It’s official: Hideo Kojima no longer at Konami, reportedly creating new studio

It’s been a long, weird road to this point. Hideo Kojima, the creator of the popular Metal Gear series, has officially left his long-time creative partnership with publisher Konami as of December 15. The news comes from a new report from Japan’s Nikkei.

For those of you who can’t read Japanese, the Nikkei report claims Kojima is currently in the process of building a brand new studio and is talking to Sony Computer Entertainment about moving forward.

The news hardly comes as a surprise following months of speculation regarding a rift between Kojima and Konami. The New Yorker reported in October that Kojima had left the publisher and his non-compete clause would wind up some time in December. Konami denied everything, claiming that Kojima was still in their employ.

The strained relations first began to appear back in March of this year when Konami, amid a corporate restructuring, abruptly deleted the Kojima Productions logo and brand from any promotional materials concerning Metal Gear Solid 5: The Phantom Pain, including the game’s box art.

In April, the publisher canned Silent Hills, Kojima’s upcoming horror collaboration with Guillermo del Toro despite the huge interest in the game’s demo, P.T. In July, Kojima Productions appeared to disband once and for all.

Both Konami and Kojima are yet to comment on the Nikkei story. The Iris has reached out to Konami for comment and will update this piece should they reply.