Death Stranding Is A Misunderstood Game

Let's explore the True Essence of Death Stranding.

Death Stranding Is A Misunderstood Game.
Death Stranding Is A Misunderstood Game.

Hideo Kojima is my favorite video game designer. With elevated designs, intricate story-telling, cinematic settings, and innovative gameplay, he pushes his boundaries to a level no one can reach.

Key Takeaways

  • Kojima reunited with Norman Reedus and Guillermo del Toro for Death Stranding after the cancellation of Silent Hill.
  • Like Kojima’s previous games, Death Stranding also had a confusing narrative.
  • Death Stranding is centered around walking and has a unique gameplay mechanic, The Strand System, where players can share their resources with other players.
  • Longer cutscenes explored characters’ backstories, developed plots, and provided key information.
  • Death Stranding consists of heart-warming scenery, giving an element of realism.
  • Most fans might have misunderstood Death Stranding yet gaming companies have yet to replicate such a unique game.

Although Hideo Kojima is famous for his Metal Gear Solid franchise, he was set to direct a Silent Hill game along with Guillermo del Toro, to be published by Konami. The Walking Dead star Norman Reedus was hired to be the protagonist in that game.

Unfortunately, the relationship between Konami and Kojima soured, and the project was canceled.

After his exit from Konami, things took an exciting turn when Kojima announced Death Stranding in 2016. The project reunited Kojima, Guillermo Del Toro, and Reedus.

Death Stranding was released in 2019 and has sold over 10 million copies. It received favorable reviews for its cast, music, and graphics, but as usual, its gameplay and story confused gamers.

This game showcases a visionary journey through a haunting yet beautiful post-apocalyptic world. However, even after four years, it has remained a misunderstood game.

Death Stranding

Death Stranding introduced us to a very unique yet engaging gameplay. Unlike other AAA games with traditional shooting and combat as the main playing element, Death Stranding had a traversing gameplay. Rather than arising conflicts, Death Stranding focused more on making cargo deliveries and exploration. 

The game takes place in a deteriorating America. It serves with mysteries about how BTs and BBs are connected to the destructive Death Stranding. This motivates players to unravel the reasons behind such calamity.

Source: Darkside Gaming, YouTube
Source: Darkside Gaming, YouTube


Death stranding is a unique blend of delivering cargo, building chiral networks, and avoiding BTs while trying to heal the world.

Players control Sam Porter Bridges, portrayed by Norman Reedus. Sam navigates through the bizarre terrain of America, ranging from rugged mountains to barren wasteland. His primary job is to deliver packages and reconnect isolated communities.

The game involves walking and climbing using tools like a ladder and climbing anchor. However, combat weapons such as grenades and guns are acquired after 10-15 hours of gameplay

Considering Kojima’s previous games, players were looking forward to energetic gameplay in Death Stranding, though the release raised different opinions.

Source: DayDream Gaming, YouTube
Source: DayDream Gaming, YouTube

Many people called the game peaceful, while some considered it a walking simulator. To be honest, it did feel the same until chapter 3 when we were opened up to The Strand System.

The Strand System: Unique Innovation

The “Strand System” is the game’s pioneering multiplayer mechanic designed to encourage connectivity with other players. It allows players to indirectly interact with one another through the game’s shared world.

It is not necessary to play the game simultaneously to collaborate, and a player can help others by leaving resources for other’s use.

Let’s assume I climb a mountain and leave a ladder in place after use instead of dismantling it. Later, fellow players can use it and offer likes as a gesture of appreciation. 

Source: John O'Sullivan, YouTube
Source: John O’Sullivan, YouTube

The Strand System extends to zipline, weapons, and signs. Players can also build storage containers anywhere on the map and keep items there for someone else’s use.

Source: GameSpot, YouTube
Source: GameSpot, YouTube

This function is incredibly unique and an enjoyable part of the game.

Long Cutscenes

Cutscenes are extended cinematic sequences that build the game’s atmosphere, provide character development, and present a clear narrative. The cutscenes vary in length, ranging from a few minutes to half an hour or more. But the case in Kojima’s game is different.

Players are well aware of Hideo’s love for cinema. Blending that love with Death Stranding, Kojima blurred the line between video games and cinema.

The game features long cutscenes that offer a deep understanding of the post-apocalyptic world and unveil the critical plot points.

Moreover, Death Stranding’s cutscenes allow players to connect with its diverse cast more personally. The game offers a deep insight into the characters’ struggles and backstories, fostering emotions among players.

Breathtaking Scenery

The scenery of Death Stranding is a canvas of stunning contrasts and vibrant landscapes. They are a mix of green valleys and misty forests. As the hilly mountains pierce through the clouds, each view breathes realism, inviting players to explore more and lose themselves in the heart-warming beauty of Death Stranding.

As much as pleasure it holds, the environment holds a hazard as well. Precipitation, called timefall, accelerates the time within that area when it comes into contact with any organism.

But, timefall’s exposure can be avoided as we progress through the game. We get the ability to create timefall shelters designed specially to avoid the rain.

Source: Video Game Worlds, YouTube
Source: Video Game Worlds, YouTube

Death Stranding Is Ahead of Its Time

A masterpiece for some, a walking simulator for many, it is better to say that Death Stranding did something special for gaming. It gave the community a forum to try something unusual other than the typical RPG games offering an immersive experience that defies expectations.

Although it has sparked a conversation over its nature of gameplay, I believe it is still an unparalleled fresh game and no company can replicate it for a few years.

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