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Rumour: Hideo Kojima Leaving Konami After MGS 5

Sometimes I’d swear that Ian Video Games is deliberately trying to ruin everyone’s fun. Just as we’re getting used to Metal Gear games settling on PC (not just Solid – we mustn’t forget Platinum’s Rising), Big Mouth strikes again and starts spreading rumours of strife.

Hideo Kojima, Metal Gear creator and director, and other senior members of Metal Gear Solid devs Kojima Productions are at odds with owners and publishers Konami, Ian says, and will leave once MGS V: The Phantom Pain is done. So Ian says, anyway. Konami say all’s hunky-dory.

Whispers started spreading after Konami started distancing itself from the Kojima Productions name. They’ve recently stopped calling MGS V “A Hideo Kojima Game”, been removing the Kojima logo from MGS art and the website, seemingly renamed Kojima Productions Los Angeles to Konami Los Angeles Studio (this was a month ago), and created a new separate Twitter account specifically for Metal Gear Solid. Konami explained that away like this:

“As we have already announced, we are shifting our production structure to a headquarters-controlled system, in order to establish a steadfast operating base capable of responding to the rapid market changes that surround our digital entertainment business. Konami Digital Entertainment (including Mr. Kojima), will continue to develop and support Metal Gear products. Please look forward to future announcements.”

That’s weird, but companies rebrand things for daft reasons all the time, especially when odd ideas of corporate unity are involved. Then there’s what a supposed inside source has told GameSpot.

They say Kojima Productions have ‘fallen out’ with Konami, resulting in key folks like Hideo working more as contractors than employees now. They have restricted access to corporate Internet, e-mail, and phones too, the source claimed. They’ll also appear less in promotions for Phantom Pain.

“After we finish MGSV, Mr. Kojima and upper management will leave Konami. They said their contract ends in December,” said GameSpot’s mystery source. “At a team meeting, Mr Kojima explained that team have to be one and make a good game for fans.”

That’s what Ian Video Games says, anyway. I’m still wary of him after that time he came round our Nettie’s for dinner and I had to send him back twice – twice! – to wash his hands after he swore blind he had. Your hands were bone dry, Ian, and so was the towel. Bone dry.

Of course, Hideo Kojima has said The Phantom Pain would his last Metal Gear Solid anyway, but he’s been saying that for yonks and kept coming back. What mysteries!

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Alice O'Connor

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When not writing news, Alice may be found in the sea.

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