Hideo Kojima isn’t just a celebrity and “stamped stamp” in the gaming world. The developer’s success today is such that his name is recognized even by people who have never played a Metal Gear. So it was especially remarkable when the director started reminiscing about his struggle to promote his first games last night, July 13th.
Anyone who follows Kojima’s work knows how participative he is on Twitter. And it was on this social network that he told the story of how he personally went to a store after the launch of Metal Gear, to deliver flyers and help spread the word about the game. In addition, he bought three copies of the title himself.
The developer explains that since Metal Gear wasn’t released on the NES at first, it wasn’t sold in stores and toy sections with other games – which were the most popular places. Instead, the game was in the miscellaneous computer software section, because it was considered an MSX program.
The MSX was a DOS-based personal computer sold by Sony that was quite popular in Japan. The system ended up receiving quite a few classic games, including Metal Gear, which five months later was ported to the much more popular NES.
The second story told by Kojima on Twitter is very similar to the first. So much so that the first tweet is basically identical. The difference is that he’s talking about Snatcher, an acclaimed game by the creator, but much less known than Metal Gear.
Snatcher was also released on MSX and faced the same problem of not being promoted as an NES game. But in the case of this game, its creator’s solution was not leafleting. Instead, Kojima went every day to one of the stores selling the game and discreetly turned up the volume on the monitor where he was running a demo of the game.
It’s interesting to read these stories and then transport yourself to the present day and imagine what would happen if Kojima just casually walks into a game store today.