Death Stranding Lets You Explore First-Person Purgatory Each Time You Die

Want to know a bit more about Hideo Kojima and Death Stranding? Well, you’re in luck given that Kojima took up an interview with another publication site to talk Death Stranding, brief parts of gameplay, and more.

Notice: Potential spoilers lie ahead. If you do not want anything given away on a small or large scale, this very summation of Kojima’s recent interview contains details pertaining to Death Stranding and some of its story and gameplay mechanics.

Recently, Hideo Kojima took up an interview with publication site IGN to discuss Death Stranding. For starters, the newest trailer showing said game ran on the Decima Engine. It was also noted that the scene portrayed is the earliest thing to happen in the game chronologically. In other words, it occurs right after the game’s prologue.

Later we learn about life and death within Death Stranding. Kojima had the following to say:

“One of the themes of this game is life and death. So I want people to realize that when they die in the game, that isn’t the end.”

The interview explains that when Sam or the player dies, they will go to a place that’s not a “game over” segment. Upon death in Death Stranding, you’re taken to a purgatory-like place that opts for free exploration in first-person.

It is said that you can use “mysterious unique” abilities that Sam hones, where you can astral project outside of your body to find/recover items. Other “things”can be investigated in this mode, but Kojima also explained that…

“At that point, you’re not dead or alive. It’s the equivalent of that screen that says ‘Continue?’ and a counter ticking down towards zero.”

Kojima later explained to the publication site more about this “Continue?” scene. You can read his explanation below.

“So as you saw in the trailer, you saw the crater, and when you come back, it’s still there. Most games would’ve taken you back to before the crater was made. So depending on the player, you might have a lot of craters all over the place — depends on each player.”


“Death will never pull you out of the game”.

We also learn about this thing called “Timefall”. This mystical and dangerous substance has the ability to manipulate time and alters humans and plant life. It is noted that it can wilt and deteriorate something in seconds.

Kojima dives into this liquid-like substance by stating:

“Most people in the game are aware of the rain — and well, Norman is quite unique in this regard… I think I should stop there. I’m spilling the beans.”

During the interview we learn that Kojima has been influenced by Kōbō Abe, and that inspiration has found its way into Death Stranding. Kojima referred to Abe’s The Man Who Turned into a Stick and stated that the stick is the first tool that mankind created to put distance between himself and “bad things” to protect himself. He went on to say that the second tool mankind created is rope.

Kojima’s interpretation of sticks and rope playing a part in Death Stranding lies below:

“Most of your tools in action games are sticks. You punch or you shoot or you kick. The communication is always through these ‘sticks.’ In [Death Stranding], I want people to be connected not through sticks, but through what would be the equivalent of ropes… But of course you will be able to use the sticks too.”

The publication site shifted the conversation over to Kojima and fans, and what he thinks of fan theories and fan dissection of his work. The answer is up for your reading pleasure.

“I think it’s fun, I really think it’s fun. It’s one of the unique things about games, that you can start having fun with people before you release the game. There are things I intentionally put there so that I can start this back and forth process with players, because I think it’s fun for everyone.”


“You can find bits, clues and information, once every five seconds or so. And by people pointing to these discussions and analysis, and with each trailer, there are also connections created there.”

Although Kojima thinks that fan theories and stuff can be fun, we also see a concerned Kojima, when fans take to social media. He explains that it can be “a double-edged sword”:

“I’ve been reading a lot on the internet of people saying I’ve spent the last year just traveling around and having fun. A lot of people saying I’m wasting time and money. But that couldn’t be further from the truth. We’re waiting for the right moment to show gameplay, but right now we’re on track with the project.”

After the above response, the publication site asked Kojima what the team has been up to so far. The following blockquote explains his response:

“So, over this past year, we’ve been working on Decima. There are things we don’t know, we ask them, we make some requests. On our end, of course, we use the Decima engine very differently from the way they use it, especially when it comes to the cutscenes. So we make our own things there, and send it to them, show it to them, get their feedback. We are at that pace, currently.”


“Everything makes sense. Everything will come together.”

Death Stranding is currently in development for PS4 and has no official release date as of this moment.

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