It might be the end of the relationship between legendary game designer Hideo Kojima and his long-time publisher, Konami, but it’s not the end of Kojima’s Metal Gear Solid 5. According to many sources, the Metal Gear sequel is still in development, although Kojima’s level of involvement remains a mystery.
Silent Hills, Kojima’s collaboration with Hollywood director Guillermo del Toro, wasn’t so lucky. After leaving fans hanging for a couple of weeks, Konami cancelled the title. Outrage followed. An online petition, asking Konami to resume development, followed, quickly amassing over 50,000 signatures.
Count del Toro’s among them. “I would add my signature to it, and hope that someone pays attention,” del Toro said in an interview with IGN. “I would love for somebody to change their mind and we can do it,” he added, “I think if anything can be rescued, I will be more than happy.”
Del Toro says that Silent Hills’ cancellation came as a complete surprise: lead actor Normal Reedus “was super happy, Hideo was super happy, and so was I.” Del Toro also criticized Konami for its “scorched earth approach” towards the game, saying that “it was not a gentle and ambiguous cancellation.”
And that’s true. Gamers were buzzing after the game’s interactive announcement trailer, P.T., mysteriously appeared on the PlayStation Network last summer, inviting players to explore a decided unsettling haunted house. However, following Silent Hills’ cancellation, Konami removed P.T. from the PlayStation store. If it’s not currently on a player’s console, it’s gone for good.
That’s unfortunate. P.T. was a work of art on its own, and del Toro says that Silent Hills would’ve been even more striking. “The idea was very, very atmosphere-drenched,” he says. “What we wanted to do with the game… was to take the technology and make it as cutting-edge as we could in creating terror in the house…. You had the atmosphere but then you [had] a pay-off with a very active, very intense series of moments.”
That’s vague but promising, and del Toro’s hesitant to go into more details just in case the project somehow comes back to life. “Hideo and I have been in touch,” he says, “And he knows he would be the only guy I would follow to the ends of the earth on anything.”
Sadly, while del Toro’s a lifelong video game player, it sounds like Silent Hills might be his last attempt to make a game. As he explains, “I’ve tried twice and I don’t know if I’ll ever come back to the form. In one instance, the company went down, and in the second, the completely unexpected happened…. It’s kind of left me reeling.”
Don’t worry, Guillermo. Silent Hill fans know exactly how you feel.