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In the same week Hideo Kojima announces his new studio, we find Konami hiring New Metal Gear staff. What a coincidence!

It was a bold move by Hideo Kojima to name his new independent studio Kojima Productions. A tad egotistical, while we’re at it, but he’s hardly known for being a shrinking violet. Why so bold? Because Kojima Productions was the name of Kojima’s sub-team studio – an exceedingly rare degree of reverence for the auteur – when he worked for the gaming goliath that is Konami.

There may yet be legal ramifications of naming his new studio Kojima Productions too, given that the trademark – in the US, at least – is still live and registered to Konami.

Metal Gear is definitely Kojima’s baby though, and yesterday Konami made their first official noise on the subject just three short days after the famed developer announced his new studio and took up arms with Sony: their careers page shows Konami hiring New Metal Gear staff.

“New Metal Gear” is their expression, not ours. Specifically, they’re looking for “a range of highly skilled game development professionals” to work on “the creation of ‘NEW METAL GEAR'” and they’re potentially hiring in both Tokyo and Los Angeles.

It may well be that Konami hiring New Metal Gear staff this week is a coincidence, or perhaps they’ve been waiting for the radio silence – or gardening leave, or whatever was really happening with Kojima – to reach its conclusion before they kicked this project into gear. It would be nice to think that it’s all very innocent and genuine, wouldn’t it?

However, given the seven-year gap between Metal Gear Solid’s fourth and fifth titles and the fact that Konami have been making noises about a shift from AAA to mobile development, not to mention the precise way they phrased it – “the creation of ‘NEW METAL GEAR'” – it does feel as though Konami hiring New Metal Gear staff, so quickly after his big announcement, is a way to get back at Kojima.

Watch this space to see what Kojima comes back with next.

Want to see what all the fuss is about? Pick up Metal Gear Solid V: The Phantom Pain from Amazon.

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