The Game Awards last night featured some cool moments, well-deserved awards, and a dash of serious awkwardness. The weirdest moment, though, was when showrunner Geoff Keighley took a moment of the show’s time to address rumors that Metal Gear Solid V director Hideo Kojima would be making an appearance at the show.
Metal Gear Solid V: The Phantom Pain won the award for best Action/Adventure game, and Keifer Sutherland took the stage to accept the award, noting that the Metal Gear fans were already his most devoted. Afterward, the show cut to Keighley.
“As you noticed, Hideo Kojima is not here with us tonight, and I wanted to tell you a little bit about that,” Keighley said. At this point I was expecting Kojima to pop out of a cake or something, but he continued. “Mr. Kojima had every intention of being with us tonight, but unfortunately he was informed by a lawyer representing Konami just recently that he would not be allowed to travel to tonight’s award ceremony to accept any awards.”
“He’s under an employment contract and it’s disappointing and it’s inconceivable to me that an artist like Hideo would not be allowed to come here and celebrate with his peers and his fellow teammates,” Keighley said. “But that’s the situation we’re in. Hideo is in Tokyo right now watching the show – and we wanted you to know, Hideo, that we’re thinking of you – and we miss you. We hope to see you at The Game Awards 2016.”
The day before, a Konami PR person accepted an award for the game in Kojima’s place at Sony’s PlayStation awards in Tokyo. I was happy to see the game win the award, but I’m disappointed to see the bizarre treatment the game and its creator are getting from the company that they both gave so much to.
In place of an appearance by Kojima, Keighley introduced a performance by Stephanie Joosten, the voice of Quiet, singing Quiet’s theme. Check out the video above for the award, the explanation, and the performance, captured by Kotaku.