I awoke this morning (December 16th, calendar slow-pokes) to find not only my Twitter feed chattering away about just one news story, but also a not-quite-unexpected, but certainly arriving sooner than anticipated, email in my inbox: "Press Release from Kojima Productions."
Metal Gear Solid series director Hideo Kojima has been a part of Konami's essential creative DNA since the mid-1980s, but 2015 has seen the relationship between man and company break down, seemingly irreparably. And now that's confirmed, as Kojima-san is leaving Konami to begin again, independently, with his first project at Kojima Productions a PlayStation exclusive that, in his own words, will be "a new and innovative gaming experience". Probably not a belated follow-up to Penguin Adventure, then.
Watch the announcement video below, as Sony's Andrew House quite clearly struggles to contain his excitement.
The very short press release reads as follows:
"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. Stay tuned for future announcements."
Konami apparently confirmed Kojima's departure just hours before Sony's announcement, according to a number of Japanese news outlets. Also on the move from Konami to Kojima Productions is Metal Gear Solid V: The Phantom Pain producer Kenichiro Imaizumi, as well as the director's assistant, Ayako Terashima.
This is big news, to say the least, and a hell of a score for PlayStation, who can now claim console exclusivity on the next games to come from Kojima, SEGA stalwart Yu Suzuki (Shenmue 3) and Tetsuya Mizuguchi (Rez Infinite). Factor in their deal on the Final Fantasy VII remake and The Last Guardian's long-awaited arrival, too, and it looks like the Xbox One, already struggling in Japan, is as good as dead in the region.
Again, look at Andrew House. Just look at him. You can taste his joy. This is what video games can do to a person. Especially when that person now knows they've gone and royally fucked over the opposition.
Kojima's final project for Konami, Metal Gear Solid V: The Phantom Pain, was voted the number one game of 2015 by VICE writers.