Death Stranding's Review Embargo Has Ended: Come Read Our Review

Does Kojima Productions' first game match his work on Metal Gear Solid?

89 Comments

Update: The review embargo has lifted, and our Death Stranding review is now live, as are many other outlets' thoughts. Check out our video review above, and for more takes, check out our review roundup. You now have less than a week to wait if you're excited to get your hands on the game, with the PS4 release coming on November 8. If you'd prefer to play on your computer, a PC version was recently confirmed for release in 2020.

Original Story: First revealed at E3 2016, Death Stranding's development has been accompanied by a slow-drip of trailers and gameplay demos. Only in the past few weeks have people outside of Kojima Productions been able to get their hands on the long-awaited game, and although opinions are still under embargo, that won't be the case for much longer. The review embargo for Death Stranding lifts on November 1 at 12:01AM PT / 3:01 AM ET / 7:01 AM GMT / 6 PM AET. So not long now. If you need something to do while you wait, check out the Death Stranding launch trailer--though, be warned, it's a bit spoilery.

The most recent opportunity for Kojima to demonstrate what he's been working on since leaving Konami was Tokyo Game Show 2019. There, over the course of two days, Kojima gave us a deeper look into the moment-to-moment gameplay of Death Stranding, which included everything from mundane traversal to battles against supernatural enemies. He followed that up with a closer look at the private quarters of Sam Porter Bridges, the main character played by Norman Reedus. It was a very revealing demo, though not in the way you might expect.

Reedus is but one of many celebrities that will appear in Death Stranding, along with Guillermo Del Toro, Mads Mikkelsen, and Lea Seydoux, to name but a few. Sadly, Keanu Reeves won't make an appearance despite rumors. We've also learned that real-world brands like Monster Energy will also be prominently featured in the game--it's anyone's guess as to whether or not these inclusions will have an impact on the credibility of the fictional (and strange) world that Kojima has crafted.

In fact, the strangeness has been at the heart of the game's messaging since the very beginning. If you fell off trying to make sense of Death Stranding a long time ago, now is the perfect time to brush up on everything we've learned so far, including details about the world, the characters that inhabit it, and the unusual constraints that will be set upon Sam as you guide him across treacherous terrain in a bid to reunite the once united states of America.

If our current Death Stranding guide isn't enough, you can also take Kojima's very straightforward explanation below:

After Death Stranding reviews land on November 1, the rest of us will have to wait until the game releases on November 8 to see what all the fuss is about. (Kept you waiting, huh?)

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phili878

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I’m just really disappointed about this being a PS4 exclusive. A game like this on the PC would look superb.

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lonesamurai00

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@phili878: No one said that this game is a Playstation exclusive. It is said to be a Sony timed exclusive, with a PC version coming at a later time. He wants this game on PC, he just can't say that.

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phili878

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@lonesamurai00: it won’t come out anytime soon. He must have a 1 year exclusive with them.

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BeefoTheBold

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Generally speaking a good sign for a game if they aren't worried about the reviews and are willing to let them come out a week before the game does.

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Bread_or_Decide

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@BeefoTheBold said:

Generally speaking a good sign for a game if they aren't worried about the reviews and are willing to let them come out a week before the game does.

And even with good reviews, people will hate on it and call the critics liars.

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BeefoTheBold

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@Bread_or_Decide: Kojima games aren't really my cup of tea, but hopefully the game will be great for the people who do like his work. Fingers crossed.

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aross2004

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@Bread_or_Decide: Well, yeah. What else would you expect?

OR, if it gets bad reviews, people will call the critics haters or "edgy".

Gotta love those no win situations ;)

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lonesamurai00

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@aross2004: Thank you for removing that Star Citizen comment. Apparently even you realized how really dumb, and ill-conceived it was. You're showing progress - keep it up.

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phili878

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@lonesamurai00: Relax there buddy...he took the comment off but nagging on it still afterwards is about on the same level.

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lonesamurai00

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Edited By lonesamurai00

@phili878: He made the comment though. I just happened to see that it was gone, but why make the comment in the first place? Star Citizen is riding on a huge high - Digital Foundry has even taken notice with regards to the latest game changing updates, and yet he's still repeating the same parrot like comments from 2013.

He removed it because it was a dumb comment by a clueless Sony console gamer who hates the fact that his sacred console game (Death Stranding) is making the jump to PC after the Sony timed exclusivity ends.

Folk like him need to do some research before posting comments.

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phili878

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@lonesamurai00: I understand and 100% agree with people’s SC frustration, I am a backer myself. I want to play a full game, at least a SP game about now. I have played all alpha versions plenty but the new content does not impress me. That game got huge sums and progress is way too slow. As you see gaming sites do not even really bother with it. The problem is that so many fanboys glorify each small update they make and they keep protecting CIG. This game has to be ready at some point, or cut down on plans and dreams and have this game done already and then add those updates later. This now is a ridiculous concept, it will go on forever like this.

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lonesamurai00

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Edited By lonesamurai00

@phili878: That's hilarious really! People who got in were looking for a game that they could FULLY PLAY within several months or so. Hey, I don't defend the game, or the choices that have been made, but I did have sense enough to know that I was supporting a game that was going to be bigger than anything ever made (which is why it is a PC only game), and that it would never truly be finished, because it would always receive feature updates, and constant advancements, both in features, graphics and performance down the road.

Star Citizen makes No Man's Sky look, feel, and play like a console title - wait it is a console title, hmmm, go figure. No Man's Sky is beautiful though... on the PC that is...

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phili878

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Edited By phili878

@lonesamurai00: i waited since 2014 for what.....small alpha updates? What bothers me is they keep adding new ships instead of finally doing a game!! They just keep selling new and new stuff to generate money of which the tiniest fraction of it is actually being used. You are right when you say many people expect a full game in a short period but many early backers like us starting to feel really nervous about what might really be happening here.

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lonesamurai00

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@phili878: Small alpha updates? Know what, since there is currently no game out there (neither currently available or under development) to compare Star Citizen against, I'll simply right your comments off to a disappointed gamer who didn't know what they were buying into.

Updates 3.7.0, and 3.7.1 are a hell of a lot more than selling ships.... and stuff.

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Jarrkha

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A whole week early, huh? Good for you publications, then.

I'll be reading it out of curiosity, next year.

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VANGUARD003

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Edited By VANGUARD003

A better title for this article would have been, "The Death Stranding review embargo lifts on November 1st."

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itchyflop

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Hes definitely a story teller.

If you dont buy into this and his way of gaming with a heavy emphasis on story your missing the game entirely.

A lot of people hated mgsV but i thought it was a clear step in the right direction with the power available of the newer hardware.

This seems "boring" or different but you cannot deny the originality of it, whether that translates to good gaming or more of a journey is to be seen.

For me i always think your getting you moneys worth with Kojima and his work.

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DoomsdayHell01

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Edited By DoomsdayHell01

I don't know he has been boring the crap out of people for all this time with all his boring game footage's. Based with i seen so far this looks like a 7 out 10 if not lower but i have a feeling since Sony is involve one way or the other that is gonna end up getting a high score whether it deserves it or not. This either is a master piece or is going to be a Bomb at the video game office.

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Crazy_sahara

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Edited By Crazy_sahara

If it's below something GameSpot will recieve anus or creamy cream.

But if above they will receive a xxtreme play at the station box complaints.

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EdwardNygma

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Edited By EdwardNygma

I don’t buy any game early on if it has a review embargo. It shows they don’t have confidence in the final product.

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phili878

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@edwardnygma: good way of looking at it.

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GustavoB

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@edwardnygma: wich means you never bought any game early on.

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aross2004

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@edwardnygma: LOL! The embargo lifts a full week before the release date. Most games never have reviews that far in advance.

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Bread_or_Decide

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@aross2004 said:

@edwardnygma: LOL! The embargo lifts a full week before the release date. Most games never have reviews that far in advance.

The gamer attitude of "hate first, find out the truth later" continues.

Do people even know what they're upset about anymore?

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GamerBum

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Well from what I’ve seen so far can’t say I’m that excited really. I have a feeling this is gonna disappoint. 7/10.

Mind you it’ll probably get 9/10 or above just because it’s a playstation title. Coz you know what the gaming media are like.

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Willowvale75

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Well either this game is a bonafide masterpiece then, OR, it's another scam and ploy, by Sony and Kojima and the press, to try to sell more games. And it will get 9 or 10's, whether it deserves it or not. I don't trust it. I was fooled once with MGSV. There is no in between. So either it's amazing or we're getting scammed again for sales.

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ScreamingSatori

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@willowvale75: What was so bad about MGSV? I thought it was a great game. After the original Metal Gear Solid (which I hated), I refused to play another MGS game because of all the cheap tricks like having to switch the controller port. A friend of mine convinced me to try MGSV, and I wasn't disappointed.

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Willowvale75

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@screamingsatori: Where to begin. Let's see. False claim, boring as hell open world with NOTHING in it. Nothing. Dropped off in a helicopter over and over. Then funneled through canyons and crap to the mission. Rinse and repeat. Missions were repetitive, doing things over and over again, in areas and bases you were already there. Lame water ship base management side game was useless. Unfinished story and bad ending. Overall, pretentious and repetitive and empty world. Yup give it 10/10!!! lol. Nope.

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ScreamingSatori

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@willowvale75: Sounds like a case of having your expectations set too high and then being let down. Yeah, it's true that there was a lot of empty space outside of mission areas and some of the missions were repetitive, but I went in knowing nothing about the game and having zero expectations and I had a lot of fun playing it. I never got tired of knocking out and extracting every enemy in the area. That balloon extraction mechanic was pretty funny.

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martintule24

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I just pre-ordered the special edition from Best Buy. I'm going to be sad when my Gamers Club Unlocked 20% off expires.

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naruto945

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Wowza Please be good x30

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lonesamurai00

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I'm waiting for the PC version of this weird game.

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martintule24

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@lonesamurai00: I would get it for PC if it has a first person mode. When it's in third person view, I like to be on the couch.

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lonesamurai00

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@martintule24: Available mods for The Witcher 3, Mass Effect: Andromeda, Just Cause 1,2,3, and 4, and all of the GTA titles make all of these games playable in a first-person view on the PC, and with the desired FOV, so I'm sure that Death Stranding wouldn't be a problem either - just saying.

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phili878

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@lonesamurai00: You can wait a long time.

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lonesamurai00

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@phili878: Playing on PC vs on a Playstation console will be worth the wait.

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phili878

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@lonesamurai00: no argument there

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Zanarkand102

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This is a good thing. Just like movie studios that put embargoes on reviews or don't let critics into screenings before release, it typically means the studio knows its junk. Hideo letting reviewers post a week before release means they are confident the reviews will be good for sales. Let's hope so.

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Just_Visiting

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Edited By Just_Visiting

I'm always wary of games that have review embargoes. I've no doubt it will get high reviews but I suspect the game will be more style over substance. Kojima is in danger of becoming a victim of his own hubris ever since the gaming community put him on such a grand pedestal due to the Konami debacle. As much as Phantom Pain was a marvel from a gaming and technical standpoint, Kojimas writing and ideas have become more outlandish and strange as a result. I was heavily put off from Phantom Pain when I had to escape a medical facility while being pursued by a man riding a flaming horse. Kojima is in danger of alienating Western audiences by leaning too much towards anime inspired tropes in his games and it'll come to a point where he might go too far in the wrong direction and gamers will forget when they thought he was the second coming of Jesus.

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aross2004

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Edited By aross2004

@just_visiting: The review embargo gets lifted a week before the game drops. That leaves no reason to be wary.

Based on these early reviews, we will have all the information we need to make a decision regarding whether to purchase or not.

It seems like there is a lot of confidence with this game to lift the embargo a full week in advance of the release date.

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meharu

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Keanu Reeves will be in Death Stranding 2 for sure.

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soulfulDAGGER

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Kojima Of The Year. 11/10

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Mozelleple112

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Greatest game of all time. Calling it now

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Forester057

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Well. No matter what it'll be different and at this point in my life different is needed. Whether that "different" is good or not is Yet to Be Determined. I like his story telling and originality. Good sign he wants the reviews a week ahead of release! Hope it pays off for him.

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BDRTFM

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Edited By BDRTFM

Considering all the hype this game has received since being announced, far more than No Man's Sky or any game in recent memory, it has to be at minimum a 9/10 or people are going to be very angry. I don't look at too much info for games like this because I don't like even minimal spoilers. But the little I have seen still makes me wonder just what the heck this game is about. I know it has a baby and the protagonist walks. A lot. I mean a really whole lot. And occasionally really freaky mobs try to kill him for some really strange reason. It looks intriguing but is it fun? Guess we'll find out in a couple of weeks.

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Gr4h4m833zy

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Well if there is no online requirement then i want it!

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