Hideo Kojima has spoken out about the mixed reviews Death Stranding has received. Pointing out the differences in reception between European/Japanese critics and American critics, Kojima said that its middling reviews in the US may be a result of reviewers finding it a “difficult game to understand.”
Death Stranding received overall positive reviews, garnering an 83 Metascore. Many US outlets, Game Revolution included, rated the game highly. However, it seems that Kojima has stumbled on some opinions he doesn’t quite agree with.
In an interview with the Italian publication Tgcom24, the Kojima Productions head expressed his thoughts on the less favorable Death Stranding reviews:
“I must say that the game received rave reviews, especially in Europe and Japan. Here in the United States, however, we have had stronger criticisms. Perhaps it is a difficult game to understand for a certain type of critic and audience. Americans are great fans of first-person shooters and Death Stranding isn’t one, it flies higher.
I always try to create new things and disputes and discussions are fine, but it must be said that the Italians or the French have a different artistic sensibility that allows them to appreciate this kind of very original product, not only in video games but also in cinema.”
Death Stranding is an original game, there’s no doubt about it. However, the suggestion that critics were underwhelmed by the game due to not understanding it is questionable. Many reviewers cited its tedious gameplay as the reason behind them not enjoying it, which isn’t related to its high-concept story.
It remains to be seen how much Death Stranding has resonated with its audience. UK sales data has confirmed that it launched at number two in the charts, as the second best-selling new IP of the year behind Days Gone.