Kojima on MGSV photorealistic environments: Once Snake comes into the frame, such reality is lost

Recently Kojima Productions released four new Metal Gear Solid V screens, showing off photorealistic environments. However, according to Kojima the studio is having trouble maintaining that level of realism with the character.

“In the screenshot taken from FOX engine that we recently released, u can see the reality comes in when we take Snake out. That’s my headache.”

“In fact we’re aiming photo-realistic graphic quality in MGSV but once Snake comes in that frame, such reality get lost.”


Kojima is known as a perfectionist, so it’s to be expected he will never be truly satisfied with his own work. But maybe this means some improvements on the character models will be made during the rest of the game’s development.

Source: Hideo Kojima Twitter

  • Huh?

    well no shit. you put what is essentially an anime character in a shot thats photo real, of course hits gonna look off. kinda like like roger rabbit looks off standing next to bob hoskins. ffs

    • Nyxus

      I don’t see what makes him an ‘anime character’.

      • Kamille

        it’s hard to explain but somehow the proportions of all the MGS characters look very unrealistic. They all look like anime characters that an artist tried his best to turn them into believable 3D models. And they looked fine on MGS4 because of the limitations of the hardware and more uniform art-style but in MGSV Kojima is modeling many of the characters after real people detail per detail, except for Snake and a couple of others like Miller.

        To better illustrate my point compare Capcom’s old Devil May Cry to Ninja Theory’s DMC. MGSV it’s like Kojima is mixing those 2 styles. He is keeping Dante from the original games while using the rest of the models from NT’s DMC which are more natural and realistic looking.

        Yeah, Snake has more polygons now but he still looks like he was based off an anime character. His hair, nose, eyes and not to mention his costume too. This creates quite the contrast against Quiet, the black child soldiers, the more photo-realistic environments, etc.

        • Nyxus

          I suppose you have a point since Snake and Miller are based on their original looks (and therefor on Shinkawa’s work), whereas other characters, such as the child soldier are simply scanned from real people. But I can’t say it’s something I notice, and I also wouldn’t call Shinkawa’s style anime.

      • PrinceHeir

        i don’t know why it seems bad to label something an anime.

        anime has a lot of styles, it’s not just moe all the way.

        you have series like Ghost in the Shell, Darker Than Black, Ergo Proxy, Cowboy Bebop and etc that have more realistic setting, but mixes some over the topness while maintaining some sort of reality within the boundary.

        i would even say MGS, Resident Evil, Tekken shared the whole stylized characters, but a more realistic approached.

        shame RE is losing it’s uniqueness. it’s becoming a more standardized characters.

        heck i would even argue MGS is more over the top compared to Ghost in the Shell, which the series could really happen in the real world with all technology is advancing at such a rapid phase.

        as for Snake, i would say he’s a mix of everything, Anime, Western Pop culture etc.

        heck the whole cardboard box thing is almost a parody of anime itself. with all the unique things getting attached to.

        i would say that in the JPN version, Akio-san seem to have bring some of his traits for Solid Snake’s voice.

        especially when Batou is reflects on the events that had just happened. he’s silent and stoic and at the same time determine to finish the job in any he can.

        he’s also sympathetic to his enemies, always questions his motives before pulling the trigger.

        • Nyxus

          Thanks for the clarification, I guess it depends on what frame of reference you use to look at the series. I’ve always seen it as sort of a modern myth, an epic story in a contemporary setting. But of course there are other ways of looking at the saga.

          I agree with you that it’s a mix of very different cultural influences, both from the east and from the west. This also fits Kojima, as he tends to have an international vision.

  • Nintendo Fan 4 Lif3

    Kojima has pronounced his perfectionism ever since when MGS4 ended up being the game Kojima never wanted to the point he regrets it. Also, it’s quite shocking that Big Boss himself is causing that much of a hurdle on the FOX Engine. Guess this is what he gets for not keeping it only on current gen or at least making it exclusively for next gen so that he can leverage what he can without compromise. Kojima will figure it out; he always finds a way to deliver to hardcore gamers-this time won’t be different.

    • NegaScott128

      I think he means that having a fictional character in a near-photorealistic world creates an uncanny valley-like effect. Or something.

      • Nintendo Fan 4 Lif3

        oh I see. thanks for the clarification.

    • Guest

      Hello, “Nintendo Fan 4 Lif3”

      • Nintendo Fan 4 Lif3

        Hello, “Guest”

  • William of Orange

    I don’t get it. Both day and night gameplay demonstrations, looks amazing.
    But that is my opinion. I don’t mind that snake and kaz looks a bit different.
    But what about Eli (liquid)? Did they used only one model for him,too?

    • Nyxus

      I don’t think they ever commented on that.

      • William of Orange

        Oh, my bad. This game would likely explain us why liquid believes he is the “inferior” son of big boss.

        • Nyxus

          Yes, that should be interesting. It could also explain what he meant with ‘I’m the one father chose’, which has always been a bit vague.

          • William of Orange

            How do you mean? You mean that he was genetic “garbage”, because he contains the recessive genes from big boss?

          • William of Orange

            I mean: he believes he is genetic “garbage”

          • Nyxus

            “That’s right! I’m just the leftovers of what they used to make you. Can you understand what it’s like to know that you’re garbage since the day you were born!? But… I’m the one father chose.”

            That last sentence is what I meant.

          • William of Orange

            yes! Still, when I heard this sentence, I thought he was the most whining villain I ever came across in a video game. Not saying that he was awful, but I know how Snake felt during that monologue: if Liquid would shut up about taking revenge on his “fatherrrrr” and stop blaming him for killing Big Boss.

          • William of Orange

            Can I ask you something? It’s about liquid being older or younger than Snake. Since liquid is named after Eli and Solid is named after David (No offense, but i’m not familiar with the bible nor do I ever intend to read it), does it mean that Liquid is older than Solid? Liquid didn’t know it either. And do you even need to create a second clone to copy paste all the recessive genes, so that the superior clone doesn’t have any recessive treats?

          • Nyxus

            Liquid and Solid are exactly the same age as far as I know. Well, by a few minutes I guess.

          • William of Orange

            I know they are twins, so it was kind of a stupid question.

  • Nekkedsnake

    i guess you could say that Snake and Kaz seem like caricatures of themselves when juxtaposed to a realistic setting or other realistic characters. while it does make them standout from a main-characters POV, i guess Kojima wanted them to look more like real people. he could have taken more time to find suitable face models as there isn’t a release date in sight anyways. all in all Snake and Kaz look badass to me. Koj can be too anal for his own good at times.

  • Ilja Y.

    alright, soon we hit 2014.

  • PrinceHeir

    i don’t really care about photo realism tbh.

    i always like the stylized but a more realistic approach like games like Resident Evil, Tekken.

    must be the CGI thingy though.

    • Ilja Y.

      agreed. atmosphere&story defenetaly more important elements in a game.

      best example: Mgs 1.

      • Nyxus

        Sure, but one thing doesn’t really exclude the other. I believe in Kojima’s vision.

  • markos

    The reason snake looks fake is that he is 4 different actors, plus some minor tweaks. The soldier in the daytime demo looks more real since he is just 1 actor, they didn’t mess with his face. The same goes to that black kid from the developers conference.

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