After an exhaustive year with video game developer/publisher Konami, Hideo Kojima, the Japanese designer, writer, director, producer, and genius mastermind behind the critically acclaimed tactical espionage action series Metal Gear, has finally found solace with the creation of a “new” independent game studio, Kojima Productions. The second chapter of the respected developer has begun and with it comes a fresh franchise and partnership with Sony that fans all over the world will be on high alert for.
In the official video announcement above, Sony Computer Entertainment President Andrew House confirms Kojima’s involvement with a PlayStation 4 exclusive title through the reborn Kojima Productions. Kojima-san looks more than ecstatic than ever to begin his next journey of his career now that his relationship with Konami is at an end:
“I’m happy to let you know that I have established my own independent studio today. And I’m excited to tell you that the first title from this new studio is a collaboration with PlayStation. I’m thrilled to embark on creating a new franchise with PlayStation that will give you all a new and innovative gaming experience, so please stay tuned”
The good thing is that Kojima will be able to work with his independent company and while flexing his creative muscles on something he has told IGN would be “slightly more edgy” than what we’ve been accustom to. Kojima will be joined by former Metal Gear Solid artist Yoji Shinkawa and producer Kenichiro Imaizumi, who will both take on senior positions supervising art design and production, respectively.
Here’s the official press release from Kojima Productions:
GAME DESIGNER HIDEO KOJIMA OPENS NEW STUDIO: KOJIMA PRODUCTIONS
KOJIMA PRODUCTIONS announced today that it has officially opened its doors. Lead by award-winning game designer, HIDEO KOJIMA, the studio will begin focusing its efforts in developing products that will push the boundaries in innovation and ignite consumer interest worldwide.
As Kojima has stated, only the first untitled game of this original franchise will be a console exclusive to the PlayStation 4. Kojima himself has since said in a follow up interview that it will also come to the PC after its release on the PS4. It will be interesting to see what kind of games will be developed considering Kojima has exclusively been working on Metal Gear for almost three decades. Kojima also explains to IGN how he is approaching the creative process:
“I want to create something that’s what people expect, but at the same time will have something new that people haven’t seen before. I’m thinking smaller-scale, not too many people, and focusing on game creation at first.”
The thought of Kojima applying his engaging narrative and visionary talents into a new intellectual property is very exciting. As far as the new studio is concerned, Kojima believes there will be more “agility”:
“We’ll be able to do things that are more edgy, preserving the quality we’ve had so far, while at the same time finding new challenges and exploring new areas.”
Prior to this year’s release of Metal Gear Solid 5: The Phantom Pain, Kojima’s name and the Kojima Productions logo were pulled from all marketing materials, including the game’s box cover art as well as the Konami website. The original Kojima Productions under Konami has since been dissolved and transitioned into Konami Digital Entertainment. And with the announcement of his reformed company a new logo has been born:
Everything is in the details when it comes to Kojima, and he goes on to tell IGN how the logo was conceived:
“I’ve always loved astronauts, and [the new Kojima Productions logo] is designed so it can be seen as a medieval knight or an astronaut’s helmet. The concept is, with new technology and a pioneer spirit, we want to bring you to a new realm – within the digital world, I mean – we want to travel together with you to a new realm to which no one has gone before. As for the skeleton, we’re homo sapiens – people of wisdom – but we’re also homo ludens – people who play – and the concept behind this logo is that: With new technology and a pioneer spirit, we’ll deliver play to a new world.”
The esteemed game designer is no stranger when it comes to dropping players into vast new worlds. And he is most thankful to the fans who have supported him through this transition:
“I’ve been in this industry for 30 years. I turned 52 this year. I’m getting to a new start, and I am very confident. I’ll keep creating games until the day I die. Rest assured I’m making more games, something more fun, something you haven’t seen, and it would be great if I could count on the fans to support me in this.”
The full force of fan love and respect was felt after the recent controversy at The Game Awards last month where Konami’s lawyers prevented Hideo Kojima from attending the event to accept the awards Metal Gear Solid 5 earned – Best Action/Adventure Game and Best Score/Soundtrack at this year’s Game Awards. A more than baffling decision.
Sadly, Konami still retains the rights to the Metal Gear series, but we are happy and look forward to whatever the revered developer will come up with next.
What would you like to see Kojima-san tackle next?