Back at the beginning of 2001, Hideo Kojima announced that his latest game, Metal Gear Solid 2: Sons of Liberty, would be the final chapter in the series. He changed his mind later that same year, proclaiming that "Metal Gear must live on."
The latest episode in the franchise, the soon-to-be-released Metal Gear Solid 4: Guns of the Patriots, was widely believed to be the last game, which would complete the story. At TGS 2005 Kojima all but confirmed this, saying, "This fourth [Metal Gear Solid] is going to be the final one for me and [series art designer Youji] Shinkawa... There are other things that [we] want to create."
Now it seems that Kojima has had a change of heart. In an interview with Reuters, Kojima said, "Metal Gear will always be around. I feel a responsibility to continue this series as long as users demand it."
However, he might well take more of a backseat on future iterations of the franchise. He confirmed, "It doesn't mean I'm going to sit in completely. I'll probably take a different role in the next game. Maybe I'll sit in as producer and let the young staff take control of the new series. I really want to go on to new things."
Kojima also revealed that although the game won't be the last in the series, it will tie together all the storylines in the last three games. He said, "I'm not a genius like George Lucas. I didn't have this story planned out. I always tried to finish the story in each game. But by some miracle in MGS4 I was able to resolve the mysteries left behind in past games and resolve the side stories from past games."