Trying to make sense of the enigma that is Kojima.
Announced at Sony’s E3 press conference last year, Metal Gear mastermind Hideo Kojima’s latest project Death Stranding remains an enigma. Though we’ve since had a few details come forth about the game, Death Stranding’s gameplay mechanics remain largely a mystery. This may have all changed recently, however.
In an article the man himself wrote over on Glixel, it was revealed that Death Stranding will focus on establishing connections on a “different level” rather than creating divisions. Kojima doesn’t want to make a game about combat again – in fact, he wants to “change the idea that games could only be about fighting.” According to the man, we as an industry “don’t need a game about dividing players between winners and losers.”
So what exactly will the core gameplay element of Death Stranding be? A strong indication here points to cooperative multiplayer. The feature in itself isn’t “based on competition” and instead focuses on the social experience – something that Kojima may imply when he writes that Death Stranding will be about”bring[ing] good to the player and mak[ing] connections.”
How do these comments meld with what the man has said so far, and what can we glean when we piece everything together? The answer to this next question takes us back to Death Stranding’s first trailer, the complete meaning of which is still unknown but whose secrets lie in its details.
Nature has always been an important element to the way in which Kojima designs his games. This is perhaps best evidenced in Metal Gear Solid 3. This theme isn’t lost on the director in Death Stranding, as the beach, dead fish and baby in the game all points to what lies inside human beings at their core.
Given this and the aforementioned possible cooperative multiplayer element, plus Kojima’s recent experience with the open-world design of Metal Gear Solid 5, the man may be striving to give players an experience not unlike – as far fetched as it may sound – Minecraft.
Hear me out here for a second. Death Stranding may rely on cooperative gameplay. A strong emphasis on environment may be placed on the title, given Kojima’s pedigree and what he’s shown of the game so far. The end goal of the title is establishing some kind of connection through interaction with the game’s world.
All the details just mentioned are integral parts to Mojang’s Minecraft. What’s more, Minecraft in its most basic form doesn’t divide people into winners and losers.
Of course, please take everything here with a grain of salt. For now, Death Stranding has only been confirmed to be running on Horizon: Zero Dawn’s Decima engine and is projected to launch for PlayStation 4 sometime before the 2020 Tokyo Olympics. It’s an open-world action game with online gaming elements whose gameplay and storytelling seek to “go beyond genre conventions,” according to Kojima.
Here’s hoping more about the game will be revealed at this year’s PlayStation Experience. Until then, fans can only wildly speculate what exactly Kojima has in store for us,