Death Stranding developer Hideo Kojima has said that he decided to make his upcoming title an open world experience because it was hard for him to go back to making linear games after Metal Gear Solid V: The Phantom Pain.
In an interview with 4Players.de at gamescom 2019, where Death Stranding had quite the showing, Kojima said (translation via ResetEra):
After experiencing an action game in an open world, you can not just go back to other things. That’s what I thought because of the interactivity. Of course, there are other ways to make a game. A linear game, for example. However, I can not go back after having had the experience of having a large-scale world in a game. The problem, however, is the technology. Of course, it is technically difficult to create an open world. The player has the greatest possible freedom in an open world. Therefore, you are never really sure what the player will do. In this context, storytelling in an open-world game is the biggest challenge. As there is more and more freedom, it means that the story sometimes gets in the way of a distraction.
So in Phantom Pain I started with a kind of experiment by starting linear. And once the world opens, the story fades in a way. Some Hideo Kojima fans were not happy that the story takes a backseat. But this was done very consciously. This time was the biggest challenge and the biggest obstacle: It’s an open world, but at the same time we do not want to reduce the importance of the story, so fans of Hideo Kojima games will not be disappointed.
Elsewhere in the interview, Kojima was asked what he thought of developers involving fans and their communities in a game’s development process. He didn’t seem open to the idea, stating that if he allowed people to have a say in his work, it would compromise his vision.
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Kojima is of the view that fans should be given a chance to demo games in order to gain valuable feedback on aspects such as control schemes. However, he doesn’t agree with changing any core tenets of his games just because fans demand something different.
Death Stranding will release on November 8, 2019 for the PlayStation 4.
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