Hideo Kojima and other key Kojima Productions staff are to leave publish Konami following completion of Metal Gear Solid 5: The Phantom Pain, GameSpot understands.
The site reports that a power stuggle between Kojima and Konami has resulted in senior staff being denied access to corportate communications including phone, internet, and emails. In addition, developers including Kojima will now have restricted access to publicity events for the game.
An anonymous source reports that many veteran staff are now work on a contract rather than permanent basis, and will leave the studio in December.
"After we finish MGSV, Mr. Kojima and upper management will leave Konami. They said their contract ends in December," the source commented. "At a team meeting, Mr Kojima explained that the team has to be one and make a good game for fans."
This follows reports earlier today that Konami has removed the Kojima Productions logo from all official Metal Gear art, while Kojima has been removed from the company's executive team. Kojima Productions' branding has also vanished from the official Metal Gear Solid website, from Twitter, and from an LA office listing.
Kojima's representatives declined to comment but Konami has stated "Konami Digital Entertainment, including Mr. Kojima, will continue to develop and support Metal Gear products. Please look forward to future announcements."
Metal Gear Solid 5: The Phantom Pain launches in September on PC, PlayStation 4, PlayStation 3, Xbox 360, and Xbox One.