Hideo Kojima, Just Stop Doing Metal Gear Solid


(This is another edition of </RANT>, a weekly opinion piece column on GameFront. Check back every week for more. The opinions expressed are those of the author, and do not reflect those of GameFront.)

For those who don’t follow the development cycle of Metal Gear Solid games very closely, allow me to tell you how a new game in the series is made. First of all, Hideo Kojima says he will not be directing it. A month later, Hideo Kojima starts to direct, write, produce, and essentially make the whole damn thing. The mad professor of videogames has attempted — or least pretended — to quit the Metal Gear Solid franchise numerous times, but every time he ends up attached as the leading brain. If you’re a follower of games and you’re tired of MGS’ endless bait-and-switch silliness, you’re not alone — Hideo Kojima himself seems pretty damn sick of it as well.

Thus it is that, when asked about a potential Metal Gear Solid 5, Hideo Kojima sounded more resigned than ever, and yet again promised to have minimal involvement.

“I think we’ll probably have to make it at some point, but what that will be, we have no idea,” he said. ”As far as my involvement in the project is concerned, [it] probably won’t be as much as it was with MGS1 –maybe I can do just one stage! For MGS1 I made the maps myself, laid out the enemy routes myself, did everything hands-on – that level I can’t do again.”

Kojima says he can’t do it again, but what Kojima says and what he ends up doing are not often the same thing.

Of course, Kojima cannot entirely be blamed for this. It’s been said that he has received death threats from fans in the past, demanding that he continues to make Metal Gear Solid games or otherwise face dire consequences. No matter how hard he tries to communicate his growing apathy for the franchise, the fans are satisfied with no less than eternal commitment to the universe of Solid Snake. I dare say that Konami itself is pretty keen to keep Kojima on board as MGS’ creative engine, especially since Metal Gear Solid is about the only original series Konami has that’s not been completely ruined yet.

Still, you’d have thought that Metal Gear Solid 4: Guns of the Patriots had served as an effective enough message that Kojima’s heart was not in it anymore. The character of Old Snake is often considered analogous to his creator, an old man tired of having to do the same old thing, weary of the world around him, and just waiting for the blessed release of death. With its heavy doses of nostalgia, the game also served as a particularly heartwarming sendoff for Kojima. It included plenty of references to past games, tied up many loose ends, and essentially acted as a way for the director to say everything he could’ve needed to say about Metal Gear Solid. While it’s clear that Guns of the Patriots would not be the last MGS game in the world, it seemed fairly clear that it ought to have been the last Kojima-led MGS game.

I believe Metal Gear Solid: Rising is another clear indicator that he’s had enough. Although this game bears the name of MGS, it’s clearly a very different project, perhaps given the MGS name just so Kojima could get away with doing it. Solid Snake won’t be the star, and the focus will be on katana combat rather than sneaking about. It’s a very different game, with Kojima finally spreading his creative wings, but still it’s had to be tied down by the Metal Gear Solid name, and I cannot help but wonder if that was done by choice.

I am not against new Metal Gear Solid games, and I certainly would be excited for an official announcement of Metal Gear Solid 5. I do, however, believe that it’s time for Kojima to be a man, take his life back, and officially step away from the series. After MGS4, I don’t know how anybody could have the energy to make another, least of all work on portable spin-off games and an action title focused on Raiden. Kojima’s tone when speaking of MGS, and his continued attempts to quit the series, indicate that he emotionally checked out a long time ago, and I think that if he really wants to stop, then he needs to bloody stop. Of course, if he doesn’t want to stop and it’s all been a ploy, then he should cease pretending. Either shit or get off the pot, as they say.

Fact of the matter is, I’d rather have no Metal Gear Solid than a Metal Gear Solid made by someone who doesn’t give a shit anymore. What’s the point of that? And what kind of fans would issue threats to force a guy to make such a game? So-called “fans” who want Kojima’s name attached to MGS projects for no reason other than tradition aren’t fans at all, and Kojima certainly shouldn’t feel bad about upsetting them. They clearly don’t give a shit about Metal Gear Solid, they only give a shit about feeling good about Metal Gear Solid. Screw those guys, they don’t care about what would make a good game.

Kojima is a man with a lot of crazy ideas, and such creative minds often hate to do the same thing repeatedly. It’s hardly surprising that Metal Gear Solid, Sons of Liberty and Snake Eater were full of so many wild and different gimmicks. The guy clearly can’t help being inventive, and I hate to think what it must be like for such an inventive guy to feel obligated to sticking with one franchise.

For his own sake, and for the good of Metal Gear Solid, I really think he should finally walk away. Both Kojima and the IP would be better off, I think, and the “fans” will have to learn to just get over themselves. I just dread to think how half-hearted and tired Metal Gear Solid 5 would be if Kojima once again resigns himself to taking the creative lead — all because the rest of the world won’t fucking let him do something else.

It’s no wonder the villains of the series are all about robbing people of their free will. Kojima’s gotta be telling us something there.

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24 Comments on Hideo Kojima, Just Stop Doing Metal Gear Solid

rabbit556

On November 23, 2011 at 1:20 pm

hideo kajima is a genius and he should never stop doing metal gear solid its one of the best action espionage series its the reason why games like splinter cell and other sneaking games exist today

Tobbii Karlsson

On November 23, 2011 at 1:32 pm

@rabbit556
The 80′s Wolfenstein games were the first real stealth games, not Metal Gear. Also, did you even read the text? Jim actually makes a good point about Kojima not wanting to make MGS any more and that he feels forced to do it. He’s not saying “Kojima is stupid, stop making games!”. For s sake…

Peter

On November 23, 2011 at 1:42 pm

I agree wholeheartedly. If Kojima wants to stop, he should stop. MGS4 ended the series beautifully. I’d love to see him do something new and exciting, like what he did with Zone of the Enders. Just let him rest. MGS will always be great, buy he shouldn’t feel like he HAS to do another game.

Jonah Falcon

On November 23, 2011 at 2:57 pm

rabbit556 sounds like Annie Wilkes. LOL

rabbit556

On November 23, 2011 at 3:07 pm

i was just saying i think that he should continue if wasnt bashing or anything just throwing out my love for kojima

Aids

On November 23, 2011 at 3:23 pm

60 dollars on a game with 30 minutes of gameplay and over 5 hours worth of video? no.

Dave T

On November 23, 2011 at 5:41 pm

I hope he has a break from metal gear, now back to Zone Of Enders!

coffe

On November 23, 2011 at 6:41 pm

Story in MGS games are utterly STUPID

Nikhil Sunil

On November 25, 2011 at 7:52 am

I completely agree.

I think Metal Gear Solid: Rising should be the last Metal Gear Solid game on this generation of consoles.

Kojima has already said that he is working on his new game, tentatively titled “project ogre”. He’s such a creative genius i can’t wait to see what he finally does with something new.

If Kojima does decide to come back to Metal Gear Solid, he should do it on an entirely new system that will allow him to do something new or creative and push the boundaries even further.

Snake needs to rest for a while.

Marcus Day

On November 27, 2011 at 4:01 pm

ARE YOU CRAZY!!!!?? Metal Gear Solid is the greatest game ever made. It shall never be stopped, NEVER! Yes Snake is not the star of the next one, but come on. They might find a cure for Snake, we don’t know. Metal Gear Solid will never be stopped.

Rapemonkey

On November 27, 2011 at 11:52 pm

@Marcus Day

aaron

On November 29, 2011 at 9:28 pm

seriously, you guys are ing retarded. What would be the point in playinng a half assed mgs ?? All good things must come to an end. Be Thankful there was even a re release of mgs hd collection. Snake was great. Now go play modern warfare 3 and shut the up..

Gabe

On December 1, 2011 at 4:23 pm

I agree that the MGS series should end because honestly it did MGS 4 finally resolved everything and filled in all the holes in the story plot. I can understand MGS: rising being created because thats another part of the story we dont know about with Raiden. Anyways Like others have said It doesnt make sense snake is done hes old and his fight is over. Im a die hard fan but I know when enough is enough and ive accepted that. I just hope Kojima can put this all to rest before these “fans” force it too much and ruin the series. Besides MGS isnt everything, hes got other games he wants to make such as ZOE 3 (cant wait). So im hopeing this will be resolved so we can move onto bigger and better things.

Assassin

On December 10, 2011 at 12:31 pm

Kojima better just stick to what sells and if the “fans” as you so delicately put want another Metal Gear Solid then I think thats what they should get. The fans are what made Kojima who he is recognized as today. It would be a shame to see Kojima’s name pop up in the obituary’s. I for one would be very…very disappointed.

Charzard

On December 10, 2011 at 12:45 pm

I agree with Assassin. I mean Metal Gear Solid 4 did tie up a lot of loose ends but I am still not completely satisfied with the story. The franchise is called Metal Gear Solid and there have only been two games where you get to play as “Solid” snake and that is MGS1 and MGS4. MGS2 you get to play as solid snake for a very short time then its raiden for the other 99% of the time not that I have anything against raiden (I think he is a cool dynamic to have in the series) but my point being we should get more playing time as solid snake and there is still more to learn about him. I also hate that they killed off liquid snake so fast in mgs1. He was the perfect nemisis for solid and they killed him off and then used Ocelot. Even though Ocelot is possessed by liquid from time to time its not the same as mgs1. It doesn’t even come close. Kojima is a master at work and like most masters their work is never done.

Snake

On December 10, 2011 at 12:56 pm

A complete remake of MGS1 with updated graphics and maybe a couple new scenes but keep the orignal story would be awesome. I know they did twin snakes but thats only for gamecube and i would like to see it for ps3 but have everything redone to look as good as mgs4. Liquid Snake was definitely the best antagonist for Solid Snake. They are twins and both very skilled warriors with differen’t perspectives. It was almost prophetic the way they fit together. In my opinion that is a big reason why MGS1 is often referred to as the best out of the series.

Jason

On December 10, 2011 at 1:10 pm

I think they realized they made a mistake when they killed liquid in MGS1 and then they thought they might do a quick fix with the whole possession thing which to me seemed really silly. It made the story just go haywire. It wasn’t the same game anymore and just didn’t have the same feel when it came to the story. The gameplay remained awesome. If the game was based on paranormal activity it would have fit in but that wasn’t the case. Solid Snake and Liquid Snake are like Batman and the Joker. You can’t kill one of them and leave the other alive. I think the series would have been alot better if they would have killed Ocelot in MGS1 and left Liquid alive but maybe you think liquid is dead and then find out otherwise in the next game that way you are still somewhat satisfied with mgs1.

jjbam

On December 30, 2011 at 12:07 am

Jim(the auther of thisd column) is right. theirs no question. if kojima wants to get the away from MGS then so-be it. the fact that people or “fans” send him death threats! is outrageous and should definitly not be playing rated-M games, because they are clearly not mature enough to play them.

Kevin

On January 21, 2012 at 1:07 am

If Kojima would stop making Metal gear games… maybe they need to find a new designer for it. then focus a story on a new character like a rookie soldier fresh out from selection or if the producers want maybe solid snake is his mentor. then from rookie ability he will became a legendary soldier
well thats my opinion for a plot of metal gear 5 haha of course in the end the guys in charge will be the one up to it >.<

Jessy

On January 21, 2012 at 1:12 am

if i would be given a chance by destiny i would like to try to sit as the new designer. if kojima doesnt want to return. haha

Couch_Mango

On March 19, 2012 at 10:02 pm

Umm No. The MGS series is amazing and I wouldn’t mind seeing another game featuring snake or HIS son. The storyline comes in sync so well with all the games. MGS is a series that should live on and never be forgotten.

Moonsaves

On May 1, 2012 at 10:15 am

I take it by the way you referred to Peace Walker that you’ve never played it? To me, it’s infinitely the best game in the entire series.

Jhale

On November 12, 2013 at 4:02 pm

Hideo Kojima is in the game still because he knows that his company will make games for the franchise whether he likes it or not. After the vast under-appreciation of Sons of Liberty, Guns of the Patriots was supposed to be a game that we did not want a sequel to and that was not fun. I definitely was not attracted to the game and this was because Kojima constantly made an effort to draw away love from sequels of the Metal Gear franchise.

Metal Gear Rising is about as bad of a game you could get out of Metal Gear Solid, but people still think it is awesome and want more. Really, Kojima is trying to find out how to reason with his fans and he is either attempting to convey his message in MGS2 again or is trying to make another game to push his mindless fans away more with MGS5.

averagejoey2000

On February 6, 2014 at 10:05 am

At the very least, we should let him stop at the new prequel: 5. Then there will be no gaps in the timeline and no more room for them to continue. The only other direction possible is WWII or 202x and he’s already shown that he won’t try again to go forward. He can let it be their department alone. I only want him ti finish the story of snake and his family. Liquid and solidus are dead, Solid is a civilian, and Naked is going to fill 197x with coma and 198x with simply existing until the original Metal gear. Once 5 is released, it can be over.