Why is Monster Energy in Death Stranding?

Death Stranding Screenshot

There’s a lot of weird things going in on Death Stranding. While it is a Hideo Kojima product, it’s not at all like the previous Metal Gear games where players were an expert spy attempting to infiltrate bases. Now, players are porters, and they’re the last delivery people in the world willing to risk it all to get packages to their destinations. An odd thing in the game is that while it’s an apocalyptic world, there’s still the use of Monster Energy. It’s a vital resource for porters who want to instantly get their stamina back to a full charge in the middle of a delivery.

Why is Monster Energy in Death Stranding?

There’s no exact reason why Monster Energy survive the fallout of everything that happened in Death Stranding. It could be one of the few things that remained intact in the world’s history books, so those in charge deemed it the best thing to use. It could also be a favorite of the population, or they found that porters are going to receive the most benefits for using it.

What does the item do in the game? It’s what players are going to use to recharge their stamina while they’re out on a delivery. They fill their canteen up with it before leaving. They can freely drink from it whenever they need a boost to get it all back, rather than waiting for it to return by sitting around or resting slowly. Players are likely going to frequently see it whenever they’re in their private room to take a shower, use the restroom, or swap out any of the suits they’re using in the game.

Now, why would Kojima feature his product so much in his game? An answer could be his desire to wanting to emulate movies. For those who have followed Kojima for any length of time during his years at working for Konami on the Metal Gear series, they would significantly understand it. This game franchise emulated quite a bit of the action movies from the 80s and beyond, with deep storylines and rich connections in each entry of the franchise. Because Kojima wants to emulate the films, the idea of stable product placement could be at work here. Plenty of movies have a great deal of product placement, from cars to drinks. The main characters of films typically use the product in front of the audience for a few seconds, drawing their attention to it, and then continuing forward with the plotline.

There are other examples of product placement in the game, too. When players go to have Sam use the restroom for sitting down on the toilet, there’s an advertisement for the actor who plays the character, Norman Reedus, and his new show. It’s shown right in the middle, blocking out the chance for players to ever see Sam do his business. This placement, along with Monster Energy, essentially breaks the fourth wall, which Kojima has also done with Metal Gear at various points.

Despite these placements, there’s no apparent reason why players need to have Sam chug down Monster Energy to complete the missions. There’s no connection to why this refuels his stamina, or why this liquid is better than water. Maybe water doesn’t exist in the world anymore?

Regardless, here we all are, wondering what Kojima is going to do next. We can’t explain why Monster Energy in the game, but sometimes, it’s better to avoid the question entirely.