The Ten Greatest Boss Quotes

The Boss is undoubtedly one of the most important characters in the Metal Gear series. With her imposing and powerful personality and incredible charisma, she is the catalyst of many of the later events, including the creation of both The Patriots and Outer Heaven. Every character in the series who encountered her, was influenced by her presence in some way. She has an outlook on things and an ideology that is unique, and is arguably the character with the strongest willpower. None of the other characters could echo her understanding of the greater perspective and of the relativeness that characterizes personal or cultural situations.


Here are ten memorable quotes spoken by The Boss, that illustrate her imposing character, her power, her ideals and her view on the world.


The only thing we can believe in, with absolute certainty, is the mission, Jack.


This sums up The Boss’s beliefs: because politics are changed by the times, you can’t believe in a concept like ‘enemy and friend’, since they too can change very easily. Therefor, soldiers need only fulfill their mission, without thinking for themselves. It’s the only certainty in a world of relativeness and deception and, because of that, uncertainty.


In the end, you have to choose whether you’re going to live as a soldier, or just another man with a gun.


For The Boss, being a soldier means having a certain, almost noble duty, and placing it above your own interests. You have to do whatever you can to fulfill your mission. Being a soldier is more than just being good at shooting things. The Boss explains that a soldier has to be ‘nothing more than a political tool’, but she senses that Snake is different: he is looking for a reason to fight. That is why she differentiates between what for her constitutes a soldier, and ‘just another man with a gun’. A soldier operates on behalf of the changing times, a man with a gun on his own vision.


You and I are alike. We’re both slowly being eaten away by the karma of others. We’ll never have the chance to die peacefully of old age. We have no tomorrow.


The Boss says these words when she is talking about the fact that both herself and Naked Snake were exposed to radiation from nuclear tests. She feels connected to Snake because of this, and also because of how they are both fated to live their lives in a similar way.
Neither of them is the kind of person who will live a normal, carefree life, and die a natural death. ‘We have no tomorrow’. The Boss knows this about herself, given her past missions and her role in operation Snake Eater, but she also foreshadows the future of Big Boss, who would spend the rest of his life on the battlefield, first wandering the world from battle to battle, and later establishing his own military state. It’s a quote that not only says a lot about The Boss, but about Snake as well.


Is there such thing as an absolute timeless enemy? There is no such thing and never has been. And the reason is that our enemies are human beings like us. They can only be our enemies in relative terms.


In a time when the world was strongly divided between East and West, and in which enemies seemed rather absolute, almost inevitable, this view of The Boss shows how she can rise above the limited perspective of a certain time in history and see how things are actually a lot more relative than most people realize. In the end, we’re all human beings, who inhabit the same planet called Earth.

He’s not going to talk. He’s been trained not to break. Trained by me.


In other words: give it up. That’s the basic message Volgin can take from this, who is trying to pry information from Big Boss. Anyone who is trained by The Boss herself not to talk, will not talk. Volgin realizes she is right, and it frustrates him greatly. He vents his anger by continuing to interrogate Snake even more severely. But he knows he is not going to get any information from him.

There is no such thing as luck on the battlefield.


The Boss is one of the most skillful soldiers who has ever lived, and ‘the mother of the US special forces’. Ocelot is playing a sadistic game in which he loads three revolvers with one bullet, juggles them in the air, and pulls the triggers randomly six times in a row, aiming at Sokolov. After the fifth time Ocelot remarks that Sokolov’s ‘luck hasn’t run out yet’. But The Boss catches one of the revolvers from the air and pulls the trigger – a shot is fired. It appears she knew exactly where the bullet was, and this illustrates the point she makes in this quote – that there is no such thing as luck on the battlefield. Ocelot’s cocky attitude is suddenly gone and he looks defeated. The Boss lectures Ocelot and punishes him by disassembling his precious revolver, like a mother disciplining a disobedient child by taking his toys away. She wants this to be a lesson for him.

Politics, economics, the arms race – they’re all just arenas for meaningless competition. I’m sure you can see that. But the Earth itself has no boundaries. No East, no West, no Cold War.


This observation of The Boss, which came to her as she saw Earth from space, is the single most important vision in the series in terms of how they started a chain of events whose consequences would reach every part of civilization. It directly influenced Zero to create his Patriots, a ‘unified world state’, and Big Boss to create MSF (‘Soldiers Without Borders’) which would later lead to Outer Heaven, a place where soldiers would be more than just pawns, like The Boss was. Of course, they both lacked the understanding The Boss had, with disastrous results, something they would only realize years later.


There is nothing left inside me now. Nothing at all. No hatred, not even regret. And yet, sometimes at night, I can still feel the pain creeping up inside me. Slithering through my body… like a snake.


The Boss doesn’t allow herself to be lead by her emotions, because she feels they only stand in the way of a soldier’s goal: completing the mission, no questions asked. But that doesn’t mean she doesn’t have those emotions, tucked away somewhere deep inside. She points at the snake-shaped scar on her body, caused when her child was taken away from her by The Philosophers. Right before her final battle with Snake, she allows herself to express some of her emotions to him.


I raised you. I loved you. I’ve given you weapons, taught you techniques, endowed you with knowledge. There is nothing more for me to give you. All that’s left for you to take is my life, by your own hand. One must die and one must live. No victory, no defeat. The survivor will carry on the fight. It is our destiny… The one who survives will inherit the title of Boss. And the one who inherits the title of Boss will face an existence of endless battle.


The Boss knows her work is done, her mission is complete, the only task left is her death by the hand of Snake. After that, she has completed her mission, and she has paid the highest price to do so.
When The Boss describes this existence of endless battle, it is almost as if she is talking about some sort of curse, passed on from generation to generation. A burden that must now be carried by her disciple. In turn, Big Boss tells his ‘successor’ Solid Snake the same thing many years later, when he himself is defeated by his clone in Outer Heaven.


Life’s end. Isn’t it beautiful? It’s almost tragic. When life ends, it gives off a final lingering aroma. Light is but a farewell gift from the darkness to those on their way to die.


The Boss has lived close to death for pretty much her entire life, going from one dangerous endeavor to the other, even killing her own comrades when the mission demanded it. Now, she knows her life is finally about to end. Self-sacrifice is not something that saddens her, though. In its tragedy, she also sees the beauty of it.


  • Sly

    This just got me Extra Hyped for MGSV again. Ready to dive deep into The Phantom Pain now.

  • Ricardo Oe

    Big boss…
    big Bosta…

  • Pitbully

    Loyalty to the end.

  • ObsessedGeorge

    Wow! What an amazing article! Very well written. Shivers went down my spine. I hope we will see her in MGSV TPP.

    • Thanks a lot! 🙂

  • LukesAlike


    Piss you Volgin, you ain’t gettin’ nothing!

  • Golgari

    What’s really cool about The Boss… and MGS3 particularly is that in 2004 facial animation for games was a luxury or non-existent at best and MGS3 still looked really great and when The Boss spoke these words. You believed her.
    It’s amazing how MGS3 holds very well even to this day.

    Not sure that we will see her in MGSV because Big Boss pretty much said farewell to her in Peace Walker. But I hope that we can have someone like her in the game. Would be nice.

    As always Nyx, very well written article and a good surprise too.

    • Thanks, and yeah, I agree, the games still hold up very well, more than you’d expect from games of a decade old.

      By the way, she might be in MGSV (as a flashback I assume):

    • decoyF0XX

      She always looked so sad. 🙁

  • VicBoss

    Great article!! One of the most charismatic character in a video game in my opnion.

    • Thanks, and agreed on that!

  • Alex

    That’s deep

  • Fraaancis


    • No Place For Hayter

      Yeah, I’m guilty there.

      • Le Guy who drowned quiet

        nostalgic stuff huh?didnt understand the 1st quote

    • Yeah but that’s not…nevermind

  • decoyF0XX

    “What is this fairy disguise? It’s gonna rub off on you. And then you’ll lose sight of who you really are.” Hah

    • This one was almost in the list. 🙂

      • decoyF0XX

        Totally understand it not being there. 🙂

        Is it just me or is The Boss the best character Kojima has written so far?

        • It was in the initial selection though because it’s a good quote. The Boss is not only talking about Snake but also about herself here, I believe.

        • No Place For Hayter

          Two words. Big Boss, lol

    • No Place For Hayter

      What about the lips? can it open it’s mouth?

      • decoyF0XX

        Where is that from??

        • Snake about the Raikov mask.

        • No Place For Hayter

          Yeah what Nyxus said, it is the question Snake asks Sigint about the mask.

          • decoyF0XX

            <— Well this guy is guilty of not paying much attention to the codec convos in Snake Eater lol. I mostly only called Zero and Eva, even skipped Para-Medic's movie talk a few times X| I know I shouldn't have done that.

          • No Place For Hayter

            The codec conversations were the best in 3, wear anything or eat anything and talk to either Sigint or Para-medic, great stuff, well at least next time you play the game you will be listening and looking for them a lot more, lol.

          • decoyF0XX

            I really liked the ones in 2 though, even the Jack/Rose conversations that everyone hates lol. Next time I’m playing 3 I’ll def pay more attention. I’d like to play through the whole series one more time before TPP is released.

          • No Place For Hayter


            The codec conversations in 2 were really good as well yeah (kinda disappointing that we won’t have long talks with people in MGSV over radio) the AI’s at the end were full of all sorts of awesome to talk about.

  • No Place For Hayter

    Wow incredible article, It is really cool that you went into the meaning and explain the quote.

    While reading this whole thing I couldn’t get Peace Walkers mammal pod out of my head.

    How come everything she said sounds so awesome, I could hear her speak every line I read.

    • Yeah, love that voice. By the way, she sounds pretty close to the Japanese voice of The Boss.

      And thanks!

      • No Place For Hayter

        That reminds of of the Japanese voice for Professor Layton, the first time I heard the Japanese voice I was blown away because it sounds Exactly like the English voice but in Japanese, it was weird to hear a Japanese English Gentleman, lol.

  • CrazyGuy207

    Could Lori Alan play The Boss in an MGS3 movie if she dyed her hair white, or would someone else play her better in a live action movie?

    • No Place For Hayter

      The Boss and Lori is kinda like Snake and David, she embodies the character, and her voice is perfect for the role and I can’t ever see anyone else doing or playing it in English…………..OH… never mind than.

      • cardboardbox engineer

        @noplaceforhayter:disqus let it go

        • Le Guy who drowned quiet

          let it go?

          • cardboardbox engineer

            he’s stil thinking about hayter being replaced by kiefer

          • Le Guy who drowned quiet

            are you arab?
            note:i know this question has nothing to do with hayter.please don’t be angry.thanks for the answer

          • cardboardbox engineer

            no dude, it’s cool,. no im not arab, i’m persian, from iran , we are a totally different race from arabs , look it up 😉

          • Le Guy who drowned quiet

            I know that Persians are different from arabs.

          • Le Guy who drowned quiet

            you from zanjan?you are a student?

          • cardboardbox engineer

            nope, you must have confused me with someone else

          • cardboardbox engineer


          • Le Guy who drowned quiet

            who are you.

        • No Place For Hayter

          It was just a joke.

      • Le Guy who drowned quiet

        you mean solid snake or venom.

        • No Place For Hayter

          I mean all snakes voiced by him.

          • Le Guy who drowned quiet

            even venom?

          • No Place For Hayter

            lol, guess not, considering Hayter doesn’t voice the Venom flavour.

  • Janeo

    This is the kind of character where you just have to listen to everything she says, she has many memorable lines and she rarely says anything without a deep meaning. I usually hate the badass female character type but that’s not what the boss is she isn’t just a great warrior for the sake of it there is a deep meaning to the character perhaps one of the deepest metal gear characters.

  • TracedInAir

    This is an incredible article! Awesome job Nyxus! I loved her character. Everything she said had meaning and made sense.

  • PrinceHeir

    Amazing write up!

    My favorite line is probably “There’s only one room for one Snake and one Boss”

    It mirrors on what Liquid Snake said to Solid Snake in MGS1 and MGS2

    • Yes, and at the end of MGS4, Big Boss repeats this line when talking to Solid Snake, but then realizes that the world ‘would be better off without Snakes’.

      • Alex

        That line made me feel like he had evolved in some way pass The Boss, finally earning his title. He might had achieved an even greater perspective on things in his final moments than Boss ever did.

  • BigBoss_88

    Incredible article Nyxus :D, thank you for making this! I really love her character and enjoyed reading her quotes from my favorite MGS game again. Also it’s nice you explained the depth of all the quotes :). I hope we get to see her in MGSV in some way or hear part of her, as I remember months ago reading something about Lori Alan perhaps participating in V 🙂 !

    One of my favorite quotes by Boss is:

    One must die and one must live. No victory, no defeat. The survivor will
    carry on the fight. It is our destiny… The one who survives will
    inherit the title of Boss. And the one who inherits the title of Boss
    will face an existence of endless battle.

    Big Boss said a bit similar thing to Solid Snake, at the end of Metal Gear 2 if I remember correctly. Something like “the loser will be liberated from the battlefield and the winner will remain, and the survivor will live as a soldier until he die”.

  • WhatTheJuicay

    Sounds like Nazi training..

  • PrinceHeir

    Btw anyone here excited for TGS2014?

    I think they might announce the game’s release date for Japan and worldwide. Of course Kojima can always save that and announced it on their Konami573ch channel.

    As for gameplay reveals. I’m guessing it will be similar to Gamescom with different weather effects like rain and such.

    I do hope for a new gameplay area though. Also what about piloting Jets, Airplanes and such!

    We already know Big Boss will pilot a mini Metal Gear. I’m excited to see how Kojima can incorporate it in gameplay. Similar to Mk II in MGS4 where they can bring you equipment, ammo etc.

    • Judging from a tweet by Kojima some time ago, they will have something for TGS. Let’s hope it will be good.

    • No Place For Hayter

      YES, very excited for TGS, biggest hope is a release date.

  • Hanna-Mari H

    Good article! She is one of my role models, that’s sure. 🙂
    It was kinda funny when Snake said in MGS4 “The boss?” What, they didn’t taught to him who was “mother of special forces”, creator of CQC or mentor of big boss? Who was a reason why Patriots and Outer Heaven were created? Snake knew almost everything else but nothing about her. Kinda sad.

  • Rafael Frozen

    I almost crying here. when a I was playing and in the end of the game I realize what The Boss was doing and why she is doing I got pretty much sad : /

    One of the best characters ever,

  • HpSnake1989

    The games have changed…. You can’t type that kind of quotes from MgsV.
    Why ? Because It Hasn’t got any valuable words to be sayed. For me…
    and for many players… the MgS saga ends with MgS4. During Phantom Pain
    I wasn’t able to feel that kind of emotions while I was playing the
    prevorious parts. It hasn’t got the spirit. It’s not Metal Gear. It just
    Grand Theft Solid with no spectacular music, with no spirit and tragic
    in main characters. It’s all just made for money, proxy game for proxy
    players. And It’s not about Hayter…It’s about everything in that game.
    You mustn’t agree with my opinion, I love Metal Gear Solid. And I
    always Will

  • Salad Snack

    What about you, Jack? What’s it going to be? Loyalty to your country,
    or loyalty to me? Your country, or your old mentor? The mission, or your
    beliefs? Your duty to your unit, or your personal feelings?

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