This afternoon, in the packed conference hall in Earls Court, Hideo Kojima took to the stage to talk about all things Metal Gear and show off it’s latest iteration – Ground Zeroes.
The event kicked off with Kojima answering questions submitted by Eurogamer readers in the lead up to the event – starting with a question on boss battles and Kojima’s favourite from the entire series. He stated two that he feels, for different reasons, struck a chord with him; The Boss at the end of MGS3 and Liquid Ocelot at the end of MGS4.
Both emotional battles, with the former having you battle someone you don’t want to kill – but must – and the second taking you throughout the history of MGS. He later hinted that he has many ideas for bosses in the future that he hopes we’ll enjoy. With previous bosses such as Fatman and The Cobra Unit from MGS3, we’re sure that they’ll be impressive indeed.
Kojima never expected Liquid Snake to become such an iconic character, when he was in MGS1. As he didn’t plan to make a sequel to MGS1, he now regrets killing off Liquid in MGS1 and needed an iconic character to be an antagonist in future titles.
Kojima stated that he has aged and matured along with Snake and that Snake will always be apart of him – He couldn’t go back to making a Snake that’s younger than him as, much like war, Snake has changed.
On the subject of Policenauts, Snatcher and if we would ever see the titles come back – Kojima is doubtful as the sales of the titles wouldn’t be enough, or financially viable, anymore. He wants to make games that are accepted globally – adventure games not being them. A remake would also have to be outsourced, with Kojipro working on new titles.
A scaredy cat, when it comes to movies, Kojima says that a Silent Hill game is something he “could” design, created with a special type of horror that only those who get scared by films could create. He talks about how the Silent Hill series has a unique atmosphere which he wouldn’t want to break, however he would be up for lending technology or his help if they did want to use FOX Engine. The president of Konami has already asked if he wanted to create the next Silent Hill after that statement in the press.
Neil Armstrong was a big influence for Kojima, and others born in that era, and that made him think about Policenauts in it’s planning stages. He respects the astronaut- especially after wanting to be one himself – and spent some time researching him in later life. Kojima even went as far to say that he would sell his soul to go to space!
Kojima stated that he will not be involved with directing or writing the Metal Gear Solid film but will supervise and work very closely with the production. Metal Gear, to him, will always be a game and he couldn’t be the one who would transfer it to film. Game movies, in the past, haven’t been of high quality he admits, but, Avi knows Metal Gear and Kojima is sure that the script and movie will turn out great. He couldn’t talk much about casting though, but he would rather go for someone unknown than someone like Hugh Jackman like he has said before as a potential Snake.
Kojima showed the Ground Zeroes demo that has previously been shown at PAX and TGS and once again confirmed that the game is open world and that if you can see something, you can go there. Due to the open world setting, there may have to be some downgrade in graphics but the lighting effects will be in full force, creating a gorgeous looking title. You can sneak in from any point and call in the helicopter to get extracted anywhere. From there you can go to the next mission or return to base.
The demo is a prologue and only shows a small map but there will be bigger places that you can use the helicopter to fly to. Time will pass in real time which will affect the gameplay. Different helicopters will also affect the time it takes to arrive somewhere, so get ready to pimp your heli. Kojima informed fans that this prologue was designed to test out the limits of FOX Engine originally.
Flipping back to some general questions before the conference ended, he was asked on the base creation and weapon modification from Peace Walker. Kojima says that it is something that he enjoyed and they are certainly planning on looking at in Ground Zeroes. You can walk around your base and the travel to the base is real time with no visible loading screens.
Kojima can also say with confidence that turning Metal Gear into an open world title will not affect the gameplay. The core gameplay is still stealth but players are being given more options. Piloting jeeps and other vehicles is an option, so if you want it to be action orientated then you can, but it isn’t a necessity and players will receive higher rewards for using stealth.
Would Kojima want the series to continue for another 25 years though, with that being the milestone it has reached this year? He wouldn’t see him doing it, if he did. Kojima would want the series to continue under younger wings – much like the Bond films have.