After much talk about the upcoming game from Hideo Kojima’s studio, we finally got a proper trailer for Death Stranding at The Game Awards on December 7th. As one would expect, the trailer was visually stunning, unnerving, and mystifying.

“Once there was an explosion,” the trailer begins, “a bang that gave birth to time and space. Once there was an explosion, a bang which set a planet spinning in that space. Once there was an explosion, a bang which gave rise to life as we know it. And then came the next explosion…”

We then see Norman Reedus’ character, Sam, awaken in the middle of a rainstorm. Next to him are the rest of his crew and one is severely injured. They are not alone as there is something out there with them; an unknown, invisible entity that can hear them breathe. We don’t see the monster, but hand prints in the muddy ground tell us that this creature is on the hunt.

The first target is the body of a dead person, who shakes and disappears in to the ground. It’s violent and scary, but it seems that this is expected. Of course, the injured crewman starts to scream, drawing attention to the remaining people who are alive. As black ooze begins to enclose his body, the only left to do it to kill him and end his misery.

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This is where things get weird. A lone figure in black stands upon a sinking space shuttle, and points. What is he pointing at? Who knows, but the nervous crewman starts to haphazardly shoot at whatever he thinks is coming for them. A black hand reaches out from the mud and grabs his leg, while another invisible hand grabs him and lifts him off the ground.

This isn’t the only strange thing happening in this trailer. Attached to the man’s stomach is an artificial womb, and in that womb, is a baby. Knowing that he is about to die, he disconnects the womb from his stomach and tosses it at Sam. As he draws the gun to his head, the unseen force stops him from killing himself, but in an act of pure desperation, the man begins to stab himself to death.

This scene is scary, and it is an image that stays with you. You don’t know why this man has an artificial womb, you don’t know what the black things are or the unseen forces. You only know that you’re scared, and that the world these characters live in now defies all logic.

This proven when the mud begins to rise, as though gravity is failing. High above them a terrifying massive alien looms overhead and explodes. Sam finds himself deep in the ocean, and he sees the bodies of other people floating to the top. But then we see his body at the bottom of the ocean, and as this version of Sam opens his mouth, a baby’s face appears.

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When Sam wakes up, he holds the artificial womb in his hand, and we are led to believe that the baby inside has died. As Sam looks on, a single tear falls from his face.

“Once there was an explosion,” the trailer concludes, “a bang which gave rise to life as we know it. And then came the next explosion…an explosion that would be our last.”

Attempting to piece together what this game could be about would probably take a few more posts and a lot of deep thought. It is clear that we are dealing with alien invaders in some form and that perhaps the human race is all but extinct. The fact that there are artificial wombs makes it seem that the babies are meant to be kept safe from this alien presence. It also looks like that these aliens control the sky and the ground, and can appear in many forms.

This all supposition, of course, because not much information has been provided as to what this game is really about. This 8-minute trailer is rich with imagery and symbolism, so we can assume that this stunningly gorgeous looking game will be something players will be talking about for a while.

In addition to Norma Reedus’ appearance in this game, the versatile Mads Mikkelsen will also be playing a major role. I am almost certain that the cloaked black figure on top of the spaceship was him. We’ll have to wait and see what information comes out in the next few months, but for now, we have new key art that Hideo Kojima tweeted out a few days ago (and look, there’s the baby!). 

As of now, there is no release date. Hopefully it will be released in 2018, but it might very well be in 2019. The game will be exclusively for the PlayStation 4.

If you have any theories about the game, let me know. I am eager to hear what you all think about the new trailer.

 

 

Renee Lopez
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