Death Stranding is a massive game. After three weeks, players are finally reaching its conclusion. Going through the narrative takes anywhere between twenty-five and sixty hours, depending on the amount of side content one engages with.
Typical to a Hideo Kojima game, the narrative is filled with shocking twists and turns, ten of which are featured on the list below. Obviously, this list is going to be chock full of spoilers, so veer your eyes away now if you want to experience all the revelations firsthand (but look here if you want some spoiler-free thoughts). For those who have beaten Death Stranding, enjoy reliving some incredibly emotional scenes.
10 The First Voidout
The long introduction includes a sequence where Sam is helping a crew bring a dead body to an incinerator. Unfortunately, BT's, or Beach Things, descend upon them before the job is done. As a result, a voidout triggers and Central Knot city is caught in the middle of it.
What makes this scene particularly harrowing is the two other men with Sam. One of them gets caught by a BT and his colleague shoots him as he is dragged away. The second one gets taken eventually, tries to turn the gun on himself to discover it's empty and resorts to stabbing himself to death instead of being taken by the monsters. Unfortunately, the efforts are in vain, because a voidout occurs anyway.
9 Fragile & The Timefall
At the beginning of the game, Fragile mentions her body being destroyed by timefall, a type of rain that instantly ages anything it touches. In episode 3, she explains that Higgs forced her to run through the timefall with only her face shielded from the damage in order to save South Knot city from a nuclear explosion.
If she hadn't run through it, Higgs would have blown up the city. The scene plays out as a flashback and gamers see it age her body in real-time. To rub salt in the wounds, many lost trust in the courier after the incident, blaming her for the loss of Middle Knot City.
8 Mama's Baby
Upon first meeting Mama, players learn she is tethered to a BT who is also her child. During childbirth, the hospital was attacked by terrorists, trapping her inside pinned beneath rubble. She gave birth and the child was a BT.
She lived, but could never leave the hospital, as her connection to the child meant she would die if she did. Ultimately, the tie is severed as she agrees to let Sam bring her to her twin sister, revealing that Mama passed away during the attack, and was only kept in this semi-living state because of her BT baby.
7 Heartman's Origins
Heartman undergoes cardiac arrest every twenty-one minutes to spend three days searching the beaches for his deceased wife and child. When he first died from an unsuccessful heart operation, his family also passed in a voidout and he briefly saw them before being brought back to life.
This specific scene is heart-wrenching to watch. Upon death, he is confused but at least has the solace of being with his loved ones. As he realizes he is being brought back to life, he begs and tries to claw his way to his family as he is being dragged away into the world of the living. It's an interesting twist on a scene to see someone beg to stay dead.
In a twist for an open-world action game, one plays for upwards of twelve hours before engaging with gunplay. The first real shootouts occur when Sam gets taken in by a chiral storm and transported onto a battlefield.
This is where he fights Cliff for the first time. It's shocking for just how different it is to the rest of the game. Other parts take place in barren areas where one walks for minutes without seeing life. In these battlefields, explosions and flames are abundant.
5 Sam's Wife
Sam was married at one time, but he doesn't speak out about it. Deadman eventually gets to the bottom of his past, though, and relays the tragic tale of his spouse and unborn child. While pregnant, his wife committed suicide, which triggered a voidout.
This event caused Sam to leave Bridges and strike out on his own. He lived this way for ten years before the game's introduction brought him back into the fold. This explains how he forges such a strong connection with his BB. He was almost a father once before unimaginable tragedy struck.
4 BB's Death
Right after saving the world and the country's new beginning, Sam learns of Lou's passing. This is just as tragic for Sam as it is for the player. Gamers have been relying on Lou for detecting BT's and keeping them safe. Side by side for anywhere between thirty to sixty hours, the two traversed arduous terrain and the player spent time comforting the BB as it cried after a tumble.
Fortunately, Sam makes an effort to revive it instead of putting it in an incinerator. The effort works, leading to a happy ending.
3 The Truth About Amelie
Amelie is Sam's adopted sister and Bridget Strand's daughter, at least, that's what everyone was led to believe. The truth contains far more cosmic consequences. She is the extinction entity behind the Death Stranding and the architect of the upcoming Last Stranding aimed at wiping out all life.
To make things even more bizarre, she and Bridget share the same consciousness. Sam's actions convince Amelie to spare humanity from immediate extinction, but as a result, she disconnects herself from the world, dooming herself to wait an eternity on her beach, alone.
2 Clifford Killing His Wife
In order to escape with his unborn child, Clifford must kill his comatose wife to sever the connection between her and the BB. In the final cut scene detailing the climactic moments of his life, players see him put a pillow over the woman's face and shoot her several times.
Clifford is a soldier and has killed in the past, but ending the life of one's own wife is a heartbreaking task, even if it's the only way to save the couple's child.
1 Sam's First Death
Sam ultimately finds out that Cliff is his father during the last cinematic. Additionally, it shows Die-Hardman killing his former comrade, an act which ultimately results in Sam's death as a recently freed Beach Baby. It's a horrific scene, showing Cliff lifeless on the floor and the baby next to him with its own pool of blood.
The imagery alone is shocking enough to make it number one on this list. Showing an infant getting murdered would come off as tasteless in most other cases, but the drama leading up to it prevents the moment from feeling exploitative. It is here when Amelie decides to make Sam a repatriate, making death a non-issue for him in the real world.