Hideo Kojima's past work on the Metal Gear Solid series and some of what was seen in Death Stranding's trailer above may have led some to believe that the game is a stealth title as a whole. Kojima says that's not the case and that it's an action game and is more specifically a "Strand Game with connection being one of its central themes. It's not a genre that we've heard of before since Kojima seems to have coined this phrase to describe his game, but Death Stranding was always touted as a genre-defining experience, according to the early descriptions of the game.
The brief synopsis of Death Stranding that we've seen tacked onto trailers and some sites that made that claim never said what genre the game was defining, so it looks like it's just going to define its own genre. Kojima took to Twitter not long after the game's latest trailer was revealed to elaborate on what Death Stranding is about and how players should approach it. One of these tweets debunked any thoughts that it'd be a stealth game and established the "Strand Game" idea.
DEATH STRANDING is not a stealth game. It is brand new action game with the concept of connection (strand). I call it Social Strand System, or simply Strand Game.May 30, 2019
There's one part in the trailer in particular which stood out and might have led some to believe the game would skew towards stealthy scenarios. Sam, the main character played by Norman Reedus, is crouching in some tall grass around three minutes into the trailer before he's noticed by some enemies wearing similar gear and armed with weapons. After being spotted, Sam runs away before turning around to show us that he can fight back and not just hide and flee.
Aside from the clarification about not being a stealth game, Kojima has shared other details on Death Stranding recently as well to discuss the "Strand Game" experience. Like most other parts of Death Stranding, it's hard to know for sure how all this will play out, but we know these strands will be forged by fellow players and will be central to the game.
"It is created so that all elements, including the story and gameplay, are bound together by the theme of the Strand or connection," Kojima said when he revealed new details on Death Stranding. "As Sam Porter Bridges, you will attempt to bridge the divides in society, and in doing create new bonds or 'Strands' with other players around the globe. Through your experience playing the game, I hope you'll come to understand the true importance of forging connections with others."
Death Stranding is scheduled to release for the PlayStation 4 on November 8th.