Metal Gear Solid auteur Hideo Kojima has officially left Konami, according to a report from the New Yorker. According to the article, his final day with the company was October 9, 2015 -- and he had a departure ceremony attended by approximately 100 guests.
It was described as "a rather cheerful but also emotional goodbye" by the New Yorker's unnamed source.
Rumors that Kojima had left the company have swelled in the past months -- Konami removed his name from advertisements for the then-upcoming Metal Gear Solid V in March, and cancelled his Silent Hills project in April -- but this appears to be the first confirmation of his actual departure from the publisher where he spent his career.
Konami has largely refocused on mobile games, with president Hideki Hayakawa charting a path forward for the company in a May interview.
There is yet no exact word on the fate of the Kojima Productions studios in Tokyo and Los Angeles, though word came in July via Akio Otsuka, the Japanese voice of Metal Gear Solid lead Solid Snake, that the studio was "dissolved." A reorganization of Konami's development resources, alluded to in that Hayakawa interview, had stripped the studio of its name earlier in the year. Metal Gear Solid V tech lead Julien Merceron left Konami in September.
Update: An unconfirmed report out of Japan (via Kotaku) cites an unnamed Konami rep who claimed that Kojima is still an employee, and simply taking "a long time off work." While it's possible that Kojima could technically be an employee under a noncompete clause, the internet remains dubious about his return to Konami.
After the New Yorker report was published, Simon Parkin, author of the report, tweeted a picture that looked less like a "see you after vacation" party and more like a farewell event:
Here is a photograph of Kojima's farewell party on October 9th at Konami, which Konami claims no knowledge of: pic.twitter.com/xgRUoYs5qt— Simon Parkin (@SimonParkin) October 20, 2015