, he is a miserable soul plagued by post-traumatic stress disorder and fighting instincts he developed from his early years as a child soldier. He resented war as much as he craved it, leading to him believe that he cannot lead a normal life and sided with Big Boss at the expense of becoming militarily opposed to his friends such as Solid Snake. Even so, Frank holds no resentment towards his best friend and junior Snake despite their fallout in Zanzibar, as he guided the latter through several anonymous radio supports and the two eventually made amends following their final battle at the minefield, in which Frank discouraged Snake to sink as low as him. Said loyalty was what motivated him to persevere against his painful cybernetic enhancements as while interfering Snake's mission at Shadow Moses so he can have a last fight against him, though he ended up giving his life to aid Snake in disabling Metal Gear REX, achieving the peace that robbed of him by Dr. Clark who turned him into Cyborg Ninja and saving the world in process.

In addition of his experiences as a child soldier, Frank's post-traumatic stress disorder was also stemmed from immense guilt that he felt after his murder on his adoptive sister Naomi Hunter's birth parents. When he recounted this crime to Solid Snake, Frank made it clear that he genuinely loved her and did his best to raise her like a younger sister and daughter figure to redeem himself all while keeping the true reason of her parents' death a secret, but the said guilt won't go away no matter what he did. As such, he remained fearful around Naomi, as he always reminded of their deaths every time he looked into Naomi's eyes and pleaded to Snake to tell Naomi the truth. Despite this, Snake couldn't bring himself to do so, knowing that Frank is the only family that Naomi had.

Abilities

George Kasler: Gray Fox... Real name, Frank Jaeger. Former member of FOXHOUND. He was the last man to hold the title of Fox in the Big Boss era. Decorated five times...
Solid Snake: Yeah, I know all about how good he is... Better than anyone else. I fought with him. He's a cold-blooded hunter. He never lets his prey escape. Everybody in the unit respected him. Looked up to him.
~ Kasler and Snake about Gray Fox

As result of spending majorities of his youth as a child soldier, Gray Fox grew into a skilled and deadly soldier, and the sole member of FOXHOUND who received code name Fox for that reason. Portable Ops. elaborated his lethality back in his days as a child soldier where he used the “frankness of a young boy” upon unsuspecting soldiers before killing them once they lowered their guard with "the ferocity of a hunter".

  • Hand-to-Hand Combat Skills: Gray Fox demonstrated impressive hand-to-hand combat skill as seen in his fight against Snake in the middle of a minefield at Zanzibar Land. After becoming the first cyborg ninja, his skills further enhanced to superhuman level. It should be noted that he has mastered a distinct form of hand-to-hand combat techniques which enable Snake to recognize him through his exoskeleton despite he concealed his face.
  • Marksmanship: As a soldier, Gray Fox is skilled in use of firearms he could reach. The extent of this ability only shown when he fought Big Boss with M10 machine gun as Null.
  • Bladed Weapon Mastery: Gray Fox also skilled when it comes about using bladed weapons, from a simple knife to the most advanced high-frequency sword.
  • Piloting and Driving Skills: Gray Fox has a decent skill in piloting and driving any sort of vehicles as demonstrated from his use of Metal Gear D.
  • Cybernetic Enhancements: After his dying body recovered by the Patriots in secret and used as guinea pig for gene therapy project and other experiments by FOXHOUND's chief medic Dr. Clark, Gray Fox acquired an experimental cybernetic exoskeleton which drastically enhanced his strength and agility to greater superhuman levels. The armor is equipped with an arm cannon that fires explosive energy blasts and a camouflage unit that lets him “cloak” at will, rendering him invisible. However, the poor attachment of the exoskeleton on his nervous system resulted him suffering occasional painful spasms.

Weapons & Equipment

  • Machete: Gray Fox's signature melee weapon as Null. (Portable Ops. only)
  • M10: Gray Fox's firearm as Null (Portable Ops. only)
  • Cyborg Ninja Exoskeleton: Following his defeat at Zanzibar Land, Gray Fox was experimented by Dr. Clark where in the said experiment, he has his crippled body outfitted and put together with experimental blue, brown, and white Cyborg Ninja Exoskeleton. The said exoskeleton is easily recognized with a red lamp in the central portion of the face mask with the eyeslots being to the left and right of the lamp. The armor was also sturdy enough to withstand a direct stomp from Metal Gear REX. The exoskeleton also has following arsenals:
    • Stealth Camouflage: The exoskeleton has built-in Stealth Camouflage technology which allow Gray Fox to be invisible at will.
    • Arm-Mounted Cannon: Gray Fox was able to mount a cannon onto his exoskeleton's right arm which appeared to fire rapid energy bolts strong enough to damage Metal Gear Rex's radome.
    • Radar Dampening Field System: The exoskeleton can emit electromagnetic waves that can disrupt radars, even one as advanced as the Soliton Radar, to short out should its wearer be in close proximity. This trait was best demonstrated when Solid Snake arrived at the Western labs the first time around, after Gray Fox managed to wipe out the soldiers stationed there, as well as during their fight in the actual lab itself.
    • Hi-Frequency Blade: Gray Fox's signature weapon, a blade reinforced by a powerful alternating current and resonating at extremely high vibration frequencies which allow it to cut almost any material on a whim. The concept art suggested that the weapon is collapsible and connected to the exoskeleton which acted as its power source.

Gallery

Trivia

  • Gray Fox’s codename when he gave Snake advice, "Deepthroat", was the codename of an FBI agent, William Mark Felt, who exposed Nixon’s involvement in the Watergate incident. He revealed his identity as Deepthroat in May 2005.
  • One of Gray Fox’s pupils was white in Metal Gear Solid, which might be a result of his fight with Snake in Zanzibar Land.
  • His actual birth name is unknown.
  • ScrewAttack named Gray Fox 2nd on their top 10 Ninjas list.
  • He is referenced a number of times in Metal Gear Solid 4, such as during one cutscene when Naomi remembered Gray Fox, where part of the “Frank Hunter” theme from Portable Ops is heard.
  • Gray Fox is an assist trophy in Super Smash Bros Brawl and Super Smash Bros. Ultimate, where he would leap around the arena, rapidly slashing at the opponents. In Brawl, if one of the players is using Snake when the Gray Fox assist trophy is activated, they will exchange dialogue from Metal Gear Solid
  • Gray Fox also appears as a DLC Skin for Raiden to wear in the videogame Metal Gear Rising Revengeance. His sword replaces Raiden's sword, though it does not change overall statistics.
  • Gray Fox appears as a playable character in Konami Krazy Racers on GBA, like many Konami characters.
  • In Metal Gear 2: Solid Snake, Fox's portrait was modeled after actor Tom Berenger. In the re-released versions, he was redesigned to resemble his later depiction in Metal Gear Solid.


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