Forging connections: the social dynamics of “Death Stranding” as a paradigm shift in gaming
This paper explores the video game Death Stranding as a shift in digital interactive media, emphasizing altruism, collaboration, and social connection in its gameplay. The close reading of the game focuses on features that diverge from traditional norms, pivoting towards a more empathetic, community-driven model and identifies five domains of analysis: narrative infrastructure; game mechanics; player-to-player interactions; player-to-NPC interactions; and player interactions as a social agent. The findings are discussed with the possibility of defining a new genre, named by the game’s creator as a “strand game” (Kojima, 2019a, 2019b). The analysis reveals Death Stranding’s ability to create a deeply immersive sense of unity among players, demonstrating the game’s potential as a model for future video games that prioritize positive social interactions and mutual support.
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.
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