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Death Stranding gameplay details finally explained

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The mystery has been solved

Kojima Productions

Even if you’ve watched every single Death Stranding trailer so far, you’d be forgiven for having no clue what the game actually is. That’s become the running joke, really — look at this wacky game! Can anyone make sense of it? Well, now you don’t have to.

While the nine-minute trailer released yesterday gives fans a closer look at what they can expect (sneaking, fighting, materializing ladders out of thin air), the official Death Stranding website gives us a more concrete understanding of what’s going on in Kojima’s latest fever dream.

After the collapse of civilization, Sam Bridges — that’s Norman Reedus — has to save everyone “from the brink of extinction,” the website says. The “Death Stranding” refers to supernatural events that occur after a series of mysterious explosions. These areas of impact are plagued with otherworldly creatures that threaten to kill all life. As Sam Bridges, you’ll brave that wasteland to try and save everyone. Most of this we could have guessed to some degree after watching trailer footage.

So we know what Death Stranding is about, but what will you actually do while playing? Based on the gameplay section of the official site, you’re going to be delivering cargo.

“Protect your supplies from wild bandits, and stay safe from the terrifying Beached Things … or face failing those who depend on you,” the site says.

The game emphasizes the terrain, which will be full of obstacles to overcome. The goal is to find a route through the supernatural elements that can alter the surrounding landscape.

Death Stranding will have online functionality, but it won’t be typical co-op. Instead, it’ll be asynchronous gameplay where you can “send supplies, share safe houses and walk in the footsteps of fellow couriers to reunite civilization.”

Another interesting feature: Kojima’s latest game won’t have a typical fail state. If you are defeated, you’ll re-appear in an “upside down realm” that you can escape from. “Choose your combat methods carefully, as killing your foe is almost never the solution – and every death carries a consequence,” the site warns.

Basically, everyone who joked that Death Stranding would be somewhat like a mailman simulator was kinda right — if delivering mail required you to run away from Mads Mikkelsen while carrying a throat baby.

Death Stranding will be released for PS4 on November 8.