A week ago, most people didn’t know that Abandoned was an upcoming indie horror game for the PS5, or that it was being made by Danish developer Blue Box Game Studios. Now both are at the heart of gaming’s latest conspiracy theory that Metal Gear designer Hideo Kojima is secretly involved and Abandoned is actually a new Silent Hill. There’s just one small hitch: Blue Box Games keeps saying none of it is true.
The hype train started pulling out of the station on June 15, when Blue Box wrote in a now-deleted tweet, “Guess the name: Abandoned = (First letter S, Last letter L). Reveal closing in… #PS5 #Exclusive.” Since the letters seemed to match up, Silent Hill fans started getting excited about the possibility of an impending announcement. While a social media guessing game is an unusual way to kick off the return of a big franchise, in this case, there was arguably some precedent for it.
Back in 2014, a demo for a mysterious horror game called P.T. was released on the PlayStation Network. While the game appeared to be a high-gloss project, it was made by a company nobody knew. When players completed the demo, it revealed that P.T. was an elaborate announcement that Kojima and film director Guillermo del Toro were working on a new Silent Hill game together. That project, along with Kojima’s relationship with Silent Hill owners Konami ended up falling apart—but the fandom around Kojima and his fake-outs has only increased.
Since then, hope has not died out. The Blue Box situation sparked a post that blew up on the Gaming Leaks and Rumors subreddit that collected all sorts of so-called data points proving Silent Hills was not dead. These ranged from noting that Konami shop was teasing new Silent Hill merchandise, to weird coincidences involving Abandoned’s game director, Hasan Kahraman. Fans latched on to Kojima tweets like this book recommendation one from June 9, where he included the words “Silent” and “Hill.”
The list of clues, while tenuous, continued to mount. Fans also found an Instagram post where Kojima appeared to be holding up a blue box. Did you know that at 0:49 in Abandoned’s April teaser trailer the letters P and T are graffitied onto some rocks? All of these, fans reasoned, must be a part of an elaborate marketing campaign for Kojima’s next game.
Why did this particular conspiracy build up steam so quickly? Rumors about a new Silent Hill have been floating around for some time. Back in February VGC reported that “Konami has already outsourced a Silent Hill project to a prominent Japanese developer, with a reveal due this summer.” Kojima himself also has a track record for pulling weird shit like this. One time, he manufactured a fake trailer and game company for a game called The Phantom Pain only to later reveal it was a teaser for Metal Gear Solid 5. It didn’t hurt that Abandoned’s April teaser shared a lot in common with P.T.’s hyper-realistic and super eerie aesthetic.
Abandoned-is-actually-Kojima’s-new-Silent-Hill theory might have petered out had Blue Box not continued playing up the speculation with its social media…
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