March 13th, 2020

mr. Gruff

Death Stranding

 Death Stranding is hard to describe, possibly even hard to love, but I found it lovable. Yes, if you've heard that you mostly go around schlepping stuff from place to place, that's quite true. But that's not all... there's also a nonsensical story that unrolls in long cut-scenes. There are some points in the end-game where the cut-scenes were so obtrusive, I longed to schlepp some things from place to place.

OK, I'm not selling it, I can tell. But if you're up for something really well-made and really out-of-the-box, this is it.

It's interesting to me that an important theme of the game is a very pro-social message of help and cooperation that comes across as affecting and sincere. Not only to help the NPCs in the game, but also fellow players, with whom you can tangentially interact. They don't appear in the world, but structures and thingummies that they build in the world show up in your own and vice versa. And there's some gamification to it in the form of 'likes' a la social media. If someone uses a ladder you placed to scale a cliff, you get a like.

I could attempt to summarize more of the game, but I think it's best as a new world to be explored. Just go jump in.