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You seem to forget that MGS is actually pretty western in terms of character design. Everyone in the whole series has looked like their age, so using the excuse of that character's don't look their age in anime & many games isn't exactly a good excuse for Sunny not looking like a 10 year old.
Anyhow, I expected it to be story-related.
Read the mania: http://www.fanfiction.net/~nonexistinghero In SA2, it's Super Sonic and Hyper Shadow.