Famed game creator Hideo Kojima talked Death Stranding at the Tribeca Game Festival in a keynote conversation, giving an update on the state of the game's development and more about Norman Reedus' character in the game.
Kojima said when he thought of the main character for Death Stranding, he was specifically thinking of having Norman Reedus take the role. For those that remember, The Walking Dead actor was set to be the protagonist in Kojima's Silent Hills game, which became a casualty of the dramatic split between Kojima and Konami in 2015.
As for Death Stranding, Reedus' character (who incidentally, Kojima almost accidentally named on stage during the keynote) is set to be the main character in this first game from the newly formed Kojima Productions. And Kojima assured fans that Reedus' character will be clothed in the game, unlike in the debut trailer for the game. The choice to have Reedus be nude in that trailer, Kojima said, was so that the focus would be on the reveal of Reedus, but in the full game his character will have a variety of clothes, hairstyles, and equipment.
Death Stranding continues the new direction by Kojima (which he started in earnest with Metal Gear Solid 5: The Phantom Pain) to work with real actors instead of use traditional CG and animation. Subsequent trailers have shown the likes of Guillermo del Toro and Mads Mikkelsen, along with fresh rumors that Emma Stone may also be starring in the game.
Why work with real actors? Kojima said actors bring an unpredictability to the project, with their choices influencing the direction of certain parts of the game, which is what he wanted. Otherwise, traditional CG and animation leads to predictable results that follow Kojima's exact plans, he said. That's not very fun, according to Kojima, while having actors participate makes the game more "lively."
When asked about how far into development Death Stranding is, Kojima said "it's going very well" with the general plan and plot in place and tests being done for the game's systems, characters, and environments. The overall story of the game is not expected to change, but Kojima said details will need to be worked out over the course of development.
It's definitely an exciting time to know that Kojima and his team are working on their next game, but no release window has been announced. The next time gamers could hear about Death Stranding is at E3, most likely during the Sony keynote as Death Stranding is a PlayStation 4 exclusive title.
Death Stranding is currently in development for PlayStation 4.