Metal Gear Solid developer Konami is working on high-end games for ‘globally known’ IP
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Metal Gear Solid V: The Phantom Pain
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Once a behemoth of the games industry, Konami has devolved into a waif and a stray. Rarely spotted outside of pachinko parlours and rarely thought of, to be honest. Meanwhile, Hideo Kojima harvests hundreds of news headlines by peeing on a mushroom. It’s a strange world.
Still, Konami might be down but it’s apparently not out. Konami has now confirmed it’s working on an unannounced AAA console project from a “globally known” franchise. Right now, all of Konami’s eggs are in a basket marked ‘eFootball PES 2020’ but it’s a publisher sitting on a raft of beloved gaming franchises such as Castlevania, Metal Gear Solid, Bomberman, Silent Hill, Contra, Suikoden, and the greatest of them all – Ganbare Goemon. But all of these franchises are currently in the doldrums, a situation all of Konami’s own doing.
“Even with new platforms coming out, we believe high-end console games are the most important,” said Konami’s European president, Masami Saso.
“We challenge for innovative ideas and technology within our console games and apply them to other devices, so we will continue to put effort into our console games. We also plan to increase our portfolio. In addition to the multi-device titles for PES and Yu-Gi-Oh, we plan to work on projects with other globally known IPs in the near future.”
When it comes to globally recognised franchises, Castalvania, MGS, and Silent Hill must sit at the top of the heap. A new Bomberman isn’t going to make a ripple, and a new Ganbare Goemon, as much as I’d love it, is going to do nothing for a worldwide audience. The obvious answer is a new Metal Gear Solid, although Metal Gear Survive and the departure of Kojima are going to cause some serious trepidation from fans. That said, we’d love to see what Konami could cook up next for any of those big three consoles when taking into account next-gen console hardware.
And, while Saso is keen to emphasise the importance of AAA console-focused projects, he also believes Konami’s strength of AAA IPs has helped the publisher in the mobile market as well. “It is a part of our legacy to create new ideas and IPs to fit each age, and we believe that spirit is one of the reasons for our strength in the mobile game market,” he said during a chat with GI.biz. “We can provide high-quality mobile games because of our technology to create high-end console games, as well as having knowledge to operate games because of our experience in arcade, PC and browser games.”
As with anything with Konami these days, we’ll believe it when we see it. It’s been almost a decade since you could argue Konami was on top of its game and it’s got a mighty uphill battle for future success.