Jusant, the new game from Life is Strange developer Don'tnod, actually drew inspiration from Death Stranding, of all things.
The new venture from Don'tnod is unlike anything the studio has done before. Jusant was described earlier this year when it was revealed as an "action-puzzle climbing game with meditative vibes," and tasks us with scaling a lot of mountains by carefully putting ourselves on the best ledges and footholds within our reach.
Kevin Poupard, co-director of Jusant, spoke to GamesRadar+ about the new game at Gamescom 2023, citing the obvious inspiration of Ubisoft's Grow Home with its climbing and platforming aspects. "But we also were inspired by Death Stranding because you know you have this balance challenge that you need to keep on," Poupard said.
"Also what we loved about Death Stranding gameplay is that you are actually analyzing the ground to choose the best paths according to what weight you're carrying. And we want you to have this kind of reflex incentive for the players in Jusant," the co-director continued.
It sounds like an odd comparison at first, but it makes total sense the more you think about it. Cargo management is paramount in Death Stranding - you need to balance out the weight of your packages around Norman Reedus so he doesn't fall flat on his face, and you then need to keep an eye on where you're stepping to keep him upright.
It sounds like this is very much a part of Jusant as well, only minus the hefty cargo. Painstakingly positioning your feet and hands on the side of a mountain sounds pretty important when you're halfway up a cliff, and we can see how Jusant is tapping into this traversal element of Kojima Productions' 2019 game.
Jusant is due at some point later this year, a day-one title for Xbox Game Pass. Elsewhere, Death Stranding 2 is in the works, but Kojima's been mum about the sequel for the past few months.
Check out our new games 2023 guide for a look over all the other games slated to launch towards the end of the year.