Metal Gear Solid 5: The Phantom Pain is open-world in the respect players are able to decide how to go about their missions, but this doesn’t necessarily make it a sandbox title, according to Hideo Kojima.
Speaking with CVG during E3 2014, Kojima said while the world isn’t like that of Grand Theft Auto’s, it still maintains a sense of freedom when it comes to making decisions.
“This is a game that is not necessarily what you would call sandbox where you can go wherever you want and do whatever you want, like in GTA,” he said. “This is not the way this game works. For our game, you get in, you accomplish a mission and you get out. These missions are very simple; destroying something, arresting someone, killing someone, recovering something. It’s really simple in that regard.
“Players have all the freedom in the world to think about what method, or what route, what time of the day will they choose to get in and accomplish their mission. During these missions there’s a story that’s developing. But there’s a limit to what the player can do when away from this mission because it’s clear when there’s a mission to complete.
“When we say we’re an open-world game it makes it sound like it’s trying to be the same as what [Rockstar] are creating. But this is very different – I’m trying to do a free infiltration game. What Rockstar has created and the world they have created is super impressive, and actually when I saw the PS4 version [of GTA 5] few days ago I got depressed again. But this is not game design-related it’s just me. The quality that they showed in the PS4 trailer was really impressive.
“In that regard, [MGS5] it’s completely different to GTA 5 in which you can do whatever you want. In MGS 5, you have missions and I try to provide players with as much fun as possible in the freedom they have for how to complete their mission.”
Kojima also touched upon the contents contained in E3 presentation of MGS5, stating the player has a choice whether to collect diamonds, or animals.
“You can even make a zoo [on Motherbase], but in the end what you have to accomplish throughout the game is completing the missions, then to understand why you had to do the mission and what happened as a result of your actions,” he said. “We didn’t want to reveal the whole idea in the presentation, but at the beginning of the mission the game might tell you that you have a time limit – such as three in-game days – or some other form of limitation. And if you breech this limitation you fail the mission.”
The Phantom Pain is out next year on PlayStation 3, PS4, Xnox 360 and Xbox One.