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Xbox is reportedly in talks to publish Hideo Kojima’s next game
Kojima Productions has been staffing up for a new project since late 2020
Microsoft is reportedly in talks with Hideo Kojima to publish the next game from the Japanese designer best known for the Metal Gear Solid series.
That’s according to VentureBeat, which claims Xbox hopes to make the second game from Death Stranding studio Kojima Productions the focus of a plan to leverage Japanese talent.
While the site’s source was unable to confirm if Microsoft has yet to actually sign a deal for the new Kojima game, it claims a Kojima Productions figurine spotted on Xbox boss Phil Spencer’s shelf during a presentation in February (pictured, top) was hinting at a potential partnership.
Prior to the launch of Microsoft’s latest consoles in November 2020, Spencer also hid an Xbox Series S in plain site on his bookshelf during interviews.
VentureBeat’s report was published in response to Wednesday’s announcement of a new PS5 game called Abandoned.
Set for release in the fourth quarter of 2021, Abandoned is described by Netherlands-based developer Blue Box Game Studios as “a cinematic, first-person horror survival shooter set in a highly detailed open world environment”.
The studio’s relative obscurity led to speculation that the game was actually being secretly developed by Kojima Productions. Blue Box Game Studios has since said that it has no association with Hideo Kojima.
Kojima Productions confirmed in October 2020 that it was staffing up for a new game project. The Death Stranding developer said at the time that it was seeking “the best-in-class talent” to fill 25 open positions at its Tokyo studio.
The studio is likely to announce its next game soon, according to art director Yoji Shinkawa.
Asked in March if he could share any details about the company’s second game during a video interview with Al Hub, Shinkawa said: “Well yeah, I am doing something, for sure, and I could tell you probably that we can announce it quite soon.”
Shinkawa is a long-time Kojima collaborator who is best known for his character and mecha design work on the Metal Gear franchise.
Kojima has teased his next project ever since the release of Death Stranding in November 2019. That month, he suggested he was watching horror movies in preparation for a future project, and in April 2020 he said he’d like to make a “revolutionary” horror game one day.
The following month Kojima claimed he’d recently had a “major” in-development project cancelled, but that he was “in the early planning stages” for his next game. More recently he teased his next game on Twitter, with images that suggested it could be Death Stranding 2.
Death Stranding actor Norman Reedus had previously claimed he was “in talks” to work on another project with Kojima and suggested it could be Death Stranding related.
In January 2020, Kojima was quoted as saying he’d like to try his hand at making smaller games such as episodic and digital-only titles, while working on the studio’s next major release.
The designer has also previously expressed a desire to explore a “new format of game” enabled by cloud gaming platforms.