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The Patriot is one of the key weapons in the Metal Gear Saga. It's basically an experimental version on the XM16E1 chambered for the .223/5.56 round. It's the signature weapon of The Boss from Metal Gear Solid 3. The solid stock has been removed, and a XM177 style buffer tube is seen at the rear end of the receiver. Note that it's NOT an M4 style buffer tube. It's a straight cylinder, with no parts sticking out. The barrel has been cut down and a custom foregrip along with a custom flash hider have been installed. The carrying handle/rear sights are that of a XM16E1, indicating that its most likely based on one. The gun has it's 20 round box magazine exchanged for a drum magazine, which holds unlimited ammo. In the cutscene where The Boss disarms Snake just after Operation Snake Eater begins, The Boss can be seen firing The Patriot in slow-motion. The bullets tend to flip vertically, which is of course, impossible in real life.
Upon defeating Metal Gear Solid 3, The Boss gives her Patriot to Snake before she dies, and if the player should start a new game with the previous save they will automatically have The Patriot in their weapons inventory.
The weapon can also be acquired in Metal Gear Solid 4: Guns of the Patriots, and upon aiming the gun parts from The Snake Eater Instrumental Theme will start playing in the background.