Death Stranding’s Story & Ending Explained

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Death Stranding Poster
Death Stranding Poster; Credits: PlayStation

A widely praised, various genre open-world action-adventure for PC from renowned game designer Hideo Kojima features Norman Reedus, Mads Mikkelsen, Léa Seydoux, and Lindsay Wagner.

In the coming years, strange explosions shook the world, triggering a chain of supernatural phenomena called the Death Stranding. With supernatural creatures wreaking havoc on the earth and mass extinction on the horizon, it’s up to Sam Porter Bridges to trek across the ruined landscape and save mankind from destruction.

Death Stranding, like any of Kojima Productions’ cinematic adventures, has the type of plot that requires months to nibble on, absorb, and eventually understand that, while there are flaws, is a terrific experience. And, while the plot includes hundreds of surprises and twists that cloak the history of the post-Death Stranding America in secrecy and rewind to explain moments through letters and interviews, it’s still better to approach the story as it is presented in the game.

Death Stranding Game
Death Stranding Game; Credits: GamesIndustry.Biz

The Story Of Death Stranding

The Preface of Death Stranding starts with a brief introduction to the effects of Time fall rain, which accelerates the passage of time on all it touches. Sam Porter Bridges goes on Reverse Tricycle, a customized motorbike in use by Porters, before collapsing because a mystery woman arrives out of nowhere to block his path. After the crash, Sam is forced to seek shelter in a cave system to withstand the Timefall and anything else the climate throws.

While in the cave, Sam sees a BT and meets the enigmatic woman, with whom he has a brief talk as to who they are and about what they must do next. While Sam sleeps through the rest of Timefall, the woman continuously calls him using his full name, Sam Porter Bridges. After waking up, Sam departs the cave and completes his mission before even being picked up by a Corpse Disposal team to aid in navigating through the BT area, where he is a valued asset due to his DOOMS.

The crew is assaulted by BTs while heading into BT territory, and the other individual sides who picked up Sam are slain in the attack. Sam survives long enough to save a BB unit carried by one of the Corpse Disposal members and see a Voidout that destroys the region as well as the adjacent Central Knot City.

Death Stranding Ending Explained

The twist in the Death Stranding conclusion is Sam discovering how he has been profoundly linked to Clifford Unger’s otherworldly manifestations. While Sam originally thinks that it is because the BB unit he is now using is Clifford’s son, the truth is more complicated – Sam is Clifford’s baby, having been rescued by Amelie after those he and Clifford were shot dead during an attempted escape from the UCA facility that was using BBs experimentally.

Death Stranding; Credits: Engadet
Death Stranding; Credits: Engadet

Sam’s resurrection through Amelie’s abilities as an Extinction Entity also gave him the ability to repatriate, which explains why he can return from death during the game and why his blood has specific characteristics to combat BTs.

Because Amelie is made up of two distinct entities—her physical body, or ha, existed as Bridget Strand while her spirit, or ka, remained stranded on The Beach—she can just save Sam on the shore and later raise him as her kid while still existing as Bridget Strand.

This comes to a head when Sam is entrusted with torching his BB during the Death Stranding closing sequence, even though it has been in duty for far longer than a BB unit should. When Sam arrives near the burning, he chooses at the last minute to save BB by putting him again into his outfit and experiencing more of the sensory flashbacks he has experienced throughout the game.

There, he can witness the full story of his life as a BB develop, including a heartbreaking moment in which Clifford addresses him personally presumably because of their link to the Beach – and gives him his dog tags to recall him by. Clifford Unger, Sam’s father, is shown to be a dedicated parent who fought with all his might against a world that wanted to steal his family away from him.

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By Arushi Chadha

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