How long does it take to beat Death Stranding? Main Story & 100% Completion

How long does it take to beat Death Stranding? Main Story & 100% Completion

The genre-bending Death Stranding has been out just over 2 years now and it’s already won and been nominated for several awards, including Game of the Year.

Created and developed by Hideo Kojima, Death Stranding is a single-player sci-fi action game set in a post-apocalyptic United States. Players control Sam Bridges, the protagonist, who is a porter tasked with delivering cargo to isolated locations, with the mission of “reforming America.”

Death Stranding has a compelling storyline with loads to do. If you want to see the game to the end, it is worth knowing how long it’s going to take.

Death Stranding takes 35-40.5 hours to beat if you want to mainline the game. Finishing it with extras will take you about 58-62 hours, while a completionist (100%) gameplay should take no less than 110 hours. The Death Stranding Director’s Cut takes 36 hours to mainline.

Difficulty, skill, and player intentions also obviously play a huge part in determining how long it take to finish Death Stranding and its Director’s Cut. In this article, I’ll break down all you need to know about beating and enjoying Death Stranding.

1. Is Death Stranding a short game?

How long does it take to beat Death Stranding? Main Story & 100% Completion
Sam in Death Stranding | Source: Steam

Death Stranding is, by no means, a short game. Sure, you can finish it within 30 hours if you only concentrate on the campaign and speed through it. But as any Death Stranding fan will tell you, that is no way to play the game.

The shortest time anyone has taken to finish the main story of Death Stranding is 20 hours, which in itself, isn’t that short.

But most players prefer to take their time with a game like this. Even if you’re not specifically a completionist, getting through the main story and side missions should take you 62 hours.

If you want to rush a little, you can also get to the end by putting in an average of 48 hours, including the main campaign of reconnecting the United Cities of America or the UCA, and extras. This is if you play on Normal or Hard difficulty at a medium pace.

2. What difficulty to play Death Stranding? Is Death Stranding tough?

How long does it take to beat Death Stranding? Main Story & 100% Completion
Difficulty Levels

Death Stranding has 4 difficulty levels and the Director’s Cut has 5: Very Easy, Easy, Normal, Hard, and Very Hard. The game is not that challenging, so unless you’re a newbie to the world of gaming – or want to complete the game in the shortest time possible – you might want to skip the first 2 modes.

For some players, even Hard isn’t that hard. That being said, Sam’s stamina drains much faster the higher the difficulty, and the combat, of course, gets tougher.

But if you’re aiming for the Platinum trophy and want to gain more experience faster, you should try the Very Hard level. Don’t worry, you can always switch difficulty modes if it gets too hard.

3. Is Death Stranding harder offline? How long does it take to beat offline?

How long does it take to beat Death Stranding? Main Story & 100% Completion
Death Stranding offline

The structure of Death Stranding emphasizes on online interaction even though there is no competitive gameplay element. Multiplayer offers world-building and player-built structures as well as interference with cargo and supply requests.

Kojima defined the Death Stranding as a strand game: a game where the player’s progress is determined by interacting with others. The entire game is about connectivity, and an internet connection will give you an outstanding experience while playing Death Stranding.

But you can also play Death Stranding offline. This will mean many features are automatically eliminated from the game; for example, items like ropes structures like generators left behind by other players simply won’t appear in you game.

Playing online will help you in terms of experience, but it isn’t necessarily harder if you play offline. All it will do is add a few more hours to your playtime since you can’t rely on other players’ structures.

But, without having to depend on others for roads or generators, you might actually be able to traverse faster.

With enough planning, you can build more of your own structures as you go and push through the main story with an average of 35 hours. For 100% completion offline, you can expect to put in approximately 110 hours. This is more or less the same time as online playthroughs.

4. Is Death Stranding mostly walking?

Death Stranding is pretty much all about traversing. Sam Bridges is a porter after all; his job is to travel from one location to another, managing and transporting cargo. But this doesn’t mean walking is all there is to the game.

With several deliveries to make, you’re probably going to find yourself doing tons of walking, hiking, and climbing, but they’re not devoid of combatting vicious “BTs” and building different infrastructures to achieve your goals.

Death Stranding is as much construction, planning, and porting as it is walking.

5. How many episodes in Death Stranding? What to do after finishing the story? Is there an endgame?

How long does it take to beat Death Stranding? Main Story & 100% Completion
Death Stranding endgame | Source: IMDb

Death Stranding has 15 chapters or episodes, plus a prologue. Episode 15, the endgame, cannot be beaten or, in essence, completed, which is what makes the game endless.

Here are the episodes, in order:

  • Prologue: “Porter”
  • Episode 1: “Bridget”
  • Episode 2: “Amelie”
  • Episode 3: “Fragile”
  • Episode 4: “Unger”
  • Episode 5: “Mama”
  • Episode 6: “Deadman”
  • Episode 7: “Clifford”
  • Episode 8: “Heartman”
  • Episode 9: “Higgs”
  • Episode 10: “Die-Hardman”
  • Episode 11: “Clifford Unger”
  • Episode 12: “Bridges”
  • Episode 13: “Sam Strand”
  • Episode 14: “Lou”
  • Episode 15: “Tomorrow is in Your Hands”

Episode 15 basically rewinds the game back 2 weeks. You need to “pass time until the presidential inauguration” happens. You can complete any mission you have left during episode 15 and collect remaining memory chips. Or, you can further explore the world.

Taking episode 15’s infinite postgamery, you can literally sink 200 hours into the game and do it gladly. You can rebuild all your structures, obliterate them, complete outstanding orders, and try and get 5 stars in everything.

6. How to complete 100% of Death Stranding? How to get all trophies?

How long does it take to beat Death Stranding? Main Story & 100% Completion
Death Stranding

You can complete 100% of Death Stranding by finishing the main story, then connecting all the facilities to the UCA, levelling them up to 5 stars, and then beating the Very Hard difficulty mode to reach the Platinum trophy.

There a total of 63 trophies – 59 Bronze, 2 Silver, 1 Gold, and 1 Platinum – and 56 memory chips to collect.

Like most other games, the difficulty you play at affects what and how many trophies and collectibles you can get. Playing on Hard will ensure you can play Premium Deliveries so you can get the Growth of Legend.  

If you are aiming to get to Platinum, you will have to change your difficulty setting to Hard or Very Hard.

On Hard you will achieve LL or Legend of Legend, and on Very Hard, you’ll get LLL, or Legend of Legend of Legend. The Very Hard mode is only available in the Death Stranding Director’s Cut, on PS5 and PC.

7. Is Death Stranding worth playing? Is it worth replaying?

How long does it take to beat Death Stranding? Main Story & 100% Completion
Death Stranding Director’s Cut | Source: Steam

Death Stranding is definitely worth experiencing. You create your own paths and structures, and consequently your own game. It is as interesting as you make it. The story and visuals are cinematic wonders which make the open-world gameplay a treat.

You end up walking a lot, though, which has made many people call the game a walking simulator, but as mentioned above, there’s a lot more than walking to this game.

Death Stranding also has a great replay value since it is a social strand game and has a lot of unique things to discover every time you play it. Conquering new terrain, scaling snow-capped mountains, and unlocking new traversal options are a lot of fun.

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8. About Death Stranding

Death Stranding is a 2019 action game developed by Kojima Productions. It is the first game from director Hideo Kojima and Kojima Productions after their split from Konami in 2015. It was published by Sony Interactive Entertainment for the PlayStation 4 in November 2019 and by 505 Games for Windows in July 2020. A director’s cut version was released for the PlayStation 5 in September 2021, followed by a release for Windows in March 2022.

The game is set in the United States following a cataclysmic event that caused destructive creatures to begin roaming the Earth. Players control Sam Porter Bridges, a courier tasked with delivering supplies to isolated colonies and reconnecting them via a wireless communications network.