Death Stranding is all about transporting as much cargo as possible between various different human settlements without damaging them. That might sound easy, but the landscape of this post apocalyptic world is difficult to navigate, with rocky inclines and rivers proving troublesome to those that don't properly prepare.
Fortunately for you, we're here to help you do just that, by providing a series of tips and tricks on how to manage your cargo effectively and avoid unfortunate mishaps while transporting it across vast distances.
Step One: How to Prepare For Long Distance Travel
So you've got yourself a new gig and you have to travel a considerable distance to deliver your cargo. Your first order of business should be to ensure you have the appropriate equipment. Take a look at the terrain between your current location and your target location. If it's reasonably flat for the entire duration, you can save yourself some weight by not taking any equipment. If it's clear that you'll have to cross mountainous terrain or a large body of water, you'll need to bring yourself a rope and ladder to navigate these safely.
If you're happy to take the long route round, it might be a good idea to forego bringing equipment with you. A single ladder, for example, weighs 5kg, which is a considerable weight. If you think you can make the route without one, go for it. It's also worth checking the map to see if other players have left any ladders or ropes you can use and plot a course between them.
You'll also want to make sure you have a spare pair of boots every single time you leave for a journey. Boots can completely wear out in as little as two journeys if you're not careful, so always have a spare.
Step Two: How to Carry Your Cargo
The next step is to adjust your cargo. You can press start at any time to bring up your map, then select Sam and press X to manage cargo. Pressing triangle on this subsequent screen will automatically arrange your cargo for you, optimizing the load. We recommend using this setting, as it's pretty flawless.
If you'd like to handle your cargo loadout manually, then we do have a few tips:
- Carry your heaviest equipment on your back. That way you won't be weighed down more on one side than the other.
- Carry your ladder on your tool rack.
- Carry your boots on your boot clip.
- Attach small cargo that's easily damaged to your suit, mitigating the damage it will take when you fall. Make sure that the cargo attached to your suit is all around the same weight to ensure balance.
Basically, balance is incredibly important. The heaviest stuff goes on your back as that's in the centre of your body, and won't weigh you down on one side. Wearing lighter cargo on your suit is worth it, as it takes less damage when you fall and helps to redistribute weight versus putting everything on your back.
You also want to stay comfortably under the weight threshold of 120kg. If your current weight is coloured in blue, you will have no problem transporting your cargo. If it's yellow, you'll have to be careful when navigating difficult terrain. If it's red, head straight for the nearest locker or waypoint and drop off some equipment to clear your load. You can come back for it and complete your delivery later, safe in the knowledge that your cargo won't get damaged at least.
Step Three: Plot a Safe Course
We kind of covered this earlier but you want to plot a safe course between destinations. By safe, we mean a route that avoids large bodies of water and mountainous terrain as much as possible. It's also worth plotting a route that goes between ladders and ropes that are already in place, as you won't have to carry this equipment with you.
To plot a route, set up markers between your current location and your destination. If you can set markers between landmarks, like ladders, lockers, and ropes, do so. If not, you might want to set them up to avoid large rivers and mountains. When you've set your waypoints, simply hold square over your current location and link the waypoints to each other. This will create a virtual arrow between the locations while you're out in the world, which you can follow to safely reach your destination.
Step Four: How to Navigate Difficult Terrain
Difficult terrain is unavoidable at times, so rather than complain about it being there it's best just to know how to deal with it. The first assessment you should make is whether or not you're carrying too much equipment to safely navigate the terrain. If not, we recommend backtracking to the nearest locker or waypoint to drop off some stuff.
If you're all good, it's time to proceed. Here are a few different terrains we've encountered so far and tips to overcome them:
- Shallow water: Hold L2 and R2 to grab your backpack, helping to balance the weight and walk slowly through the water. Grabbing your backpack slows you down anyway, but going slow will prevent you from stumbling while carrying a heavy pack. There's no real need to use a ladder with shallow water.
- Deep water: Use a ladder. Simply press and hold the right arrow on the dpad and select the ladder, then hold L2 while looking at the water. Choose where you'd like the ladder to go and place it there, then simply walk over the ladder to the other side of the river. Once there, you can pick your ladder back up by holding options.
- Going up a mountain: Find a steep cliff-like section and use your ladder, following the instructions from the deep water section to set it up. It's easier to use a ladder on vertical spots, so we recommend navigating to one first.
- Going down a mountain: Going down is a lot easier than going up, as you don't have to worry about finding a vertical spot. Simply find a spot to pitch your climbing rope and use it. You will want to make sure that you don't have to go down too steep a cliff or mountain though, as your rope is only a limited length and you don't want to have to waste time climbing back up if it's not long enough.
Step Five: How to Deal With Timefall
No, that's not just lovely rain that you see when you're wandering around the beautiful environments. It's timefall, and it's the bane of your very existence. Any cargo that timefall comes into contact with will lose resistance to damage over time, as timefall ages anything it touches very quickly. It doesn't actually damage the cargo but it will make it take more damage if you fall over or stumble.
We recommend that you get out of the timefall whenever it appears by finding shelter. This is incredibly tricky though, as it's not always easy to find a safe space. Either backtrack to your last waypoint or look for mountainous areas to try and find a cave or small shelter.
Timefall is particularly dangerous while carrying heavy loads, as you're more likely to fall over and damage your cargo.
Step Six: How to Restore Your Health and Stamina
Your health will drop whenever you fall over or while fighting enemies and your stamina will decrease gradually as you move around the world, dropping faster if you do anything too strenuous. Fortunately, you can restore both of these while wandering around the world. You can recover stamina by drinking from your flask, which can be located with a quick press and hold of the left dpad button, then selecting your flask. press X to drink and you'll restore your stamina.
Your flask recovers whenever you come into contact with water – including timefall. So there's a nice risk versus reward mechanic when choosing to stay or hide from timefall.
To restore health you need to find cryptobiotes, which are dotted around the world. Simply press R1 to scan the nearby area and look for the bug-like icon to find them. When you have, get close and press and hold square to eat them.
Step Seven: Tips on Delivering Lost Cargo
As you explore the world you'll come across lost cargo that you can choose to deliver or ignore. Here's a few tips we've put together to deal with lost cargo.
- Whenever you find lost cargo, press and hold triangle to place it on your beck then press start, select manage cargo, and press triangle again to optimise your cargo placement.
- If you have the space to carry the cargo, do so. You'll get a bunch of extra likes for delivering it.
- If not, grab it and place it in a nearby locker. You can either place it in a shared locker, so other players can deliver it for you, or in a private locker for later.
Step Eight: How and When to Replace Your Boots
Our last tip involves your boots, which will lose durability over time – particularly when you're navigating difficult terrain. As you walk around, you'll see the current durability of your boots on the bottom left of the screen, or by pressing the options button and looking at the bottom left. Whenever your boots have run out of durability, press and hold the up button on the dpad, select your boots, and press X to replace them.