This morning, Kojima Productions tweeted out that they are looking for “best-in-class talent” for their next project, as well as confirming that development has already started. This leaves a lot to the imagination. Since it is already in development, we know that Kojima already has a crazy concept in mind. If you take a look at his Twitter, you can see he has been brainstorming since he wrapped on Death Stranding. This may mean there will be a proof of concept or an announcement soon.
Trying to predict Kojima is practically impossible given that he is considered one of the most innovative, adventurous, and eccentric minds in the industry. He has access to a AAA budget and clout, but with the jobs being posted, it’s possible to at least narrow it.
Rest assured classic video game fans, despite some comments from Kojima himself, the job listings that Kojima Productions has uploaded include multiple senior positions for programmers, game designers, UI artists, and the like, so for now, a Kojima film isn’t coming.
There have been rumors with Kojima’s next project being a horror game, with fans being desperately starved from that tiny glimpse of his harrowing imagination from P.T. it seems like the natural choice. It could be possible that we could be getting something similar to Death Stranding but leaning much further into the uncanny, unsettling, creepy vibe captured in their trailers.
Listings for a network programmer were included so expect the next game to also include that asynchronous multiplayer that Kojima has been really interested in exploring throughout his last two games. Metal Gear Solid V first began Kojima’s career in expressing unique stories through the internet with the secret Nuclear Disarmament ending only being possible through group communal effort. P.T. carried this tradition as well, as it encouraged gamers to collaborate online and find ways to complete the game through community forums. Death Stranding is the evolution of that concept stretched to a whole game, where you transverse a harsh world where the only respites available are the kind remnants of other players. Even before online gaming, Kojima always played around with the embodiment of the “self” in video games, as those themes were present even in his earlier games such as Metal Gear Solid 1 or even Snatcher. So expect that the meta-narrative of Kojima games will probably stay online, possibly expanding the bounds of a “Strand Type Game”.
Regardless of the type of game it turns out to be, what excites me the most from the job listings is that they are hiring more writers and localizers. While I love the crazy and extremely metaphorical and metanarrative writing of Kojima, consistency has never been his strong suit. He has wonderful ideas and blends serious and silly tones second only to the “Yakuza” series, but I do believe that he sometimes needs someone to reel him in to make sure it doesn’t go too far this time.
It should be safe to assume that this will be a next-gen title, and most likely a PS5 exclusive; with play having its limits removed, I can’t wait to see what a legendary out-of-the-box game director like Hideo Kojima can come up with.