An exclusive report from 9to5Google claims that Hideo Kojima once pitched an exclusive single-player game to Google for Stadia, although it was eventually cancelled due to Stadia's general manager Phil Harrison not seeing an interest in single-player games.
The report alleges that the game pitched by Kojima would have been "strictly a single-player experience" in contrast to Death Stranding's asynchronous elements. Following the game getting initial approval from Google and starting development, mockups for the project were created and shown in mid-2020 before the project was cancelled altogether. According to 9to5Google's source, it was the single-player nature of the game that got it canned, with Google believing there wasn't "a market for solo experiences".
Although 9to5Google mentions Death Stranding several times throughout its report and even calls it a "Death Stranding follow-up" in the header, it seems to mean the next game following on from Death Stranding and not some kind of sequel or spin-off to it. The PC release for Death Stranding confirmed that Sony owns the rights to the IP and, although it's let the game appear on Xbox, it's unlikely that it would allow Kojima Productions to give a new game in the series exclusively to Google.
Rather, it seems as if the game that 9to5Google is talking about is actually Overdose, the rumoured horror title from Kojima Productions that is currently in development in collaboration with Xbox. Kojima previously confirmed that it would be using the cloud, and rumours have indicated that it's a single-player horror title, something that would also match with it being pitched to Google and the claim in this report that it was rejected due to a lack of interest in single-player games.
Even though it seems unlikely that this project had anything to do with Death Stranding, it does at least seem to live on through whatever Kojima is working on with Xbox. Death Stranding fans also have something to look forward to, as the actor behind Sam Porter Bridges, Norman Reedus, has mentioned numerous times now that a sequel to the first game is in the works.
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