Death Stranding will have a very easy difficulty mode, creator Hideo Kojima confirms in a post on social media. Gameplay trailers had showed some incredibly difficult moments, such as this video of protagonist Sam trying to escape from a huge B.T. or Beached Thing.
On Twitter, Kojima's assistant Ayako revealed that she had been enjoying a test playthrough of Death Stranding on the very easy difficulty mode. This prompted Kojima to explain that while he had planned to offer just an easy mode in Death Stranding, he later added the very easy difficulty "so that it can be enjoyed by non-game-experienced Western fans." Kojima also suggests that it is so the many actors of Death Stranding, such as Norman Reedus, Maks Mikkelsen, and Lea Seydoux would be able to enjoy the game without finding themselves stuck because of the difficulty.
Ayako's tweet confirms that Death Stranding will have three different difficulty modes. Very easy mode is described as "perfect for Western fans and RPG users who don't play games," while normal or hard mode are described as "recommended for action game lovers."
普通はイージーまでですが、ノーマンやマッツ、レアさんなどが出演しているので、ゲーム未経験者の洋画ファンでも楽しめるようにと、ベリー・イージーを用意しました。パックマンの1面がクリア出来なかった矢野さんもベリー・イージーで楽しみながら、クリア出来ました👍🌈🦀😅 https://t.co/qR0lWdcIzx— 小島秀夫 (@Kojima_Hideo) September 5, 2019
How to beat the game on Hard guide— Hyper Light Drifter (@MyhawkNr1) September 5, 2019
It's unclear just how Death Stranding's each difficulty mode will make the game easier or harder. Some have jokingly responded to Kojima suggesting that the game will make Sam pee more powerfully. More realistically, Sam will probably have to be far less cautious around B.T.s, which are alerted to sounds and movements or he may be more resilient against them. It may also allow Sam to use his B.B. for longer without having to sync it to its Still Mother so that it can remain in service.
Other incredibly difficult games that have flirted with the idea of adding easy difficulty modes have been met with huge backlash. An easy mode mod for Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice made boss battles easier and made the game more accessible but it also ignited a vicious debate online as people asked whether it was right for difficult games to be played this way. There was also a meme as someone suggested that playing a game on easy mode is "cheating" the game and the player who has switched it on.
So far, Death Stranding seems to be unscathed. Most fans seem to be amused by the suggestion that the game's actors aren't very good at playing games and agree that they shouldn't not get to play Death Stranding just because they don't have experience.
Death Stranding will be released on November 8, 2019 on PS4.