The ongoing saga of Hideo Kojima's extended divorce proceedings from Konami took another public turn last night as it was announced that the publisher had prevented him picking up an award for Metal Gear Solid V from The Game Awards last night.
Host Geoff Keighley openly called Konami out for not allowing the ex-employee to attend, and collect the prize, which Keifer Sutherland picked up in his stead. Sutherland, the new voice actor for MGS lead character Snake, was also accompanied by Dutch model and actress Stefanie Joosten - who plays Quiet in Metal Gear Solid V, who sang her character's theme song.
"As you noticed," said Keighley after the prixe was announced. "Hideo Kojima is not here with us tonight and I want to tell you a little about that. 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 awards ceremony to accept any awards. He's still 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 team mates."
Kojima retweeted messages of support from Joosten and other games celebrities but didn't comment on his situation directly. Given the animosity which surrounded the auteur's departure from Konami, it's unlikely that the full story will ever be public knowledge, but it's not the only award which has been picked up by someone else in Kojima's stead. Last night, a Konami PR also picked up two awards for MGSV at the PlayStation Awards in Tokyo.
Konami has been contacted for clarification of the issue.