A few months ago, Kojima Productions announced Death Stranding’s November 2019 release date. It was a surprising reveal, given that the title was unveiled in 2016. Could the team really have something ready to go in a presumably three to four year development cycle? We’ll know soon enough, but there are doubts as to whether Death Stranding will launch this year. Considering Kojima’s recent words, however, perhaps such doubts should be cast aside. To ensure the title meets its slated release date, the creator said his team is in the “crunch time” of development.
Kojima made note of this in a recent Twitter post, claiming, once again, that Death Stranding will bring something special to the table, something the industry’s never seen before. It seems to achieve this, the studio is putting in extra effort. See Kojima’s tweet on the matter below:
DEATH STRANDING has the element of something never existed before, the gameplay, the world atmosphere, the visuals which we aimed to create. The studio I established was tiny indies but trying our best to deliver the product launching on Nov 8th. Still in crunch time of dev pic.twitter.com/sNvTAc7wwB
— HIDEO_KOJIMA (@HIDEO_KOJIMA_EN) August 1, 2019
Hopefully, “crunch time” isn’t literal, though that unfortunately seems to be the case. Of late, the idea and practice of crunch at game studios has become a hot topic. In game development, periods of crunch oftentimes demand developers sacrifice mental, physical, and emotional health to see a project through to completion in a certain timeframe. These periods can in some cases lead to developers being overworked and underpaid.
In recent months, NetherRealm Studios and Naughty Dog have been accused of employing these practices to unhealthy extremes. Sure, both studios consistently produce quality projects that rarely disappoint, but at what cost? Here’s to hoping the team members at Kojima Productions are not becoming examples of what that cost may entail.
Death Stranding will come to the PlayStation 4 later this year on November 8th. Both the game and its Collector’s Edition are currently available for preorder online and at various retailers.
[Source: Hideo Kojima on Twitter]