Who are we to question the brilliance of Hideo Kojima? The man behind the exceptional Metal Gear Solid series has put his acrimonious departure from Konami firmly behind him and is forging forward with the rather bizarre yet massively intriguing Death Stranding, the first game developed by the developer’s newly founded studio – Kojima Productions, and future PS4 exclusive.
Last Thursday at The Game Awards in Los Angeles, the mercurial developer showcased an extended cinematic trailer for Death Stranding, and by the time we’d met its conclusion, we’d witnessed something that beggared belief; something so unique that we were left with even more questions than ever before. What happens when the player dies? What about the time-manipulating rain? and what’s with the baby?? Thankfully, Kojima-san has chosen to enlighten us regarding the latest trailer and clear up some fan theories in the process.
If you haven’t already, check out the trailer in full below before proceeding on with the article.
Speaking with IGN, Kojima revealed details of Death Stranding that helps make sense of so much of what we saw. Regarding the moment when Norman Reedus’ character Sam is seen floating naked in the water, Kojima states that this is where players go to die in Death Stranding, but it’s no normal death screen. “Death will never pull you out of the game,” explains Kojima. “At that point, you’re not dead or alive. It’s the equivalent of that screen that says ‘Continue?’ and a counter ticking down towards zero.”
Continuing on with that theme Kojima added, “in the trailer, you saw the crater, and when you come back, it’s still there. Most games would’ve taken you back to before the crater was made. So depending on the player, you might have a lot of craters all over the place — depends on each player.”
Certainly one of the more interesting parts of the trailer revolves around Death Stranding‘s rain, which appears to affect humans by speeding up the ageing process. Kojima refers to rain in Death Stranding as “Timefall”, an integral part of the game’s story and lore. The otherworldly rain can manipulate time whereby growth of plants happens considerably faster than normal, but it also greatly affects humans as we saw first-hand as one of the characters in the trailer begins to age and deteriorate rapidly. On that particular subject, Kojima had the following to say: “Most people in the game are aware of the rain — and well, Norman is quite unique in this regard. I think I should stop there. I’m spilling the beans.”
And what about that baby? according to Kojima, it relates to Death Stranding‘s game mechanics as well as the story. It is also the same baby we’ve seen in the 3 previous trailers for the game and certainly appears to affect Sam and his team the moment they come into contact with it during the latest trailer.
We’ve yet to see any actual gameplay footage for Death Stranding, however, Kojima notes that the team is waiting for the right moment to do just that. For now though, the game is on track and we can’t wait to see more.
If you haven’t already, you should definitely check out the interview in full over at IGN.