Konami appoints Julien Merceron as worldwide technology director

Makes move from Square Enix, joins new European studio.

Julien Merceron

Julien Merceron is the new worldwide technology director for Konami Digital Entertainment, and will start work at the new European headquarters on October 1.

“Julien brings with him an incredible awareness of how to take games as an entertainment force forward,” said Konami’s European president, Shinji Hirano.

“He will be a key member of our talented development community and be integral to ensuring that future titles will push the limits of what can be technically achieved, while ensuring they retain Konami’s famed gameplay. We welcome him and his talents to the team.”

His duties will involve work on future iterations of Kojima Productions’ FOX Engine.

Merceron makes the move from Square Enix, where he was also worldwide technology director. He joined the company in April 2009 as CTO, after more than three years with Eidos. He’s also worked with Ubisoft as both a programmer and as worldwide technology director, and can be found on the BAFTA jury and GDC advisory board.


Kojima Productions LA officially opens

Konami’s Western expansion of Metal Gear Solid maker goes live, over a dozen senior positions still unfilled

Kojima Productions LA

It’s been a year since job openings for a Los Angeles-based offshoot of Kojima Productions started making the rounds, and the outfit is finally ready to get to work. Konami today held an official opening ceremony for the studio, with Kojima Productions director and Metal Gear creator Hideo Kojima in attendance.

“As gaming takes the world stage as one of the greatest forms of entertainment, it’s only natural for us to expand our operations across the globe,” Kojima said. “And since Los Angeles is ground zero for the best studios, facilities and world-class talent, we are leaning on these local resources to build an incredible team to create gaming experiences that are just as compelling as any film or television show.”

While the studio is officially open now, it doesn’t appear to be fully staffed as yet. Konami’s careers website indicates the company is looking to fill more than a dozen senior roles at the studio, including programmers, animators, designers, and a senior project manager.

“The Los Angeles studio emphasizes [Konami’s] and Kojima Productions’ commitment to expanding our development footprint,” Konami Digital Entertainment president Tomoyuki Tsuboi said. “The new studio will put Kojima Productions in the heart of the West which will benefit future releases as it will introduce new talent and creativity to the development teams.”

The LA studio’s first task will be to assist in development of Metal Gear Solid: Ground Zeroes and Metal Gear Solid V: The Phantom Pain.



Metal Gear Solid 5: Kiefer Sutherland confirmed as the voice of Snake


Hideo Kojima has revealed Hollywood actor and star of 24 Keifer Sutherland will be the voice of Snake in Metal Gear Solid 5: The Phantom Pain.

Speaking during a pre-E3 press conference, Kojima said he needed someone who could deliver the expressive qualities of a much older Snake.

“I needed someone who could convery facial and vocal qualities of a man at his age, so I asked a producer friend of mine in Hollywood, Avi Arad, for advice,” said Kojima.”He’s the one who introduced me to Mr. Kiefer Sutherland.”

“I felt that he was the perfect fit in terms of age and performance,” he added. “Kiefer immediately understood what I was looking for.”

During the stream Sutherland appeared and spoke of his respect and admiration for the Metal Gear Solid series.

“It’s an honour to be able to play this character, this character has a legacy, there’s a real personal quality to the character that I’ve connected to,” he said.

“I’m not a gamer and even I knew about this game. I was certainly keenly aware of the legacy of these games, the unbelievable success of these games”

Konami Teases Castlevania Fans with Another Screenshot of Lords of Shadow 2

Castlevania: Lords of Shadow series producer David Cox has decided to release yet another nice little teaser for fans who are eagerly awaiting the release of the sequel to Konami’s action hit of 2010.

Cox posted the following picture on Twitter:

Mind you, this isn’t the first time we’ve been teased by David Cox with a screenshot of Lords of Shadow 2. Just last month we were to a different, yet equally stunning image that only serves to make the wait for this game even more difficult to bear.

If for whatever reason you haven’t already seen Konami’s incredible announcement trailer, you’d best give it a look right now.

Castlevania: Lords of Shadow 2 is being developed by Mercurysteam, and is expected to launch sometime next year for both the Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3. If you’ve played the prior entry, be sure to let us know what you thought of the game in the comments below.

Source: PlaystationLifestyle

Metal Gear Solid 4: Guns of the Patriots 25th Anniversary Edition Coming

Konami looks set to release a special 25th Anniversary Edition version of Metal Gear Solid 4: Guns of the Patriots.

That’s at least according to U.K. online retailers Zavvi and ShopTo, which lists the stealth-action title for release on PlayStation 3 on November 30, 2012. It’s listed for £19.99 on ShopTo, but Zavvi prices it significantly higher at £37.45.

No official word from Konami has been issued yet, but we imagine we’ll hear something soon.

No details on any possible extras for this re-release have been outed, but it’s safe to assume that Trophies will be part of the package after the recent update. Metal Gear Online surely won’t be featured following the closure of its servers back in June, however.

Stay tuned to afterdarkgaming for more details.

via Eurogamer