Hideo Kojima is believed to have told France games magazine IG that Solid Snake is set to return in the next instalment of the Metal Gear Solid franchise.
The creative figurehead at Kojima Productions is quoted in full as saying:
"About Metal Gear Solid 5, I can tell you two things. There will be much question of infiltration, espionage, and convincing people to give you 'a favour' like in the last Metal Gear Solid.
"I liked the idea of social interactions in Deus Ex: Human Revolution, but we will see. And if I say more, the female ninja public relations officer, who is behind the door, I will be carved up into pieces. So it's better that we meet again when the time comes to talk about Metal Gear Solid 5."
CVG has contacted Konami about the interview - a spokesperson has declined to comment.
Doubts have been raised over the legitimacy of the quote. It is being widely reported that Kojima made the claim in the July issue of IG Magazine. However, the publication's official website makes no reference to an interview with Hideo Kojima for that month.
UPDATE: A spokesperson for IG has confirmed to CVG that the interview and quotes are legitimate.
Kojima appears to have said "there will be a Metal Gear Solid 5 with the new FOX Engine".
He added: "Metal Gear Rising: Revengeance never claimed to be a Metal Gear Solid. This is not a game about our beloved Solid Snake. It is a spinoff that tries something different. We have not yet finished with Solid Snake, despite the fact that I wanted to let him die at the end of Guns of the Patriots."
PSM3 conducted an in-depth investigation of the Metal Gear Solid timeline and speculated that Metal Gear Solid 5 will be set in 1970s Africa, star Big Boss and - and maybe, just maybe - show the birth of baby Solid Snake.