In another life, another time
I watched Silent Hills along with everyone else as it burst - Hindenburg-esque - into flames and crash-landed all over the internet. And despite my best attempts to plug that pyramid-shaped hole in my heart (opens in new tab), it festers to this day. But what I didn't appreciate until recently is that the tragedy of Silent Hills and Kojima's unceremonious departure from Konami doesn't end there. It gets even worse.
Over the years, the prolific game designer has hinted at a handful of other ideas and projects he'd love to puruse. In fact, it was this hinting that landed him the ill-fated Silent Hills gig in the first place. But between his recent departure and Konami's... shall we say... new direction, it's unlikely any of these ideas will ever been seen or heard from again. Here's a look at what could have been:
Zone of the Enders 3
Back in 2012, Konami held a special, Zone of the Enders-centric event in Japan where they announced (opens in new tab) 'Enders Project' was in development. The game would utilize the Fox Engine (which now powers Phantom Pain) and would be the Enders series' first major release since 2003's 2nd Runner. At the same event, the company also announced a release for the much-anticipated Zone of the Enders HD Collection, which would help kick off the hype train for Enders Project.
Except the exact opposite happened. One year later, Kojima went on his online radio show (because of course he has one) and announced Enders Project was scrapped. "Right now," Kojima said (via Kotaku (opens in new tab)), "nothing's happening [on the project]. We originally said we were going to do a sequel, but the team has been disbanded." This sudden shift was attributed to poor sales of the HD version resulting from the framerate not performing as well as the original PS2 release. Kojima's name has since been scrubbed (opens in new tab) from the HD Collection, following his departure from Konami, and the series is quietly fading into obscurity.
A Metal Gear game starring The Boss
The Boss - mentor of Solid Snake's father, Big Boss - is one of the strongest, most complex characters in gaming. Hell, even Volgin is nervous (opens in new tab) around her, and he's a six-foot tall masochist who shoots lightning out of his hands. So great is The Boss' influence that she was almost the star of Metal Gear Solid 5. Kojima teased (opens in new tab) this idea in a video interview about Metal Gear Rising, stating "I had several ideas for a game featuring The Boss and the Cobra Unit during the invasion of Normandy."
Ultimately, it was Metal Gear Rising that won out, but the idea of a Boss-centric Metal Gear obviously stuck with Kojima. In 2012, during a PAX Prime presentation, he mentioned (opens in new tab) that while he wasn't a "huge fan of spin-offs," a Metal Gear starring The Boss was still something he'd "definitely love to make." I imagine it as Saving Private Ryan except Tom Hanks is a woman and her teammates include a dude who controls bees and someone who talks to ghosts. This would also be a great opportunity to showcase the Philosophers, an organization who immense capital fueled the plot of Snake Eater.
An open world remake of Metal Gear Solid
Turns out Phantom Pain isn't the only open world Metal Gear game Kojima was interested in creating. Speaking at the 2015 Taipei Game Show, the developer said (opens in new tab) he'd love to someday play an open-world version of Shadow Moses but that currently no developer had come forward offering to make it.
This builds upon comments Kojima made months earlier when asked about remaking his games. "Personally, Im not too fond of remakes," he said (via IGN (opens in new tab)) "But I would have to go with MGS1. If it was going to be a remake, I wouldnt want to make a standard remake, but something similar to Planet of the Apes: Bringing the best of the past to the present and doing something new."
Considering how many changes (read: retcons (opens in new tab)) the Metal Gear universe has undergone since 1998, the original Metal Gear Solid would gain a lot from an updated script that recognized everything that has happened over the years.
Whatever 'Guy Savage' was supposed to be
In a game filled with bizarre, creepy moments, Metal Gear Solid 3's 'Guy Savage (opens in new tab)' minigame is one of the creepiest and most bizarre. It is presented as a dream sequence (or nightmare) that triggers after Naked Snake endures the game's infamous torture scene. Beaten and broken, he collapses on a cot in his prison cell, dozes off to sleep, and then everything changes. The player is now some sort of hook sword-wielding convict who butchers zombie police officers in a hack-and-slash minigame. Everything is desaturated and there's no music, which heightens the surrealness of this sequence. Eventually, after hacking up enough enemies, Snake stirs from his slumber.
Not much else is known about 'Guy Savage' or what it was supposed to become. The game was removed from later versions of MGS3, along with any references to it. Shuyo Murata, co-director on MGS4 and writer on MGS5, is credited (opens in new tab) as the minigame's design director, and as the story (opens in new tab) goes, Guy Savage was actually a demo for a future Konmai game that was later canceled. Now (almost) all traces of the game have faded away, much like PT.
The smoldering embers of our once blazing passion for this Silent Hill reboot/revival/reimagining still smolder across the internet. Kojima. Del Toro. A dream team mashup of two offbeat visionaries tackling a series made famous for its mind games. We're talking Chrono Trigger levels of game developer collaboration here. And then it all went up in flames. A Scorched Earth policy that burned Silent Hills to the ground and took Kojima Productions along with it, searing away Kojima's name from Konami's recent history; a revisionist history.
The silver lining, at least, is that Hideo Kojima apparently still has a passion for creating things, as evidenced by this tweet (opens in new tab) celebrating his 52nd birthday. He has often hinted at wanting to step away (opens in new tab) from the Metal Gear series and has even mentioned a passion for writing and making movies. Chances are, outside of a pachinko machine, the ideas in this list will likely never see the light of day. However, there are certainly more adventures to come from the original Big Boss.