Buy Metal Gear Solid 5 For Kojima – Supporting a Vision
Konami have done the seemingly impossible, they’ve become more disliked than EA games. While hatred towards EA is often misguided, and clumsy, Konami have seemingly went on a campaign to elevate themselves to a higher level. As company, Konami have long been a slobbering mess, stumbling around, popping out games ranging from fair to utterly broken. Their treatment of the ‘core’ franchises has not exactly helped things either. Releasing broken HD remasterings of both Silent Hill and Zone of Enders, and simply refusing to fix either release, left a bitter taste in the mouth of the collective consumer mouth.
Of course, it’s hard to talk about Konami without mentioning Hideo Kojima, the former golden boy turned wandering exile. In truth, Kojima has played his part in some of Konami’s mistakes, a fact often ignored by many because ‘it’s Kojima’, but the breakdown between the two has been spectacular.
The Metal Gear series is not just another video game franchise, it’s relevance and importance to the industry is undeniable, it’s fan base fiercely loyal. While most franchises are celebrated as video games, Metal Gear has always been there, side by side, with Kojima as a video game cultural event. The man himself has became just as much of a focal point as his creations. His bizarre, often pretentious, works have carved out a unique space for him in the hearts and minds of many. Much like Shigeru Miyamoto, or god forbid Cliff Bleszinski, Kojima has taken up the mantle of industry icon. This position comes with a huge amount of power, both business wise and socially.
The break down between Konami and Kojima wasn’t simply a business matter, or even a creative matter, it grew into it’s own story. Fans sat back and saw almost daily updates on the decaying relationship of two iconic names. Backlash started to bubble up, blog posts and tweets started to spit venom, the knives we’re out for Konami. The final straw seemingly came in the form of Konami removing Kojima’s name from their records, denying his efforts, including the effort put into Metal Gear Solid 5: The Phantom Pain.
Fans of Kojima, and not-so-fans like myself, began to take notice. This was no longer just a disagreement between employee and employer, this was something much more. Konami had been nurturing a bad reputation for sometime now, KojimaGate (least I tried) was merely the flame that set off the explosion.
With a huge cloud of animosity engulfing Konami from nearly every corner of the industry, and the sense of injustice towards Kojima, the resulting consequences have produced a few interesting dilemmas. Konami have one of, if not, the biggest release of 2015 on their hands. Metal Gear Solid 5, Kojima’s last effort in the franchise, is hard to ignore, but is buying the game supporting a shitty company like Konami a good thing?
It’s easy to rush to the conclusion that we should boycott Metal Gear 5, hit Konami in the pocket. While they may be raking it in through various arcade machines, their biggest game flopping would surely be a dagger to side. The most furious of people may support a boycott, after all, boycotting has been a popular concept in video games for sometime, even if it often fails to materialise, but there’s a problem with this form of protest in a creative industry.
Kojima does not just make video games, he crafts his visions and inspirations, resulting in a video game. . His general attitude towards the art form , and creative media as a whole, is admirable. His tweets, much like his work, often reflect various influences and nods towards what inspires and interests him. Even after all the bullshit between him and Konami, I find it hard to believe that he would support a boycott, even more so if it was at the expense of his work.
Much like a artiest wants to express themselves to others, Kojima would surely want as many people as possible to see his masterpiece. Buying Metal Gear Solid 5 isn’t you supporting a shitty company like Konami, it’s witnessing the final strokes on a creation spanning well over a decade.