Death Stranding: Director’s Cut, an enhanced return to 2019’s spectacularly unique sci-if adventure title from Hideo Kojima and PlayStation studios, has arrived on the PlayStation 5. With new content, upgraded visuals, Dualsense support and various tweaks, this upgraded package has cemented itself as undoubtedly the best way to play one of the most unusual and distinctive PlayStation titles in recent memory.

In terms of new content, one of the biggest additions is the new Firing Range mode. This might sound like a simple feature, but nothing could be further from the truth. The Firing Range is an incredibly deep and well thought-out aspect of the Director’s Cut. It offers players a way to hone their skills and test weapons (both new and old) in a safe, controlled environment, with plenty of customisation. In addition, it also offers new short burst-style missions which serve as advanced tutorials, teaching the player how to use weapons and tools in strategic manners.

There is also a new narrative mission which ties in with the main story of Death Stranding, while also paying tribute to Kojima’s Metal Gear Solid series. While it is a fairly short quest, it is a fun, bonus tidbit of narrative development for characters from the base game. Some new traversal tools have also been added to the game, allowing players to more easily move about the harsh landscape of Death Stranding, including a catapult and even a jet pack!

One of the greatest upgrades which the Director’s Cut offers, however, is in the visual department. While the game, running on Guerilla’s Decima Engine, was already a gorgeous, stunning visual feast on the PlayStation 4, Death Stranding on PlayStation 5 has been elevated to an even greater level of visual fidelity. The fidelity mode renders at a native 4K resolution and sticks close to 60 frames per second most of the time, with occasional dips. The performance mode smooths out these occasional dips, at the expense of some resolution loss. In my opinion, the fidelity mode looks noticeably sharper and the frame drops are rare and mild enough that the trade-off is worth bearing. When running in this mode, the game competes with the best looking games on PlayStation 5, thanks to the smoothness of motion, high resolution and use of 4K textures.

Kojima Productions have also added a very interesting ultra wide mode to the Director’s Cut. This functions by adding letterboxed bars to the top and bottom of the frame and massively widening the field of view. Some players may enjoy this more cinematic presentation of the game, however, I personally opted to stick with the standard version. Of course, the incredible HDR implementation has also carried over to the PlayStation 5, adding to the jaw-dropping presentation.

Another incredibly impactful addition is DualSense haptics. Every bump, fall and stumble is felt via the brilliant haptics of the PS5’s controller, with the adaptive triggers also being used to add different tactile experiences to the various weapons present in the game. The haptic implementation adds to the immersion and gives a new feeling of heft and weight to the movement which is so central to the gameplay of Death Stranding.

Overall, Death Stranding: Director’s Cut is an excellent PlayStation 5 upgrade. The visuals and performance have been elevated, which, when paired with Dualsense haptics and various tweaks and quality of life improvements to the game, offer what is undoubtedly the best way to experience one of the most unique games released in recent times. While the changes won’t do anything to change the opinion of those who disliked the PS4 release, those who enjoyed Death Stranding certainly have a strong motive to return to the game on their PlayStation 5.

DISCLAIMER: This review has been carried out on PlayStation 5 using review code kindly provided by the publisher, Sony Interactive Entertainment.