Hideo Kojima on the age of online conspiracy: 'It’s almost a new kind of sin for mankind'

Hideo Kojima in Brighton, 2016.
(Image credit: Future)
Audio player loading…

Hideo Kojima has taken a break from posting snaps of his lunch to do an interview with the Guardian, during which he touched briefly on one of his upcoming game projects, as well as touching on a recent and unfortunate incident. The celebrated designer was earlier this year erroneously linked with the assassination of Shinzo Abe (opens in new tab), a malicious fake that began online before spreading into real-world news, and a bitter irony for a creator who predicted the age of junk information.

"This story is digital, so it could remain online for millions of years,” said Kojima. "People post without considering that. It’s almost a new kind of sin for mankind. No, I’m not happy about having predicted these things."

Kojima is in a rather digressive mood in this interview and, amusingly enough, insists on his normality even as he's making the Guardian's journalist take a Covid test before meeting him.

“I’ll show pieces of my daily life," Kojima muses at one point on his social media habits, "but I don’t do glamorous photos like other celebrities on Instagram.” Anyone who gets food envy, particularly of delicious looking katsu sandwiches, may disagree with that.

The director briefly mentions the Metal Gear series, which is progress of a sort after the almost total silence since he left Konami: "now I see these young kids playing Metal Gear Solid, a game made 30 years ago, and they are having fun … My feelings have started to change."

Then the interview ends with a typically Kojima-ass teaser for one of his upcoming games, and given the way he talks this is almost certainly the one for which Kojima Productions has gone into partnership with Microsoft. The big known element of this is that it's making some sort of core use of Microsoft's cloud technology, which admittedly could mean anything but is why Kojima reckons the studio can achieve something special.

"It’s almost like a new medium," said Kojima. "If this succeeds, it will turn things around—not just in the game industry, but in the movie industry as well. You can have successful experiments, but there’s a long distance between an experiment and a place where it’s something that becomes a part of everyday usage. For the first person, everything is hard. But I want to be the first. I want to keep being the first."

Rich is a games journalist with 15 years' experience, beginning his career on Edge magazine before working for a wide range of outlets, including Ars Technica, Eurogamer, GamesRadar+, Gamespot, the Guardian, IGN, the New Statesman, Polygon, and Vice. He was the editor of Kotaku UK, the UK arm of Kotaku, for three years before joining PC Gamer. He is the author of a Brief History of Video Games, a full history of the medium, which the Midwest Book Review described as "[a] must-read for serious minded game historians and curious video game connoisseurs alike."