‘Metal Gear Solid’ PC Release Date Moved Up as Konami Faces Scrutiny

Konami has moved its PC release date for stealth game Metal Gear Solid 5: The Phantom Pain from Tuesday, September 15, to Tuesday, September 1 to coincide with the game’s release on Xbox One, Xbox 360, PlayStation 4, and PlayStation 3. But while console gamers get online multiplayer on October 6, PC players will have to wait until January 2016.

This news comes amid months of reports of Metal Gear developer Hideo Kojima’s uncertain future with Konami and the Monday, August 3, 2015 release of a Nikkei article detailing poor working conditions at Konami.

According to Nikkei, computers at Kojima Productions, now called “Number 8 Production Department,” are disconnected from the Internet. Konami’s workers do not have individualized email addresses and are given randomized ones that are switched periodically. Nikkei also states that cameras track employees, and workers who take extensive lunch breaks have their names called out to their coworkers. Developers deemed no longer useful by Konami are given jobs as guards, janitors, or pachi-slot machine manual laborers.

As Breitbart reported in May, Konami has shifted it’s focus away from console gaming to the mobile gaming market, but the developer spent $80 million on the production of Metal Gear Solid 5. Rika Muranaka, a singer and composer for the franchise, rationalized the possible split between Kojima and Konami by describing Kojima as more focused on creativity, with Konami being more profit-centric.

Muranaka said, “What [Kojima] loves is to create the best game possible for the fans. His focus was concerned on that of creating what will be a masterpiece. Konami, on the other hand, is a business that is focused on budget and profit. So I simply expressed that maybe that has something to do with it… Konami is a business, and they have to look at things from a business standpoint and not just from a creative side. Creativity is important, but so is keeping your business afloat.”

Regarding the new early release date for The Phantom Pain on PC, Konami President Tomotada Tashiro said, “We initially did not think it would be possible to get such an epic game out onto PC in time for launch alongside its console counterparts, but all involved have worked diligently to meet the demands of our PC consumers…. We feel confident that Steam users will be satisfied with the contents we will provide for the Steam version.”

The Phantom Pain boasts 4K resolution graphics on the PC. Pre-orders of the game will include Metal Gear Solid: Ground Zeroes and behind the scenes videos. Players who pre-order will also get the “Mother Base Staff” and “Venom Snake emblem.”

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