Hideo Kojima, The Phantom Pain and the importance of misleading people


The speculation began from the moment The Phantom Pain trailer was revealed. Was this Metal Gear Solid 5? Neogaf’s 96 page thread is emblematic of the forensic analysis Kojima’s output inspires, and it has lead to what is now a universally accepted assumption: The Phantom Pain is a Kojima project, and it is linked – somehow – to the Metal Gear universe.

As part of an interview with Hideo Kojima in which he discussed PS4, episodic games and more, we had to ask: is he involved with The Phantom Pain project? Frosty looks were exchanged, and he wouldn’t answer. He did, however, respond to a broader question about leaving clues in trailers, and what they might mean.

“I do think it’s important to leave hints, but, in a sense, I think it’s important to mislead people with hints because I think if something’s too predictable then it’s no longer fun,” he said. “I think that’s the problem with many Hollywood sequels, you get exactly what you expect. But what I want to do, is make people look forward to a game by watching the trailers and say “Hey, that looks great.” But then, when they actually play it, they have this sort of epiphany where they realise “Oh, so that’s what that was.” And it all kind of comes together and clicks in their head. I think that’s very important that you leave some sense of discovery for the player.”

Tomorrow, we’ll see another piece of this puzzle slot into place. GTTV will broadcast an interview with the apparent CEO of The Phantom Pain developer Moby Dick Studios, Joakim Mogren. We don’t expect a complete reveal, but yet more teasing ahead of concrete details at Kojima’s GDC 2013 talk. Until then, there are more details on Konami’s next-gen game engine in the latest issue of Edge magazine.