Video game publisher Konami has reportedly begun discussing plans for the next Metal Gear Solid title, with the company even discussing the game’s budget.

It’s been an eventful few months for fans of the Metal Gear Solid series as there has been much speculation about whether series’ creator Hideo Kojima has left the series’ publisher Konami. According it seems like Kojima has split with the company, Konami maintains that he’s just on holiday. But with the latest game in the franchise, Metal Gear Solid 5: The Phantom Pain, having shipped 5 million copies, Konami appears to be keen to get over the controversy and embrace the success instead, which is perhaps why a new Metal Gear Solid game is already being discussed.

This information comes from a report in the Japan-based publication Nikkei that states that Konami is currently discussing the next Metal Gear Solid game. Understandably, details are light on what that game will play or even look like but Konami has reportedly said that “when we start development, a large-scale investment will become necessary”. Though, this statement should come as very little surprise given the fact that Metal Gear Solid 5: The Phantom Pain cost a massive $80 million to develop.

One question that’s up for discussion is just who will be working on this new Metal Gear game. A month ago, one of Konami’s community managers confirmed that the series would live on without Kojima, emphasizing that the brand is about the characters and the story. Moreover, just this week it has been rumored that Kojima Productions Los Angeles, has now officially been closed down, with this news following the previous suggestion that the developer had actually disbanded before Metal Gear Solid 5 was released. So it seems unlikely that Kojima, or those who have worked with the Metal Gear creator, will be working on the next Metal Gear Solid title at all.

Metal Gear Solid 5: The Phantom Pain Review - Metal Gear Solid 5 box art

Some Metal Gear fans may find a way to see that as a positive. Although Kojima and the developers under the KojiPro banner are a talented bunch, many fans wouldn’t want to see the animosity between them and Konami hinder development. The high development budget of of Metal Gear Solid 5 has already been cited as a reason for Kojima and the company’s falling out and with the next Metal Gear Solid set to be even bigger, the pair continuing to work together could only exacerbate the issues.

On the other hand, many players would argue that Hideo Kojima was a huge factor in the game’s quality and success, even to the point where his name was added to the Metal Gear Solid 5 box art (though Konami removed it soon after tensions between them arose, only to add it again) and so they may fear that the next game won’t be as good because of Kojima’s absense. It’s too soon to say whether Konami and Kojima will patch things up or even if Kojima will be involved in a consultant or supporting role but there’s no doubt that this is something that the publisher will be addressing before development begins.

Are you worried about Kojima not working on the next Metal Gear Solid game? Or are you excited to see someone else’s take on the iconic franchise? Leave a comment and let us know.

Source: Kotaku