Ken-Ichiro Imaizumi, who is one of the founding members of Kojima Productions, has left the company. Hideo Kojima created Kojima Productions after leaving Konami and the developer's first game was Death Stranding.

An article by Video Games Chronicle reveals that Ken-Ichiro Imaizumi has left Kojima Productions after having been with the studio since its creation. Imaizumi was the developer's corporate director and looked over all production of Death Stranding. The reviews of Death Stranding weren't all positive and the game was review bombed by some players on the day it was released, but it is unlikely that's why Imaizumi left.

The article says that a img "claimed it was due to a disagreement with Kojima Productions’ other directors." Kojima Productions and Sony, which publishes the PS4 version of Death Stranding, haven't commented on Imaizumi's decision to leave. It seems unlikely that the real reason will be officially confirmed.

Many fans of Kojima's will be familiar with Imaizumi, as the two men have been working together for years. Imaizumi was a senior producer at Konami from 1995 to 2015 and he helped develop all of the Metal Gear Solid games from Metal Gear Solid 2: Sons of Liberty to Metal Gear Solid 5: The Phantom Pain, which was Kojima's last Metal Gear Solid game before leaving to create Kojima Productions. The producer was one of several ex-Konami developers to join Kojima Productions to develop Death Stranding.

Kojima seems to have had a good working relationship with Imaizumi and if they hadn't, Imaizumi wouldn't have joined Kojima after 20 years of working at Konami. Imaizumi was a director and a producer at Kojima Productions too, meaning he had a big part in the development of Death Stranding. Kojima would like to develop some very scary horror games, but fans will be wondering if those games will look differently without Imaizumi working on them.

It's also possible that Imaizumi's decision to leave the developer won't have any effect on the next Kojima Productions project. Kojima has suggested that he would like Kojima Productions to make films. If that does happen, then Imaizumi's years of experience as a video game developer on the Metal Gear Solid games will not be as important.

Source: Video Games Chronicle