35 years later, Hideo Kojima recalls how the "gruelling" development of his little-known Cyberpunk adventure game left him with a stomach ulcer

(Image credit: Konami)

Hideo Kojima has recalled how one of his earliest games was a "gruelling" process to develop.

Before Kojima was known for a little series call Metal Gear in the 1990s, he helped develop Snatcher for Konami. The "cyberpunk graphic adventure game," as it's described now, was first released for the PC-8801 and MSX2 in Japan in 1998, and focused on sentient robots killing and replacing humanity in an East Asian city.

Kojima helped write, code, and plan Snatcher. November 26 marked 35 years since Snatcher released for the PC-8801, so Kojima marked the occasion by reflecting on the game's development process, which was apparently particularly painful as the team at Konami had to effectively write their own programming language on the fly.

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The Snatcher team at Konami was focusing on the MSX prior to Snatcher's development, so it actually had zero experience with developing for the PC-8801. Kojima's tweets above make it sound like the team had to effectively teach itself how to program for a PC as it developed Snatcher.

Kojima recalls that the development process was especially "gruelling," and he actually ended up with a stomach ulcer near the end of making Snatcher. Game development is chaotic and ever-evolving, where hundreds of things can go wrong at any point in time, so devising your own programming language alongside making the actual game sounds nightmarish. 

Still, Kojima looks back on the process as what "brought me to where I am today." We can only hope that other members of Snatcher's development team can look back upon the process as having helped their careers as positively as Kojima can, at the end of the day.

Here's everything we know to date about Death Stranding 2, which is just one of the ongoing projects at Kojima Productions. 

Hirun Cryer

Hirun Cryer is a freelance reporter and writer with Gamesradar+ based out of U.K. After earning a degree in American History specializing in journalism, cinema, literature, and history, he stepped into the games writing world, with a focus on shooters, indie games, and RPGs, and has since been the recipient of the MCV 30 Under 30 award for 2021. In his spare time he freelances with other outlets around the industry, practices Japanese, and enjoys contemporary manga and anime.