Hideo Kojima Explains Why He's Done Making Horror Games

"I get scared very easily."

58 Comments

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Silent Hills, the game Metal Gear creator Hideo Kojima worked on with filmmaker Guillermo del Toro before its cancellation, looked pretty scary. His current project is Death Stranding, which is not a horror game. But would Kojima ever consider making another horror game someday?

It doesn't sound like it. He told IGN that there is a very practical reason for why he doesn't want to. "I get scared very easily," he explained. "Actually, this is true of Alfred Hitchcock as well as Steven Spielberg. Because they scare easily, because I scare easily, it's actually easy for us to make something that is scary, because we understand what is scary."

A scene from Death Stranding
A scene from Death Stranding

"But while in that process, we're constantly imagining, like, terrifying situations so it ends up giving me bad dreams," he added. "That's the reason why I don't want to make a horror game."

P.T./Silent Hills surely proved that Kojima has the chops to scare us. He even joked before the game's cancellation that a version of the game would come with a new set of pants because the game was going to be so scary it would make you "sh** your pants."

In the IGN interview, Kojima said he thinks the most effective way to scare people is to show them something that is "slightly out of the ordinary."

"Slightly off, but at first glance, they don't know what it is about it that is unusual. When you do something like this, it confuses the mind, and that becomes unnerving for the person who sees it," Kojima said, adding that the element of the "unknown" can also be very scary.

Kojima spoke about his new game, Death Stranding, during a presentation recently. He confirmed the game is coming to PS4, not PS5; he also discussed the possibility of a sequel and a lot more.

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Avatar image for gothsalvation
gothsalvation

Why people keep saying PT was "scary"? It was nothing more than a jumpscare feast... And it has nothing to do with the now defunt Silent Hills. Yes, yes.. is a good looking demo but that's pretty much it.
I would've love to see what Kojima could do with Silent Hill, after so many shitty games the franchise needed a strong revival and maybe Silent Hills wouldn't have live to the standards of the first four games but AT LEAST it would have been a lot better than anything that came after The Room.

Avatar image for Ripper_TV
Ripper_TV

And when he was making PT? He wasn't scared easily? Explanation doesn't make much sense. He's making it sound like he stopped developing it by choice.

Avatar image for Kunakai
Kunakai

@Ripper_TV: Maybe the last time he walked from a studio making a horror game he decided enough was enough?

Given how he's in a position of nearly unlimited creative freedom at the moment, I'm not so sure he'd have reason to deceive.

Avatar image for Atragon
Atragon

Give the man a chance. Metal Gear games are the ultimate in Stealth gameplay and usually have interesting plots (except V, which wasn't finished). He does great stuff.

Avatar image for isariamkia
Isariamkia

"he also discussed the possibility of a sequel and a lot more."

So we don't what the hell will this game be but we already know it could have a sequel, great.

Avatar image for Kunakai
Kunakai

@isariamkia: Doesn't more or less any game have the possibility of a sequel?

I get where you're coming from, the whole having to anticipate a games release for three years or more is irritating enough without being told there might be a sequel in six years or so. Just seems like the statement was obvious anywho. At this stage the less details about any of this the better. It'd only lead to disappointment if the project were cancelled/over-hyped.

Avatar image for isariamkia
Isariamkia

@Kunakai: Well yeah most of time there's a sequel, but I find it quite arrogant talking about a sequel when we don't know anything about the game

I'll be really happy to have a sequel if the game is great and deserve one but right now I just want to see what the game is >>

Avatar image for lvsolja
lvsolja

games havent been scary since resident evil was on sega saturn and playstation...oh then again...the awesome code veronica on dreamcast..rememebr those nights...u grabbed something to eat,turn off the lights,turned on your game and was immersed in another world..videogames dont have that feeling anymore

Avatar image for Kunakai
Kunakai

@lvsolja: They didn't change. You did. It's called growing up.

Still inhabiting my man-child form, I can tell you that games can still be just as immersive.

Avatar image for therightclique
therightclique

@lvsolja: You have to be joking. Games are a thousand times more scary now than they were back then.

Avatar image for el_swanno
el_swanno

@lvsolja: The first Resident Evil was a huge step forward for gaming. Resi 7 is pretty good if you haven't checked it out. It's very atmospheric in VR.

Avatar image for deactivated-5cd08b1605da1

Thats sad to hear... P.T. was the only thing that ever managed to scare me, gaming wise. Games like Amnesia, Outlast, Alien Isolation, etc were boring to me but P.T... jesus... I hate ghosts

Avatar image for reanor2
reanor2

HK doesn't need to make horror games to be good at what he is doing... And articlesists are becoming like paparazzi lately, blow out of proportion everything that celebrity says to make a big deal out of it, enough for an article.

Avatar image for toffifee
toffifee

He really has opinions about everything. I have never been more fed up with a game related person before. Go away.

Avatar image for therightclique
therightclique

@toffifee: Seriously. He doesn't even have the skills to back up the celebrity that he has. His games are clunky and full of BS.

Avatar image for Kunakai
Kunakai

@therightclique: I'm not a massive MGS fan myself. I'd wager his games have more fans than there are people on Earth who know your name dude.

Personally I'm thankful Cliffy B and Randy Pitchford aren't as prominent as they used to be.

Avatar image for datriax
datriax

Don't you have to first, make a horror game, in order to be "done" with making horror games? Do people really consider that hallway slog to be a game?

Avatar image for nintendians
nintendians

huh... only silent hills is his scary game that i know of, unless he did some scary games in the past.

Avatar image for gothsalvation
gothsalvation

@nintendians: Silent Hills? The game that never saw the light of day? And no, PT is not Silent Hills.

Avatar image for nintendians
nintendians

@gothsalvation: wasn't PT a demo teaser of silent hills before konami fired him? i remember it was.

Avatar image for gothsalvation
gothsalvation

@nintendians: It was a teaser, yes, but at the end it clearly said it has nothing to do with Silent Hills. Kojima made the teaser to show what the Fox Engine was capable in terms of "horror" and eye candy in general.

Avatar image for marcelinof
marcelinof

Pu55y.

Avatar image for BlackBaldwin
BlackBaldwin

Clickbait article. I havent played anything remotely scarely in a long while and yes i played P.T. and the new Resident Evil with vr which was pretty fun i recommend it whole heartedly.

Avatar image for edhc44
edhc44

The subtitle alone made me skip straight here.

Avatar image for mattsaroni24
mattsaroni24

Games aren't made by one person.

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Scarf0

PT was and still is absolutely SCARY! Anyone saying otherwise are just trying to seem edgy on the internet. You know how these kids are today over the internet....

Avatar image for lvsolja
lvsolja

@Scarf0: not true,some people are just not that immersed ,so its just a videogame to them.....like myself....and it time invested,reading and learning the story and really getting into the game to even beging to embellished in a game....games now have too many damn saves.....every where is a save save save...no sweat...how about 4 chapters before u can save...shoot

Avatar image for mazuiface
mazuiface

Kojima kind of doesn't make sense here, because what he depicts in Metal Gear Solid is arguably more terrifying than Silent Hills: massive hyper-mobile war machines that house nuclear weapons; cyborg modified, bloodthirsty, once child soldiers, people who have had their lives consist of nothing but war, and much more. This is not bad; because his storytelling and the horror he depicts from war actually enhances the experience of his games and makes them more gut-wrenching when they are supposed to be, and that is part of what makes his games done so well. I think that he is totally capable of making another Guillermo del Toro for another game. This is just kind of a confused thing to say after making Metal Gear.

Avatar image for edhc44
edhc44

@mazuiface: In theory it might me, but what does it mean to user experience? Who was frightened by the "horrors of war" depicted in the MGS series? On the other hand, who WASN'T terrified by PT? I tried it once. Died. Too scared to try it again.

Avatar image for Megamandrew
Megamandrew

For someone who claims to not like horror much, he sure puts lots of little horror touches in the Metal Gear games. Walking down bloody hallways filled with corpses, your comrade being mind-controlled by a floating telepath to blow her head off, faces randomly resembling skulls and spewing nonsense, a vampire, people made out of hornets and super creepy mech walkers. Plus, the entire narrative of MGS V is basically horror.

Avatar image for owlcoholic
owlcoholic

Because Zombies, Ghosts, Robots, Demons, Vampires and Aliens aren't scary anymore, derp. Horror games are just too unrealistic nowadays. Horror, is waking up one day blind, or getting out of bed without having legs. "I get scared very easily," What kinda pussy says that? I got an idea, do a movie about getting nuked twice for Pearl Harbor.

Avatar image for dysonlu
dysonlu

Steven Spielberg made scary movies?

Avatar image for nEoQuIcKsiLvEr
nEoQuIcKsiLvEr

@dysonlu: Jaws. Poltergeist. Jurassic Park. Close Encounters of the Third Kind.

Avatar image for dysonlu
dysonlu

@nEoQuIcKsiLvEr:

I guess I'm not easily scared then. All of these I consider thrillers, except perhaps Poltergeist, which was borderline horror.

Avatar image for lithus
lithus

It's not like he's known for and made a ton of horror games. But okay...

Avatar image for cds325
cds325

No horror games from Kojima?! I hope hes trolling!!! Booooo!!!!!!!

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XDeathClawX

Looks like a horror game

Avatar image for videogameninja
videogameninja

Since my introduction to the survival horror genre I have never and I do mean EVER played a game/demo/piece of gaming entertainment quite like the PT demo.

I’ve been there since the first jump scare of the Resident evil series (the dogs through the window.), treaded carefully through waves of blinding mist with the groans of unspeakable entities only a few feet away in Silent Hill and more recently run through the hallways with a psychotic murderer behind me in outlast, but all pale in comparison to what I felt playing that demo.

How do I know this? How can I make an objective and reliable comparison to justify my rational for this statement? … Simple.

When I played PT I was actually sweating. Never have I done that in a game before or since.

I don’t know whether it was the foreboding imagery or the eerie soundtrack beating against my eardrums but something was markedly different. Somehow that demo tapped in psychologically to some kind of primitive fear.

There has to be something said about seeing a truly horrifying figure just a few feet away from you, just standing there, waiting for you before the lights turn off or the sounds of a radio broadcast playing only to be interrupted by a gravelly voice saying “Don’t look behind you.”

That demo was littered with tons of moments like that. I can't even imagine if I had played through it in my younger ninja years. I probably would have ended up more messed up than I already am.

Truth is if they actually made it into a full game today I’m not even sure I could bring myself to play it, lol.

Still, it’s fun to imagine “What if…”

-SCAREDY CAT NINJA APPROVED-

Avatar image for darthrevenx
DarthRevenX

@videogameninja: i didn't see all that PT had to offer but gods was it more authentic than any horror game before it and it was just a demo......

and other games have done really good creepy levels like Thief 3's Shalebridge Cradle level......now that was creepy.....

Avatar image for deactivated-5c56012aaa167

@videogameninja: "There has to be something said about seeing a truly horrifying figure just a few feet away from you,"

actually this was directly copied from Silent Hill 2 & 4.(PH and Walter Sullivan do the same thing in those games)

but still PT had the most stupid thing I've ever seen in Horror games : a Talking Paper bag.

Avatar image for videogameninja
videogameninja

@dorog1995: A talking paper bag?!

LOL! I must have missed that one (or conveniently blocked it out.).

I remember people saying there were tons of different things/Easter eggs to find. Hell, some people were devoting months upon months to finding them all, and it was just a demo, lol.

The Resident evil 7 demo did a similar thing.

-VIDEOGAME NINJA APPROVED-

Avatar image for mikeblazingit
Mikeblazingit

ign is the worst

Avatar image for darthrevenx
DarthRevenX

@mikeblazingit: IGN is Evil, IGN is Satan........

if IGN existed in the 40's they'd be Nazi sympathizers.......lolz

Avatar image for Blk_Mage_Ctype
Blk_Mage_Ctype

Done? Technically you never made a single horror game since Silent Hills was cancelled before completion and you were only the co-creator anyway.

So unless you made some other horror game which I'm unaware of, then you're not "done" because you never made one in the first place.

Avatar image for deactivated-5a1d4b615a3a3

@Blk_Mage_Ctype: He produced the recent Castlevania games and they certainly had Horror elements

Avatar image for louixiii
LouiXIII

A part of wants to say something ass-holy because this was ripped from IGN but hey...we all got to make a living. Thank for heads up Eddie

Avatar image for luert
luert

damn shame, I'm not much the type for horror games but this one really looked very interesting, too bad konami had to mess it up )=

Avatar image for Abomination713
Abomination713

He worked for Konami. Nothing else should be giving him nightmares anymore.

Avatar image for slypher9
Slypher9

@Abomination713: lol come on be nice..

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