Death Stranding second trailer analysis

Gaming / PlayStation

Death Stranding is the latest title to come from the utterly insane, yet always brilliant mind of Hideo Kojima; who is best known for his popular Metal Gear series of games. Death Stranding was announced to be the first title released under Hideo’s now independent development studio Kojima Productions after they terminated their contract with Konami following a long dispute between the company and Kojima, which eventually led to Kojima’s permanent departure from Konami.

The first trailer for Death Stranding was revealed at E3 2016 to much excitement, and also confusion. As is the standard with any Kojima title, the trailer gave us a glimpse at Norman Reedus’ character, while essentially revealing almost nothing that would give viewers an indication as to what the title will be about. Generally, teasers are always light on details but as Kojima is known for his intricate and bizarre stories, characters, lengthy dialogue, and strange worlds, it was expected that we would get very little information regarding the title.

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The character that Norman Reedus will be portraying within the game revealed during the first trailer.

The second trailer was longer and revealed a better look at the war-torn world that the title will be taking place in, however, it still perplexed viewers as to what exactly will be taking place. Is this a post-apocalyptic future earth? Is this an alternate dimension or world? We simply do not yet know the answers to these questions. This trailer opens up with a frantic and clearly stressed out CGI model of the brilliant director Guillermo Del Toro,  who is holding a device that we later see holds a human baby.

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The character that shares a likeness with film director Guillermo del Toro, although he has a possible lobotomy scar visible on his forehead. If you zoom in on his badge, you can make out that his name could potentially be Bridges, or this could be a company he is working for. It is also possible to see that his badge shows an image of the “United Cities of America.”

The as yet unnamed character frantically runs to an underpass to hide, whilst a tank which seems to have some form of living organisms on it passes by overhead with a group of armed skeletal soldiers walking behind, which all seem to be linked to the tank by some form of cord looking extension.

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The tank that seems to be a living organism along with marching skeletal soldiers. It is worth noting that the rainbows appear upside down within this world.

We then see oil rise up around the unnamed character which leads to a damaged baby doll floating by into the tunnel. It is at this point that the character becomes increasingly worried as the camera delves deeper into the tunnel following the now glowing red floating baby doll.

The baby doll seems to have the same cross-shaped scar on its abdomen, much like Norman Reedus’ character in the first trailer, what connection could this be pointing to?

Guillermo’s character then becomes increasingly worried and clutches the vessel device tight to his chest as he reaches out and connects a cord (that we can assume is connected to his body in some way) to the device, thus awakening the baby, or transporting the baby to the device from somewhere.

The way in which the baby wakes up and looks directly ahead with Guillermo’s character implies some form of shared consciousness.

The trailer then shows a modern looking soldier with four of the previously seen skeletal soldiers, who are all once again linked to this human soldier by an extension cord device walking down the tunnel.

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The modern soldier is shown with his crew of skeletal soldiers all directly linked to him by extension like cords.

The camera then pans up to the face of the soldier to show his night vision goggles disappear in a flash of red to reveal none other than Mads Mikkelson, whom then makes a quiet gesture with his finger to his mouth as the cords from the skeleton soldiers retract and they spread out in a military pattern to possibly search for Guillermo’s character. The floating baby doll then flows into Mads’ feet which then leads to him giving the camera an evil smirk as the trailer ends.

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The reveal of Mads Mikkelsen. He seems to be covered in oil, another recurring theme within the trailers.

This trailer did little to inform viewers of what the title will be about, but there are some theories making the rounds based on what we have seen so far. All of which are far too complicated and in-depth to discuss here. It is quite clear from the two trailers that Babies, birth, death, and oil will all be constant themes in this title, along with the emphasis on umbilical cords, which seem to be connected to almost every form of life we have so far seen. It could be that rebirth and the need to be connected to other lifeforms will be a major necessity within this universe.

It remains to be seen exactly what Death Stranding will be about, along with how the game will actually play and control, but I cannot wait to see what the future holds for this title and Kojima, as I am a huge fan of his work and commitment to the industry and the worlds he creates. Kojima is well known for creating in-depth storylines and worlds populated with an array of interesting design choices that constantly engage players, and require discussions within the community to understand.

We still have quite a while to go before we will get to play this title ourselves, as the only release date information that we have states the title will be released sometime prior to 2019. Let us hope we get substantially more information pertaining to this title, along with actual gameplay footage shortly to help alleviate the long and painful wait

What are your thoughts on this trailer and future title? Are you excited for a game that will let Kojima have complete creative freedom away from Konami? Let us know in the comments section below or on Twitter, Facebook, and Google+.

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