Analysis / Review: Death Stranding [2019]; Part One: In Which We Hereby Enter Into a Contract

Cᴏɴᴛᴇɴᴛ Iɴᴅᴇx

an analysis, a review, and a story; written over time and space, by the Team.
(This is not a review or an analysis. This is just an introduction.)

Before I go on: Hello everyone! It’s been a while. And I have a few things to explain…

This is a new sort of post we’re trying out on The Corvid Review. Instead of doing the analysis and review all in one go like we usually do, we’re chopping it up into a series of posts. Once we’re done with all of the posts, I’ll edit them together into a ‘master-post’. The reason we’re doing this is because there’s a lot we’ve got to talk about and it’d be easier for people to read if we broke everything up. This post isn’t going to be a review or an analysis, and I’ll explain why later on.

Here are the posts we know are coming your way. A few more posts might jump in along the way depending on how much we have to talk about.

ᴇᴘɪsᴏᴅᴇs (ᴄᴏɴᴛᴇɴᴛs)

  • ɪɴᴛʀᴏᴅᴜᴄᴛɪᴏɴ ᴛsɴ
  • ᴀɴᴀʟʏsɪs (ᴛʙᴀ) ᴛᴄʀ
  • ʀᴇᴠɪᴇᴡ (ɢᴀᴍᴇᴘʟᴀʏ) ᴀᴡᴍ
  • ᴄᴏɴᴄʟᴜsɪᴏɴs ᴛsɴ

For now, we hope you enjoy this new kind of post, and with all that out of the way, let’s get to it!


Sᴘᴏᴛᴡᴏᴍᴀɴ

Once, there was an explosion. A bang which gave birth to time and space.
Once, there was an explosion. A bang which set planets 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.

I already know one of us is going to have a big problem with that opening dialogue. But I digress…

Death Stranding is the latest videogame by the Almighty God Himself. Or at least that’s what you’d think if you’ve ever heard his fans talking about him. Hideo Kojima is a game director who’s most famous for his Metal Gear games, and this is the first time in over twenty-five years that he’s released a (finished) original game which has nothing to do with Metal Gear (according to his Wikipedia).

(His Wikipedia also says that he voiced God once.)

I’ve heard from many people that Death Stranding was expected to be one of the biggest games of the year, but funnily, none of the gamers I know seem to know about it or be interested in it. I saw ads for it on YT and other places and it looked really strange, but also really good. It seemed like the kind of thing that one of us would write a review of.

I guessed that the Captain would be reviewing the game since he’s such a huge fan of the guy, but that wasn’t happening either. The game is a PS4 exclusive, and Crowman has no interest in buying one since he’d also have to buy a TV and other things with it. I’ve owed him a review for a long time, and he asked me if I’d be up for it. But I’m not a gamer, and no one around me seems to be playing it.

I asked him if he was planning on sitting out the whole thing, and he told me wasn’t. He told me that someone had already uploaded all the story cinematics to YT, and he was having a good time sitting back and watching it. But he also said that he didn’t want to review a game without actually playing it. The best he could do is analyse the story whenever he was done watching the nine hours (NINE!) of video that the game has, but that he didn’t feel like he needed to rush it.

I was actually so interested in what he told me about what was going on in the game that I asked him if he could send me the link to the video. What he was describing was really… messy. Crowman could explain ‘space physics’ to a six-year old, so it wasn’t that hard to follow, but I knew things were a lot more complicated than he was making them out to be.

And I watched a bit (a lot, actually), and I loved it. This is the strangest, weirdest thing I’ve ever seen (and I’ve seen Videodrome), and I knew we needed a full review.

But a full review means I needed to find someone who had played the game. And the game gave me a great idea. The game has this storyline about making America “whole” again (MAWA! Put that on a hat!), and I figured that with everything that’s been going on these days, I decided we needed to do something similar to make this review work. And yep! The reason why this post isn’t a review or an analysis is because this is actually more of a ‘Team Update’! What we needed to do is to rebuild the U.C.A., the United Corvid Alliance. And to find a reviewer, I’d have to rebuild a network to find a player, just like what Sam ‘BRIDGES Porter’ has to do in the game.

And that’s what I set out to do. I, Spotwoman ‘CORVIDS Writer’, have been rebuilding all the Corvid network. And I think I’m on to someone. I think I’ve got just the person who’ll complete the network for our Death Stranding review. There are still a lot of packages to pick up and deliver before we can get a review done, but the great work has started. For now, why don’t I give you my ‘opening thoughts’ on what I’ve seen so far?

Dᴇᴀᴛʜ Sᴛʀᴀɴᴅɪɴɢ
Sᴘᴏᴛᴡᴏᴍᴀɴ

So far, I’ve seen something like an hour and a half of the YT video and I’m completely confused.

This is the situation. Something very bad has happened on Earth. Some kind of ‘explosion’ has basically eradicated the world’s population. And all that’s left are these little cities that are connected by ‘the Network’. The game takes place in the US, and it’s not confirmed whether or not the rest of the world is still even around.

Things are bad. Whenever a person dies and their body starts decomposing, their body begins to build up this black substance which eventually blows up and craters the place the body was. There are these (mostly) invisible ghosts called BTs which show up from time to time and they come with rain that makes everything it touches age faster. There’s this weird afterlife place (I’m pretty sure that’s what it is) called the beach where some people can go to when they die and from where the main character can somehow come back to life. Some people have this disease called DOOMS and it does something we don’t know too much about yet. People cry a lot because they’re allergic to what’s going on around them, and there are lots and lots of stranger things (lol) going on all over the place.

This game really brings back memories of Stranger Things for me, since I’m such a big fan of the show, but there aren’t really that many connections. One thing that’s clear right from the beginning is that this game has a lot of backing. We’ve all heard of Hollywood actors popping up in games these days, joining up with the people we know from their voices. But this game really pushes that whole thing.

There are Hollywood directors in this game… acting. GDT (one of my favourite directors ever because of Pan’s Labyrinth) and NWR (who’s made some really pretty films) are both in this game.

Apart from them, Norman Reedus is playing the main character Sam, Léa Seydoux is playing a mystery woman named Fragile, theatre actor Tommie Earl Jenkins (who I’m pretty sure I’ve seen as the Genie at the Old Vic) and Margaret Qualley from that horrible Death Note film and the new Tarantino film are also here. There’s voice actor Troy Baker actually acting, and Mads Mikkelsen playing someone we haven’t met so far. The trailers both say they’re villains, but I don’t think Mads is actually playing a villain in this game. The original bionic woman Lindsay Wagner and Emily O’Brien round out the cast, and I’m sure there are more names that I haven’t seen yet involved in this game.

Just looking at those names, Death Stranding sure has a lot of star power.

It’s a very pretty game, with a lot to look at, but I’m not sure how much there’s to do. But it’s the kind of game where I think the story is more important than what you have to play with.

There’s a lot of story, and there are some really funny things in the game. People have some of the supidest names I’ve ever heard, and Die-hardman is my favourite out of all of them. People talk way too much, but I don’t mind it. I like the way everyone’s trying to figure out what’s going on by smacking each other in the face with story.

I’ll get around to what I think about the game later on, but those are my two cents for now. I’m going to be a while getting back since I’m setting out to MTCRWA! But the next post is going to explain pretty much everything in the game because Crowman’s seen the whole thing and is going to do what he does best.

See you on the other side.

— Bye!


Next:


Here’s the game cover:

5 thoughts on “Analysis / Review: Death Stranding [2019]; Part One: In Which We Hereby Enter Into a Contract”

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