Gaming, Hands-On

Cloud Save Is the Best Part of Death Stranding on Apple Devices

Death Stranding Director’s Cut was released on several Apple devices earlier this week, including the iPhone 15 Pro, iPhone 15 Pro Max, as well as Macs and iPads running on an M1 chip or later. I’ve been playing through Hideo Kojima’s latest title quite a bit on the iPhone 15 Pro and M3 Max MacBook Pro, and the absolute best part of the game on Apple? Cloud save.

Naturally, iCloud is required for cloud save to work with Death Stranding, and it allows for seamless cross-progression across platforms. I can play the game on my iPhone while I’m out and about, and once I’m home, I can fire it up on the MacBook Pro and continue my progress without missing a beat. To me, this is an incredibly convenient feature.

On top of that, you only need to purchase Death Stranding Director’s Cut once through the Apple App Store to be able to play the game on all three available platforms (iOS, macOS, iPadOS). Priced at only RM99.90 for a limited time, this is a very attractive price tag for a AAA title, not to mention the fact that you’re effectively getting three copies of the game.

Beyond that, Death Stranding is very much playable on the iPhone 15 Pro. While the resolution isn’t particularly sharp at 720p – and the 30fps frame rate fluctuates quite a bit here and there – it’s still impressive that a game that was previously only offered on console and PC can be played on a mobile device.

The on-screen controls are also decent, and I love that the buttons are minimal enough to not block off the contents of the game. Of course, using a dedicated gamepad will definitely make for a more pleasant gaming experience.

While I do enjoy playing Death Stranding on the iPhone, there are some caveats to keep in mind, such as the lengthy installation that pops up between the prologue and the start of the game. I wasn’t timing the installation time, but it felt like it took an hour or so for the installation to be completed. This is not a major shortcoming by any means, but it’s definitely worth a mention.

As expected, running a demanding game like Death Stranding on a mobile device takes up quite a bit of power. On the iPhone 15 Pro, about 20 minutes of gameplay take up approximately 10% battery. Running the game for prolonged periods of time noticeably heats up the phone too, though not to the point of concern.

How about the M3 Max MacBook Pro? Can it run Death Stranding well enough? Absolutely. In fact, the game runs beautifully on the laptop at maxed out settings with the resolution set to 4K. The frame rate also feels stable at 60fps, and it’s an absolute blast to play the game on the MacBook Pro.

That being said, it’s worth noting that the M3 Mac MacBook Pro I tested Death Stranding on is quite well-equipped. It has the highest-end M3 Max chip with 14-core CPU and 30-core GPU, along with 64GB of unified memory. Nonetheless, I’m still amazed that the game can run this well on a MacBook; a platform that is rarely considered for serious gaming.

If you’ve always wanted to pick up Death Stranding Director’s Cut, I can easily recommend getting the game on the Apple App Store while it’s still offered for only RM99.90. Of course, this is assuming you’ve got a compatible Mac, iPad, or iPhone.

Looking forward, I do hope more developers will consider releasing their games on Apple’s ecosystem. There’s certainly potential in this space, and I’m definitely excited at the prospect of being able to play the upcoming Death Stranding 2: On the Beach on an iPhone or MacBook in the foreseeable future.

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