Death Stranding is all about building connections with both in-game characters and other players. But how strong might those connections grow to be? Apparently, one in particular could mean life or death for a certain NPC. Early in the game, the protagonist Sam will have the task of delivering medicine to an elderly sick man. According to Hideo Kojima, it then becomes the player’s choice as to whether Sam continues to visit the older gentleman. Should a player choose not to, the ailing NPC will die.
Kojima himself revealed this interesting detail while recently in attendance at the Garage Museum of Modern Art in Moscow. During his public talk, he explained that the connections players build throughout Death Stranding will require careful maintenance. The old man serves as but one example. According to Redditor Keqpup, Kojima shared the following about the old man’s potential fate in Death Stranding:
We have a character who lives deep underground. He is sick and needs medicine, and Sam can deliver it. Since this happens at the beginning of the story, this is a must. After completing this quest, the player himself chooses the following actions: you can constantly go to the old man and carry medicine; can deliver other items; You can listen to his stories from the past.
But the player is constantly moving forward and moving away from the character. And I’m sure that there are gamers who forget about this old man. And then they will remember and return to it. Since they have not carried medicine to him all this time, he will die by this moment. Through such actions, a connection arises with the character.
We really hope that the significance of the connection between people–how it is formed, how it develops–will be revealed, and it will be interesting for you to play it.
This intriguing information raises a slew of questions. Chief among them is how often Sam must visit the older man to ensure his survival. In addition, how does the backtracking work exactly, through a fast travel system? For now, this much and more remains unclear. Of course, this example also calls into question how many other NPCs will rely on Sam’s help in a similar fashion.
Additionally worth noting is how drastically these connections with NPCs may differ from player to player. One person’s Sam may become attached to the sick individual, while others only engage with him a couple of times. As such, it’ll be fascinating to hear about the varying types of experiences Death Stranding offers.
Death Stranding is due out in just a few weeks on November 8th for the PlayStation 4.