November 8, 2019. That’s the date Hideo Kojima’s next crazy game, Death Stranding, is coming to PlayStation 4. An absurd new trailer shows more gameplay wrapped around one hell of a confusing narrative. Most of it appears to take place in the game’s present day, but then we see flashbacks to what looks like World War I. Are we looking at time travel? Accessing memories? Some other Kojima craziness? Who knows.
Alternate between ‘what the hell is this,’ and ‘this looks hype as hell’ in the nine-minute trailer below.
The new gameplay we see does raise one big question for me.
Exactly how big is Death Stranding? The ladder and climbing rope teases choice while making our way across the apocalyptic landscapes. I hope the game does lean into giving players a choice in how they get around, and it’s not an illusion. If the ladder is the only option for specific areas, then why make players place it. Just have it there in the world. I’m digging the options the gameplay teases us, and hope the folks at Kojima Productions go all in on this.
We also see the protagonist jump onto a bike at one point, which once again hints at a substantial world to explore. Sony’s description of the game also describes a vast world.
“With spectral creatures plaguing the landscape, and the planet on the verge of a mass extinction, it’s up to Sam Bridges to journey across the ravaged wasteland and save mankind from impending annihilation.”
That doesn’t seem to describe a linear game, and neither does the gameplay.
Traveling through time? I don’t want to dive too much into story speculation because we could be here all day, but that World War I sequence starting at 4:45 looked incredible. I don’t know what the hell is going, but I like it.
A nine-minute trailer for any other game would give us a good feeling about what’s going on and how it’ll play. Not Death Stranding. Nine minutes later and I’m wondering what the hell did I watch. It looks terrific and teases some interesting gameplay hooks. In about five months, we’ll see what craziness Kojima and company deliver this time.
It’ll be fun watching E3 next month and seeing how all the big games navigate around the November 8 release date.
As for Sony’s other big games? Kotaku’s Jason Schreier is hearing The Last of Us 2 is going to be an early 2020 game. Death Stranding will be Sony’s big hitter this holiday season.