Death Stranding - what did you make of the new gameplay footage?

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Humanity

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#1  Edited By Humanity

It’s not all just about slowly walking while holding a bunch of FedEx boxes full of sperm and singing to a baby.

Chris Kohler, Kotaku

He [Hideo Kojima] also talked more about the story of the game and building connections between cities. Some people you encounter will be unwilling to help build connections because they don't want to repeat past mistakes. Kojima suggests that world events similar to the election of President Trump and Brexit may exist in the past of this world, making NPCs uneasy with building connections to other cities.

"For Bridges' sake, you're connecting from east to west and they want you to join the UCA--the United Cities of America. When you connect, you can use UCA services, but at the same time, they're retrieving your information 24 hours a day. It's like 1984. Some people may not like that, and say 'I'm not going to connect to UCA, because we're going to repeat the same thing that we did.' Like Trump, or the EU, these things. It's a metaphor. However, if you get really close, they start to say, 'Okay, I'll connect.'"

GameSpot

No Caption Provided

IGN has translated the those first 49 minutes and subtitled the video if you want to know what the sperm eggs are all about!

TRANSLATED VIDEO

IGN

Kojima showed off 48 minutes of gameplay from Death Stranding at TGS. There was also a cinematic trailer in english that had some hilarious lines in it. Like the presidents daughter being called Samantha America Strand..

Anyway the gameplay has Kojima narrating it but sadly it's all in Japanese and Googles auto translation produces complete gibberish (if anyone here knows Japanese and could shed some light on things that would be awesome!) ..although.. at one point the subtitles said "sperm eggs" and I chuckled like an infant, and then up on the UI I actually saw Sperm Eggs written plain as day in english in the game. So far this thing is looking like it's a whole lotta' walking around on green hills. There is a boss fight that seems pretty basic and they fight some human enemies using a neat looking bola gun. Weirdly enough a lot of the combat options showcased were non-lethal. The engine seems to be pretty good, who knows maybe it's even as good as their Phantom Pain engine was because there seems to be a wide range of options for movement. Every 30 seconds there seemed to be a prompt to shift you weight, to rest, to massage your shoulders.

I dunno it looks as weird as it ever did and the gameplay portion seems still very enigmatic. On the surface it appears to be a game about walking from the east coast to the westcoast connecting these points back to the Chiral(?) network, whatever it is, using a Cupid, whatever that is. Not sure if anything more exciting happens along the way but Kojima is known for showing you about 5% of the game in the trailers and gameplay and hiding a ton of content through clever editing and tricks. Visually I'm really into it.

Death Stranding is out in November.

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Nodima

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I'm out on any more footage; MGS V's story was a hot mess but Kojima's intense application of long takes, lens flare and stilted dialogue owing to a near-mute protagonist and the timing differences of Japanese vs. English language made for some truly fascinating video game storytelling. I've seen enough to know I'm getting more of that, and I'll let the gameplay be what it is. I've enjoyed playing every Kojima game I've played, and while I'm sure Death Stranding won't hold up to Phantom Pain that's an incredibly tall ask for any game. I'm fine letting it be what it is, and I'm fine seeing very little of it beforehand. I did that with Control and found that really enhanced my enjoyment of its flaws because at least they were still surprises.

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bmccann42

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I cycle between being interested (but not heavily) in Death Stranding, and just being repulsed by the Kojima-BS.

Tried various Metal Gears and I suspect they are just not for me. The Kojima-stuff just seems stupid to me, and I can't take it seriously or it really just rubs me the wrong way (Quiet for instance).

Will wait and see what comes of it, but probably won;t be buying it day one.

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VincentVendetta

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#4  Edited By VincentVendetta

Well I'm glad I'm learning Japanese at the moment.

As for the gameplay, it reminds me of the endless nights I spent playing No Man's Sky. Or Journey. If Kojima wants to make his very own Tarkovsky video game, I'm okay with that. The asynchronous multiplayer elements make me think that if I'm ever to play this, it will have to be at launch when everyone comes in. And I haven't payed full price for a video game in a very, very long while.

That story still seems as vague and pretentious as ever.

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Brackstone

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#5  Edited By Brackstone

Man, the writing is so bad, like, wow. That's the main thing I'm worried about, the more I see of this game the more I'm certain that the story is going to be the biggest problem with it. I'm especially worried that any weirdness, ambiguity and mystery is just part of the marketing if we have dialogue as belaboured and bluntly expositional as that cutscene showed. I had hoped that with a new universe Kojima would avoid some of the pitfalls of the MGS storyline, but I'm not getting good vibes about it.

But the gameplay looks fantastic to me. I love the idea of having to equip yourself for somewhat long missions with further resources found in the mission being sparse or dangerous to obtain, I love the art design, I like the way enemy encounters look. For me, it looks to have the right balance of open but guided, where you have a lot of room to explore and experiment but the game seems to have several systems to keep you on track.

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csl316

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I'm waiting on reviews, honestly. I'm curious because it's Kojima, but I want to hear what this game is when it's unleashed on the world. And not just what they choose to show.

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HildaTilde

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It could be pretty fun, but I have zero confidence in Kojima's ability to deliver good writing. As he took over more control of MGS the writing got worse, and once on of the lead writers of MGS 1-3 left they got abysmal. If this is truly Kojima Unchained it's probably going to be pretty bad writing, but the guy does have weird interesting gameplay ideas from time to time. This definitely looks like it could be really cool. I guess we'll just have to see how it goes.

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ClockworkDoll

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#8  Edited By ClockworkDoll

Weirdly, because the gameplay video is in Japanese I was able to focus on the game mechanics and other elements besides the story. I was amazed by the quality of the graphics. There were some scenes that honestly looked like actual video and not computer rendered graphics. My favorite part was the attempt at fording the river. Watching the character get swept off his feet and floated downstream, losing a package, and once he regained his footing, able to wait for that package to float down to him was something I can't recall seeing in another game.

The scene of him playing the harmonica to sooth the canister baby was also great too.

All in all, I am more intrigued now than I was before.

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Teddie

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#9 Teddie  Online

Looks like MGSV with more space between the bases. I imagine the traversal is meant to be fun, but if there's nothing fun to find in that world then it'll get old, fast. I loved MGSV's gameplay though, so I can only hope.

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Lajiaya

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I hope there's more to the message of this game than: People just need to connect! That's all!

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Sanj

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This is going to be a mediocre game, I can feel it in my bones.

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Humanity

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#12  Edited By Humanity

There is another 30 minute demo that Kojima is doing tomorrow that is supposed to continue on where they left off with the 48 minute one above.

I'm curious to see more weirdness - fortunately I have no issue with Kojima writing because I think it's a perfect mix of serious and absurd. I had just finished Gears 5 last night and I have more confidence in Kojima delivering an interesting story than the Coalition did with Gears thus far. Videogame writing is a very low bar for the most part.

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NTM

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#13  Edited By NTM

I'm interested in it for sure. It's kind of what I expected. On one hand, I can understand people being a bit pessimistic about it because it looks to be a lot of walking around or sitting around, but on the other hand, do people really want the same old same old where you're encountering enemies every few minutes, clearing out a base and then rinse repeat? I think if this game is a lot of walking around, it just needs to make sure that what I'm seeing and what I'm hearing grabs me. I can fully enjoy a 'slow' game if the movement feels good, and the atmosphere makes me feel something.

I think what many people may have taken away from it is that it'll be 75 to 80 percent carrying items on your back from one area, over mountain ranges, to another area with some type of action be it enemy encounter or boss fight to cover the other 20 percent. That may be true, I don't know, but the game looks beautiful and again as long as it feels good and I like hearing and seeing where I'm going, I don't mind. There are games, like RDR2 that I sometimes play just to be in that world; walking by and underwater falls, through snow, or in the city to hear the city life (I use RDR2 here because that seems like the closest comparison in terms the plodding nature). I want games that make me immersed.

That said, I think this game will have a bit more than what we saw so I'm still curious what else it has to offer. The way it feels like right now, if I could compare it to a movie, is The Arrival or The Martian in terms of how 'exciting' it is, where you're not there to experience a bunch of action, but some kind of story and just get sucked into the world rather than a loop you repeat through killing enemies. I don't really want another MGS5 either (although, Death Stranding does make me want to play MGS5 in anticipation). I love the art design. In Kojima's games, the design of the tech and armor or what have you has always been cool. I don't mind if the story is extremely weird (that's welcome), but I hope that, unlike MGS, the writing is less cringeworthy.

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Humanity

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@ntm: yah I’m generally interested simply because Kojima does forge his own path in the gaming world which is always exciting. People will often bemoan the lack of creativity and risk taking in the industry, and then something like Death Stranding comes along and somehow plenty of folks aren’t that interested anymore. I’m just really worried that my base PS4 is going to have issues with this, but then again Phantom Pain ran near flawlessly so who knows? I know there is a chance this will come out for PC but I think it’s a game beat experienced during the zeitgeist.

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Shindig

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This reads like a Japanese man looking at America's current climate from very, very far away and putting together a hot take. Like how David Cage always puts together a weird French America.

I think I'm done.

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Lajiaya

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@ntm: It seems that what they haven't really shown is what happens when you die, and presumably cross over to the world of the dead. I'm guessing that's where "the beach" is, and all the weirder world war imagry is.

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FrodoBaggins

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#17  Edited By FrodoBaggins

I am all in on anything somebody like Kojima creates.

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someoneproud

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#18  Edited By someoneproud

I'm really into the thought of traversal being the main gameplay component myself and I'm looking forward to digging in to this. It seems different from anything I've played before and that's enough of a draw for me to look past a few issues if needs be.

EDIT: Just noticed that the predecessor to the notion of reconnecting shit was called "Bridgette". Just. Fucking. Marvelous.

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Humanity

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@shindig: I think you might be projecting a little here. I very much doubt Hideo Kojima is basing Death Stranding on the current political climate of the US. Kojima has always dealt with wide-sweeping ideas that are presented through stories happening in America, not so much about America. Patriotism, governments, dissemination of information, legacies, cultural barriers - these are all themes that could have been represented through numerous countries and protagonists. The one thing that seems somewhat clear is that Death Stranding has something to do with the way people connect in this day and age, not about US foreign policy, police brutality or the income gap.

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TheRealTurk

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It looks like the type of game that I'll watch the cutscenes on YouTube and skip playing the game. While I agree that I like the uniqueness of the traversal mechanics, it also looks like something that would be most engaging in a 10 hour or so game, not a meandering Kojima epic.

I had kind of the same problem with MGSV as well. Sneaking and fultoning guys is fun for a few hours, but dozens of hours of it gets seriously stale.

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Shindig

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@humanity Yeah, you're right. He does broader themes than I give him credit for.

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NTM

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@humanity: Yeah, I haven't read a whole lot into it, but from what I understand the game is no longer listed as a PS4 exclusive. I have a PS4 Pro so I'm excited to see how it turns out. I don't know how connected the title is to Sony, but if Sony has no rights and say in how the game goes, I can imagine the game coming out on the X as well and perhaps even next-gen consoles if developers are still into remastering games. They always are if money is there for it, but I'm just thinking about how back compat may deter them from doing it as many consumers may not see the point as long as the back compat is there and competent.

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Lajiaya

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Dualshockers (website) put together a summary of the last presentation featuring the Japanese voice cast, and it seems like the message (Kojima wants the game to potray) is more about people being mean to each other over the internet and not considering "other people's feelings".

"You know, human communication has changed as technology evolved. In the past, we only had letters. Then we had phones, radios and TVs. And now on the net, we can communicate in real-time with anyone anywhere. The world is now directly connected. At the same time, with everyone hidden behind their keyboards, this made it much easier for negativity to spread. With Death Stranding’s game system, I wish to indirectly connect the world. That way people will start thinking about each other’s feelings again. I hope people who experience Death Stranding will try to understand more about others and the society we live in, ultimately making the world a better place."

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Humanity

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#24  Edited By Humanity

@lajiaya: Thanks for the info, I checked that article out and it's definitely really interesting to hear them talk about it. Also I'm always really taken aback how in Japan everyone is always very enthusiastic about the projects they're working on but it somehow seems a lot more earnest than when you hear people in the west. It's hard to explain but they all feel so, I don't know, I guess "honored" to be part of the process. The one voice actress mentions how the game made her see society and herself in a different way, and motivated her to "challenge herself" - thats kind of a powerful statement.

@shindig Hey I guess I was 100% wrong and take it all back, you were right, I guess this is directly influenced by todays politics after all!

He [Hideo Kojima] also talked more about the story of the game and building connections between cities. Some people you encounter will be unwilling to help build connections because they don't want to repeat past mistakes. Kojima suggests that world events similar to the election of President Trump and Brexit may exist in the past of this world, making NPCs uneasy with building connections to other cities.

"For Bridges' sake, you're connecting from east to west and they want you to join the UCA--the United Cities of America. When you connect, you can use UCA services, but at the same time, they're retrieving your information 24 hours a day. It's like 1984. Some people may not like that, and say 'I'm not going to connect to UCA, because we're going to repeat the same thing that we did.' Like Trump, or the EU, these things. It's a metaphor. However, if you get really close, they start to say, 'Okay, I'll connect.'"

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notnert427

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Okay, I'm back on board with this thing. Kojima writing is truly goddamn abysmal, and it's going to be hilarious watching Kojima attempt sharp sociopolitical commentary based off of an understanding of the West that appears cursory at best, told through characters like DieHardMan and Samantha America Strand within a narrative that is almost assuredly no deeper than the "we need to reconnect" line that's in every single trailer for this thing. Throw in "gameplay" that largely amounts to walking around and occasionally using your magic ladder and we've got a winner. Can we also discuss how America is apparently the Isle of Skye?

There's next to no chance that this isn't a glorious mess, and I really want to watch Dan play it.

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Brackstone

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The big problem I can forsee is that it's going to end up being like MGSV, which I do not like. The basic feel of MGSV is good (Snakes run is really weird though). But the structure of it kind of sucked. There were a lot of fairly straight forward, kind of boring missions. The really good unique stuff was so spread out and rare that it felt underutilized. In other words it had good set pieces, but standard missions were fairly monotonous. The most interesting the basic stealth ever was, was actually back in Ground Zeroes when it had a more contained and much more tightly designed gameplay area. To top it off, you had a elements that felt either significantly over developed or significantly underdeveloped, like Mother Base.

I'm getting that same vibe from Death Stranding. The basic gameplay looks good, but if too many of the missions are simple filler delivery missions, and the setpieces with the BTs and whatever is going on with Skeleton WW1 are few and far between, the game's going to get monotonous fast. Then, I see the stuff at the safe house, and think "boy is this really developed for something that probably won't matter at all and that most players will be compelled to interact with maybe once or twice", kind of like Mother Base. Having more randomized elements could help a lot, as could the online parts causing variance within each mission. If there was always a chance of running into BTs on every mission, that would help a lot. They shouldn't be there all the time, that would diminish encountering them, but they shouldn't be as sparsely encountered as the Skulls from MGSV, for instance.

Anyway, the first TGS gameplay trailer sold me on the basic gameplay systems, I just not sure if the mission design and variety are going to be issues like in MGSV. If each delivery mission is crafted to be unique, that would be great.

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Humanity

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@brackstone: I very much think it will be a bunch of walking, connecting these Chiral network nodes and these "preppers" which act as side missions, and then getting a cool set-piece vent here and there. The thing is I really enjoyed the gameplay of Phantom Pain. Infiltrating outposts and capturing guards seemed to almost never get old. This was partly due to the constantly evolving research tree. I had been fultoning enemies for the first half of the game and that remained satisfying.. but then.. I got the wormhole upgrade and suddenly you can fulton people indoors, and large containers, and tanks - all sucked up into a big wormhole.

If Death Stranding has an intricate upgrade system that keeps expanding on the base gameplay then I might be ok with a lot less exciting narrative from story beat to story beat.

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frytup

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#28 frytup  Online

Looks like incomprehensible nonsense.

I'm definitely playing it day 1.

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Shindig

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@humanity:Okay, I'm scared. What is Kojima's interpretation on Brexit? Is it a country literally splitting apart to reveal a ... oh. That's the game, isn't it? America has cracked in half along the San Andreas. That's why you're building physical bridges.

@lajiaya: So ... is the inner baby supposed to be Norman Reedus' feelings? Why are there invisible demon people that do real physical harm? Are they internet trolls? You can't block real physical invisible murder people.

What do they think they're making?

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Humanity

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@shindig: They're making something great I tell ya' what.

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Lajiaya

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@shindig: Well I think what Kojima has in mind is the relationship betwen players over the asynchronous online aspects. I don't know about any further metaphors in the plot/story.

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JoeDangerous

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Looking forward to watching streams of this title, but not sure who's going to stick with this the whole way through. I have no doubt that most of the streamers I watch will stream it for a day or two, but at some point the writing, walking, and confusing story lines are just going to become more tedious than anything else. At least that's the vibe I get after watching all of this.

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Brackstone

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@humanity: For me I wasn't that into MGSV's gameplay, taking outposts got boring very fast for me. I think it's because what I wanted was a tight challenging stealth game and what I got was more of a sandbox for messing around with fun toys. Which is fine, it just wasn't for me. The wormhole is actually a good example of one of my problems with MGSV's design, a lot of the upgrades exist to negate otherwise interesting gameplay mechanics or scenarios. The internal balance felt off. I guess it always comes back to player variety vs scenario variety. Some people like games where they have lots of abilities and personal options, some people like a small set of tools that they have to use to overcome a variety of scenarios. Both are fine, but I fall into the latter camp.

My concern is that Death Stranding will offer neither tight engaging scenarios or a fun expansive sandbox. If the scenario variety just isn't there and it starts to get boring, it doesn't seem like it has the same potential for goofing around as MGS has always offered if traversal is the primary gameplay mechanic rather than enemy encounters.

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Lajiaya

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It will be interesting to see how frequent those Mule outposts actually are, and how often it is possible to be caught by Beached Things. But the actual traveral itself seems very granular, with a lot of systems to consider.

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VincentVendetta

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Here's the thing: even if I'm lukewarm on Kojima as a whole (I think Suda51 is a better writter/director overall), it's still the only game from 2019 that I'm actually interested in playing, the only one that might go somewhere interesting. Last year was the same thing: the only brand new disc game I bought was Tetris Effect.

And you're right @humanity, games' story are, for the most part, completely mediocre. That's why I stopped playing them so much. (How many games can I buy to fill a collection, how much money can I spend on them, only to look back and barely remember any of them? It's like TV series; they take a lot of time, but when you're done, they're completely forgettable.)

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Shindig

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I'd sooner play Metal Gear Survive than this, to be honest. Far too much upkeep and a reliance on other players in what looks like an empty world. If you're late to the party on this, there might be no game to go back to.

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cikame

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#37  Edited By cikame

Just watched it via the GB video, it looks great.

... I don't really have much else to say, maybe it's boring as hell to play but we won't know till it comes out, and i won't know until there's a PC version.
Also
@shindig: MG: Survive was good :D, survival light with excellent mechanics and a good story, i wouldn't recommend playing it "forever" like most survival games imply that you should, but i got 50 entertaining hours out of it without having to do anything repetitive.

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BoOzak

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I thought it looked alright, i'm surprised how much I was reminded of MGS V watching it, which will probably throw up red flags for some people but i'm all for developers doing interesting things with open world games instead of the standard icon vomit we're used to.

I do find it amusing how Kojima refers to "Strand" gameplay as if it's something he invented. Single player games where people influence other players worlds has been done before, maybe this game will go further with the concept but it's not it's own genre and Kojima definitely didnt invent it. It's "Transfaring" all over again.

@cikame said:

Just watched it via the GB video, it looks great.

... I don't really have much else to say, maybe it's boring as hell to play but we won't know till it comes out, and i won't know until there's a PC version.

Also

@shindig: MG: Survive was good :D, survival light with excellent mechanics and a good story, i wouldn't recommend playing it "forever" like most survival games imply that you should, but i got 50 entertaining hours out of it without having to do anything repetitive.

Metal Gear Survive was the only survival game i've seen through to completion due to the fact that it actually plays well. I dont mind maintenance in games as long as the systems are well explained and the interface is decent. (although hunger and thirst mechanics can be quite opressive) It definitely wasnt up to the standard of other Metal Gear games (havent played Acid 1&2) it was pretty good for a budget game. (or free if you have game pass)

I found it pretty weird how most of the GB crew scoffed at even the mere notion of having to craft or manage your inventory, is it really that difficult? I do think it will be funny if Vinny ends up enjoying the game more than Dan due to his high tolerance for upkeep in games. All the Kojima shit might turn him off though.

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tp0p

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It kind of reminds me of breath of the wild, in the sense that there is a huge open space and encounters that you can interact with in multiple ways(lots of immergent gameplay). There is also that sense like you are walking in a kind of line towards the final objective on the other side of the country like journey or Oregon trail, which is kind of interesting.

Honestly, I got kind of bored with the breath of the wild gameplay loop. And I can see the same thing happening with this.

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Onemanarmyy

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#40  Edited By Onemanarmyy

I do find it amusing how Kojima refers to "Strand" gameplay as if it's something he invented. Single player games where people influence other players worlds has been done before, maybe this game will go further with the concept but it's not it's own genre and Kojima definitely didnt invent it. It's "Transfaring" all over again.

I think it's more that Kojima likes to make up a name to signal the essence of the game to players in a subtitle. Snatcher was a 'Cyberpunk Adventure' , MGS was a 'TACTICAL ESPIONAGE ACTION' game. MGS Peace Walker & V both were TACTICAL ESPIONAGE OPERATIONS games. Even Boktai had a subtitle to make it clear that the actual sun mattered.

Death Stranding has a bunch of Dark Souls / Journey / Sky shared world shananigans in it, but we don't really have a set term for that stuff yet. (as far as i know?) So he decided to call it a strand game to drive home that that kind of stuff is the focus of this game. I'm sure he knows that we're not stupid and have seen these mechanics pop up before in other games. Seems like he wants to incorporate those shared world features in basically everything you do and probably the story as well.

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Gundato

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Only watched the first video (via Giant Bomb) before hitting the "I need a break" point.

Yeah... Over the years I have been increasingly concerned that I actively dislike Kojima. I love MGS, but I've been rolling my eyes at the stupid problematic shit since I was a teenager and increasingly rolling my eyes at the "up his own ass 'auteur'" shit as I've gotten older. I am the guy who is increasingly convinced that MGS3 was his Empire Strikes Back moment (where another writer did the heavy lifting because he didn't want to do it) and who thinks Rising and MGS5 are the best Metal Gears because someone tied a gag around his mouth (possibly literally in the case of MGS5). And I generally dislike the rockstar devs because they have a tendency to heavily downplay what their teams actually do.

The Death Stranding footage kind of confirmed that for me. He is the obnoxious pothead freshman who thinks they are the smartest person on the planet because they discovered socialism and who will never shut up about whatever they learned in Philosophy 101. Except that he somehow keeps getting very large amounts of cash and way too much freedom. The footage took me from "I kind of want to experience it" to "I kind of want to read a plot summary and then hear a few opinions on the gameplay".

The moment to moment in the game looks horrible in all the ways we learned from in the 00s and early 10s and the comparison to "get the car through the race with minimal damage" seems spot on. And the boss fight against "one of the weaker enemies" just looked way too bullet spongey and had no reaction whatsoever to anything Reedus did. And I say Reedus because even Kojima can barely stand to use his character's name (Sean?) and insists on reminding people that he got this product placement or that person to do face scanning.

And I still think someone needs to sit down the Japan game dev scene and force them to play not only a modern Ass Creed but also a few of the eurojank RPGs from the late 00s. Would probably save us all a lot of time.

Maybe the second video will turn me around. I could kind of see there being such a ridiculous management and infrastructure system that I am more interested in that than any of the actual "gameplay" (can Strand games be "Journey" AND "Dwarf Fortress"? Because that would make me VERY happy). But unless the Mads Mikkelsen stuff is REALLY good and over the top in a fun way, I actively want nothing to do with this game and kind of hope this stops companies like Sony from paying Kojima to jerk off.

I think Kojima, through a filter, can be awesome and I still consider MGS1-5+R to be some of my favorite games of all time. I think that without that filter, I am kind of on Konami's side for "Fire his fucking ass". Maybe not "lock him in the office building and make sure nobody can talk to him", but probably "don't let him talk to the press about his games".

And I think it is interesting to contrast Kojima with someone like Yoko Taro who is probably even MORE batshit insane but seems to have the self awareness to surround himself with people who will say "no" and to work with companies that will outsource the parts of gameplay (e.g. "gameplay') that he and his studio are not as talented with and allow them to focus on what they do best.

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clush

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@gundato said:

I actively want nothing to do with this game and kind of hope this stops companies like Sony from paying Kojima to jerk off.

I don't agree with that at all.

I saw the footage and like pretty much everyone else (I think?) I'm wondering how the hell any of this is actually going to be 'good' or 'fun'.

But isn't that fucking awesome?! Who'd have thunk in 2019 one of the biggest games coming out is this shit-on-the-wall crazy new IP that is so out there that describing it as anything else than a 'strand game' doesn't really do it justice?

It's bonkers. It's unlike anything else ever seen before. It's a complete re-imagining of this thing we call video games. It's an overproduced mess that nobody asked for. And yet it's here.

So who cares if it's even good or fun... I just love that it's able to exist at all.

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Gundato

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@clush: My problem is that it isn't actually that crazy or "unique"

Based on what we have seen, it is a generic open world outpost attacking game with a bunch of fedex quests in between. Even the "strand" stuff is just asynchronous multiplayer that is fairly reminiscent of that really shitty Front Mission spinoff with the horrible AI and no wanzer piloting from last year (?).

And the second video was just 30 minutes of watching someone struggle to navigate through a really slow menu. I can watch a Borderlands 3 stream for that.

And everything surrounding that is just some eurojank. it is stuff that maybe sounded fun to somebody but is so hard to get right that it is almost a universally horrible idea (think "weapon degradation").

This isn't "oh my god, it is so fascinating that this was made". This is just a self indulgent pile of bad game design that is shockingly derivative once you get past "Ha ha, Norman is peeing. But not at the hot spring. And look, we designed the game so you can't see his penis". To put it in terms Kojima himself would appreciate: This is the arty schlock that successful mainstream directors insist on making to prove to themselves that they are still cool.

And it pisses me off because there are two outcomes from this.

Either it sells insanely well because everyone will gush over Kojima and we get to watch a few years of great games get screwed up by trying to imitate bad game design. Or it bombs so hard that it becomes a lot harder for the actual "Holy shit... how did this get made?" devs to try anything interesting while having a remotely decent budget

And all of that is ignoring the general uneasiness toward how it is handling things like likenesses, voice acting, and motion capping.

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Humanity

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@gundato: I don't know I think you are really coming at this from a strange angle. First of all, Hideo Kojima doesn't owe anyone anything. He is not, and should not, be pressured into making games through some weird outside committee that dictates what is good and what is bad. He is free to make whatever he wants however he wants - thats how this industry works, or at least in the best case scenario that is how it should work. The only people he owes anything is Sony, who are publishing this and fronting the money, and apparently they came to an understanding that he can do whatever he wants with it. Any fan of video games would absolutely want developers to be unshackled from board meetings and decisions made by business people.

Your continued sentiment that this is masturbatory and self indulgent are really strange to me as well. Was God of War masturbatory and self indulgent because Cory Balrog was greatly motivated by his personal experiences as a father in the development of that game? How is it indulgent for a creator to make the thing they want to make? Shouldn't that be the absolute minimum?

It is interesting you mention Yoko Taro as a better version of Kojima, when Taro as you yourself have noticed is just as eccentric, but historically his games have never been nearly as technically competent as anything Kojima has put out. Of course who knows what goes on behind the scenes as it's not just Taro and Kojima coding these things up in a basement, but the end product shows light years of difference in terms of polish and playability. The Drakengard series is not great to play and are filled to the brim with melodramatic dialog, except instead of hinting at real world issues the way Metal Gear has done, it's fantasy gibberish.

You probably don't have to worry about anyone imitating Death Stranding because historically his games have always been in a lane of their own. Apart from maybe Splinter Cell, and that is a big stretch, there is nothing out there like Metal Gear.

I would understand if you were this angry because Kojima would be making these horrible games that didn't play well and were critically panned by media and fans, and yet still publishers awarded him with limitless budgets. But nearly all the games he had been involved with have been in the very least GOOD, if not great. Most importantly they have all been innovative and that is what people like about him as a creator. Even Boktai on the gameboy was a really clever idea, and a really solid game on it's own. Now after all these years he is allowed to make something that has no ties to past projects and he is given a carte blanche to do so, and you are advocating that he should be "gagged" ? That Konami was right in "firing his ass" after the guy had put in years making one of their most recognizable franchises? That people need to sit down with Japanese devs and show them how to make games good? My dude, that is some incredibly entitled and angry stuff to say. Let the guy make the game he wants to make, and if you don't like it then don't play it. It's as simple as that. No need to write self indulgent and masturbatory rants.

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Gundato

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@humanity: Not going to address most of that as it is very much "people should make whatever they can get away with" which is actually a stance I agree with. Just append "but that doesn't mean they are immune to criticism"

What I will address is

I would understand if you were this angry because Kojima would be making these horrible games that didn't play well and were critically panned by media and fans, and yet still publishers awarded him with limitless budgets. But nearly all the games he had been involved with have been in the very least GOOD, if not great. Most importantly they have all been innovative and that is what people like about him as a creator. Even Boktai on the gameboy was a really clever idea, and a really solid game on it's own. Now after all these years he is allowed to make something that has no ties to past projects and he is given a carte blanche to do so, and you are advocating that he should be "gagged" ? That Konami was right in "firing his ass" after the guy had put in years making one of their most recognizable franchises? That people need to sit down with Japanese devs and show them how to make games good? My dude, that is some incredibly entitled and angry stuff to say. Let the guy make the game he wants to make, and if you don't like it then don't play it. It's as simple as that. No need to write self indulgent and masturbatory rants.

Development studios are teams. I don't know what happened behind the scenes. I do know that the MGS series, following 3 (and I can understand folk who would claim 2 was the high point), got noticeably worse as time went on and one of the games (Rising) was outright taken away and outsourced. And as much as I love 5, a lot of that is because so much of the actual Metal Gear was missing and it was just an incredibly competent, if generic, open world game.

But my point with sitting the japanese development community down and having them experience some eurojank is that they are reinventing it. Breath of the Wild was every single generic RPG from the 00s with a crapton of polish. And you know the parts people criticized (durability, aimlessness, general pointlessness of survival mechanics)? People criticized those 10 years ago and folk like the AssCreed studio learned from it. (after making a bunch of mistakes of their own).

I would positively LOVE a Japanese take on a 5.56 or a STALKER or even a Witcher. And I think it is kind of sad that we're going to have to hope that these games keep selling for the decade or so it will take to learn from previously made mistakes because "if we didn't do it, it didn't exist". Hell, the fact that Kojima clearly loves Michael Bay is one of the things I like about him: We get a very japanese take on a western action movie. Similarly, I love that Yoko Taro, for all of his batshit insane awesomeness, seems to have a pretty deep understanding of modern philosophy and tries to work quite a bit of it into the themes and dialogue of his games.

And if wishing that developers would acknowledge their peers and learn from their mistakes makes me "entitled" then so be it.

But I do apologize if I didn't answer your thread correctly. Please indicate how we are supposed to react to a reaction thread in the future so that I don't make this mistake.

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Gundato

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@leonavy:Thematically: I dunno. Unless they go hard with the people you bolo I just don't get that vibe

But I have actually thought about this a lot over the years (I am a big crazy). I think Dark Souls is actually Japanese STALKER. A region of immense danger that you explore because you are seeking salvation. Immense danger that you can only overcome by preparing. A shit ton of obnoxious traps. And a non-answer of an ending that usually requires a semi-obscure quest line to be followed to get the alternate ending

Main issue with that is that Dark/Demon Souls is Berserk and Berserk, is a fairly "medieval European" manga in a lot of ways. With eldrtich horror. And problematic stuff.

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glots

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Having watched the GB coverage of it, I sure hope that the difficulty you pick also affects all those systems in place, because I'm not all that stoked about having to craft new boots every 20 minutes. RDR 2 had a bunch of things to maintain as well, but you really didn't have to care about most of them.

The branding is also bizarre. I guess MGS4 and 5 had it too (I only played 5), but I don't remember anything as dumb as cans of Monster or ads for an actual tv-show, like the "Ride with Norman Reedus" on the shower door, which just completely shatters the fourth wall. I don't know, maybe it's suppose to?

As for the game itself, it looks ok, as most open-world third-person action games do these days. Well, the running around and shooting stuff at least. The scenery does look really great too and I could see myself almost buying the game just to travel in that empty world with some moody music, but that depends a lot on how tiresome all those systems are.

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Gundato

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@leonavy:I think the issue I have is that this after the end world just doesn't seem that... bad. In a lot of ways, it is closer to the actual Pripyat: Mostly an abandoned region that nature reclaimed with a few areas that you should probably still stay the fuck away from. Because as generic and generated as that landscape was, I really want to go on a hike there. To be fair, I would also love to go on a hike in The Zone, but that is because I am kind of stupid (and, because nobody asked, Pripyat is totally on my bucket list).

As for being hesitant to truly call Dark Souls the STALKER of Japan: That sort of gets into the source material aspects. The game is Ukranian and the movie/book are Russian. Even if a lot of the symbolism and commentary are lost on the audience, it is still there. And the "after the fall" of Dark Souls is just a bit too generic. Especially once you consider all the "source material" Japan has for humanity destroying itself. For cultural reasons I am not sure if we'll get anything closer, but it still seems kind of a cop-out to "award" the overly reductive comparison to something that wears its inspirations on its blood soaked sleeves.

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