Famed game designer Hideo Kojima has revealed that his mysterious upcoming game Death Stranding will run on the Decima games engine, the same engine used by Guerrilla Games' PS4 exclusive Horizon: Zero Dawn. Earlier this year, the Metal Gear Solid series creator revealed that he was traveling around the world to find a third-party development engine for his studio's debut game.
Kojima made the announcement during a panel discussion at the annual PlayStation Experience event after sharing a second Death Stranding trailer, featuring the song "Easy way out" by Icelandic band Low Roar.
Guerrilla Games managing director Hermen Hulst and PlayStation 4 chief architect Mark Cerny also joined Kojima and moderator Geoff Keighley to talk more about the Decima game engine.
"Decima is the Horizon Zero Dawn engine and, in essence, it's the engine that all Guerrilla games so far run on, but it's evolved," Hulst explained. "It's fair to say it's taken a quantum leap in the last couple of years to get it ready for this project. It's a lot more than just a rendering engine.
"It involves AI, physics, logics, it's got the entire world creation tool screen in it. And I'd argue that the engine probably is a statement of philosophy of game development as well."
Cerny added that "Kojima-san had to leave his technology with his former employer," prompting boos from the audience. Kojima worked on the Fox Engine at Konami that was used in Metal Gear Solid 5: The Phantom Pain.
"From the first time I met Guerrilla, I had a good feeling about this," Kojima said, adding that Decima is a "fantastic engine" that is very appropriate to work in an open world environment. He also said that the developer gave Kojima a small wooden box with the engine's source code after their first meeting, even before any contracts were signed.
"This box is the treasure of Guerrilla, and it symbolizes everything they've been working on so far," Kojima said. "Just meeting me and immediately handing me this made me feel very special. It gave me a really special feeling. I'm very confident that Herman is completely insane."
During Kojima's "world tour" in search of a new game engine, he visited multiple studios across the globe and met with several game developers including Crytek, EA DICE, Mojang, Quantic Dream, Media Molecule and Guerrilla.
A small satellite studio for Kojima Productions is also housed in Guerrilla Games' Amsterdam office, Hulst said.
"Guerrilla has always been known for the visual splendor of the games and a lot of details in it," Hulst said. He also emphasized that the game engine is "not just about rendering," but also involves "AI, physics, logics" and other dynamic elements.
Kojima unveiled a dark new trailer for Death Stranding at The Game Awards on 1 December starring Hannibal star Mads Mikkelsen and director Guillermo del Toro. He also received this year's Industry Icon Award at the event after his ex-employer Konami prohibited him from attending the show in 2015.
Death Stranding was announced at Sony's E3 2016 press conference with a weird, cryptic trailer featuring The Walking Dead star Norman Reedus.
Death Stranding is currently in development as a console exclusive for PS4 and for PC. The studio has not announced a release date for the cryptic game yet. Earlier this year, Kojima teased that the game will be released before the year in which the 1988 anime film Akira is set, which is 2019.