Death Stranding's own creator says he doesn't understand the game.
Speaking to the Financial Times, video game auteur Hideo Kojima admitted even he can't quite comprehend his upcoming title - a star-studded action game where the focus is connection rather than destruction.
“Death Stranding… even now, I don’t understand the game,” said Kojima of the PlayStation 4 release.
“Its world view, gameplay, they are all new. My mission is to create a genre that does not currently exist, and which takes everyone by surprise. There is, naturally, a risk in that…”
The story of Death Stranding has been teased out over the past year, trailer by surreal trailer. In the most recent one released by Kojima Studios, fans were introduced to a breastfeeding invisible baby born in the afterlife, but attached its mother through a floating, invisible umbilical cord.
Kojima theorises that video games are in some ways the ultimate expression of craftsmanship. While he has famously been a proponent of cinematic games, he describes what he does not in terms of art but rather as a craft service. Something more in line with a sushi master, someone who creates beautiful dishes but whose goal is ultimately nourishment.
“There are stories being told [in cinema] that my generation may find surprising but which the gamer generation doesn’t find weird at all,” he says of the distinction between the art of both industries.
“If you take something that looks like a banana and give it the title ‘apple’, that works as art. But it doesn’t apply to games. We are making things that are interactive. A banana has to be edible after you peel the skin. Cars have to be drivable. For games to be interactive and to deliver the enjoyment, there has to be a reality where there are lots of people backstage making it all happen.
"That is us – a kind of art-driven service industry.”
Death Stranding will release on November 8.