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The Strange World of “Death Stranding” Has Finally Released

  • Death Stranding’s premise of uniting the world spilled over onto Reddit.
  • As predicted, user reviews are divided; includes plenty of review bombs and overhypes.
  • Death Stranding is now available for pre-purchase on Steam and Epic Games Store.

 

Death Stranding, the long-awaited game from Hideo Kojima and his studio Kojima Productions, has finally hit the PlayStation 4, causing just as much of an earthquake as everyone expected it to. After four years of mass confusion and speculation, all caused by incredibly cinematic yet enigmatic trailers that could best be described as an artistic, the launch has finally put Death Stranding into context. Or rather, it’s at least answered that long-awaited question: what in the world is it?

Before we get into the context of what it is, lets talk about what Hideo Kojima wanted it to be. Early on in development, he described the game as giving players a rope, not a stick. We use the “stick” in other games as a way of defeating our enemies. That is to say, most games are a competition of some form. Meanwhile, he wanted to give us a rope to bring people together. Confused yet? I bet you are. This is actually in reference to Kobo Abe’s Nawa:

The “Rope,” along with the “stick,” are two of mankind’s oldest tools. The stick to keep the bad away, the rope used to bring the good toward us. They were our first friends, of our own invention. Wherever there were people, there were the rope and the stick.

What does this mean in the context of Death Stranding? A very well hidden online experience that only began surfacing a few days before launch. After meeting certain conditions in different regions of the map, you will start seeing some of the things left behind by other players in their own game worlds, and as you use them or rate them, everyone contributes to “rebuilding society” within the gameplay. It’s an interesting premise; we’ll have to keep an eye on just how it plays out over the coming weeks within the game. But, Kojima’s goal of bringing players together seems to have occurred in another way as well.

On r/DeathStranding, there were a number of players actually branching out to get copies of Death Stranding into the hands of those who couldn’t afford the title at release right away. Obviously, players weren’t able to just supply the entire world with copies, but a number of people ended up providing 20+ copies of the game to other players, and there are still others off and on offering to do the same. It even went as far as to capture the attention of Tommie Earl Jenkins, the actor who portrays Die-Hardman both in likeness and voice.

Gaming has a habit of bringing people together for their combined love of a hobby, but it’s rare to see it play out in such a way where people are actually going out of their way to make sure others can give a game a try. Whether Death Stranding is a game for you or not, that’s a story sure to put a smile on your face. It just makes you feel good to read.

Of course, it wouldn’t be Death Stranding without its share of division. Metacritic currently has a critic score of 83, while the user reviews are sitting at a 6.7 at the time of writing this. Taking the time to go through the positive, negative, and mixed reviews, though, it appears this game is being bombarded by review bombers giving the game a 0 or a 1, and while some do provide reasoning, many are doing it just because it’s a Hideo Kojima game. On the other end of the spectrum, there are many 10’s and again while some provide reasoning others are just doing it because it’s a Hideo Kojima game.

It’s clear that this wasn’t going to be a game for everyone, but review bombing (or inversely, praise for the sake of praise) doesn’t benefit anyone. Honest feedback from both critics and users is what’s most beneficial to the curious consumer. So, here is some honest feedback from someone who has played the game. It’s very much not for everyone. The gameplay is about 70% deliveries (though not as simply put as that), 10% combat, 20% indulging in the Social Strand System. Personally, I love it. But as much as I enjoy it, I can easily see how this sort of game wouldn’t appeal to everyone. If you want an experience that mixes relaxation with some periods of stress or tension when you least expect them, you might want to give it a go, otherwise it may not be up your alley.

If it does sound like your kind of game, but you don’t have a PlayStation 4 pre-ordering is now available for the PC version on both Steam and the Epic Games Store. Are you one of the many playing Death Stranding right now? What do you think of it? Any plans on getting it on PC? Let us know down below.

 

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  1. There are lots of games where I can move things from point A to Point B, most don’t require me listening to hours of cut scenes. This is a pass for me. Leave it for others.

  2. I think a more complex review is needed for this game, maybe in chapters just like those hardware comparison articles and the promised traffic light game recommendation system rather to buy it, hold it or reject it.

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