Kojima talks about MGSV: The Phantom Pain – story, characters and closing the loop on the saga

In a video published by IGN, Hideo Kojima talks about Metal Gear Solid V: The Phantom Pain – how the game is shaping up, how he designed the story and characters, and how it will be his last Metal Gear game.

MGSV-Release-Date-Art

Kojima started off by thanking everyone for their patience. After long periods of testing and experimentation, the studio is now in the stage of polishing the game and putting in the finishing touches. According to Kojima, the goal is in sight.

The vast environments of the game are filled with content – not just enemies, but also items and ‘various interactive elements’, which are now being balanced. Kojima is satisfied with how things are shaping up.

As explained before, the game will feature a ‘freely assembled episodic format’, comparable to a tv series. The story won’t be told in a linear way but will be gradually pieced together as the player progresses.

“I never set out to create a franchise called Metal Gear”, Kojima said. The game would originally have a different title, but they decided to name it after the main enemy weapon. And now that the series is known as Metal Gear, there is no going back. It has to have a Metal Gear. According to Kojima, the bipedal walking tanks in MGSV are inspired by sci-fi movies of the era. “Certain aspects are realistic, but when it comes to high-tech weapons and walking tanks, what you’re seeing are visions of the future to the lens of that era.” But Kojima also looked at failed military R&D projects. He hopes people will appreciate the details and enjoy the atmosphere of sci-fi from 1984.

Kojima-Interview-IGN-March-4-2015-2

Kojima explained how he works together with Yoji Shinkawa for character design. Hideo comes up with name, age, habits, background and language. Shinkawa then gets to work. Kojima checks the designs and gives feedback. Their two booths are next to each other so they can communicate constantly. After the basic design is decided upon, Kojima leaves Shinkawa to it. Usually, the two are constantly working together, but sometimes Shinkawa surprises him with something that is very different from what he originally asked for. “That’s the really fun part of working with him.” Kojima said. “Several characters in The Phantom Pain are the result of this.”

Building the FOX Engine was vital for this project to succeed. Kojima explained how with Metal Gear Solid 4, he tried to do sort of an open world approach, but couldn’t realize it at the time. “I felt we were also lacking behind western studios in other areas like physics simulation, lightning and rendering techniques as well.” This is what lead to to creation of the FOX Engine. Now, small teams of specialists can individually work on the things they are best at. MGSV differs greatly from MGS4, both in terms of development methods as in terms of content.

Kojima noted how these days with online connectivity, there’s always other people in the world playing the same thing. At a certain point in the game, you’ll be able to attack other players’ Mother Bases, or join as allies.

MGSV-TPP-Snake-Knife

As we know by now, Snake won’t speak much in The Phantom Pain. According to Kojima, the character has always been an extension of the player, an alter ego. “I made a very conscious effort this time to bring Snake closer to the player’s perspective.” Kojima explained. “As much as possible, Snake will act based on the player rather than doing things like making spontaneous comments or flirting with women.” He once again made a comparison to Mad Max, where the characters around him are expanding the story.

So, will MGSV be Kojima’s last Metal Gear game? Kojima said that the saga he built with Metal Gear, Metal Gear 2, MGS1, 2, 3, 4 and Peace Walker, he will finally be closing the loop with The Phantom Pain. “Even if the Metal Gear franchise continues, to me this is the last Metal Gear.” he concluded.

Lastly, Kojima was given an opportunity to leave his fans a message. “We’re putting everything we have into redefining the concept of strategic freedom in open world gaming, as we sprint towards release during this critical phase.” Kojima said. “It’s been challenging, but also immensely rewarding, and I can’t wait for fans to experience what I think will be the most interesting game in the franchise. Please, look forward to it.”

Source: IGN

  • I can’t imagine walking into Shinkawa’s office and being like “Nah that’s not what I’m looking for, Do it again.” He’s a god of an artist. I’m really glad Kojima is looking foward to the release date. Usually he isn’t proud of his work. He always feels he can do more. I think this might be his masterpiece and he knows it. I really hope some new footage is shown at 6am my time.

  • i don’t believe a word kojima said

  • jkffyjjkgft

    Great!. I believe in kojima to make the best game this year.

  • Golgari

    I used that pic as my desktop background.

    V – For Victory!

  • Bramdeman

    September is far away, but I’m sure the team will make it even better.

  • MAG V Supreme

    I am only commenting to say. Lets all hope we get mgo beta and a Co-Op for story mode trailer today. Who is with me?

    • Tibor

      I don’t think mgo beta will happen but Co-Op with this game would be awesome

    • psychomantis18

      Not me. MGS is to its core a single-player experience. I think Kojima only really offers MGO to appease the multi-player audience while, thankfully, putting most of his blood’n’sweat into the main campaign.

  • Cartmangus

    I think TPP is very questionable game to make Big Boss an avatar for the player as this is supposed to be the game we see his descent. As well as running an army. Having him be the silent grunt type soldier just seems like an odd choice to me. I was especially excited for his character with this game when it was first announced and the first couple of trailers dropped, but now I’m more reserved and I don’t really know what to expect out of it.

    It all lies in the execution, he might do some really interesting things with it that only helps with the depiction of his downfall but as of now it sounds really sketchy as this initially seemed like it was gonna be very focused on Big Boss himself as a character.

    • Golgari

      I agree with you on this. It all lies in the execution really. Also The reason why he is silent grunt soldier is because the game is huge and after Troy Baker’s interview where he said that this game is the biggest game there is right now and other speculations about the world being bigger then GTAV I’m not sure that fans will like the idea of Big Boss talking all the time.
      People already hated for some reason when Master Miller talked about the mission all the fucking time in GZ. “Snake -Remember the mission” – Player: I KNOW!

      Big Boss will have his moments. I’m sure of that.

      • Mr.Pony

        I agree too, it would be a big fail on Kojima’s part to get Kiefer to voice Big Boss and in the end be reduced to some mere lines of dialog. He will certainly talk but only when necessary, no unnecessary talk over the radio but only the essencial and crucial parts for the main story. I was also happy to see that there is in fact stuff to find in the open-world, stuff you can use not just collectibles with no reward. Also I’m not sure that Kojima meant this to be his final MGS, he said something similar at MGS4 and then he said that he was not done yet with Solid Snake, maybe he is just tired of all the work.

      • korruption

        I hope there’s a way to cut transmission with Miller after the first attempt of any mission. Unless he has additional advice for players who aren’t very adept at observation, then cut him off when you’ve heard what you needed, head back to Mother Base and give him a fulton wedgie.

    • THIS. EXACTLY THIS.

    • Hunter Rose

      My thoughts exactly. I’ve always liked that Solid Snake and Big Boss are more than just blank stand-ins for the player, but I guess we just have to have faith that Kojima knows what he’s doing and will find the right balance

    • Vegas

      I think what Kojima intents is to stop making Big Boss talk all the time. For instance, remember in MGS3 (hell, all MGS) when Snake always repeated something he just heard. “Snake, you have to meet with ADAM”. “ADAM…?”. “Yes, he will support you in this operation.” “Support…?” “For fuck sake, stop repeating me”.
      I imagine that Big Boss will only talk when necessary and he won’t act like a numbnut all the time. Something like Quiet trailer. He almost doesn’t speak but he said just enough. It won’t be such linear conversations anymore, he will carry more emotion in his words and making him talk all the time would empty the emotional meaning.

    • Alex

      It will add a player-based personal attachment to that story of his descent. Its all very personal to you the player, and that experience is different for each player, so we all go through our own personal decent with Big Boss. For example, I’m sure some areas will have child soldiers in them to amp up the tension of the stealth. If you get caught and find yourself forced to kill some kids, that just adds to your personal decent, its part of your specific story.

  • Big_Boss88

    I love how MGS has all these scifi stuff included in the games :D. I have known ever since the first trailer that this will be the best game and MGS ever 😉 !

    Kojima taking different approaches in his games is so great, every game feels really fresh when so different from previous MGS. Even if Big Boss talks less , Im sure he talk much especially in cutscenes. Which makes me imagine how freaking amazing it will be to finally play the epic trailer scenes we have seen so many times ^_^.

    I salute you Kojima and good if he finally decide TPP to be last, he will end saga with best game for sure.

    • Mr.Pony

      As for the Sci-fi vibe, can’t stop thinking of Big Boss being abducted by aliens xD and also body snatchers

  • Bramdeman

    Big Boss rocking the lock screen:

    • Mr.Pony

      that looks awesome “Slide to unlock the daemon”

      • César H. Sandoval

        I (quickly) made a thingy, using it as wallpaper now 😛

        • Bramdeman

          Wow looks great!

        • i made this one! it’s dirtier though :c

          • César H. Sandoval

            Diamonds from ashes 🙂

    • Zlatan

      Ah nice! I had the diamond dogs logo until now, but this is even cooler!

    • ThreeMadFrogs

      I did this too 😛

  • MrVux007

    *this will be really my last MGS*….Konami be like

  • I was hoping to hear about a collectors edition so I could finally pre-order the game.

    • Keep a browser locked on Konami.jp/mgs5/ They said they had some more to tell the world!

      • Shalashaska

        any stream ?

        • I think IGN is supossed to stream something. Can’t find a link though

          • Shalashaska

            the idiots didnt share the link on their site ? seriously ? let me go checking shit im so late 🙁

      • Shalashaska

        lol dude the site is crashing!!!!!!

  • The Konami.jp/mgs5/ page won’t let me use the Phantom Cigar anymore hahaha

    • Silverius

      Same here.

    • Shalashaska

      You tried that too.. didnt you ? These buggers ARE smarter than the PATRIOTS ! Sadly, their only wrong choice was to give it to ign :/

  • DarpaLT.Sigma_

    Kojima can end the series if he wants , as long as he remakes my fav game Metal Gear Solid 4 🙂 for nex gen of course (Xbox One)

    • Shalashaska

      wish i had that on my 360 :'(

      • DarpaLT.Sigma_

        There’s no need to go exclusive ever again…. hopefully

    • I hope the remakes make it to all consoles for everyone to enjoy.

      • DarpaLT.Sigma_

        Well said

    • Edward Wokhands

      It’s amazing how good MGS4 still looks. It doesn’t need a remake. Unless you just mean that you want it ported?

  • Shalashaska

    Ok so HERE is the thing.. I DO think this will be his last game. and that’s because he is done with the Saga.. He is going to cover everything with the TPP game.. ALL the holes are filled. All the corners are smoothed. There is NOTHING left for him to tell anymore. His timeline begins with the Virtous mission and ends at Zero’s/BBoss’s death.. Now you count the numerous games and see the timeline.. you’d realize that its done, Guys.. sadly the saga ends here. There are no holes left to fill, no incomplete stories.. no loopholes.. Nothing.. Some here and there characters arent explained but he isnt gonna make a game specifically for them. So yea.. I DO think THIS will be HIS last game. Now Do I think that MG series and MGS series wont be re-made at some point ? I DO believe this. HIGHLY SURE of THAT. But it wont be undertaken by Kojima-san.. But knowing Kojima san, he wont let his game get tainted.. he’ll probably make sure everything goes through him before it is made.. or maybe not ..maybe he’ll trust the team who is making it. So for all the AMAZING gaming years I have played Metal gear series starting with Metal gear Solid 1 on the ps1 and till the final game of The Phantom Pain.. HERE is To you all and Especially to the greatest game creator alive in this century : Hideo Kojima.

    https://i.imgflip.com/ieq1y.jpg

    • yes…

      http://olivethepeople.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/12/Amen-brother-gif.gif

      I fully agree, and I would be happy to see remakes of older games just be made by other studios who are just as big of fans as us on metalgearinformer.com
      I want Kojima to persue other games I know he really wants to do. Who knows, Maybe his next franchise can blow Metal Gear out of the water. We won’t know till we move on… I’m ready to do so…

      • korruption

        I kinda just wanna move on (really fast, preferably) to Sept. 1st and then patiently wait out what his intentions will be afterward. =D

        Now then… I know I left my cryogenic storage coffin around here somewhere…

    • decoyF0XX

      Ah the wait for MGS V has so many feels involved it’s a whole different experience. I think when it’s time for Konami to continue MG without Kojima, they should give it another name like Metal Gear ****** so it’s a parallel series and it doesn’t affect the original series, that might make everyone happy.

      https://i.imgflip.com/ieq1y.jpg

      • Shalashaska

        THEY need to indulge their hands into PROPER STEALTH VR. EFFING IMAGINE THAT! IMAGINE PLAYING A GAME AS BIG BOSS THRU HIS EYES!!!!!!!! NO MORE NEED TO PRESS R1!!!!! .. Ahem..evaa..cough..ahaaan. Ok .. best part = Beginning of mgs 3!

        • decoyF0XX

          First-person MGS?? Sounds cool but don’t give Konami that idea haha, FPS games are a cancer!

          • Shalashaska

            Ofcourse I dont Mean it to be like COD, I mean it like Far cry BUT BETTER 😀

          • decoyF0XX

            Oh, now that you mention Far Cry! Far Cry 3 happens to be one of my favourite games of all time. I can imagine sneaking as Snake in first person with VR, that would be awesome. And ah, yes, the HALO jump would be amazing in First -Person view!

  • Javier Sosa

    Ten more minutes

  • Silverius

    Site wont even load properly for me anymore WHYYYY!!! 🙁

  • Shalashaska

    hahaha site is crashing because of the load guys xD

    • Silverius

      SHEEEEEEIT!!!!

  • Golgari

    Guys, I hate you all. xD because of you my Metal Gear web page is full of shit right now. Konami site crashed… Lol.

    • BROTHER!!!

      • Golgari

        IT’S BEEN TOO LONG!

        • Silverius

          LIQUIIIIIID!!!!!

    • Shalashaska

      AWWWW… we love you too <3 <3 <3 <3

  • Adstratorz

    Kept You Waiting Huh!? hahahah

    can you guys share live stream link?

  • セーサー異音

    There’s a way getting around Kojima’s logic of Metal Gear saga.

    Making a remastered version.

  • Solid Snakes Revenge

    This is sooo awesome. It’s as if kojima knew it was my birthday. I sure hope it’s not the last metal gear though. I hope he still comes back and remakes the first 2 MG’s. Now the wait til Sept.1st.

  • Adstratorz

    Yessssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssss! I’m so very HAAAAPPPPPYYYYY right now

    PC version is on September 15

    http://www.ign.com/articles/2015/03/04/metal-gear-solid-5-the-phantom-pain-release-date-revealed?abthid=54f70f1c07093caf3700000b

    Thank You!
    Sir Kojima

  • Shalashaska
    • Big_Boss88

      Oh my god :D, yeah! Best news I hear today :D:D , going home at the moment thx for info. Kojima makes me so happy…

      This is perfect, can play TPP first on PS4 and then on PC with Japanese VA <3.

      • Shalashaska

        sept 15 is pc version release.. just 15 days after console which is damn good tbh 🙂

        • Mr.Pony

          And so it begins, the greatest waiting game of our time 🙂
          September 15 can’t come quick enough

          • Shalashaska

            lol.. 6months.. tick tock.. just effing lock me in a room till this game releases.. i want to hibernate!!!!

          • Hanna-Mari

            Yeah, waiting until june or september will be tough. At least I can kick scarecrows ass about 3 months before TPP. Something to do…

    • Shalashaska
  • DarpaLT.Sigma_

    I can’t go on Konami ‘s official site for some reason….. I wanna watch the countdown 🙁

  • solidsnack

    whoah the collectors edition looks nice, i was hoping for the bionic arm!

    • Silverius

      Oh come on guys, europe gets a leather Diamond Dogs Box? What the fuck 🙁

  • Shalashaska
    • RevolverRoden

      What a shame.

      • Shalashaska

        Imagine how great it would be without their mistake.. Thousands at the same time.. instead we got thousands wishing the september 1st news wasnt true and others being like..oh okay.. i know i wasnt so excited.. :/

        • RevolverRoden

          I guess the only good part was that I got finished with (most of) my depression yesterday and wasn’t completely devastated today.
          Heh

          • Shalashaska

            Its sorta sad though.. Kojima doesnt deserve such crap while working on the best and last mgs title

  • Crowstorm

    Wait, no physical release and no collector’s edition for PC? I dont give a fuck about steam release 🙁

    • Crowstorm

      Like, im so mad right now. I would have to buy PS4 CE + digital release on steam and I really hate digital items.

  • vic boss

    I expected a disc with the soundtrack but I will buy this no matter what.

    • Xomak

      Good point, where’s our soundtrack!?

  • Silverius
    • DarpaLT.Sigma_

      Oooooohhh! Very sexy 😀

    • Edward Wokhands

      Oh my ballbag.

  • ThreeMadFrogs
  • Edward Wokhands

    Kojima used a very specific phrase regarding it being the last game. He said “in that sense, it’s the last game” regarding the story loop. What he means is that the whole Big Boss / Solid Snake story has been told. Or at least that’s how it sounded to me. That doesn’t mean that it’s the final game, not even close.

  • RevolverRoden

    You know, I actually believe him this time. I’m sure MGS will continue, either as remakes, spin offs, or a reboot, but the MGS canon is all done now. And even if theres a new MGS, I think it’ll have less, if any, Kojima involvement. He’s 50 now and he wants to move on.
    I’m gonna cry ;{

    • Xilurm

      Well the sad part is, even if Kojima leaves the franchise, because Konami is greedy they will attempt to make more games. And we all know they will fail. But as you said, this will be the last canon game. No matter what anyone says, if it’s not approved by Kojima then it ain’t canon.

      • RevolverRoden

        Yeah Konami can’t afford to lose Metal Gear. I wonder what will happen. As much I love MGS and Kojima’s vision, I kind of feel for him and don’t want him to make another MGS if he doesn’t. His message to the fans today gave me feels. I wanted to give Kojima a good Snake-Otacon style hug heh.
        KOJIMA! You’re pretty good.

  • i still can’t agree with BB being silent, i get the part of making the character a extension of the player. it has already been done in plenty of games but the problem here is that everyone in MGS has a lot of personality and it doesn’t make much sense to build a character with a strong personality and then take all of it away and leave him just as an avatar… especially if we are talking about BB who is the most badass character of the whole saga. i’m sure V will be awesome but i fear for the development of BB through the game. i don’t want him to suck, less in this game that has to told the story of his downfall.

    also, we’ve all heard before the “this will be my last MG” comment before. so as always i’m not to sure about it but this time it seems it’s closer to being true than before. but now i think it comes the worst part. if Kojima won’t make another one i’m sure Konami will milk whatever they can from the franchise. i just wish they don’t fuck up anything, i’m ok with remakes and spin off though i just wish we never get a “Disney star wars treatment” with MGS. that would tear my heart apart.

    and i would love to see something new coming from Kojima, this guy has what it takes to make great games.

  • Ninja_Se7eN

    Kojima also mentioned that we could invite other people to our motherbase as allies.
    Does it mean Co-Op?

  • Cipher

    So the game will cover from 1984 to 1995
    from creating Diamond Dogs to the rise of Outer Heaven
    it must be really big
    and so it should, after 3 years of development

    But as much as Iam excited, I’m also sad to hear this will be his last game :((

  • ThreeMadFrogs

    My prediction – E3 2017, next Metal Gear will be unveiled.

  • J’lon Madison

    I’m sure this has been said before, but seeing as how this will “close the loop”, I think it would be incredible if Kojima did an expansion to Phantom Pain in the coming years; a downloadable mission in the same vein as Ground Zeroes that recreated the events of the very first Metal Gear.

    You bring back Hayter to voice a young Solid Snake while simultaneously remaking the very first game with modern tech. It would not only be fan service, but the bite-size Ground Zeroes experience done right. The fans would eat that up in a heartbeat.

    It just makes too much sense to me. C’mon Kojima, REALLY close that loop!

  • Pingback: Kojima: I shall only look forward doing my best | Metal Gear Informer()

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