There’s no denying that Death Stranding looks like Hideo Kojima’s typical brand of perplexing. While it has elements of modern game design, it doesn’t seem to fit into any one specific genre. Kojima says he has invented something new with this one.
The Japanese auteur took to Twitter to breakdown exactly what he’s doing. Death Stranding is an action game, as evidenced by the release date trailer above, but Kojima says the game is creating a hybrid of something entirely new. He calls Death Stranding an “action game/strand game(social strand system),” a project that’s not quite a stealth game but not quite a first-person shooter either.
As I’m getting similar questions so I shall re-post. DS is not a stealth game. Could move subjectively but not a FPS shooting game either. By incorporating with the concept of connection(strand), it’s totally brand new genre called action game/strand game(social strand system). pic.twitter.com/1KaQUVH9zL
— HIDEO_KOJIMA (@HIDEO_KOJIMA_EN) June 5, 2019
There are elements of both featured in Death Stranding, with protagonist Sam Porter Bridges (portrayed by The Walking Dead actor Norman Reedus) shooting and stealthing his way through the dilapidated world Kojima has conjured up, but Kojima seems more interested in the “strand” part of Death Stranding. He says the game is “incorporating the concept of connection(strand)” to create a “totally brand new genre.”
Genre creation isn’t new for the prolific developer. With the Metal Gear Solid HD Collection, Kojima coined the term transfarring, a portmanteau of transfer and sharing in which a save file could be moved between the PSP, PS Vita, PS3, or PS4, allowing for seamless, continuous play. The Tactical Espionage Action of the Metal Gear franchise also falls into Kojima’s genre-blending/creation ethos.
Kojima managed to get some big name actors to appear in Death Stranding. Along with longtime collaborators Guillermo del Toro and Norman Reedus, Death Stranding will star Lea Seydoux (The Lobster, Spectre), Lindsay Wagner (Grey’s Anatomy, The Bionic Woman), Mads Mikkelsen (Doctor Strange, Rogue One: A Star Wars Story), Margaret Qualley (Death Note, The Leftovers), director Nicolas Winding Refn (Drive, Valhalla Rising), Tommie Earl Jenkins (The Bourne Identity, Gambit), and Troy Baker (Metal Gear Solid V: The Phantom Pain, The Last of Us).
Death Stranding will connect on PS4 on November 8.