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If you caught the latest trailer for Death Stranding during last week's The Game Awards, then you're probably still scratching your head concerning what, exactly, the game is actually about. Thankfully, Director Hideo Kojima feels our pain, and he's finally offered a few glimpses into what folks can expect to spend their time doing while playing the game.
Over on IGN, they had a sit-down with Kojima to discuss all things Death Stranding. Best known for his work on the Metal Gear Solid series, Kojima has always been known for thinking outside the box with his games, implementing all kinds of bizarre new ideas and gameplay elements. It sounds like Death Stranding will be no different, which you could have easily guessed had you watched any of the game's three insane trailers.
The first one included a naked Norman Reedus clutching a baby (he presumably gave birth to) on an oil-slick beach. The next one actually looked like a dark and gothic take on Metal Gear, with Guillermo del Toro sneaking around with a baby in a mysterious vat and Mads Mikkelsen commanding a group of skeletal soldiers. The most recent trailer was the most clear image we've had yet of the world of Death Stranding, featuring bunch of dudes trying to hide from or kill a bunch of invisible monsters. Oh, and then Norman Reedus takes a swim in the ocean after apparently swallowing a baby.
You see what I mean? It's insanity.
So, it's a good thing Kojima is here to shed a bit of actual light on the street-rat crazy game that Reedus himself admitted (on the Game Awards stage) to having no idea what the hell is going on.
For starters, Kojima explained that Death Stranding will explore the ideas of life and death, particularly how they apply to video games. When you die in the game, apparently you'll be able to explore a watery purgatory world, collecting items and preparing to jump back into the game. Kojima referred to this as his own take on the screen seen in arcade games asking if the player wants to continue.
Similar to games like Dark Souls, Kojima said that Death Stranding will treat death as a natural occurrence in the game world, but without punishment or resetting the clock. So once you decide to re-enter the game's world, you'll do so following your death, not with the clock rewound a little bit. In a normal game, if a bomb goes off and kills the player, they usually restart the game sometime before that bomb went off, so now the player has a chance to avoid it. In Death Stranding, you would return to the world following the explosion that killed you. It happened, there's no changing that, and now the story must progress.
As for how players will interact with the game world, Kojima has been quoted as saying we will use both "sticks" and "ropes." Sticks are how we typically interact with games, such as guns to shoot our enemies. In Death Stranding, Kojima said that he aims to toy around with ropes, too, specifically how players can have an impact on the world and each other in, we assume, non-violent ways.
So, that answered a few of our questions but, in traditional Kojima fashion, we're left with so many more.