UPDATE: GameSpot reports that an inside source claims that Hideo Kojima will indeed leave Konami once Metal Gear Solid V is finished, and that he’ll come on as a contractor for future projects.
“After we finish MGSV, Mr. Kojima and upper management will leave Konami. They said their contract ends in December,” the inside source told GameSpot.
The fate of Silent Hills, Kojima’s next project, is iffy at this point, and we’ve yet to hear official word on the game’s status. There’s a likely chance that the horror collaboration will be cancelled considering Kojima won’t have creative control over the game’s development.
Original story is as follows.
Something strange is going on between Konami and Metal Gear Solid creator Hideo Kojima, and it appears that the Japanese publisher might have lost one of its key talents.
Earlier today it was discovered that Konami has removed all mentions of Hideo Kojima’s development team, Kojima Productions, from the official Metal Gear Solid V website.
But this redaction ins’t just for Metal Gear Solid V, as it looks like Konami has scrubbed any mention of the dev team and the iconic header from Ground Zeroes as well as the Legacy Collection games. Here’s a quick before and after shot to confirm.
On the heels of this move, the official Kojima Productions’ Twitter account announced that a new account would be taking over news updates on the social media platform. Kojima Pro’s official website now also redirects to a consolidated portal on the Konami domain.
— Kojima Pro Live (@Kojima_Pro_Live) March 19, 2015
Furthermore it looks like Kojima is no longer a Konami executive. Effective April 1, 2015 (yes, that’s April Fool’s day) the MGS creator’s name will be stricken from the corporate listing of company executives.
So what does this mean? Is Kojima free to taken on other projects and create games for other publishers besides Konami? Might we see another label handle the next Metal Gear Solid game? Or maybe Kojima is finally done with the fan-favorite mulit-decade franchise?
We already know Kojima is looking forward to tackling other projects, as he’s teamed up with high-profile movie director Guillermo del Toro to create the acclaimed horror game Silent Hills. The fate of Silent Hills might be in question, though, especially if Kojima Productions is folded into Konami Digital Entertainment.
But Konami assures gamers that Kojima will be making more Metal Gear Solid games, and that the new releases will be under their label.
“Konami Digital Entertainment, including Mr. Kojima, will continue to develop and support Metal Gear products,” a Konami representative told VideoGamer. But the rep wouldn’t discuss what the website changes meant, and this point things seem very tight-lipped.
It looks like Konami might have bought out Hideo Kojima’s production company and absorbed it into Konami Digital Entertainment, with the exception of Kojima himself. Kojima might lend his talents to the continuation of the franchise, but he might not be at the helm of development, which could be disastrous for the series.
Earlier this month Konami shifted around key personnel, so there might be a plausible connection here between the restructuring and Kojima’s demotion as company executive.
The gaming community isn’t taking the news very well, which is to be expected, and the future of the series is looking bleak. Long-time fans are stepping forward to condemn and ridicule the company for removing Kojima’s name from the games.
The story is still developing and we’ll be sure to update you once more information comes to light. Although exact details are fuzzy, it remains pretty clear that that something strange is happening, and Hideo Kojima might be free of Konami’s hold at last.
Metal Gear Solid V: The Phantom Pain is still on track for a release on September 1, 2015 on consoles, and Sept. 15 on PC.