Metal Gear Solid 4 was considered with open-world in mind

Metal Gear mastermind Hideo Kojima has revealed he initially considered an open-world setting for the PlayStation 3-exclusive stealth title, Metal Gear Solid 4: Guns of the Patriots.

Speaking during a recent video interview (translated by worldsfactory), Kojima-san said the sandbox approach was abandoned due to lack of available technology at the time—hence why the Fox Engine was created for Metal Gear Solid V.

"While developing MGSIV, I considered an open world approach but we lacked the technology. I felt we were also lagging behind Western studios in other areas like physics simulation, lighting and rendering techniques as well.

That fueled my decision to seriously invest in creating an internal game engine we called the FOX ENGINE. The new engine was mandatory to realize my goals for MGSV: TPP; I needed a way to empower small teams of specialists to work individually on tasks they were best at, in order to boost efficiency. The engine also allowed us to adopt more of a western-style tool chain and team structure. Without these modern optimizations, we would never finish a game with TPP scope. This resulted in MGSV differing drastically from MGSIV not only with respect to content, but also with regard to development style and methods."

Metal Gear Solid V: The Phantom Pain is due out worldwide on September 1, 2015 for PS4, PS3, PC, Xbox One, and Xbox 360. Check out details here on the Day-One and Collector’s Editions of the game. 

Read our review of Metal Gear Solid 4: Guns of the Patriots from 2008 here.