Last night at The Game Awards, announcer Geoff Keighley said that Hideo Kojima, a video game designer known for the Metal Gear Solid games, would not be appearing. He seemed pretty upset. According to Keighley, Kojima was prevented from attending by his possibly soon-to-be former employer, Konami. (Konami maintains that Kojima is still an employee, despite evidence indicating that at very least, things are no longer amicable between the two.)
This is just the latest in a long string of slightly mysterious choices Konami has made with regards to Kojima. In March, Kojima’s name and company—Kojima Productions—were removed from all Metal Gear merchandising and the Metal Gear website. Kojima Productions Los Angeles was renamed to Konami Los Angeles Studio, and the studio has since closed its doors entirely.
There were also rumors of a goodbye party for Kojima, though those rumors are unconfirmed aside from photographic evidence that indicates some kind of gathering took place in Kojima’s honor. (Konami said Kojima was simply going on vacation.)
Despite everything, Konami and Kojima released a joint statement claiming that Kojima remained on the Metal Gear team and would remain involved throughout Metal Gear Solid 5: The Phantom Pain’s development. Later, Konami announced that another Metal Gear was in the works, despite Kojima’s having stated that he would be “finally closing the loop on that saga.”
Given Konami’s behavior to date, Kojima’s failure to appear at the Game Awards isn’t particularly surprising. Keighley condemned Konami on stage, and shortly thereafter tweeted a personal congratulations to Kojima.
This morning Kojima tweeted this:
— xaviiiVLC (@XaviiiVLC) December 4, 2015