Death Stranding is an unconventional game and has gotten a mixed reception, but Hideo Kojima’s first independent effort has gained a high-profile fan: Super Smash Bros. director Masahiro Sakurai. Sakurai gave credit to its ambition and creativity, while voicing some relatively minor complaints about UI issues.
Sakurai shared his thoughts in the Japanese magazine Famitsu (via DualShockers). He praised the game’s originality and said he lost track of time while playing. In particular, he lauded some of its design solutions, like balancing the social sharing aspect with difficulty by gating those helpful connections behind objectives like restoring the Chiral network. He also said many games don’t achieve such a good mixture of story, gameplay, and new possibilities. He said it was a nice reminder of Kojima’s talent.
He did share some reservations, however. He said the UI symbols and text were too small and hard to read, and commented that the UI depends too much on button-hold commands. He also didn’t like volume of small rocks obstructing the landscape. (The text size issue, at least, will be getting an update this month.)
Though many of the Cyber Monday sales are behind us, a good deal on Death Stranding is still available in case Sakurai has you wondering what all the hubbub is about. GameSpot gave the title a 9/10 in our Death Stranding review.
“It’s positive without ignoring pain; in fact, it argues in both its story and its gameplay that adversity itself is what makes things worth doing and life worth living,” wrote Kallie Plagge. “It’s a game that requires patience, compassion, and love, and it’s also one we really need right now.”