Dark Souls 2 Will Remain Same In Core
Dark Souls wasn’t just any game – it was, in many ways, one of the few but grand disciples that championed a revival of the punishingly hard yet satisfyingly rewarding videogame. It was the first of this breed that took up the call after the Gamers had been pampered with games which went out of their way to make things easy.
It wasn’t the most refined of games to come out on the PC – its console background was there for everyone to see. Yet it still drew massive amounts of support from a dedicated community with included mods to fix the 30fps lock as well as the rather silly resolution settings. With such a strong fan base it came as no surprise that, even though some had feared the opposite, the sequel of Dark Souls would also come out on PC. Roaring applause was the answer to this announcement at this year’s VGA.
But with a wider audience and a more focused look upon the PC as a viable platform come certain dangers. How to attract the highest number of potential buyers? How to make the game accessible to as many as possible? How to not alienate your existing consumers that have supported you this far? A game like Dark Souls isn’t really what the present generation of PC Gamers are used to. Failure and pain is part of the experience and in a market filled with games that provide a cheap and simple joyride – not mentioning any names here but you know what I mean when I say ‘Duty Calls’ me to write this news article - consumers might be shunned by the bold ‘Prepare to die’ slogan that has come integral to the Dark Souls name.
So when just over a week ago Tomohiro Shibuya announced that he would want to make Dark Souls 2 ‘more straightforward and understandable’, a few alarm bells went off. As an answer to this, during and interview with Famitsu magazine (translation by Polygon), Hidetaka Miyazaki, the director of Dark Souls who holds a supervisory post when it comes to the sequel said:
“If we’re going to announce this as a sequel to Dark Souls then I think there’s certainly a core that we need to protect. I’m talking about how we think about the difficulty level and how you achieve things in-game; about the concepts behind the mechanics and level design.”
While this sounds reassuring, at the same time he continued to explain that:
“Outside of that core, though, I think it’s better to leave things to the discretion of the director. There’s a lot around that core that we need to fix or adjust, besides, and individual touches always tend to come out in the world setting and artwork, so I’m not meddling in that very much.”
When asked about what specific changes he had in mind, Miyazaki said that for example the location of Dark Souls 2 would be different:
“The game is set in a different part of the same planet — to put it another way, if the first game was set in the North Pole, this one would be in the South Pole; that sort of contrast.”
Shibuya also explained that dedicated servers are currently being envisioned for Dark Souls 2:
“Setting up a dedicated server lets you retain your data, making it easier to share it with other players. We’d like to evolve the asynchronous message-oriented online support from the previous game; we’re imagining a framework where players are able to directly interact with each other.”
It looks as if, until the release of Dark Souls 2, a lot of nervous waiting will accompany the fans of the game. Relax guys, there is always ice-cream.