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Kojima Productions, the development team headed by its namesake and Metal Gear Solid series creator, Hideo Kojima, has disbanded according to Akio Otsuka, the Japanese voice actor behind the iconic role of Solid Snake.
Sadly, it was only a matter of time before this news came down, as the massive production company was build and supported under the Konami umbrella. In case you haven't been following the news these past few months, that umbrella is one that the publisher and developer are no longer sharing.
Otsuka broke the news this weekend, offering a few kind words through his Twitter page.
Kojima Productions was forced to disband, but it appears that the work that they team has been putting their utmost effort into is nearly completeI'm not exaggerating when I say that I expect it will become their greatest masterpiece. I couldn't help it. I just wanted to say 'Kept you waiting, huh?; (Laughs.) But even if this is the end, Metal Gear Solid is immortal!
Unfortunately, Konami, Kojima and the rest of his team have kept a tight lid on most details involving the state of the studio, so this is what we have to go on at this time.
When it was first revealed that Kojima and Konami were on the outs, I was in the camp that was half convinced that it was going to turn out to be some kind of crazy meta marketing strategy for the upcoming action game, Metal Gear Solid V. This is a studio that first teased their title as The Phantom Pain without any direct reference to MGS, and later went on to introduce P.T., an utterly frightening demo from a made up developer that turned out to actually be a teaser for another game Kojima Productions was working on, Silent Hills.
In other words, I took any news involving Kojima Productions with a very large grain of salt.
The rumors kept rolling out, though, and it was soon confirmed (for realsies) that the beloved director and Konami would be parting ways. It was made clear that the father of Metal Gear would remain involved through the completion of MGSV, and then he'd be off on his own.
Kojima Productions, though, is a pretty big team, so it shouldn't really come as a surprise that the group is, for all intents and purposes, disbanded. Then again, this could also prove to be pretty good news for fans of Kojima and his team. Yes, its possible that some folks lost their jobs or got absorbed onto other teams, but that isn't necessarily how things will remain.
Many fans were ready for Kojima to do something new, so this could be his perfect opportunity to do exactly that. If he signs on with another big publisher, he may even be able to get the old band back together, so to speak. Or, if he decides to do something smaller for a change, he may be able to at least pull together some of his former employees to get cracking on something new and creative.