Konami was once a game company that developed brilliant games throughout the 1980s and 1990s. I know that that’s hard to believe, but that was the state of affairs a mere fifteen years ago. Suddenly, though, they’re all over the place. Hideo Kojima is set to leave the company after Metal Gear Solid V: The Phantom Pain hits store shelves. Silent Hills, a teased return to form for Silent Hill after the series was revitalised with Shattered Memories, between both Hideo Kojima and Guillermo del Toro, was revealed to be cancelled a month after its announcement. It’s safe to say that the Konami of yesteryear is no more.
What is Konami without their star talent? Can it only amount of Castlevania: Lords of Shadow 3? Not all all. In fact, it is sitting on mines and mines of potential. Bomberman, Probotector (or Contra for those in the Americas), Adventure Island, Dance Dance Revolution, Gradius, Suikoden, Pro Evolution Soccer, to name just a few of their biggest games of yesteryear. However, it wouldn’t be Konami without screwing something up, would it – they are now set on churning out low quality, cookie-cutter games, and might even be leaving the industry altogether. I sincerely believe they lost all of their passion, but how can I say that for sure?
Well, they managed to leave out two whole thirds of a game when they brought it over here from Japan, and they proudly sold it for a full thirty pounds on store shelves. How is it even possible to care so little about the potential profits you could turn? It may have been only Yu-Gi-Oh!, but that’s just a money grabbing tactic to capitalise on a consumer who doesn’t know better about what they’re buying.
The situation could have been salvaged, too, but the games they put out aren’t what they used to be – take the 2011 travesty that was the Silent Hill HD Collection. What they may not realise is that a good reputation is what drives sales. They are what keeps the company going, but in a strange twist, Konami are now a fraction of what they used to be. They are solely driven by money now. That is Konami. They delisted themselves off the New York Stock Exchange, probably with the sole intention of deceiving the public into thinking, “oh, they’re not doing too bad”, but that perception couldn’t be further from the truth.
Earlier this year, they tried to take Kojima’s name off a series that was his creation, all the way from the MSX-2 days up until the 8th generation of consoles. That was really the nail in the coffin for a company that was, to simply put it, years and years past its expiration date. They’ve given up and stopped delivering experiences that are remarkable, which draws unrefutable parallels to Atari. It’s only a matter of time before it sinks in the pachinko machine-filled ocean, ready to scam more people in forking out for one of their so-called ‘services’.
In closing, I think we can all agree that Konami has become downright silly. I haven’t even tackled the hostility, or the unfair conditions, or gone deeper into Konami. This is only scratching the surface. It does gets worse. Much, much worse.