Death Stranding uses Guerrilla’s Decima game engine – the same tech behind PS4 exclusive Horizon Zero Dawn – and it was known some support from the Killzone creator would be required during development.
When the engine collaboration was announced in 2016, Kojima Productions said it had established a satellite team at Guerilla’s Amsterdam HQ to offer ‘technical support’ to the game’s Japanese development team.
However, the final version of Death Stranding reveals the Horizon studio’s development input was much broader than previously thought.
According to the game’s credits, Guerrilla contributed to Death Stranding’s environment art, animation, visual effects, cinematics, audio and more.
More than 40 Guerrilla engineers worked on the game, including Horzion Zero Dawn’s lead game programmer (Tommy De Roos), lead programmer (Frank Compagner), lead AI programmer (Arjen Beij) and technical director (Michiel van der Leeuw).
Horizon’s art director (Jan-Bart Van Beek), lead environment artist (Kim Van Heest), technical art director (Maarten van der Gaag), lead lighting artist (Roderick van der Steen) and lead technical animator (Bart Wijsman) also worked on Death Stranding.
Horizon Zero Dawn’s senior quest designer, James Kneuper is even credited for “guest design” on the Kojima title.
None of the Guerrilla developers credited above mention Death Stranding in their LinkedIn profiles.
Around 300 people worked on Horizon Zero Dawn at Guerrilla, while Kojima Productions is understood to employ just over 100 people.
Death Stranding reviews went live across the video games press on Friday, ahead of the game’s release on November 8.
Hideo Kojima’s first post-MGS release has received a mixed reception from the media, with scores ranging from 6 to 10.
In VGC’s Death Stranding review, we call the PS4 exclusive “an unusual and fascinating game by triple-A blockbusters standards” with a score of three out of five.