Internal power struggles between Kojima Productions and Konami reportedly mean key members will be leaving following Metal Gear Solid V's launch.
Konami has never had... the greatest reputation as a publisher in the gaming industry, and now, an internal power struggle between it and Kojima Productions - the folks behind the Metal Gear series - may lead to the entire studio disbanding, and Hideo Kojima himself taking his ball and going home.
According to an inside source who spoke to GameSpot on the condition of anonymity, the publisher has been forced to make drastic changes to the Kojima Productions staff, including amending the employee status of its Metal Gear team. Some senior staff at the studio, including Kojima, now essentially work as contractors, not permanent employees, whose contracts are set to expire upon the launch of Metal Gear Solid V.
"After we finish MGSV, Mr. Kojima and upper management will leave Konami. They said their contract ends in December," the source claimed. "At a team meeting, Mr Kojima explained that [despite this] the team has to be one and make a good game for fans."
Even Konami itself appears to be preparing itself for Kojima's departure. The publisher has begun removing the Kojima Productions logo from all official Metal Gear art, as well as any Kojima Productions branding from Twitter, the official Metal Gear website, and even the LA office listing.
Kojima has also reportedly had his communications privileges restricted, and is being blocked from attending media events to promote his upcoming game.
Konami had only the following official statement to offer when reached for comment: "Konami Digital Entertainment, including Mr. Kojima, will continue to develop and support Metal Gear products. Please look forward to future announcements."
I guess Kojima wasn't kidding when he said Metal Gear Solid V will be the last one.