What we know about Death Stranding (and what we don’t)


We have more answers and more questions for Hideo Kojima’s latest

We got our first glimpse of Death Stranding at E3 2016 and as the year closes we got to take another look and find out some important new info. Here’s what we know, and what we don’t, so far.

We know… Death Stranding is running on the newly christened Decima Engine from Guerrilla Games, the same engine that is in fact currently powering Horizon: Zero Dawn. Guerrilla has been evolving the same engine through all of its projects, but the latest version has been heavily upgraded in order to handle the open-world demands of an RPG. As such it’s a one-stop shop for world building, AI programming and in-game logic.

We don’t know… How far along Kojima Productions is in the development of the game or in the make-up of its studio. While the first trailer felt like an early tease that might only have a tangential relationship with the final game, this new trailer is in-engine and looks just as good (if not better, actually) so Death Stranding could be closer than we thought.

We know… Mads Mikkelsen of Hannibal, Doctor Strange and Rogue One: A Star Wars Story fame, will be playing the main antagonist to Norman Reedus’ lead character in the game. He was approached by Kojima via Danish film director Nicolas Winding Refn and was seemingly taken with the idea of working with such a legendary and maverick game maker.

We don’t know… Who Mads Mikkelsen’s character is commanding. The skeletal soldiers of the latest trailer appear to be connected via cords to him. It suggests a world where solder automatons are being used. Images of death and birth keep melding with each other, but then Kojima did promise he would be reinventing our concept of death in games back around E3, if you remember.

We know… Kojima Productions is opening a satellite studio within (or at least close to) Guerrilla Games called Kojima Productions Amsterdam and it is apparently hiring. Decima is now being considered a collaborative project between the Dutch developer and Kojima, with both adding to the code base.

We don’t know… How do these trailers connect? The dead sea life is a clear connection, the presence of a baby in both trailers, that del Toro and Reedus are wearing the same style of handcuff. Black holes and omnipotent beings were hinted at before, now we have mind control and a mixture of World War II and modern military tech. It’s all wonderfully bizarre and enthralling.

Read back over our coverage of Kojima’s gaming past in our Games Master special on the Japanese developer