Well this is a turn up for the books. According to a source close to Forbes, the hotly anticipated Dark Souls II has launched (on the PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360) to mixed reviews because of a last minute graphical downgrade, The reason, if this source is to be believed, is that the game was built very much with 'next generation' (possibly a PlayStation 4/Xbone release too?) technology, such as DX11 in mind. Which is why earlier video and screenshot press releases look far sharper than the shipped product.
"This is what it comes down to: a playable framerate. The early builds that the screenshots came from were playable but only just so. The game was not in a state where it could be sold at that point. I strongly suspect that they were focusing heavily on delivering a top-notch experience on PC and underestimated the challenges the new systems would pose on PS3 / Xbox360. That's my analysis, anyway. But, factually, the early builds played like Blighttown the entire game."
If true, this is extremely inspiring. It's no secret that the original game, on the PC, was a port. And a pretty bloody bad one at that. So iffy, in fact, that it took a fan mod to make it playable...well, effectively at least. So, it seems, this time around they went in completely the opposite direction. Which is kind of what we've been hearing from the beginning, that there would be a big push to make a gaming experience we of the Master Race would be proud of. Something i honestly took them at the word for. Now, it seems, my faith has been justified.
Namco have said, for clarity, that there will be more concrete details, from them directly, regarding the PC release (like a tech demo trailer perhaps?) sometime in April. but prior to the April 25th launch window. As for the console port, which is what it now most certainly is, I can sympathise with the disappointment to a degree. It would have been good of From/Namco to give advance notice that the 'downgrade' was happening. But it does seem like it was a decision made right at the last minute. And on the other hand...dude, ten year old tech...
Now here's the real question. All that previous footage we've seen running on the dev build, was that a PC dev build...or will our release be even purdier? I'm betting it will.