Hideo Kojima er uten tvil en av bransjens mest ikoniske, men også mest enigmatiske skapere. Mannen som bragte oss Metal Gear Solid-serien er kjent for sine kreative visjoner og unike spill, og det er uten å nevne hans andre prosjekter som det kansellerte Silent Hills, som virket meget lovende ut ifra P.T., som var teaseren som ble utgitt i 2014.
Men nå vender alle blikket mot Death Stranding, det kommende spillet fra Kojima Productions som har fanget spillverdenens interesse, hvorav halvparten av interessen kommer fra det vi har sett så langt, mens den andre halvparten kommer fra nysgjerrigheten om hvordan det hele egentlig blir. Kojima har holdt mye tilbake angående spillet, og derfor vil vi veldig gjerne høre mer om prosjektet fra mannen selv.
Og det er nettopp dét Gamereactors egne Andreas fikk gjøre da vi var i Japan for Tokyo Game Show. Etter å ha sett massevis av gameplay på showet (vi anbefaler at du sjekker ut alt det selv), satt vi oss ned med Death Strandings skaper for å snakke om hans seneste prosjekt, og vi har nå en innholdsrik Q&A å dele med dere.
Takk for at du tok deg tiden til å prate med oss i dag. Mitt første spørsmål handler om fiendene vi så under presentasjonen du ga på scenen på Tokyo Game Show-messen. Du viste oss endelig spillets fiender, altså både mennesker, BT-er og en boss-kamp. Hva var det som egentlig skjedde der? Det var en kjempetsunami som oversvømte hele området?
- The world changes real-time in the game. There is a "Gazer" floating around, and when it spots you, a hunter enemy called "catcher" will appear and try to grab you. The water is not a tsunami; it's tar that rises, altering the world. When you defeat the enemy, the tar goes down and the world changes back. So, it's not like a tsunami, it's the changing of the world.
It's kind of like a challenge I did to make a world that really evolves and changes. In the presentation we defeated the catcher, but if he eats you it creates a wide explosion called "void-out" and that void becomes a crater. It's not game over, so you don't have to repeat the encounter. Sam Bridges (the protagonist) will instead go to another other world in order to reclaim his body and come back. When you come back there, a big crater is created.
So again, all the environment changes as a result of your actions. The cities that you saw before disappears because of the "void-out", so you must go around the craters. If you are defeated by/or eaten by the catcher there will be craters all around. It totally changes how you play the game.
Du har tidligere slått fast, og senere vist, at dette er en stor sosial opplevelse hvor andre spillere kan besøke ditt hem, dine private kamre, og etterlate saker og ting. Vil andres feilede kamper mot disse Catchers vises i mitt spill?
- At first it was, but I didn't want people's mistakes to affect you, I thought. It's a little negative. It's only your world that you affect in your story. If we are playing together, I can see your explosions, but they won't affect my world. The things you carried during an explosion will go into the world, so you will find the packages. It won't affect the story plot of another player.
Hvor mange spillere kan komme og hjelpe meg når jeg kjemper mot en truende fiende? En hel armé?
- It really depends on how you play the game, how many thumbs up you give other players, or how you contribute by creating something - it varies from player to player. Some people don't interact at all and just play the storyline. That way, people don't come and help you. The more you interact with other players indirectly, the more people will come to your aid. There will be a results screen once you complete each mission; you will discover how connected you are to other players. If you are connected, they will be the white Sam support hunters that come and help you during the boss battle. You must play this way, to be connected.
Du har tidligere sagt at Sam er et menneske, men det ser ut til at han ikke er det allikevel, eller? Det er elementer av ham som ser ut til å være rotfestet i det overnaturlige, eller paranormale.
- Well, he's human but what's so special about him is that he has specialties where he can go to the other world and back, re-patch it. He is a re-patcher. You have to play the game to understand him through his past. Basically, he is a special person that can't die. He goes to a beach in between the real world and the world of the dead.
Er det der den første traileren fant sted?
- Yes, that was the beach. So, every time you die, you go there, because it's in between worlds. As stated, you must find your body and come back to the real world. So, he is kind of special in that way. Therefore, his body fluid is also useful to battle against the monsters of the other side. He is a little more resistant than other human beings, but he is not a superman.
Jeg er så glad for å få forklart hva som egentlig foregikk i den første traileren. Nå gir alt mening.
- (ler) I want you to write this actually. A lot of people aren't convinced unless I kind of tell everything. I said it's an open world. You can use anything. It's not a spoiler. It is up to the player what you do. It's not a linear game with a track. I don't want to say anything about the storyline, which is why I said you have to use the past to find out about Sam and what he is. There was a need for more explanation on the game due to a high demand.
Det ser ut til at mange av karakterene i spillet er en form for representasjoner av allerede eksisterende mennesker? Du kar Geoff Keighley, og du har Guillermo del Toro blant andre. Er dette cameoer, og hvis ja, er det plass til meg i spillet?
- (ler) Yes, of course, you can come into the game. Not this one, but the next one, yeah you have a possibility to show up as a cameo.
Jeg gir deg kortet mitt med det samme!
- There are so many rumours already on the internet, who is gonna be on cameo? There is a lot of people.
Mye av samtalen om Death Stranding har sirkulert omkring det man egentlig gjør i spillet. Det ser dog ut til at bare det å utforske kommer til å ta mye av tiden. Er dette designet på samme måte som eksempelvis No Man's Sky?
Yes, it's a special world game system itself. There is so much information, you have new terminology, you may be puzzled about what it is about? But don't worry, when you play the game, you are driven in very slowly at the start. It's not like Terminator or Star Wars. There is no explanation or anything. It's very easy to do it that way and I can do it, but the story progresses slowly. Especially at the beginning. You will feel lost, but don't worry - you will naturally fit in. The system is explained.
Some people say it's almost like the movie Alien, where you are gradually finding out what the whole world is about, what you can do and not do. Maybe it gets really fun when you have completed 50 percent of the game. The player, like in shooters and other genres, go into the game with a known rule and you think you know what a game is about. I didn't want to have that feeling. Everyone should start from ground zero. Not knowing how to pick up and play the game. What I have shown makes you puzzled, but it all really makes sense when you play the game.
Du har flere ganger slått fast at Death Stranding tilhører en ny sjanger ved navn "Social Strand System". Under fremvisningen gikk du litt mer i detaljer, men hvordan skiller det seg fra eksempelvis et spill som Dark Souls, hvor du etterlater beskjeder til andre spillere, som så kan hoppe inn i din dimensjon og hjelpe?
- I actually don't play so many other games; I am too busy. I don't want to create a new genre. I want to create something different for a game. Everyone says it's an open world, it's a stealth game, what's different? I say no. That's not it. You don't have to define a genre. A lot of people just keeps asking me "is it a mission" or? That's why I just set a temporary name as social strand.
- So since it's really new and you saw the footage at Tokyo Game Show, you still must play it to really understand and get the feeling. That's what I say to everyone, you have to play it to feel this new feeling. My staff didn't understand or was opposed to the initial concept. Now it's different, they say things like "just walking in this world is so fun" because everything is up to you. As an example, you can choose yourself how to climb a mountain. They say "oh this is the real open world that we wanted to do". It's not like we have an open wprld and show you what you can do. That's not it. It's like I want you to select your path, where to go. Many say "this game is similar to that or this". However, since I said I don't have time to play all games I did not have an opinion on what the game should be and just wanted to create this world. I want you to play to find out.
The last scene in the Sony stage presentation, where you see the port Knox City and go down the mountains, you might not understand by just watching the video, but if you actually play it, you'll get a totally different feeling. Some people cry in that scene while playing it. People watching the video ask "why did you cry in that scene, just climbing down the mountain". If you play it, you will get this feeling.
Så, kan jeg spille det?
Og til sist, du viste i går at å bruke støvler er viktig. Sams føtter blir hovne, han blir sliten etc. Kan man dø av utmattelse?
- You don't die from fatigue. You kind of die falling from a tall place. But when you die what happens is, you have to find your body in the void and then come back. It's not a game over. That is more a concept from 40 years ago where you had these 25 cents and it kept you playing forever in the arcades or there was a continue system. My game is different. When you die you don't die. You just float in your soul and find your body to dive back in. Of course, if you are unsuccessful in a mission you rewind to do it again in order to progress the story. Other than that, there is no game over. You die, but there is no game over.