Hideo Kojima is one of the biggest names in the gaming industry, with directorial, writing, designing, and/or producing credits in nearly all the Metal Gear series games. The game-creating super force is also the director of Kojima Productions and was once the Vice President of developer/publisher Konami Digital Entertainment. Kojima’s latest endeavor, one that has been buzzed about since it was teased at E3 2016, is Death Stranding.
During the Sony press conference at the 2016 E3 convention, audience members got the first look at Death Stranding, featuring The Walking Dead actor Norman Reedus in the main role. Fast forward a few months to The Game Awards 2016, and Kojima Productions unveiled a second trailer that confirmed Guillermo del Toro’s involvement in Death Stranding. The upcoming open-world action game also took aboard actor Mads Mikkelsen as one of its primary antagonists, and while making gaming magic, Mikkelsen and Kojima have formed a strong friendship.
Earlier this week, Mikkelsen visited the Kojima Productions studio, as game actors tend to do, and Kojima treated him to an immersive, noteworthy afternoon excursion. Evidenced by the pictures snapped and posted on Kojima’s Twitter account, the Death Stranding duo began the day in elegant dining wear, enjoying a nice seaside view while they had a likely even nicer chat. Next came the usual tour trappings, where Mikkelsen stopped to sign the wall and check out what appears to be some 3-D character renderings.
Mikkelsen and Kojima ended their best-friends-forever outing with a punch, by getting custom portraits done by Solid Snake and Metal Gear Rex designer Yoji Shinkawa. Then the two dug into a lovely sashimi and sake dinner, accented with an adorable “cheers” photo.
Though there is much left to be done on the Death Stranding production front before gamers can get their hands on it, a solid “bromance” has already blossomed between creator and actor. And while Kojima and Mikkelsen’s friendship may not seem all that exciting, fans know how important strong interpersonal relationships are to a game’s creation and ultimate success. Some gamers and even publishers/developers can argue that rocky relations may lead to complicated development, release delays, staff departures, or even cancellations.
Since the title has garnered such massive attention and anticipation, and since Kojima himself stated that he believes Death Stranding will be his best work yet, it is comforting to know that things are running smoothly and that rapport is friendly behind the scenes. A good deal of gamers is aware that Kojima has allegedly faced some difficulties in the past in former professional relationships. Many cite the 2015 incident in which Kojima was banned from attending The Game Awards by Konami, which came shortly after Kojima’s apparent departure.
After Kojima’s heartwarming excitement about Mikkelsen touring the studio, and with Mikkelsen’s statement that Kojima is a “master” and “visionary person,” it seems all is well among the Death Stranding team. Fans will have to wait quite some time before the game gets an official release date, but for now, they can watch (and rewatch) the game’s trailer and possibly find solace that Kojima and Mikkelsen are becoming best buds.
Death Stranding has no set release date as of January 2017, but it anticipated to hit shelves before 2019. It is currently in production for PlayStation 4.