Death Stranding Review: It’s a dystopian future. You’re a mailman of sorts. Your parcel is an in vitro fetus named Lou. There are Terminals, tears, and Mass Extinctions. There’s a lady in red on the beach, and there are floating umbrellas. These are the clues that we’ve been trying to piece together. Those of us, that is, that have been anticipating the long-awaited release of Death Stranding.
[Death Stranding Review: 2020 Updates Included]:
The multilayered, multifaceted game, Death Stranding, from Kojima Productions, is officially OUT NOW! For those who can wait no longer: Death Stranding for Playstation 4 also available Limited Edition Console Bundle
What is Death Stranding?
Brief synopsis: Most of America is gone because of a series of mass explosions. This initial event is called the Death Stranding. All that remains are small walled-city-states completely cut off from one another. Now there’s an immediate need for “porters” — people assigned to deliver supplies to different cities, risking their lives in the dangerous wastelands of America.
The game is built on the idea of connection. Hideo Kojima says in a BBC interview, that in a world where we seem to be putting up walls, Death Stranding uses bridges to represent connection – there are options to use them or break them. It’s about making people think about the meaning of connection.”
Death Stranding Controversy
One point of contention and controversy is the blatant product placement of Monster Energy drink. In fact, it’s written into the storyline. It gives Protagonist, Sam Bridges (played by Norman Reedus) a healing boost. This is something typically frowned upon in the gaming world. Especially when the product is integral to the gameplay.
Another point of contention: some say that the game is just odd. From carrying a live fetus to using DOOMS, which are supernatural abilities, to detect BTs (Beached Things) which are the dead that have come back as spirit entities. These BTs attack on sight. This oddness is even parodied by Rick and Morty:
The parody has taken on a life of its own as evidenced by this: Rick and Morty Shirt
Finally, people are divided by their love or hate of this game. While most agree that the gameworld is beautifully designed, some argue that the gameplay loop is monotonous and boring.
Is Death Stranding Boring?
In short; you’re a mailman. You deliver parcels. The end.
No, actually there is much more but many have said that it is, in fact, boring. They claim that much of the gameloop is traversing the landscape and they don’t find this to be exciting enough. Others love doing just this as they explore all the richness along the way. So is this game boring? As with so much in life, “boring” is subjective. It really comes down to the player and the type of games they enjoy playing.
Hideo Kojima and Death Stranding
Kojima is the mastermind of this game. After 30 years of working with Konami where he developed hits like the Metal Gear series, Kojima and Konami had a very public split in 2015. He then funded Death Stranding with his own funds. Because he didn’t have to answer to investors, Kojima was free to create the game of his dreams.
Death Stranding Gameworld and Yoji Shinkawa
As lead artist and mechanical and environment designer for Kojima Productions, Yoji Shinkawa is the artist responsible for the beautiful Gameworld in Death Stranding. The Metal Gear series, as well as the Zone of the Enders series, were products of their work together at Konami but after the split, the two left and joined forces. The rest will go down in game history.
Even those that are not fond of the gameloop, agree that the game is beautifully designed. Fans of the game are wearing the Q-Pid Neckpiece . It contains the necessary security and operations for survival and is given to Sam upon embarking on his journey across America. Also,the game’s Umbrella that is used to protect from “Time Fall” is now leaving the gameword and entering the physical realm. Kojima posted it on Twitter.
Fans of the game are recreating Yoji’s imaginative designs:
Fan DIY Umbrella Tutorial:
Death Stranding Review (Final Thoughts)
The game is beautifully designed and many love it just as it is. On the other hand, some argue that it’s just art and boring to play. So What’s the verdict? In the end, it comes down to the player and the type of game they enjoy? But whether the game is loved or hated, it has in fact, made game history in that it is changing the rules of gaming and pushing new boundaries.
When we look back, we will note Death Stranding as being the game that took us all in a new direction and a new way of thinking about games.