No I’m not kidding, there was a real Metal Gear, well during the 60’s that is…The US military designed a giant robot called “Beetle”
The Beetle robot was created by Jered Industries in Detroit for General Electric’s Nuclear Materials and Propulsion Operation division and was designed for the Air Force Special Weapons Centre, it’s main purpose is to maintain and repair aircraft engines, it was created on 1959 and then completed on 1961.
Unlike the Metal Gear “Shagohod” (featured in Metal Gear Solid 3: Snake Eater) which was unmanned (it run by AI) and it’s sole purpose is to launch nuclear weapons and wreck havoc to the world, the Beetle was piloted by a person and it only do repairs, but both were created during the Cold War
The Beetle was 19 feet long, 12 feet wide, 11 feet high and weighed 77 tons, it is also powered by a 500hp engine which can run at a maximum of 8 miles per hour, although the machine moves pretty slow, it packs a powerful punch, it can tear through thick concrete walls from bunkers.
As of today, it is still unknown on what became of the mecha or it could be tucked into the Air Force Base and now gathering dust.
And since we are all in the hype from Metal Gear Solid: Peace Walker, let’s check out for more similar robots from the popular franchise.
And looks like there are:
The Defense Advanced Research Project Authority (DARPA) (sounds familiar eh?) was designing a four legged machine called “BigDog” where it can walk on different terrains, you can check the video to learn how BigDog can move.
And finally from Japan, robotics manufacturer Sakakibara-Kikai just released the very first bi pedal exoskeleton called the Land Walker which was 3.4 meters tall, weigh 1500 kg and has a speed of 1.5kph. And this mech has more resemblance to the Battletech/Mechwarrior series than to the Metal Gear series.