Is it worth buying the Death Stranding game

Sam gasps and groans and sways. But he stays on his feet. Without stopping, he climbs bit by bit up the steep slope on the shortest path. 13 metal boxes are stacked on his back. Among other things: 2.4 kilos of sedatives, 76 kilos of soil samples, 6 kilos of old magazines, a ladder and a rifle for rubber bullets.

In "Death Stranding", the latest computer game from star developer Hideo Kojima, the player as Sam Porter Bridges delivers everything - from pizza to hydrogen bombs. The expectations of the exclusive game for the Playstation 4 in advance were huge. Partly because Kojima skilfully sprinkled details about Death Stranding with a series of acclaimed live performances and video trailers without revealing much about the plot.

It follows a well-known narrative pattern: a lonely hero has to save the world in a dystopian future. After a catastrophe of unknown origin, society is fragmented. The survivors live scattered across the North American continent in a handful of cities behind high walls or have withdrawn into underground bunkers. Parcel delivery service Sam's big task is to deliver the bare essentials to the remaining people, but above all to reconnect the isolated settlements via the so-called chiral network (a kind of Internet). To do this, the loner traverses America from the east to the west coast by motorized vehicles at the beginning and later.

The developer comments on socio-political debates with humor

Kojima always lets one question resonate - sometimes more, sometimes less subtle: Do we become lonely because technology makes up an ever larger part of our lives?

It rarely happens that Sam meets another person personally in Death Stranding. When he delivers a package to his recipient, the latter only sends a hologram of himself to the surface to thank Sam. The player pushes the package onto a conveyor belt or puts it in an elevator. From there it disappears into the depths of any storage room. The player cannot see the living room in the bunkers or behind the city walls. Sam, who suffers from fear of contact and prefers to be alone, doesn't seem to mind. The almost plantless landscape, which is by no means monotonous, but is strewn with boulders, and the gray sky - all in brilliant graphics - complete the overall picture of a deplorable world. Technology is in abundance, but there is little interpersonal.

But that's what the people in the game obviously long for. That's why they distribute likes to their fellow human beings, especially Sam. The player delivers the requested medication to the capital: 186 likes. Parts for a 3D printer: 24 likes. Sam does not receive any other form of payment. The likes received improve his reputation. He is transported from the simple messenger to the freight handler, later to the transporter and finally to the courier. With his typical humor, Kojima comments on such details in many places in Death Stranding on current socio-political sticking points, such as dealing with social media or the delivery culture.