Kojima Twitch interview summary: discussing Japanese gaming industry, Portable Ops canonicity, and possibility of remakes

On March 13, Geoff Keighley interviewed Hideo Kojima for an hour in a interview live streamed on Twitch. Here is a summary of Kojima’s answers.

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Kojima presented the Fellowship award to Rockstar at the BAFTAs. Keighley asked what Kojima thought of the studio.

According to Kojima, with GTA Rockstar changed what game design was, with the freedom it offered. Kojima recounted that at the time MGS2 came out, GTA3 was also released. Kojima told his programmers he wanted a game that loaded the stages in the background to give the player full freedom. His staff said that wasn’t possible, and then Kojima showed them GTA3, and they were amazed by what they saw. Kojima thinks that when it comes to game design, there is a time before and after GTA.

What games have inspired you recently?

Kojima said that while he was playing GTAV for a few hours, he noticed all the small details and felt full of envy because of this. This happens for all the games he really likes. He also thought The Last of Us was great.

What’s the perception of gaming right now in Japan?

The market has shifted from core games to portable and mobile games. These kind of games are practical, and while Kojima likes that, he also really likes games where you really have to sit down, prepare and take your time. With the success of the PlayStation 4, Kojima hopes young people will discover these kind of games as well.

How do you feel about the launch of Ground Zeroes?

Normally Kojima has a small break after having finished a game, but because Ground Zeroes is a prologue, that is not the case this time. He is looking forward to seeing what people think of Ground Zeroes, but at the same time work on The Phantom Pain continues.

What’s the design philosophy behind GZ when it comes to storytelling?

When Kojima first started with the series, games didn’t really have stories, so he tried to put that in. Up until this point, the Metal Gear games have been story heavy, linear games. Movie-like games have become more common the last few years. Kojima thinks replay value is very important to games, and he wanted Ground Zeroes to be a game you can play over and over. People often associate Metal Gear with cutscenes. But in MSGV, Kojima tried to put as few cutscenes as possible, and a lot of information can be obtained by other means. Having few cutscenes doesn’t mean there is no story.

Can we expect multiple endings in future Metal Gear games? 

Kojima isn’t planning to have different versions of the same story, but rather wants people to enjoy the missions in their own way.

Will Camp Omega return in The Phantom Pain? 

The idea right now is that people who have Ground Zeroes will be able to play missions in Camp Omega. Kojima also said something interesting, yet vague:

“In Metal Gear Solid V I’m trying something new, something that I don’t think have ever even heard of in the game industry, can’t talk to much about that yet but hopefully I’ll be able to surprise a lot of people with that.”

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Will Snake be in the next Smash Brothers? 

Kojima said he didn’t know since he isn’t working on the game himself, but he doesn’t think it’s likely. He added, jokingly, that if Sakurai (creator of the Super Smash series) is watching, to ‘please use Snake’ for the game.

Is Kojima Productions interested in mobile gaming?

Not in the usual kind of games he sees on mobile devices, but he would like to create a deep adventure game.

When will we see Metal Gear Online?

Kojima Productions LA is working together with the original team, and he expects it to be ready be the time The Phantom Pain is released.

What do you think of Virtual Reality and Oculus Rift?

Kojima is a fan of new things, so he tried Oculus Rift. He can’t play it for more than five minutes though, as he gets sick easily. But he is always interested in new tech, and researching it.

What franchise would you like to direct or reboot?

Silent Hill. He would like to work on it in the future, but he would have to prepare for nightmares, as he gets scared easily.

When will Shinkawa get on Twitter?

Kojima doesn’t think Shinkawa will join Twitter, but there is a rumor he’s on Facebook.

Are you done with the Snatcher and Policenauts universes?

Kojima has no plans for new games in those franchises, but would be happy to assist if another studio tried.

Will you remake Metal Gear and Metal Gear 2 (MSX) using the FOX Engine? And what about Zone of the Enders 3?

A few years ago Kojima tried to create a new Zone of the Enders game, mixing the robot with Lord of the Rings-like adventure elements, and create a game that everyone around the world would be able to enjoy. But it became clear to him people didn’t want this, so the project was postponed for now.

While Kojima would like to remake the games with the changes to the story in mind, they don’t have the manpower to do it right now, so there are currently no plans for these remakes.

Is Metal Gear Solid: Portable Ops canon or not?

Kojima considers this a difficult question to answer. While he did produce the game, he didn’t write the story himself, so some of the details are a bit off. The main storyline is part of the official timeline, but some of the details are not. More importantly though, he rather makes a distinction between games he only produced and games he wrote and directed as well. For a very exact translation of Kojima’s own words, check out this post.

Will Ground Zeroes receive additional downloadable content? 

Kojima likes the idea but says having to create more content for Ground Zeroes would delay The Phantom Pain even more.

What was your favorite Metal Gear to work on?

Metal Gear Solid 1 on PlayStation. Kojima did pretty much everything, from sales to production. Kojima didn’t expect it to sell, so there wasn’t the pressure of having to sell a lot of copies.

Final words 

Kojima wants Ground Zeroes to become ‘a Ground Zero for you’, as an introduction to The Phantom Pain.

Source: Twitch Interview

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