See you on the beach - the thread for Hideo Kojima's DEATH STRANDING

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*rocks BB way too quickly*

mh, Monday, 11 November 2019 14:42 (four weeks ago) link

Death Stranding (2019) @giantbomb @jeffgerstmann @taswell #DeathStranding

— Jacob! (@JacobGehnert) November 9, 2019

Glower, Disruption & Pies (kingfish), Monday, 11 November 2019 15:27 (four weeks ago) link

18 hours deep, still in chapter 3. happily building roads.

the design and aesthetic are top notch. i love that HD means you can really read all the dumbass slogans kojima slathers over every surface. even the corny music works, when it swells up and the camera pulls back crossing a giant open space. the upward-floating debris, the weird tendrils hanging from the hovering overpasses, the porter bots wearing little shoes and singing to themselves.

trudging slowly over wet sand with an enormous stack of high-performance underwear crates is fun. putting ladders in stupid places is fun. getting and sending thousands of likes is fun. rocking the baby is reasonably fun (and i spend most of my day entertaining an irl toddler). feel like most reviews don't mention that the game is actually fun and satisfying to play. when you do something stupid and drop every fucking thing you are carrying (a rare occurrence unless you are not paying any attention), mashing triangle to pick stuff up is hilarious. it's got a similar feel to snake picking stuff up in mgs, it's a really fast animation and when you mash it norman reedus goes fucking nuts throwing shit back on his cargo stack. feels good.

love the bananas story and setting.

adam, Monday, 11 November 2019 15:30 (four weeks ago) link

the walking simulator is my favorite game genre and this sounds fucking awful to me

tantric societal collapse (rushomancy), Monday, 11 November 2019 15:31 (four weeks ago) link

it's too bad everyone established "walking sim" as a flippant term for narrative adventure games because now that there's an actual walking sim we don't have a term for it that won't cause confusion

ciderpress, Monday, 11 November 2019 15:40 (four weeks ago) link

how does the online element of this game work? online players can affect the landscape based on things they leave out for each other... but does that mean that technically you might be able to bump into each other and if enough people play it there could be thousnads of Reedus's walking around? I take it that's not the case?

YOU CALL THIS JOURNALSIM? (dog latin), Monday, 11 November 2019 15:41 (four weeks ago) link

i've already floated 'stumbling simulator' tbf xp

Titanic was cliched Marxist crap. (bizarro gazzara), Monday, 11 November 2019 15:41 (four weeks ago) link

“Drudgery sim”?

Fuck the NRA (ulysses), Monday, 11 November 2019 15:42 (four weeks ago) link

xp it's asynchronous, it'll load some amount of other players' constructions into your game, prioritizing people on your PS friends list, but you're not actually in the same instance of the game world as anyone else

ciderpress, Monday, 11 November 2019 15:43 (four weeks ago) link

'Slow Gaming'

YOU CALL THIS JOURNALSIM? (dog latin), Monday, 11 November 2019 15:48 (four weeks ago) link

other people can contribute to your constructions and vice versa so the resource accumulation/distribution is less onerous. i like upgrading ppl's stuff when i don't feel like hauling a zillion kg of metal back to whatever knot city.

adam, Monday, 11 November 2019 15:50 (four weeks ago) link

i think the cutscenes' emphasis on connections and logistics are telling but what really gives it away is calling the bandits MULEs. i feel like kojima is in direct dialogue with M.U.L.E., advancing a vision of radical generosity over that game's free market ruthlessness.

so let's go with "post apocalyptic socialism sim"

adam, Monday, 11 November 2019 15:55 (four weeks ago) link

aw shit, i think by mentioning MULE you just made me buy this goddammit

Fuck the NRA (ulysses), Monday, 11 November 2019 16:45 (four weeks ago) link

it rules forks just do it

adam, Monday, 11 November 2019 17:03 (four weeks ago) link

damn u

Fuck the NRA (ulysses), Monday, 11 November 2019 17:08 (four weeks ago) link

Fuck the NRA (ulysses), Monday, 11 November 2019 17:09 (four weeks ago) link

I am kind of disappointed because it seemed like I was going to finally meet Mads' character and you.. kind of encounter him? not really. I'm sure it'll come later.

This is the first game where I've gotten something that seems like it could cause lethal damage after having some random incapacitating items and I feel really hesitant about the idea of shooting people. Those MULE guys seem like assholes, but do I really need to injure them that badly?

mh, Monday, 11 November 2019 17:11 (four weeks ago) link

“Drudgery sim”?

― Fuck the NRA (ulysses)

that's sort of what i like about gaming, ultimately at a certain point they all boil down to tedious drudgery. commit this otherwise useless sequence of button presses to muscle memory. this vision of gaming has been around for at least as long as pac-man - i remember as a child reading books on how to get good at pac-man and it was all rote execution of patterns. we pay money for the chance to do routine things.

tantric societal collapse (rushomancy), Monday, 11 November 2019 17:41 (four weeks ago) link

This thread is the manifestation of the game I was most looking forward to, please update with tales of dystopian banality

change display name (Jordan), Monday, 11 November 2019 17:53 (four weeks ago) link

the irony of the fact that this will take until Wednesday to deliver is not lost on me

Fuck the NRA (ulysses), Monday, 11 November 2019 17:59 (four weeks ago) link

I think the banality aspect has been oversold, to an extent. There have been a number of games with interesting landscapes, but I can't remember many details of them past rote pathfinding. Might have to jump over some rocks, may encounter an impassable area. In this game, not only is the world very beautiful, but the obstacles seem meaningful. Do I set up a ladder to make it past, or do I go around and use my tools later?

When I connect a new area, will I discover that the other way up a hill that seemed insurmountable on the map already has a series of ropes and ladders placed by someone online, making my journey that much shorter? There's a joy of discovery to it

mh, Monday, 11 November 2019 18:03 (four weeks ago) link

yeah, the game isn't boring at all. in its insistence on paying attention to your surroundings and to your movements it's not at all unlike metal gear solid, just without the trappings of Tactical Espionage Action. that absence is the engine of Gamer Backlash, plus i think there's a (faulty) collective assumption of rebuke in that absence.

adam, Monday, 11 November 2019 18:10 (four weeks ago) link

So it's actually fun?

Antonym Scalia (Leee), Monday, 11 November 2019 19:07 (four weeks ago) link

what if I told you in 2019, that a video game would not only get the idea of "likes" from strangers giving that kick of dopamine, but did so in a way that made it a constructive gameplay dynamic?

there are some abuses of it, like spamming of a bunch of signs that a player has to pass through near home locations, but overall it's a well-balanced mechanic

mh, Monday, 11 November 2019 19:14 (four weeks ago) link

Still looking for clarity: if you play offline, that whole aspect of the game is nullified?

Josh in Chicago, Monday, 11 November 2019 19:21 (four weeks ago) link

You get "likes" from doing certain tasks in the game, but the abundance of physical objects in the landscape won't appear

mh, Monday, 11 November 2019 19:25 (four weeks ago) link

so there's no benefit to the likes if you're offline?

Josh in Chicago, Monday, 11 November 2019 19:26 (four weeks ago) link

my understanding is that the online components don't require playstation plus

adam, Monday, 11 November 2019 19:26 (four weeks ago) link

(if that is the issue)

adam, Monday, 11 November 2019 19:27 (four weeks ago) link

I'm perversely avoiding any actual reviews or gameplay videos atm because every anecdotal comment somehow confuses me further re: what this game even is/is about. Which I find fascinating.

Maybe you wanna lay off the Mountain Dew, there, Burt. (Old Lunch), Monday, 11 November 2019 19:28 (four weeks ago) link

it's possible some of the structures are put up by the NPC porters (your job) in the game, as a few appear, but I don't know that anyone reviewing or even playing the game has done it completely offline

mh, Monday, 11 November 2019 19:28 (four weeks ago) link

the "likes" are what levels up one of your five metrics

mh, Monday, 11 November 2019 19:29 (four weeks ago) link

i've gotten likes from NPC porters for shit i've left lying around

adam, Monday, 11 November 2019 19:30 (four weeks ago) link

OL, there's a backstory that at the core establishes this post-apocalyptic world, what the precursor event was, and some of the basics that differentiate this world from our own. The story starts to answer a lot of the unknowns, but a lot of it is "we discovered this technology, it did amazing things, and something horrible happened" with some additional elements related to the fact knowledge was lost in the chaos and your NPC peers are discovering the history as you are.

mh, Monday, 11 November 2019 19:32 (four weeks ago) link

fwiw the thread (strand?) title here is a reference that becomes clear not far into the game

mh, Monday, 11 November 2019 19:33 (four weeks ago) link

finally a game that can breach the high watermark set by bioshock for creepiest cosplay

$1,000,000 or 1 bag of honeycrisp apples (Sufjan Grafton), Monday, 11 November 2019 19:50 (four weeks ago) link

oh man there's gonna be a thousand norman reeduses at comicon
fat reedus, skinny reedus, buff reedus, black reedus, ups delivery uniform reedus, amazon delivery uniform reedus, DHL delivery uniform reedus, asia reedus, sexy reedus, mecha reedus, dog reedus...

Fuck the NRA (ulysses), Monday, 11 November 2019 20:10 (four weeks ago) link

I'm wondering what point in the game unlocks the Chvrches song!

The non-score musical parts so far are ok, but I feel like Kojima has found a band that's halfway between Imagine Dragons and Coldplay

mh, Monday, 11 November 2019 20:17 (four weeks ago) link

I guess I should say vibe-wise, since there's not just one band

mh, Monday, 11 November 2019 20:19 (four weeks ago) link

This is actually pretty fun and addictive. I don’t think the gameplay footage really sells it. There is a kind of tactile satisfaction in hauling yourself over the landscape that doesn’t really translate well to someone not holding the controller.

Not without its problems. The MULE and BT enemy encounters seem really simplistic and half-baked. I’m down with de-emphasizing combat, but I wish those systems were a little more sophisticated.

There are certain elements that seem to be deliberately irritating. Trudging through BT morass, mashing buttons as monster arms tear cargo off your back while a baby is crying in your face via the controller speaker is a good example. But that stuff is relatively minor/brief.

circa1916, Monday, 11 November 2019 20:20 (four weeks ago) link

I've only had one BT battle encounter so far! And it was right at the beginning, before I really got the dynamic. If you're cautious and well-stocked with grenades or some of the later weapons, you can knock those suckers back to the afterlife.

I kind of want to trigger a battle because apparently if you take out one of the larger enemies that appear, they drop a ton of crystals

mh, Monday, 11 November 2019 20:25 (four weeks ago) link

gameplay in the looks a bit like a walking version of spintires, would that be accurate?

thomasintrouble, Tuesday, 12 November 2019 17:13 (three weeks ago) link


Li'l Brexit (Tracer Hand), Wednesday, 13 November 2019 00:43 (three weeks ago) link

the president's henchman is 'die hardman' who wears a leather suit, cravat and METAL SKULL MASK 24/7 i can't

i ended up just running the fuck away from the annoying BTs at the incinerator, suddenly found myself at the edge of a cliff, and somebody named igor had left.... a rope for me! at the edge! i liked the shit out of it and rappelled away, thanks igor.

Li'l Brexit (Tracer Hand), Wednesday, 13 November 2019 00:46 (three weeks ago) link

thomas i think spintires is more frustrating and lets you screw yourself over. here a modicum of attention will keep you upright.

love this game. just got the "speed skeleton" and i am booking it across this rock strewn ghost-scape. also i am getting the rhythm of infiltrating BT areas so it's less of a drag. stupid MULEs not so much. i'll figure them out.

adam, Wednesday, 13 November 2019 00:58 (three weeks ago) link

I’ve gotten pretty good at shooting MULES in the face with my bolo gun. Drops em.

Game really starts opening up in chapter 3. Trucking my stolen MULE mobile down the highway, wind in my hair. Feels good.

circa1916, Wednesday, 13 November 2019 03:17 (three weeks ago) link

just got the BRIDGES truck, really adds to the UPS vibe. loading that motherfucker up with claimed metals and ceramics all the way to south knot city.

adam, Wednesday, 13 November 2019 12:20 (three weeks ago) link

Tracer, Igor was the guy in the truck with the corpse at the very beginning!

mh, Wednesday, 13 November 2019 13:02 (three weeks ago) link


Li'l Brexit (Tracer Hand), Wednesday, 13 November 2019 13:32 (three weeks ago) link

I've been trying to put a certain feeling into words and I think this is how one says this these days.. This game has big Tomb Raider 1 energy

Li'l Brexit (Tracer Hand), Wednesday, 13 November 2019 15:11 (three weeks ago) link

I'm not sure I even know my username.

Could you go through this game liking stuff that is not useful?

Josh in Chicago, Friday, 22 November 2019 17:16 (two weeks ago) link

sure, but all the really cool objects that have shown up for me have hundreds or even thousands of likes now that the game's been out a while

mh, Friday, 22 November 2019 17:18 (two weeks ago) link

oh yeah, the other metric for those who haven't read about it:

there's a list in-game of players you've "interacted" with and you can set up "strand contacts" with them, leading to the game prioritizing their objects appearing in your instance. it shows a number next to them that is either the number of likes they've received, or is somehow related to that metric

I have seen a few players with tens of thousands of likes on that list, but some people have reported others with millions

mh, Friday, 22 November 2019 17:20 (two weeks ago) link

But as of yet you're saying there is no real reward to that ranking, just ego?

Josh in Chicago, Friday, 22 November 2019 17:23 (two weeks ago) link

again, likes can help influence one of five metrics in the game, but you max it out in-game on your own easily enough after a while

mh, Friday, 22 November 2019 17:24 (two weeks ago) link

Death Stranding 2 should be 50 hours of explaining and demonstrating to the newly on-line how the chiral network works.

circa1916, Friday, 22 November 2019 17:39 (two weeks ago) link

Sounds like the guy should have made a movie or website or social network app or something. Since the game aspect seems sort of ancillary to his themes and/or goals.

Josh in Chicago, Friday, 22 November 2019 17:44 (two weeks ago) link

the main task of the game is literally connecting disconnected people

mh, Friday, 22 November 2019 17:46 (two weeks ago) link

it's like a goddamn imBEACHment hearing in here

$1,000,000 or 1 bag of honeycrisp apples (Sufjan Grafton), Friday, 22 November 2019 17:58 (two weeks ago) link

yeah, I give up

so, those of us actually playing this, how you doing? what episode are you on?

mh, Friday, 22 November 2019 18:02 (two weeks ago) link

This does seem like the type of thing that a phone app would be ideal for. Check in on likes and such for those structures you laid down earlier.

Last night I wrecked some MULE sites and grabbed a ton of road materials. Almost single handedly putting together a Route 66 across this piece.

I’m at... episode 8 or 9? With like 40 some hours of play time. I really enjoy this game and can’t seem to put it down.

circa1916, Friday, 22 November 2019 18:07 (two weeks ago) link

i'm on episode 6, i plead toddler

adam, Friday, 22 November 2019 18:24 (two weeks ago) link

if you're around 8, would highly recommend doing all the standard orders and world-building you can for a while

there's a moment I'm at where you can't for a while :/

mh, Friday, 22 November 2019 18:40 (two weeks ago) link

i think i'm still on like..... 2? only get an hour or so every night or so

confused by criticism of these janked-out 22nd century vehicles that they're clumsy or handle strangely. i mean... of course they handle strangely, they're from a society that's been totally destroyed where the only roads were 3-d printed 20 minutes ago

Li'l Brexit (Tracer Hand), Friday, 22 November 2019 23:07 (two weeks ago) link

lol, that’s canon now

mh, Saturday, 23 November 2019 01:11 (two weeks ago) link

Haha fair point actually. If I could ever imagine how a 3D printed vehicle would handle it would absolutely be just like this.

circa1916, Saturday, 23 November 2019 11:30 (two weeks ago) link

Kojima may have outdone himself when it comes to dumping 80% of the exposition during the endgame and credits this time!

mh, Saturday, 23 November 2019 15:19 (two weeks ago) link

i liked this:

i'm still very early on but this is interesting to think about: "Death Stranding's drawback as a fable about the importance of reforging connections is that it never moves beyond that atmosphere of collective toil and deprivation."

i do sort of wish that there were a big narrative moment where your relationship with BRIDGES changes, that the carefully constructed material/building/recycling loops start to go haywire, that you override the weapons deactivations and discover just what the fuck is going on. it's a great game without that of course but it would have been pretty amazing.

Li'l Brexit (Tracer Hand), Saturday, 23 November 2019 15:26 (two weeks ago) link

afaict there’s only one truly bad person in the game! everything is very morally complex, or should I say... uncertain

mh, Saturday, 23 November 2019 15:31 (two weeks ago) link

finished. ruled

adam, Sunday, 24 November 2019 21:26 (two weeks ago) link


wish I’d done the pizza missions when they were available

mh, Sunday, 24 November 2019 23:56 (two weeks ago) link

i did the first one and received a very good email from the recipient later! i wonder what the subsequent ones were all about

adam, Monday, 25 November 2019 00:52 (two weeks ago) link

check your messages, dude

or at least go to peter’s shelter

mh, Monday, 25 November 2019 03:17 (two weeks ago) link

ya thats the email i mean. gonna drop by tonight.

last few hours of this game are like "oh you thought we were doing tarkovsky? psyche mf it's douglas sirk's evangelion"

adam, Monday, 25 November 2019 10:29 (two weeks ago) link

Kojima hiding story twists behind other, more bizarre, story twists

There was one moment where I was actually stunned

mh, Monday, 25 November 2019 14:55 (two weeks ago) link

I could’ve done with less exposition on top of exposition and then the exposition of that exposition. Kojima continues to be comically long winded. BUT... this was really great and I admire its fully dedicated swinging-for-the-fences-and-MEANING-IT heart. Felt entirely confident.

Also the game was just... really fun. Despite (or because of) its insistence on making you suffer through some of it, the core gameplay loop’s legitimately addictive and satisfying.

I’m gonna keep playing and collect some trophies I think. Still some zip line routes to complete.

Excited to see what else untethered Kojima will have coming in the future.

circa1916, Saturday, 30 November 2019 00:48 (one week ago) link

Can I just say how impressed I am that any of you folks can finish a game, any game, in just a few weeks?

Josh in Chicago, Sunday, 1 December 2019 15:02 (one week ago) link

I’ve only just started chapter three but i’m really enjoying this uniquely haunted stumbling simulator

A victim managed to capture evidence of the gimp (bizarro gazzara), Sunday, 1 December 2019 15:09 (one week ago) link

it is super haunted

it’s all about shaky contact from the other side: of death, of the wire connecting you to the internet, of the “chiral network”. despite all this contact you are so, so alone.

Li'l Brexit (Tracer Hand), Sunday, 1 December 2019 19:28 (one week ago) link

I have a bunch of time off at the end of year, regularly procrastinate housework (and am suffering now) and have no kids and a lot of my social obligations exist but I can push them off a week or two

so, throwing fifty hours into a game in just over two weeks is probably not healthy but it was fun! I honestly only do this maybe once a year. don’t feel like you have to binge this sucker — it’s super fun in one to two hour increments and the plot is set up so that you can progress or do a number of tasks that fit in that amount of time

mh, Monday, 2 December 2019 00:24 (one week ago) link

Just goes to show, if you make a game about connection and helping other people, someone is going to use that mechanic to be a dick. (see also: jump here, fake wall ahead, go left et al. in Dark Souls)

Josh in Chicago, Tuesday, 3 December 2019 17:34 (six days ago) link

i just started chapter 3 and there's a holographic "watcher" from horizon zero dawn just hanging out on the outskirts of lake knot city?!?

Li'l Brexit (Tracer Hand), Thursday, 5 December 2019 01:41 (four days ago) link

is that the weird giraffe thing? there are a few giant holograms that weird me out but, hey, it’s a futuristic world with holograms

mh, Thursday, 5 December 2019 02:15 (four days ago) link

huh would you look at that

"Big Joe Fuck and the Bogalusa Maniac" (bizarro gazzara), Thursday, 5 December 2019 10:00 (four days ago) link

Is that game any good? I guess it uses the same game engine.

mh, Thursday, 5 December 2019 15:00 (four days ago) link

nah it's like an ubisoft style big map boring tasks game imo, i played a few hours and never went back to it

adam, Thursday, 5 December 2019 15:12 (four days ago) link

maybe like those EA LOTR mordor games are a better comparison. overstuffed with not-that-fun stuffing

adam, Thursday, 5 December 2019 15:13 (four days ago) link

Horizon Zero Fun more like.

(I haven’t played it, but that’s how a friend described it)

circa1916, Thursday, 5 December 2019 15:19 (four days ago) link

i haven't played it but it looked like it had more "real" action gameplay than like the assassins creed contextual action stuff, is that the case

ciderpress, Thursday, 5 December 2019 15:20 (four days ago) link

I’ve definitely worn out on that Ubi template so when I heard that was the set-up I avoided it from there.

circa1916, Thursday, 5 December 2019 15:23 (four days ago) link

combat is more like the mordor games so while not "fun" exactly it's not just press square to wrist blade lorenzo de medici

adam, Thursday, 5 December 2019 15:25 (four days ago) link

It's well made but extremely unoriginal and I'm positively allergic to the 'techno-native' aesthetic they've got going on. Viking dudes wearing bones in their beards talking into a teal HUD. Yeah I simply cannot wait to craft another set of shock arrows and then have a stilted over-the-shoulder conversation with somebody named Lek who will never appear again.

Death Stranding both incredibly close to the world of Horizon - fallen/destroyed world with some half-operational vestiges of extremely advanced technology dotting the landscape - and a million miles away from it aesthetically - HZD the aforementioned techno-primitive bullshit but incredibly lush and fruitful landscape; DS austere and pulled back, no animals, few plants, everything just blasted away apart from a suspiciously unblemished system of faceless distribution centres and everybody wearing a kind of modern, c20 plebian luggage handler gear.

Li'l Brexit (Tracer Hand), Thursday, 5 December 2019 15:58 (four days ago) link

Played this for like 3 hours straight last night - a marathon session by my standards - and really got into its rhythms. Absolutely love it. Starting to build some roads next to Lake Knot city even though I don't have anything to drive with.

Has anybody used Strand Contracts? I'm like a 'master handler' now (lmao at the absurdly over-engineered task completion and level-up views) so I can do them but I'm..... shy

By the way I'm a lot less afraid of MULES now. I just karate chop 'em if they see me. I assume this will get harder.

Li'l Brexit (Tracer Hand), Thursday, 5 December 2019 16:01 (four days ago) link

Oh and... once I 'dismantle' a ladder or whatever... is it just gone? I'm not clear on what happens to it

Li'l Brexit (Tracer Hand), Thursday, 5 December 2019 16:01 (four days ago) link

I've tagged a handful of people with high numbers in the list with strand contacts but I haven't dug in to see if there's a big difference

mh, Thursday, 5 December 2019 16:05 (four days ago) link

Dismantling gets rid of things, yes. It's basically an erase button.

MULEs get harder after a plot point where you traverse a certain area where they've "gone feral" or something similar. After that point, you run into many more with actual guns :(

mh, Thursday, 5 December 2019 16:07 (four days ago) link

They have really good eyesight. Much harder to sneak up on than soldiers in MGS imo

Li'l Brexit (Tracer Hand), Thursday, 5 December 2019 16:08 (four days ago) link

I haven't played at all this week, but an fyi for anyone who is toward the end game and is curious about how effective weapons are:

do NOT throw a real grenade (as opposed to a stun grenade) anywhere near a MULE vehicle. I mean, unless you enjoy taking an entire truck of corpses to an incinerator. additionally, there are no game achievements for killing or delivering to the incinerator. the game absolutely does not want you to kill anyone!

mh, Thursday, 5 December 2019 16:12 (four days ago) link

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