Publisher Sony Interactive Entertainment and developer Kojima Productions debuted 49 minutes of Death Stranding gameplay during the game’s “Gameplay Session Volume 1” stage event at Tokyo Game Show 2019.
The PlayStation Blog also posted an article detailing the key takeaways from the demonstration, which only features commentary in Japanese from director Hideo Kojima.
Death Stranding is due out for PlayStation 4 on November 8.
Find the gameplay presentation and PlayStation Blog article below. (Gameplay runs from 7:26 to 55:55.)
Preparation Is Key
First, we see Sam likely preparing for a mission by picking his equipment and balancing his cargo. His loadout isn’t just attached to his back; he seems to meticulously equip his suit and to carefully select attachments for his arms as well. How these different attachments and options affect his capabilities in the field remain to be seen, but it seems like it’ll be worth it to get things just right before setting out.
Plot Your Own Course
Before leaving the facility, Sam also takes a moment to examine the map, which can be shifted into a topographical view that takes all the area’s hills, valleys, and bodies of water into account. Players can place markers to plot a specific course, as well as prepare necessary equipment like ladders, anchors, and boots for the journey ahead.
You’re Not The Only One Exploring This World
While we’re pretty sure you won’t be bumping into direct contact with other players in this world, it seems you may come across things they’ve built or left behind.* There are clear signs of other travelers like yourself using equipment to cross gaps and scale mountains, making you the benefactor of their generous intrepidness. Be sure to leave them a like for their troubles — it’s not yet known what purpose that serves, but at least it will make them feel deservedly appreciated.
Given the responsibility placed on Sam’s shoulders, both literally and figuratively, Death Stranding encourages moments of tranquility and recuperation. We see Sam taking some time to rest in the grass, with prompts for him to massage his shoulders, stretch his legs or sneak in a quick nap. He’ll stop to play a tune from a quest-given harmonica or bathe in a Recharging Spring, prompting the BB to respond with appreciative coos and likes.
On The Move
Sam can move at different paces despite being loaded to the brim with cargo and equipment. We see Sam equip an “Active Skeleton” that lets him run faster and farther. He also pulls off some rather epic jumps despite his massive pack of cargo — getting around should be a lot more interesting once you acquire one of these. We can also see Sam steal a MULE truck for a quick escape, and later on, ride a motorcycle, illustrating that traversal in Death Stranding can take many forms.
Lighten The Load
Sam can also equip a Floating Carrier: a hovering palette of sorts that Sam can pack cargo onto, and be pulled along behind him as he walks. This should make a big difference in terms of Sam’s capacity to transport goods, speeding up deliveries and allowing for more flexibility should he come across lost cargo he doesn’t want to leave behind.
That Floating Carrier Can Carry You, Too
Later in the video we see Sam hop onto his empty Floating Carrier to zoom down from his high vantage point and stealthily approach a MULE camp. This sort of speedy, convenient traversal hints at multiple ways to approach a challenge, giving Sam an even more efficient way of getting down beyond the rope and ladders we’ve already seen.
Don’t Be A Drag
Sam finds himself in danger in the second half of the footage, when his sensor alerts him to nearby activity. We see him struggle to shift his weight and break free from the BT’s tar covered grip, and eventually be dragged into combat with a more formidable foe. If running isn’t an option, as it appears in this section of gameplay, then removing packages to keep Sam lighter during combat is. He’ll need to move swiftly to lob Hematic and EX Grenades (we’ll let you guess what those are made from) or use the Anti-BT Handgun from a distance. Should you survive, don’t forget to grab your discarded cargo.
Make Meaningful Connections
Sam isn’t alone in the world of Death Stranding. We see him complete a couple deliveries throughout the new footage, one to return lost cargo and the other in which he approaches a larger facility and is met with a hologram version of one of its residents. Upon delivery completion, each facility representative greeted Sam to thank him for his trouble and allowed him to add their base to a larger sprawling Chiral Network. It seems these forged connections are at the heart of his journey.