Thursday, June 29, 2017

A theory on the 'connection' we will share with the characters of Death Stranding-UNR

Going off of this thread I thought about the role of handcuffs further and have added in some more speculative theorizing on the themes we will encounter in the game. Have a roll of foil at hand.

After rewatching the reveal trailer after a long break from all the speculation I noticed how Norman's handcuffs are 'off' until the handprints reach it; coincidentally, he regains consciousness and 'comes alive' the instant they flicker 'on.' In the second trailer we see a 'conscious' Del Toro enters the frame and the first glimpse we get of his handcuff reveals that they are 'on.'

In most games the player controlled characters are only 'alive' once the player picks up the controller and starts moving the character. When this happens the player character is 'bound' to the will of the player. If you put the controller down the character becomes unconscious, without drive or a will, in a metaphorical sense of 'death' where they either stay still or, if the game designer has included it, an 'idle' animation. They become 'stranded' in a sort of Limbo. Let's let this simmer in our mind for a while.

Homo Ludens, Those Who Play, are most likely us. The Players. I can't help but draw associations with the Ludens from Boris Strugatsky's "The Time Wanderers."

The Wikipedia entry says: Ludens view themselves as a distinct race, and claim to have "different interests" from humanity at large, in some instances claiming to be above traditional human morality. The Ludens routinely conduct experiments on humans and alter their minds in order to further their own means, but according to Daniel Logovenko in "The Time Wanderers", over ninety percent of Ludens have no interest in humanity.

Let's pretend that the Player is an advanced intelligence from a game character's point of view. It could be argued that the player knows more about the character's world than the character does. And our interests differ from the characters. For them they are fighting for their life, for us we merely want a new story and a character's death has little impact if we can simply pop in another coin or push start to continue with virtually no consequence and our characters are none the wiser.

Now perhaps the disembodied hands are 'spectating' players and, in the trailer, the moment the hands reach norman he 'continues' with the hands on his body being previous players attempts to move him through the story. In a sense, he's been 'played with' or 'used.' Going with this train of thought, could the black liquid possibly be a sign of 'player interaction/influence?' Once we 'awaken' and start 'controlling' Norman, his hands are black with our 'influence.'

TL;DR: Player characters are only 'alive' when we control them. We, the Players, are the disembodied hands that control Reedus to progress the story because we "want to feel something memorable, again." Tuned For Everything Norman We Don't Mess Around when it comes to things pertaining to the man.

No comments:

Post a Comment