Metal Gear Rising: Revengeance purports to combine the outlandish stories and characters of a Kojima Productions title with the balls-to-the-wall combat of a Platinum Games production. It is, in fact, thanks to Platinum that Revengeance is even seeing the light of day — Kojima initially scrapped the project but Platinum saw some viability in it.
That being said, it’s still interesting to consider what Metal Gear Rising had looked like if Kojima did stay fully committed to the project, and not began work on Metal Gear Solid: Ground Zeroes. Thankfully, the prolific developer has clued us in to one of his initial development decisions — one that is sure to excite fans about what might have been.
Speaking with IGN about the early development of Revengeance, which at the time was simply called Metal Gear Rising, Kojima reveals that his idea was not to have Raiden at the center of the game’s story but someone else. That someone else is a character we haven’t seen in quite some time, the cyborg ninja Gray Fox (real name Frank Jaegar).
“I wanted to go for Frank Jaegar or Gray Fox. But if we had gone with that, I would have had to write the script and then be really committed to creating the game. I want to pass game development to the younger generation in my team, and have been trying to do so for quite some time. Before I never could give complete responsibilities for other games, but for Revengeance, they are fully in control. Besides, if I had created the game and directed it, it wouldn’t have been this game. I am very happy to see the growth in my team and how they have developed such an incredible game.”
However, as the quote above explains, casting Gray Fox would mean Hideo Kojima would have to be “really committed,” which suggests he doesn’t like when other creative personnel craft stories involving characters he has created. Kojima does, however, want to foster young talent and give complete control to a different development team.
And then that development hit a wall and Platinum Games stepped in, and most importantly Raiden was cemented as the game’s hero. Kojima is still on hand to consult, as we’re sure he was for Kojima’s development, but he ultimately doesn’t control all aspects of the production.
So while it would have been a great treat for fans to play as Gray Fox in a Metal Gear game — something this writer has been dying for the opportunity to do — that isn’t going to happen any time soon. Nevertheless the fact that Kojima still considers Gray Fox a character worth exploring, even starring in a game, suggests he is not done with Jaegar’s story.
Are you disappointed that Gray Fox is not the star of Metal Gear Rising: Revengeance? What other Metal Gear games would you like to see star in their own game?
Metal Gear Rising: Revengeance releases February 19, 2013 for the PS3 and Xbox 360.
Follow me on Twitter @ANTaormina