Hideo Kojima spoke about the past, present and future of the Metal Gear franchise.
In celebration of the 25th anniversary of the Metal Gear franchise, series creator Hideo Kojima spoke about the past, present and future in an interview published today on the official PlayStation blog.
Most notable, perhaps, was Kojima's promise to show off the developer's new Fox game engine on Aug. 30.
Kojima began his career as a designer and planner, but he soon became discouraged when the first game he worked on was cancelled. "I thought about leaving the company and looking for other work, but they offered me the chance to develop a combat game for the MSX," Kojima said. "The result of this offer was the first Metal Gear. It was launched exactly 25 years ago."
Kojima not only looks back at his work but at the Japanese video game industry and its future. "Production studios in Japan are nearly extinct, a fact that we have recognized for nearly 10 years, and although the Fox Engine is not finished we are ready to show what it can do... on August 30th in Japan to be more specific," he said.
Kojima's stature and responsibilities increased as Metal Gear games grew in popularity. At each stage in his career, he faced frustrations technological, fiscal, and managerial, and the story he tells attributes much of his success to overcoming these ever-present challenges. In 1998, for example, when he was working on Metal Gear Solid, Kojima worked on a schedule and budget that Konami determined. Dissatisfied with that arrangement, he founded Kojima Productions.
"At Kojima Productions I'm a director, producer, and designer of video games," he said. "I have control over the budget, and more say in what to do or what not to do, especially regarding hiring. In fact, the people who worked on the first Metal Gear Solid are still the core of Kojima Productions"
In the context of creating each Metal Gear game, Kojima opens up about how he tried and failed to hand directorial suites to others, and how he leveraged the technology in PlayStation 2 and 3 to create realistic environments. His current project, the multi-platform Fox Engine on which future Kojima Productions games will run, is "nearly finished," he said.
All this Metal Gear talk got you hungry for more tactical espionage action? Be sure to check out the gameplay video that Konami released last week from the upcoming Raiden-centric spinoff, Metal Gear Rising Revengeance, which makes up in swords what it lacks in stealth.