Game Masters: Hideo Kojima and Fumito Ueda

Meet the creative minds behind Metal Gear Solid and Shadow of the Colossus.


This interview is part of GameSpot's Game Masters: Behind the Talent feature, which explores some of the biggest names in game development. The feature coincides with a new exhibition celebrating video game culture taking place at the Australian Centre for Moving Image (ACMI) in Melbourne, Victoria.

Hideo Kojima

The mind behind Metal Gear Solid, Hideo Kojima, speaks about how his interest in movies and novels affects the way he approaches game design, and how game systems, story and personal influences work together.

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Fumito Ueda

The director of ICO and Shadow of the Colossus Fumito Ueda speaks about creating games as an intensely personal player experience, and considering games as an artform.

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To find out more about GameSpot's Game Masters feature, visit the home page.

Read our Game Masters interviews with Tim Schafer, Warren Spector, Peter Molyneux, and Tetsuya Mizuguchi.

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Avatar image for camichan

I read somewhere once that what makes something designed "art" is that its meaning is open to interpretation. On this premise SoTC could arguably be considered as art (I believe it is). The meaning of the story raises difficult moral questions that can lead to various interpretations. I imagine the same could be said of other games like Killer 7. I find the case for Rez to be more difficult to make on this premise, though I would argue Rez is also a work of art. In the case of Rez, you could perhaps argue it is art in that it is hard to reproduce it, just like the Mona Lisa. The skill and creativity required to craft and originate such a work are truly exceptional, despite the tools required to make a copy available to many. But the Ueda interview where he comments about "personal experience" (in shaping what we consider art) offers some interesting thoughts for a different perspective.

Avatar image for Shrabsters

If Shadow of the Colossus isn't art, then I don't know (or care to know) what is. Both Fumito Ueda and Hideo Kojima are amazing designers.

Avatar image for leviathanwing

@Shrabsters like movies or music not all games are art. even the best games cant be considered art depending on tastes obviously as to what 'best' means to each individual. but many games are artistic or artful as for games being art. that should be reserved for games which not only succeed in the purely aesthetic form or art and also be good games otherwise.

Avatar image for ilantis

By the way hideo Kojima is 55 years old. You would never tell by his look

Avatar image for johnman05

@ilantis He's actually 48, but like you said, you would never be able to tell.

Avatar image for Falru

@ilantis If there's one thing true that can be said about Asians that can't possibly be debated, it's that they age insanely well.

Avatar image for Falru

To me, Ueda was able to truly make videogames into a form of art that DOESN'T fall under that "videogames are art" excuse we keep hearing to excuse terrible videogame design.

It's amazing how emotionally attached I felt to the characters of Shadow of the Colossus when they, all of them combined, probably only spoke around 20 lines of dialogue.

Avatar image for Pete5506

Both had made some amazing games

Avatar image for x-TwilighT-x

Some of the "Game Masters" were good picks, some were not so much, but these two were obvious.

They deserve the title given here, wholly.

Avatar image for 4dr1el

Kojima + Ueda = GOD

Avatar image for leviathanwing

@4dr1el fusion?

Avatar image for jpm1276

I was wondering when Mr. Kojima was going to make the list. But I wouldn't say he is a Game Master, he is a Game God!!

Avatar image for NightFox313

Two of my favorite video "Game Masters" ever. Kojima and Ueda both find ways to turn their video games into a sort of art, an immersive art, that really sucks the player in. It's why "Metal Gear "is one of my favorite video game franchises ever, and why I think ICO and Shadow of the Colossus are two of the greatest video games ever made.

Ueda is definitely taking some time with "The Last Guardian", mainly because he's a perfectionist at heart and this could very well be his last major project with a large team, as he's now a freelance video game designer, having left SCEJ and Team ICO. He's just going to finish the game to make sure that his last project is a great one before he moves on to become a freelance designer. I hope it works out well for him.

Avatar image for TohouAsura

Two masterminds, truly.

It is these kinds of developers that make me look at video games, and say " Games are so much more than just simple-minded entertaintment.. They can be an experience."

Honestly, I would NEVER replace Metal Gear Solid with a movie adaption of it. It just doesn't work. MGS was built around the idea that a game can have a deep philosophy and meaning, to take that into movies like saying "Games are nice but they still fail as art and as such we need to degrade ourselves to movies in order to reall have it appreciated."

MGS and Shadow Of the Colossus proved everyone who thought that wrong.

This is why I'm pissed off when someone says about a game "They should make a movie out of it!". Why? Why would you degrade it into a 2-3 hour Blockbuster shitfest? That's not right.

Avatar image for x-TwilighT-x

@TohouAsura I agree, I hadn't thought about it until you mentioned it though. I've never wanted a game to be a movie. Not once.

Avatar image for johny300

The Last Guardian will come be patient people, it will be a masterpiece.

Avatar image for AceBalls

The Last Guardian will come. Patience..

Avatar image for GalvatronType_R

Hold on a second, why is Ueda wasting time talking to GS as opposed to using that time to finish the Last Guardian?

Avatar image for nate1222

I loved the MGS series. And I still rock Lunar Knights on my DS.

Avatar image for NeoIostars

too bad Fumito Ueda's interview is too short. I was kinda hoping he would give us a rough idea on when The Last Guardian will be finished... still my highest-anticipated game after all these years.