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Historical Society Historian
 Post subject: KojiPro addresses recent rumors about P.T.'s development.

Missing since: 04 Mar 2007
Notes left: 3532
P.T. was back in the news, or at least the rumour mill for a bit.

One French outlet began spreading supposed insider information about Kojima's 'firing' from Konami being due to misappropriating MGSV's budget to develop P.T. in secret without Konami knowing.

Kojima Productions released a brief statement denying this.

"KOJIMA PRODUCTIONS normally does not comment on rumors or speculation, however we can confirm that the article recently posted on http://Gameblog.fr is categorically false."
- Jay Boor, Global Head of Marketing and Communications

https://twitter.com/KojiPro2015_EN/stat ... 9297775616

Jay Boor was the recent ex-Konami UK PR hire who previously handled marketing Silent Hill and Metal Gear for Konami.

When the rumor first began it was clearly nonsense, because it essentially claimed that Kojima managed to secretly get Del Toro and Norman Reedus on board and even promote the title of Konami's own channels, including internal company tech demos and monitoring software to check how people were playing and reacting to P.T. on Social Media, which would require many staff members and lots of paperwork to do without Konami's permission or any of the higher ups at Konami knowing under a fake shell company. Which is extremely implausible.

Also we knew as early as the announcement of MGSV and the development of the FOX Engine that the then-President of Konami actually approached Kojima to consider making Silent Hill on the FOX Engine. And Kojima, being a vice-president at the time wouldn't have any trouble securing funding for internal proof of concept ideas that are routinely pitched.

The closest to a credible conspiracy theory revolving around P.T. and Kojima was Great Debate's series who believed that Kojima already had P.T. ready to go, but some about-faces were occurring at Konami to shift to mobile and who wanted to delay or cancel Silent Hills and pull MGSV's development plug, so they might've wanted P.T. not to be released at the time, but Kojima went behind them and released it anyway, then used the social media and audience metrics to convince Konami to keep the project going.

Also, while Kojima knew his time at Konami was limited, as evidenced by the DLC for Ground Zeroes that had people erasing his games, there was no evidence that he already had a gig lined up to start Kojima Productions, as for at least a year according to Kojima he had no idea what he was going to do, his family was not keen on the idea of him going independent, and he was only considering beginning a small indy outlet until Del Toro, Andy House and others encouraged him to aim at AAA.

It would also not explain why so many other KojiPro staff, like Shinkawa and Aki Saito and others also left Konami if it was only Kojima being fired for misappropriation of funds.

The rumour also involved some other MGSV claims that there was no 'chapter 3' and that Survive was a DLC concept etc. So while the tweet is a broad denial, it's most likely addressing specifically the P.T. claims of misusing funds and setting up fraudulent shell companies, because KojiPro have never bothered addressing other rumours about MGSV's chapter 3 or other cut content or anything to do with Survive.

A second tweet for clarification also came out saying they're willing to be more elaborate on details if a more credible source was involved, so maybe, Vixx here can contact Jay Boor for the inside story on P.T.?

https://twitter.com/KojiPro2015_EN/stat ... 9415076864


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 Post subject: Re: KojiPro addresses recent rumors about P.T.'s development
     
         
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Missing since: 06 Jul 2003
Notes left: 4381
Last seen at: Your Special Place
Quote:
One French outlet began spreading supposed insider information about Kojima's 'firing' from Konami being due to misappropriating MGSV's budget to develop P.T. in secret without Konami knowing.


Interestingly, I'd been told the same waaaay back when it happened. Can't confirm/deny it, but that's certainly what I'd heard.

I've tried to tap Konami before for a formal post-mortem and uncover what really went down, but no luck as yet!

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Historical Society Historian
 Post subject: Re: KojiPro addresses recent rumors about P.T.'s development

Missing since: 04 Mar 2007
Notes left: 3532
If it were true - as in - if Kojima misappropriated funds by setting up some shell company outside Konami, then that's pretty much a criminal matter. There's no way he'd just be let off like that, nor would he likely have landed on his feet outside with Sony or anyone else willing to work with him, nor would this lead to an exodus of other Konami employees to go and join him. So I don't see that as a possibility given how things shook out. Kojima even had to approach banks to take out a loan, which would be very difficult if there were criminal complications, even if Konami didn't press charges, the banks would do their homework. Kojima did say he had trouble getting a loan, but that he explained was due to the usual risk involved in start-up businesses, at least on the scale he was attempting.

The only thing I can think of that sounds plausible regarding some shell company, is if Kojima was trying to pull another 'Joakim Morgen' / Moby Dick Studios gag with a fake company like he did for 'The Phantom Pain' reveal at The Game Awards, which turned out to be MGSV. And maybe he was thinking of doing something like that for P.T., but then just decided to have Sony publish it. But this would've still been clear within Konami.

Another possibility is that Sony funded development of P.T. which Kojima undertook in secret because Konami wouldn't agree to it, and Kojma was using this to push Silent Hills within Konami during a time when they didn't want to pursue any more AAA console game development. The money would've still gone to Konami, so there was no fraud involved, but rather just an act of insubordination on Kojima's part. But I have trouble believing that too given that Konami PR after-the-fact never indicated anything that suggested they were unaware of the project internally, and efforts to revive Silent Hill with Kojima went as far back as the original unveiling of Ground Zeroes and the FOX Engine.

Most likely case is that Kojima was already working on P.T. internally with a plan for Silent Hills, but late in the game, Kojima was being told to just finish MGSV which would be the last big Konami console title with Silent Hills going to be cancelled, and therefore P.T. was not to be released, but Kojima went ahead and released it anyway, and the following TGS mentioned how he wanted to use P.T. as a form of analytics to measure audience interest in a Silent Hill title to show to Konami.

So while that would certainly lead to stubbornness and infighting within Konami, it would not have been anything illegal.

Considering how Konami is known to treat their employees, the contempt shown against 'Ex-Kons', and the fact that Konami was even making issues with Kojima trying to purchase health insurance for his employees, there was no motive for them to keep quiet about a criminal matter against Kojima, which if made public would've been the end of any of Kojima's ambitions to set up another game studio in Japan as that scandal would've followed him. Even if Konami kept it hushed up just out of not wanting to have their brand associated with scandal of any kind, industry insiders in Japan would've gotten word of it, much like how this rumor seems to have made the rounds that we're hearing of now, but if it were credible, it's unlikely we'd have ever seen a Kojima Productions or Death Stranding.

So it may have initially went around as a rumor early on when news of Kojima's departure from Konami and the removal of his name from MGSV's marketing first began coming to light, but only as speculation that then didn't likely turn out to be true.

It's certainly not impossible that such a thing could've occurred, and been kept quiet and only known to industry vets. For example there's the story concerning anime Studio Gainax and its money issues and the setting up of shell companies that people at the studio sold the rights to certain franchises like FLCL etc. to, which kept creators like Neon Genesis Evangelion's Hideaki Anno who left Gainax to form Khara from getting the rights to some of the studio's work, and Anno even lent his friends money that he never got back to get them through financial hardships, so stories like this are not unheard of in Japan.

But this doesn't fit with Kojima's situation. Kojima was not running Konami, and Kojima was not in any money issues and was working for salary with no royalties etc. So there was nothing to financially gain on his end. And internal projects like P.T. are hardly unusual, and Kojima has undoubtedly pitched several other ideas internally that would've all required some demos and conceptual productions, much like his cancelled Ogre and Oni projects, that he said he was pitching to Konami as new IP, but instead they told him to just use some of those ideas in another MGS title. As FOX was being created as a company-wide engine, he likely had demos for other Konami franchises running on FOX, including P.T./Silent Hills.

I'm more in line thinking that a combination of Konami's mobile-first about face, and likely the delay for MGSV's development due to FOX Engine issues that might've been facing the same hurdles as Capcom's cancelled Phanta Rhei Engine and Square Enix's Crystal Tools, and the opening of the Los Angeles studio were more than enough to see Kojima and Konami butting heads over the direction of Konami's console divisions. There was an additional rumour that Kojima's ambitions for MGSV were being held back by PS3/Xbox 360, and Kojima was considering another delay or outright cancelling the older-gen releases for TPP, and this would've caused additional problems.

For those who see the cancelled 'Chapter 3' content on the Special Edition disc of MGSV, a lot of it involved lage scale map-wide helicopter missions that had you chasing down Metal Gear, but this was likely impossible to pull off for the same reason that old-gen was very restricted with a combination of FOX not being optimized well enough without major quality sacrifices, so helicopter missions as seen in Ground Zeroes were not present in TPP, and you had to routinely boot out of the map to your heli and then boot in again and couldn't just seamlessly fly around the map at will, with bases being stretched wide apart to allow loading in, out, and in of assets, which naturally heavily undermine game design. And thus this is one of the reasons why MGSV lacks that 'finale' in chapter 2 and feels incomplete as far as a typical Kojima game. This ability to stream assets in quickly is thankfully one of the things that PS5's shift to an Solid State Drive solves for developers. So the original scope for MGSV is actually achievable for next-gen.

Either way, there were likely already plenty of behind-the-scenes stuff taking place that would've led to Kojima and Konami's breakup, and that's after Igarashi and Yamaoka and many others had all already been leaving for various reasons.


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 Post subject: Re: KojiPro addresses recent rumors about P.T.'s development
     
         
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Missing since: 06 Jul 2003
Notes left: 4381
Last seen at: Your Special Place
jdnation wrote:
If it were true - as in - if Kojima misappropriated funds by setting up some shell company outside Konami, then that's pretty much a criminal matter.


No, I didn't say he set up another company, only that he used funding that was supposed to be used for MGSV's development for Silent Hills/PT. Both are Konami IPs and he was still working for Konami at this time.

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© 2003-2020 Vixx. The contents of this post may only be used within the boundaries of http://www.silenthillforum.com. Any usage outside of the aforementioned forum is strictly prohibited.


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