In a move both surprising and depressingly believable, former software giant Konami has slashed any plans for triple-A releases outside of the Pro Evolution Soccer series. The move seems strange after the release of one of the biggest and most ambitious games in the last half decade (Metal Gear Solid 5), but Konami has been shaking up things lately, so a move to mobile games makes a certain sense.
After the very public breakup with game design giant Hideo Kojima earlier this year, Konami has also lost worldwide technology director Julien Merceron. Merceron expressed unhappiness with the shift away from traditional video games into the mobile space.
Konami has 2 big titles slated to come out, Metal Gear Online and Pro Evolution Soccer 2016, but after that there is nothing on the horizon. While the mobile space is obviously a growing market (as well as cheaper and more profitable in most cases), Konami’s dropping of traditional video games is unfortunate given their pedigree and their role in making gaming the industry it is now.
How much of this has to do with the reportedly abysmal corporate culture and near abuse of employees and how much has to do with their aversion to paying for large projects is unknown. It’s hard to imagine we don’t get more information as Merceron and Kojima do more interviews. As a lifelong gamer, I certainly hope Konami returns to form sooner rather than later. . .