PlayStation 4

Hideo Kojima Talks Open World, Online Play, And Norman Reedus For Death Stranding



We still have a lot of questions surrounding Hideo Kojima and his studio’s new title, Death Stranding, but he recently talked open world, online play, and more about Norman Reedus at RTX Sydney.


Here’s more from the interview with Hideo Kojima over at the PlayStation Blog:


On Death Stranding’s gameplay:

I can’t really speak on that right now but in a word, it’s an action game – an open world game, with a lot of freedom. You have a lot of freedom of choice to do what you want to do and you can get in vehicles and so on. If you are a fighter, there’s plenty of opportunity for that. If you’re not that type of player, there are other ways to play this game. I can’t really say much more, but it’s an open-world, action game that’s very intuitive to play. Once you get into the world and start to explore more, we’re hoping there’s something there you’ve never seen before.


On its “different” online play:

Again, this is something that we can’t say a lot about at the moment but if you want to play the game stand-alone, without an online component, that’s perfectly fine. We do have an online component and, again, it’s different as there will be something different versus what most people expect from an online game. A lot of games have a ‘campaign mode’ and once you’re done with that you take it to the online mode. This game is not that kind of structure.


On adopting Guerrilla Games’ Engine:

I visited many studios all around the world, meeting many great people. Guerrilla Games in Amsterdam: their technology was just a league ahead of everywhere else. Even though they have an open world they are able to render very rich scenes with many objects. As you know their upcoming game Horizon Zero Dawn, which is coming out in February, has an artistic sensibility, particularly with regards to the use of color, whereas we’re looking for a very photo-realistic sensibility.


Their engine is built for their purposes, for the game that they wanted to create, and as I said we wanted to create a game that even at the very base levels looks very different from that, so we needed to test it to see how far we could tune their engine to fit our purposes.


Usually when you go to use, buy or borrow an engine, someone will say, “Lend us your name,” or of course ask for payment. We had no contract with Guerrilla Games, but when we met them they suddenly gave us a box, a very pretty box. When we opened the box, there was a USB dongle inside that had the source code for the engine.


Keep in mind we had no contract or anything at this stage, yet still they handed over what was basically the crystallisation of their efforts over many years. They simply said, “Mr. Kojima please use this engine,” and we thought these people are incredible.


There was one condition though, that Kojima Productions doesn’t just use the engine, but that we develop the engine together with Guerrilla Games, that it should be a collaborative effort. So we were really blown away by their stance on this and being so open with the engine and we thought “Wow, these are the people we have to work with.”


On more Hollywood stars for the project in the future:

Unfortunately, we can’t really say anything with regards to Death Stranding at the moment, but I feel like this type of method (working with Hollywood stars and actors) in games is going to become the norm in the future. Creating movies and creating games like this, the process is very similar.


On whether the protagonist was written with Norman Reedus in mind:

When I went independent and I was thinking about my first game in my head, I did see Norman playing this character. The visuals of this character were based on using Norman Reedus as the precedent.


On its current development status:

As you know, we have a new office in Tokyo and we’re still hiring additional staff to work with us. We’re still running tests on the game, but we have made it to the stage where we have the framework worked out. This year is all about hardcore production and development, so please look forward to the fruits of our labor further down the road.


Death Stranding is in development for PlayStation 4.

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