Death Stranding is without a doubt one of the most important games that Hideo Kojima ever made. Why? Because this was the first game that he made with his new studio after his unceremonious departure from Konami after decades of service to them. He wanted his first game to be fresh, bold, unique, and visually stunning. He did accomplish that, even if people still don’t understand all that happened in the title or continue to call it a package delivery simulator.
The point is, the game came out and sold well. So it getting a sequel wouldn’t be that odd, but the game getting a sequel on the Google Stadia? That comes as a surprise, and yet, that was exactly what almost happened.
In a new report, a source claimed that Kojima was working on a single-player-focused follow-up to Death Stranding. For those who haven’t played the game, the original title was multiplayer in the sense that what you did in your version of the world could affect other players, including helping them get from one spot to another via signs you made.
The follow-up would’ve been strictly single-player and for the Stadia instead of the Playstation systems. Here’s where another twist comes in. It wasn’t Google’s idea for the game to be single-player. That was Kojima’s idea. When he pitched it to them after initial approval, Google shut the whole thing down. Why? Because they didn’t believe that solo experiences had a place in the market anymore.
If that sounds familiar, you might remember a certain tweet made by Electronic Arts where it bashed single-player games, and the community revolted. Single-player games absolutely have a market, and they sell incredibly well, including Death Stranding.
But it was Phil Harris himself who shut down the project, a misfire that will be remembered. Then again, given that the project was in its earliest phases back in 2020, and the Stadia is shutting down in January of next year, it’s entirely possible that the title wouldn’t have been finished in time, and porting it might have been very problematic.
So while this was a missed opportunity, it might have been for the best given where we stand now.