The E3 conference 2019, which was held in Los Angeles, has recently come to a close. During this exhibition, Death Stranding developers have lifted the veil of secrecy and revealed some details about the upcoming release of the long-awaited computer game.
Death Stranding Development
According to the developer (Kojima Productions), the Death Stranding’s release for PS4 is scheduled for November 8, 2019. The novelty will be published by Sony Interactive Entertainment.
The development team has been working on the game under the guidance of the Japanese game designer, producer, and screenwriter Hideo Kojima. It is noteworthy that Death Stranding is Hideo’s first project after his departure from Konami.
Despite the fact that the game is one of the most anticipated novelties for millions of fans this year, Kojima refused to directly participate in the E3 event, which caused even more excitement around his project.
It would seem that the game designer ignores any means to attract attention, but it is not true – he just does not need it. The fact that well-known actors such as Troy Baker, Norman Reedus, Lea Seydoux, Mads Mikkelsen and Lindsay Wagner take part in the game development makes additional PR unnecessary. Besides, we shouldn’t forget about the scandal connected with Konami, as well as cooperation with Sony, which rises even more rumors and conjectures regarding Death Stranding and Kojima’s activities.
Until 2016, little was known about the game. After Kojima left Konami in the summer of 2015, he founded an independent studio Kojima Productions. Even before the announcement, the developer said that Death Stranding would be available for the PS4 users at first, and then the game would be released for the PC. The novelty is being built on the Decima Engine by Guerrilla Games.
Initially, it was thought that Death Stranding was a replacement for the Silent Hill game, which the designer had been working on in Konami, but later this information was denied.
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Death Stranding Genre
According to Hideo Kojima, the game genre is action. However, the developer decided to add something new there. He compared the Death Stranding’s developing process with the one of the 1987 video game Metal Gear. Then its genre was also called action since the definition of "stealth" did not exist at that time.
Unique game mechanics was the first thing Kojima started with. At the very start, even the Kojima Productions’ representatives did not understand the idea of the screenwriter.
Origin of the Name
Kojima explained why he had decided to name his game that way. Words “Death Stranding” may be interpreted like “connection that kills”. It symbolizes something mysterious and even alien. According to the screenwriter, the idea of the game is based on the story of Kobo Abe, according to which a stick is the very first tool that people began to use in order to push away something or to defend themselves against the enemy. The second tool is a rope, which, on the contrary, was used to bind something that turned out to be the most important thing, and so that no one could take it away. These two tools were used as basic elements in the gameplay; Kojima only slightly improved them. So, the stick was replaced by gunfire with strokes and the rope – by everything that connects people with each other.
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Voice Actors’ Strike
The game development process was interrupted by the strike of the voice actors. This became known from Kojima himself, who described this situation in an interview given for the IGN site. The strike organized by members of the American trade union SAG-AFTRA was held in October 2017.
Voice actors were extremely dissatisfied with working conditions that had not changed over the years. They called on the leading game development companies to renegotiate the contracts, but their request was ignored. As a result, on October 21, the actors refused to work.
Kojima admitted that this occasion had considerably delayed the release of the game – a lot of time had been lost.
Characters and Plot
For the first time, the developers mentioned Death Stranding at the E3 Sony Conference in 2016. Then the screenwriter presented the first teaser of the game. A digital model of Norman Reedus sitting by the sea appeared on the screen – it was the main character of the game.
The second teaser was shown during The Game Awards 2016, where the participants of the event finally saw other characters: 3D-models of Mads Mikkelsen and Guillermo Del Toro. At the same event a year later, the first long trailer was demonstrated – people wearing protective suits were trying to flee from a horrible monster.
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Later Playstation.com published a description of the game’s plot. The story takes place in the future, where the protagonist named Sam Porter Bridges is trying to save the world. He is in danger since all life can disappear because of the alien monsters’ invasion. Sam’s task is to prevent this. To do so, the main character needs to restore the integrity of the split planet and establish a connection between the isolated people who constantly live in fear.
At the end of June 2019, Kojima posted about ten screenshots of Death Stranding’s gameplay frames on his Twitter account.
As mentioned earlier, only one week is left till the most highly-anticipated release of 2019 – Red Dead Redemption 2.