Metal Gear Solid creator Hideo Kojima is no stranger to obfuscation. In fact, some might say that the prolific developer actually loves hidden messages more than he does full-scale reveals. Just look at the amount of effort that went into revealing Metal Gear Solid 5: The Phantom Pain.
It's for that reason that fans have learned to study Kojima's every move, from the seemingly mundane to the widely televised. Like if the Metal Gear Solid 5 director wears a t-shirt with a foreign language, fans are going to translate it in the hopes of revealing some new information. And that's just what they did.
During The Game Awards on Friday, Kojima took the stage to reveal Metal Gear Online, MGS 5's cooperative online mode. However, his appearance sparked some speculation once fans noticed Kojima was wearing a shirt with the phrase "tjugoandra den sjätte" across the front.
Now, had the phrase been in Japanese, gamers might have thought nothing of it. But, because "tjugoandra den sjätte" is actually Swedish, speculation has run rampant.
So, what does ""tjugoandra den sjätte" mean? Literally translated, the phrase means "twenty-second and sixth," which some have interpreted to mean June 22nd – as in the unannounced release date for Metal Gear Solid 5. It's also worth mentioning that in Sweden the phrase June 22nd wouldn't be "tjugoandra den sjätte," meaning that whoever made the shirt (like say, a Japanese developer) could have used Google Translate to find the phrase and doesn't actually know Swedish.
Obviously, there are a lot of assumptions going on, but when it comes to Kojima anything can be a clue. Things get especially interesting when you consider that Kojima created a fake Swedish developer, called Moby Dick Studios, for The Phantom Pain back when we thought it was some random game with an armless protagonist. He later confirmed that Moby Dick was fake and that The Phantom Pain was one of two new Metal Gear Solid games, but not before fans had already uncovered every clue.
On the one hand, having to translate a developer's shirt to find out a release date seems silly, but at the same time it has become part of Kojima's charm. It also means that sometimes people find clues where there are none, like the theories David Hayter might actually be voicing Snake and not Kiefer Sutherland.
At the end of the day, though, we're as eager as anybody to get our hands on Metal Gear Solid 5, and so if it is to arrive in the first half of next year then that's good news.
Do you think Kojima was secretly trying to reveal Metal Gear Solid 5's release date? Or was he just trying to take fans on a wild goose chase?
Metal Gear Solid 5: The Phantom Pain is slated to arrive in 2015 for PC, PS3, PS4, Xbox 360, and Xbox One.