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There's no doubt that Death Stranding will be the most polarizing game to players and
reviewers alike.
It's a game with high expectations that don't follow the traditional expectations modern
gaming has set on the industry.
It's slow, tedious and repetitive yet at the same time, it's therapeutic, satisfying and
zen-like.
Death Stranding is a very ambiguous game and for that same reason, I'll try not to spoil
anything for you all.
After a catastrophic event is known as the Death Stranding, The United States and seemingly
the rest of the world has been completely changed as we know it.
Civilization is segregated into cities with large gaps in between.
It's a world of isolation and quartine that's constantly haunted by the memories of what
the world used to be and the monsters that haunt it now.
These monsters are known as BTs, come from the world of the dead, crossing the boundary
between are two worlds and are a constant obstacle looming over our head.
Who are we exactly though?
Well, we're Same Porter Bridges, a porter or delivery man.
In our modern society, we joke about just being a simple UPS or deliver man, but in
a post Death Stranding world, they're the connective tissue that connects city to city
by delivering vital packages to isolated cities.
In return, connecting these cities brings them, online to the chiral network, this world's
version of the new internet under the recovering United Cities of America government.
Through connecting the cities back together, delivering packages to those in need and being
a vital part of society, Sam slowly beings to reconnect America all while slowly uncovering
more about the people in this world, the death stranding and how it all connects.
In typical Hideo Kojima fashion, the story is told through long-form cinematics that
rival and at times surpass those in Hollywood.
Characters are filled with depth and personality despite their odd names like Deadman and Die
Hard Man.
Never the less, the performances here are truly outstanding being some of the most captivating
performances I've seen in a video game.
Ultimately the story grabbed by its mysterious foundation that fed me bits of lore and information
the more time I invested in the game.
Whether it was through long-form cutscenes or the subtle stories told through the emails
and mission briefs, Death Stranding was a fascinating story though told in unconventional
ways.
Through its many gameplay previews and trailers, many including myself thought Death Stranding
looked like an overly simplistic walking simulator and I was partially right.
Death Stranding's gameplay does have elements of action here and there but the larger gameplay
ratio is walking from point a to point b to deliver item x.
Where I was wrong was whether it'd be oversimplistic because Death Stranding is the most intricate
walking game.
Where any other video game would treat walking as pressing forward on the analog stick and
that's it, Death Stranding kicks it up a notch to some absurd levels.
Sam Porter has weight to him as he walks the uneven mountain terrain.
Carry too much on your back and you'll begin to lean on one side too much.
As you walk, you'll have to shift your weight around to adjust to your movement.
This means something as simple as walking down hell can easily mean Sam tripping off
the side of a cliff and dying.
While you can respawn, your mistakes have consequences like damaging your cargo and
ruining your orders.
The terrain isn't your only obstacle though.
In this post Death Stranding world, some are against the reconstruction of any government.
They like the chaos and freedom of this demolished world, these terrorist or mules lookout for
porters like yourself to rob and kill.
On top of the human enemies are the BTs, these creatures from the world of the dead that
haunt the world of the living.
They appear along with the time fall but with the help of your BB, you can detect their
direction and hope you remain undetected.
The BB attached to your chest comes from brain dead mothers, they're a bridge between the
world of the living and the dead and thus, they can help detect the other world creatures
like BTs.
However, that's another management system to use as well.
BB gets stressed when you're hurt when BTs show up and so on.
Like any other baby, when BB feels scared or anxious, they'll start the cry only making
the mules and BTs more aware of your location.
Over time, I began to unlock new tools and weapons like grenades that could help me take
down these enemies, making the anxiety and fear of them dwindle rather quickly.
Like the terrain, I had been walking on for hours, these enemies went from being enemies
to just any other obstacle.
That theme of management is a constant mechanics in Death Stranding.
From how you place the cargo on your body, your footwear wearing out as you walk more
and BB's stress levels, Death Stranding is all about complicated management systems.
The satisfaction of dealing with them comes through all the thank yous and social interaction
you receive in a game where you never really directly interact with people.
Death Stranding is an online game but not in the traditional sense.
You don't see other players online but rather their creations.
Death Stranding creates these server pools that gather a handful of people together.
This means as I brought new parts of the world into the chiral network, I'd begin to see
other people's building efforts in my world and vice versa.
I could build a bridge in my world over a larger river that could appear as a useful
structure for someone else playing the game.
That introduce this sense of comradery between me and all the people playing online.
I wasn't just helping rebuild America, it was and everyone else playing too.
It's with that I found myself going out of my way from my main and side objective deliveries
to build new structures, warning signs for players and pick up other people's lost cargo
so I could help deliver it to where it needed to go.
In return, I'd see a few likes appear on the side of my screen as I went on my way.
The social likes act like a currency here that upgrades Sam's stats but also act as
a motivational boost to me, letting me know my efforts were appreciated by some other
real-life player.
All in all, Death Stranding is a social heavy synchronize online game that caters to heavy
inventory management.
It's slow-paced and repetitive with bits of action toward the later end of the game but
ultimately this is a game that takes its time to tell a story.
For some it'll be too much of a sluggish buildup, swaying away many people, for others like
myself, they'll find the process therapeutic and rewarding with new bits of story and action
elements.
With that said, the slow-paced nature of Death Stranding is front and center most of the
time.
It's not for everyone.
As with all of my reviews, I can only speak for my take on the experience.
There's a sense of beauty in the despair and isolation of this world.
The Death Stranding has dismantled the environment leaving it this wide-open mountainscape that
looks as if society was never here.
Sam is but a speck of dust in this world but the mark he along with the rest of the players
online leave can be monstrous.
Like a nature walk through a forest, Death Stranding looks simple but lovely.
The terrain here looks incredibly realistic from the plant life growing and dying as the
time fall hits it, to the shine of the rivers leading down the mountainside.
Character models are even more stunning with some of the most realistic facial capture.
Norman Reedus, Troy Baker, Guierllmo Del Toro, and Margret Qualiy are phenomenally captured
along with the rest of the studded cast.
When it comes to performance, Death Stranding is impressive on both the base and pro model
PS4.
Base PS4 runs at native 1080p 30fps while the PS4 Pro can render that at a checkerboard
4k resolution also at 30 fps.
With the resolution being the only major differences between both versions, both pro and base ps4
maintain a mostly constant 30 fps outside of a few hiccups during some cutscenes.
Those tended to be the mirror shots when Sam was in his private room.
Mostly likely due to the double rendering of Sam instead of a reflection trick, the
game will dip to the mid-20s in these instances.
Outside of that, you can expect a stable performance.
If you're on PS4 Pro, you do have the option to render at 1080p instead of 2160p through
system settings, this ironed out most of the frame dips.
However, you can also force supersample from 2160p to 1080p using the PS4 system options
for a sharper visual on a 1080p tv.
Death Stranding is a true showcase of this generation's visual capability just like The
Last of Us proved to be a technical showcase for the PS3.
This Kojima's love for movies, cinematic framing and obsessively realistic visuals firing at
full cylinders.
The performances of actors are not only a spectacle to watch but to hear here too.
While there's a lot of Hollywood stars here, it's more impressive to see the less known
actors give it their all here.
Tommie Earl Jenkins who may not be as well known as someone like Mads or Norman is incredible
with his performance as Die Hard Man.
Music selection here is well done.
Low Roar's tracks playing as I spend hours walkthrough the devastated world gave things
a melancholy but also meditative like feeling anytime I was on an expedition.
After completing my 50 hours adventure, I found myself playing many of the Death Stranding's
tracks on my walks.
Chvrches' Death Stranding, Hoshino Gen's Pop Virus and Low Roar's Don't Be Serious were
easily the most addicting songs for me.
Just how I didn't think Joker was a fun movie to watch but I still enjoyed it for what it
was and the social commentary is made, I find myself feeling the same way about Death Stranding.
Death Stranding isn't fun, it lacks action and when it does have it, it takes an absurd
amount of build-up to get to it.
The slow pace nature of the gameplay drags on unlike other artful experiences that usually
keep its entire gameplay down to 4 hours or less, Death Stranding is an easy 30-80 hours
at least.
Despite it all, I found myself smiling with every delivery made, with every thank you
received.
I didn't like spending my free time in Uni helping other people study for exams, but
the satisfaction of seeing the joy on that person's face when they scored better because
of my help, was enough to get me to keep helping.
I felt like I was doing my part and that's what I feel with Death Stranding.
It's soothing and reflective but sluggish and tiresome like any given chore given to
you as a kid.
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死亡擱淺 (Death Stranding Review)

263 分類 收藏
吳銘凱 發佈於 2019 年 11 月 15 日
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