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Death Stranding’s arrival on Game Pass is a triumph for the Xbox brand, for PlayStation Studios and for gamers

Who was going to say it? Sam Bridges’ journey has even taken him to Game Pass itself. Six years after the highly publicized departure of Konami and subsequent agreement with Sony, the fruit of that alliance, Death Stranding, joins the Xbox subscription service. It will be played on PC and, as far as we know, it will remain an exclusive to PlayStation consoles, but this resounding move is quite a milestone in which everyone, editors, creatives and players, wins.

Death Stranding not only does it come to Game Pass for PC, but it also appears in the Microsoft store for Windows 10 and Windows 11. The third digital game portal if we count on the fact that 505 Games has already published it both on Steam and on the Epic Games Store. Twice, moreover, if we take into account that recently the Director’s Cut, its improved and extended version.

Now, as you can see in the trailer released for the occasion, it should be emphasized that the version of Death Stranding of the Game Pass is the original for PCs. The extras of the “director’s cut” they are not included.

Does that mean that the Kojima Productions game is disregarding the agreements with Sony? The role of 505 Games is that of an editor, but both when opening the game once installed and in its official screenshots and trailers we will continue to see the Sony Interactive Entertainment logo. That has not changed nor will it change in the future.

In fact, the arrival of Death Stranding It hasn’t exactly caught us by surprise, and it has nothing to do with the new alliance between Xbox Game Studios and Hideo Kojima: for some time now the official accounts have been leaving unmistakable cluesso the only thing missing was the official announcement.

From here it is time to ask ourselves what each party gains with this movement. For the Xbox brand it is clear: its Game Pass service is much more attractive with each game, and if it is of the caliber of Death Stranding even more. For gamers too. Especially those who did not have the opportunity to play or were not curious enough to do so. And what do Sony and Kojima Productions earn?

The essentials: who owns the Death Stranding brand?

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If we go to the purchase page of Death Stranding, the mobile app or the Microsoft store from the Windows search bar and open any of the screenshots of the game we will see that each and every one of the images comes with the same legend:

“Death Stranding is a trademark of Sony Interactive Entertainment. [El juego] has been created and developed by Kojima Productions.”

And beware, that same reminder can be read in the official images of the Steam or Epic versions or under the game requirements of the Valve store. In the same way that Metal Gear and the character of Solid Snake are owned by Konami, the Death Stranding trademark belongs to Sony.

As a rule of three, Spider-Man does not belong to Sony. He has by contract the rights to make video games and movies, of course, but the character is from Marvel and, by extension, Disney. Furthermore, the wall-crawler may appear in games produced by third parties, such as Marvel’s Midnight Suns. Another thing is that Sony has dedicated itself to shielding the agreements so as not to lose the opportunity to monetize the character in all possible means.

Of course, the publisher of the game in the PC versions is 505 Gamesand the creator is Hideo Kojima (there is no doubt about that, since the story of the game is a full-fledged Kojimada) but for all intents and purposes Death Stranding It is the first trademark of Sony that will come to Game Pass. And that is a giant step.

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In fact, in the same photographs you can see that the registrations of Valve’s trademarks appear as there are contents and logos of their games. half life Y Portal in Death Stranding, which also do not belong to Sony, Kojima Productions or 505 Games. Items that, by the way, will be present in the version of the Microsoft store despite the fact that they were originally released for Steam.

And eye, what Death Stranding it is not the first game produced since Sony to reach Game Pass: for no less than two seasons MLB The Show has been available at launch on the Microsoft service, both for PCs and consoles. However, in this case, the transfer of the brand belongs to the sports association itself, and that the games reached Game Pass was due to the interests of the Baseball League itself, but it is the PlayStation Studios logo that welcomes us when starting the game.

From this point it is time to ask the second question: how has a trademark registered by Sony Interactive ended up in the Xbox Game Pass?

The future of PlayStation goes through the PC

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Corporate giant Sony’s new plan is to take its video game division beyond consoles. He has said it explicitly. That is not to say that the interest in getting a PS5 has diminished, not at all, but the main idea is that the Sony brand expands on new fronts:

  • On the one hand, becoming a reference as associated with video games as manufacturers such as Razer or Corsair. A step that has already been taken with the INZONE monitors and headphones.
  • On the other, that its star characters like Nathan Drake, Kratos, Aloy or Ratchet and Clank be known by the general public. At least, like Mario, Link or, in the case of the United States, like the Master Chief himself.

As we discussed, the plan to expand the Sony brand and, by extension, PlayStation is to take its superstars beyond their consoles. One way to achieve this is through movies, and in that aspect we will see productions for the small and big screen based on practically all its sagas.

The other is to relaunch games that have already completed their commercial cycle on PC. Like God of War, like Horizon Zero Dawn and, in the not too distant future, Uncharted and The Last of Us. Games that can be purchased with the appropriate discount for 20 euros or less on consoles – an almost symbolic price – and that can continue to perform wonderfully on new systems at full price.

But beware, not everything is based on monetizing the same game for the second or third time.

As much as Sony has invested in print, TV and billboard advertising, for a very large proportion of PC gamers (or Nintendo Switch, for example) many of the great PlayStation sagas are kind of unknown territory. An untold number of gamers may dream of playing Bloodborne on PC, but Elden Ring’s milestone was bringing FromSoftware’s formula to the mainstream. After all, Soulsborne are not games for everyone.

Y Death Stranding either.

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The arrival Death Stranding to Game Pass is the next step to secure the future of Sony licenses in PC territory. Above all, when the Director’s Cut version has been available for several months and for sale on Steam and Epic Games, so that it can indirectly benefit them and give them a second boost in the future and with a good discount. The Game Pass achieves that effect among players.

However, Sony’s move is rounded if we look at the medium and long term. In the event of a sequel to Death Stranding We are clear that it will come out first and with a wide margin on PS5. Basically, because Sony said it back in the day and is already doing it that way. And the most curious thing is that the first to raise this hypothetical sequel and put it on the table was Norman Reedus due to an oversight. I mean, Sam Porter himself.

How the arrival of Death Stranding (and other PlayStation licenses) to Game Pass benefits PS5

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Although, at no time Sony or Kojima Productions have officially commented on the existence of the sequel to Death StrandingAlthough Hideo Kojima himself has reacted publicly, there are already plenty of precedents for PlayStation Studios’ true plan for its console lineup: bringing PC gamers to PS5 through the force of its exclusivities. Starting with the already announced sequels to its star sagas.

Because Horizon Zero Dawn, God of War Y spider-man they are already played on PC, and have performed quite well, but all of its sequels are played or will be played on PlayStation consoles first.

The absolute exclusivity of the great PlayStation video game sagas has become a relative exclusivity. First of all, because through the PlayStation Plus Premium subscription it is possible to play their hits through Sony’s cloud game. But also because we already take it for granted that, after a properly calculated time frame, they will end up coming to PC.

What does Game Pass bring to this premise? To begin with, more than 25 million subscribers will have access to Death Stranding, most of whom probably have not played it (the original game sold 5 million units in 2021, before its Director’s Cut). Which is a spectacular showcase for the future of the saga and, by extension, the next projects of Kojima Productions, 505 Games and Sony Interactive Entertainment.

Are we likely to see other Sony and PlayStation Studios games on Game Pass in the future? From the start we already have that the next season of MLB The Show will be played on serve. But, with our feet on the ground, the odds are the same as they were a month ago that we would see Sam Bridges in the Game Pass. Namely, it is not disposable. In the same way that we do not dare to deny the arrival of Game Pass to other systems beyond Xbox in the future.

However, and despite the fact that it is all good news, we are left with an even more interesting question: Will we end up seeing Death Stranding on Xbox consoles? For now, that idea is no longer so crazy and preposterous. Cast It is a triumph for all those who are passionate about video games.

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