Kojima says MGS: Ground Zeroes may be too 'risky' to release

Developer explains upcoming Metal Gear Solid targeting taboo and mature themes that make the game so controversial that even if it does release, it may not sell.

Metal Gear Solid: Ground Zeroes may be too "risky" to ever see release. Designer Hideo Kojima explained in a roundtable interview session attended by Videogamer that the game's focus on mature and taboo themes may make it too controversial to sell, even if it does release.

"That's precisely what I want to try to tackle with Ground Zeroes. Honestly I'm going to be targeting a lot of taboos, a lot of mature themes that really are quite risky," Kojima said. "I'm not even sure if I'm going to be able to release the game, and even if I did release the game then maybe it wouldn't sell because it's too much. As a creator I want to take that risk."

Kojima said games have not matured much in the past 25 years--including Metal Gear Solid games--, saying "It's always about killing aliens and zombies." He said he thinks these games are fun, but claimed they have "a long way to go before they can mature."

Kojima does not seem too worried about hitting sales targets for Ground Zeroes. Ultimately, he said creativity trumps sales.

"I'm approaching the project as a creator and prioritizing creativity over sales," he said.

For more on Metal Gear Solid: Ground Zeroes, check out GameSpot's previous coverage.

Got a news tip or want to contact us directly? Email news@gamespot.com

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Eddie Makuch

Eddie Makuch is a news editor at GameSpot, and would like to see the Whalers return to Hartford.
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1046 comments
CRYO_HAWK
CRYO_HAWK

YOU WILL RELEASE IT WHEN ITS READY BE CREATIVE AS POSSIBLE!!!

Firelo
Firelo

"Creativity trumps sales".Right...That 's why he 's not releasing it on pc.

Tsesugu
Tsesugu

This will be the biggest game ever sold if you release it, so release it.

zemc77
zemc77

Please release it Hideo!

Vintendo33189
Vintendo33189

i'll go to the black market to buy this if i have to!

scaperat1
scaperat1

So, this game might offend people, huh? Hopefully, it won't rub me the wrong way. As long as it has nothing to do with sex, religion, cannibalism or having the player mistreat children, I'm good.

MalakTawus
MalakTawus

I'll be honest: there is NO WAY that Ground Zeroes won't sell, imo Hideo has no need to worry and he should continue to create games following his creativity like he is doing now.

Just one thing Hideo, i'm super happy for GZ, but for the love of god, give us ZOE3 too!!!

Scorpion1813
Scorpion1813

This is what the industry NEEDS, and it's what many gamers WANT.
For the industry to grow up and for mature gamers to be able to play mature games.
Mature does NOT mean more boobs, blood, and bad mouthing - it means more mature themes. This is why I love the Metal Gear series - and why I love Hideo Kojima.

"I'm approaching the project as a creator and prioritizing creativity over sales," Why can't more people in the entertainment industry be like this??

Hey_Jay
Hey_Jay

Wow. I can at least appreciate an environment in which you have the freedom to release something that may be controversial. I love when people can create something great without concerns of watering down the product. I'd rather run the path of "risky" than mediocrity. Go, Kojima, Go!

AlexFili
AlexFili

It's not often a developer worries that something is too risky. Hope he pulls it off

redstorm72
redstorm72

Unless there is something extremely sexual (rape?) I doubt it is too "risky" or "taboo" for it to effect sales or even get noticed. Hell, the rest of the series has already dealt with some pretty heavy topics (child soldiers, distrust of leadership, use of the military for political gain, loyalty vs. personal morals, etc) so I have a hard time imagining anything that is significantly more controversial. I think this is just a publicity stunt to stir up some interest. Anyway, I'm looking forward to the game.

CFritzRun
CFritzRun

"I'm approaching the project as a creator and prioritizing creativity over sales."

This is why I love Hideo Kojima.

maddog123
maddog123

well gee Hideo, this doesn't make me want to buy the game a million times more at all! You God of Games, you Master of Metal Gear - I will get MGS:GZ and I know I will enjoy it.

LukeWesty
LukeWesty

Wonder if it's because of the cut scene of Snake being raped by 3 stocky men?.

DarthLod
DarthLod

Why do you care what a few idiots say? Put the game out and let us play it. Leave the bitching to Fox News and CNN. No one forces THEM to play it.

Kravyn81
Kravyn81

Kojima, respectfully, STFU. Make your damn game and ship it already. You don't need to drum up fake publicity or drama to sell your next game. Jesus...is anyone else tired of PR stunts like this??

VastGameMaster
VastGameMaster

Kojima, I say bring it! We can take anything that you can throw at us.

KinoDaKonqueror
KinoDaKonqueror

'too risky'?  Has he seen MW2's No Russian?  That was risky back then and selled.  Hell, I think players love taboo, I do.  I think it's going to sell as long as it avoids Heavy Rain's control scheme.

Ohaidere
Ohaidere

Fake controversy. The only reason Kojima is releasing this statement is to garner publicity.

rahmie0789
rahmie0789

"creativity trumps sales" 

I couldnt agree more. MG series never let me down, Kojima is one of the few I have faith in. Even if I dont agree with everything, Ill still be willing to give it a try.

edulink
edulink

Don't. Even. Think. About. It!

Here, take my money! *throws money at the screen*

mr_azim
mr_azim

Didn't Raiden run around naked in MGS2 and confess to being sexually abused by his mother-in-law in their swimming pool?  Something about his sister too.

bsnimunf
bsnimunf

What a load of marketing BS! As if they are going to make a game they cant release.

vicke32
vicke32

As long as it doesn't go all "Walking on water due to nanomachines" it's ok, i preferred when it was mysterious.

arsy130
arsy130

misleading title once again... no where in the article did you quote kojima saying he wouldnt release the game. really bro ? stop trying to scare people, this is all the media knows how to do scare people so they read your article. good job ! 

ShadowofSonic
ShadowofSonic

Hearing this just makes me want the game more.

Dear Kojima, I will buy millions of copies if the game doesn't sell well, just don't cancel it! Metal Gear games are just the greatest.

Tzunoy
Tzunoy

smells like cancel???

Threesixtyci
Threesixtyci

This is the same guy that removed the American Flag and the leveling of New York after the 911 incident from MGS2.

dxBIGBOSSxb
dxBIGBOSSxb

Knowing Kojima... there's probably a unicorn named "Francesco Van Aberstein III" helping write the script... NANOMACHINES!!!!

I love Kojimas writing, but he often goes the insane route sometimes, like the masochistic vampire, Mooing (Yes, MOOING!) sexy-legged robots called geckos, a homosexual and sadistic Russian colonel surging with electricity, more than half the stuf in MGR Revengeance, and lest we forget "Hurt me Snake! HURT ME MOAR DAWG!!! Whoa! I'm so f^%$ing crazy!!! Whoa G, blblblblblblblblblblblblblblblblblblblp!!!... Grey FOX!"

SlimeSwayze
SlimeSwayze

Yeah, soap opera-esque melodrama and nanomachines are pretty hot button issues right now.

Mickeyminime
Mickeyminime

If it has Snake or Big Boss after MGS3, it will sell, after all, it has Snake, Snake is Snake. Everyone loves Snake, so just stop being a big baby, create it, release it and let us MGS fans buy it. If it sucks, it sucks, but hey, least you will get profit from us buying it. Whatever you do, don't aid Raiden in it

Rippletonz
Rippletonz

You guys in the comments are completely missing the message. 

"I'm approaching the project as a creator and prioritizing creativity over sales."  That's really all that should be taken away from this, if anything. 

naryanrobinson
naryanrobinson

I'm not sure if infamy works differently in Japan, but if it doesn't, then it really sounds like he doesn't have a clue.

If the game is released and has some seriously risky aspects to it, that's only going to increase its sales.

I really don't see it happening that people say;

"The new MGS game?  Oh I couldn't possibly.  I'm afraid the topics involved were just appallingly risky and downright offensive to my finely tuned sensibilities.  We avoid anything that can relate to real life like the plague, don't we Humphrey?  Now if you'll excuse us, we have to order some new shoes for our dog, Mr. Peters."

...

uh... what was the question again?

daveg1
daveg1

well if the storey is anything like mgs4 he shouldnt bother..

vashtricham
vashtricham

Im all for devs taking this kind of risk or just trying to do new things. Games have been in a rut, we need something like this to show us that gaming can still take leaps forwards instead of running in place 

MadGamer132
MadGamer132

thats a risky statement. i hope it get released and sells good.

Rjs01007
Rjs01007

Hideo Kojima is full of crap.

You don't make a ten-minute fully-rendered and voice-acted teaser trailer for a game you don't think will be published. Clearly, this clown is just fishing for press.

"Ground Zeroes"? And here I was thinking "Revengeance" was the stupidest game title of the year.

mblaney
mblaney

It's a MGS game, of course it'll sell. It could have Snake wearing a tutu, riding a unicorn, and collecting candy canes and it would still sell.

haze_blaze
haze_blaze

LOL. He knows it will sell... now it will likely sell twice as much!

zoeyleft
zoeyleft

"I'm approaching the project as a creator and prioritizing creativity over sales," he said.
why we love mgs games.

Darmage
Darmage

I'm so bored of all the games nowadays! Give me some controversial stuff Kojima!  

And like no one is gonna buy the latest entry in the mgs series, haha that's a good one. 

killip
killip

Hideo is but a handful of creative torch holders in the industry. It's good to see him pulling out all the stops.

Keitha313
Keitha313

MGS will sell no matter what but I feel Kojima is doing a bit of work on selling this game perhaps?

Controversial games generally always sell.