The idea that someone other than longtime Snake voice actor David Hayter will play the role in the upcoming Metal Gear Solid V: The Phantom Pain does not sit well with the actor. In an extended tweet, Hayter claimed that not only did Konami never approach him for the role, but the publisher never explained why it was moving in a different direction.
Recapping the events, Hayter said in December he came home to Los Angeles after being away in Toronto shooting a movie and heard that recording sessions for Metal Gear Solid V were being put together. He said he hadn't heard from Konami, so he contacted the production team to find out if he would be needed or not.
"We got together for lunch, and he told me that they 'wouldn’t be needing me' on this game," Hayter said. "No reason, or explanation was given beyond that. And that was it."
Hayter said after this meeting, he was "bummed" about not getting to reprise the role he had come to enjoy since he began contributing to the series in 1998. He explained that he has spent a "huge amount of time and effort" into making sure Snake came across as a compelling character and that he will have a tough time hearing someone else's voice as Snake.
"If it were my choice, I would do this role forever," Hayter said. "To hear anyone else’s voice coming from Snake’s battered throat, makes me a little ill, to be honest."
At the same time, Hayter said he understands that at the end of the day, Konami and Hideo Kojima ultimately get to call the shots. "And that's fair," he said. "And I'll get by. I am not lacking for employment on any level."
"But I didn’t want anybody to think that I was intentionally abandoning them. And know that I will miss this job, and this character, very much."
Kojima explained last week that the decision to go with someone other than Hayter in Metal Gear Solid V was about reflecting the design of the game.
"It's a new type of Metal Gear game and we wanted to have this reflected in the voice actor as well," Kojima said at the time.
Neither Kojima nor Konami have revealed who will play Snake in Metal Gear Solid V: The Phantom Pain.
Metal Gear Solid V: The Phantom Pain is due out for the Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3, while Ground Zeroes will be a prologue and an entirely separate game.