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How the Mighty Have Fallen: Konami’s Self-Disintegration Effect

Watch as it burns...

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There has been a lot of bad news coming out of the Konami camp lately. Various stories with conflicting information about the ousting of Metal Gear Solid creator Hideo Kojima, working conditions at Konami offices, and other crazy tidbits of info have given the company a terrible reputation as of late.

The worst part about all of this isn’t the things being said about Konami as much as it is the way the company has handled the entire situation. Confusing statements and the lack of any real transparency on questions asked by the media have not helped with the general consensus of how gamers are feeling about the company. But this is only the tip of a very daunting iceberg. Konami’s recent actions have been rapidly accelerating its own breakdown in the eyes of many in the gaming industry.

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The news covering the tension between Hideo Kojima and Konami, leading to news of Kojima leaving the company upon Metal Gear Solid V’s completion, was something that got a lot of attention. Kojima is widely regarded as a well-respected developer whose games have carried the weight of Konami since the era of the original PlayStation. There simply wouldn’t be a person in gaming who mentions Konami as a company without pairing up the Metal Gear series with it. Many would argue that losing Kojima would spell doom for the Metal Gear Solid Series and possibly wipe away the last bit of relevance that Konami has within the gaming industry. This is partially true with the complete waste of the Castlevania games recently, the confusing absence of the Contra series, and the uncertain future of the Pro Evolution Soccer franchise.

Konami in recent years has pretty much become a shell of its former self. A company that once released titles that changed the way we viewed video games, has now dwindled away to become a company looking to cut off its face to spite its nose. Poor decisions ranging from quietly removing Kojima’s name from The Phantom Pain’s marketing (and then reinstating it because of fan backlash), to openly stating shortly after that the company is veering towards focused efforts into mobile gaming has made for a PR nightmare thunderstorm. When it rains, it really pours. But none of this was as bad as what Konami had openly did to one YouTuber that was looking at everything unfolding from the outside.

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Super Bunnyhop, a YouTube content creator who covers issues in gaming, created a video detailing a lot of the news being reported on Hideo Kojima and the status of Konami. The video had information from unverified sources about some of the events taking place behind the scenes, as well as foreshadowing of events that eventually came to pass, such as the removal of P.T. from the PlayStation store and Konami focusing on the mobile market. The video had received copyright strike and Super Bunnyhop got a DMCA Takedown notice in his inbox from one high-ranking Konami executive, who was also a lawyer for the company’s legal team. Shortly afterwards, the claim was denied by YouTube and the strike removed from Super Bunnyhop’s channel.

This whole event only dampens the outlook that everyone has on Konami at this point. Amazingly, not only does this mark the first time that YouTube has openly questioned another company about the validity of a strike against a video protected under fair use, but also brings into question Konami’s sense of stability. What company would actively try to silence a video, containing speculative information about them, in the midst of the fallout from a PR nightmare, unless there was some truth to it all? The company’s action have painted a worse picture of them, and in turn had the opposite effect by making Super Bunnyhop’s video seen on every gaming website imaginable. It’s possibly enough to make any PR representative simply rage quit.

There clearly is something wrong at Konami. It’s not the poor quality of the games or trouble financing projects, but poor direction from all sides. Those that are making decisions at Konami’s highest levels are taking actions that seem more akin to a confused and scared child, rather than that of a focused and confident business. It is clear that Konami disparages their own image towards the gaming industry and doesn’t hold the same value they once had for the legacy of their various franchises.

Konami is a company that is slowly disintegrating because of its own actions. It’s a shame to see a company that once held a pedigree for giving gamers classics that withstood console generations becoming a slow sinking ship under its own dead weight. The worst part of it all may be that Konami might not think it’s doing so.

What do you think about the recent events involving Konami? Have a feeling we may not look at Konami the same way again down the line? Leave us a comment below!!!

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Jakejames Lugo Senior Editor
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