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Default Dark Souls II - Editorial @ EDGE

January 24th, 2014, 06:10
EDGE has a new article for Dark Souls II thats talks about FromSoftware’s quest to create the last great adventure of last generation.

Ever since co-director Yui Tanimura was quoted using the word ‘accessible’ in relation to this new entry in the dark fantasy Souls series, the teams at developer FromSoftware and publisher Namco Bandai seem to have taken great pride in proving that Dark Souls II will be every bit as pad-shatteringly difficult as Demon’s Souls and Dark Souls.

No one wants Dark Souls II to be easy. The trial-by-fire nature of these adventures is what makes them memorable. Errors are greeted with death, and you quickly learn not to make the same mistake twice. But those systems could be better expressed. Short, clipped dialogue boxes did a terrible job of explaining things in past games, and this is an area that FromSoftware will address in the sequel – to a degree.
More information.
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January 24th, 2014, 06:10
These guys from Edge seem to have went to Japan and had a private Demo.

So in addition to spoiling the intro movie (which I managed to skim over ) there are a couple of bits I found interesting too:

The sequence’s production values are an indication of the general improvements the game will bring. With its development team roughly doubled, FromSoftware is making the biggest game in the studio’s history. It’s also easily the most hungrily anticipated, with some 2.5 million fans to please. Working with a budget that is bigger than before but still nowhere near that of a western triple-A release, the studio is nonetheless aiming to create blockbuster entertainment that looks and plays the part. In order to meet that vision, production has been spilt in two, with battle mechanics and gameplay directed by Tanimura, and Tomohiro Shibuya in charge of world and design. But the pair are apparently being overseen “closely” by series creator Hidetaka Miyazaki – in contrast to the picture we were given last year.
Good to know that the previous Director had a more direct involvement at any rate…

also:

Another area of concern for some fans who played the network test was the framerate, which was a downright disaster in some areas of the previous game and still seemed choppy on occasion in the beta. Miyazoe insists this will be fixed at 30fps on PS3 and 360, and maybe a little higher on PC, by release. Careful observers also noticed a smattering of low-res textures, particularly on the ground but also some walls and clothing elements. These will be fixed as far as possible, but Miyazoe says they’re not a top priority. “If it’s far in the distance, we might just leave it,” he says. “If it’s very crucial to the gameplay, we will definitely fix it. The visuals have improved a lot from Dark Souls, and we want to capitalise on that.”
Sounds like a stable Framerate will be a priority this time. So I guess PS3 users at least should expect some visible LoDing issues. I just hope we don't inherit them on the PC versions. They do owe us to go the extra mile after the last time methinks
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January 24th, 2014, 06:19
Originally Posted by JonNik View Post
Sounds like a stable Framerate will be a priority this time. So I guess PS3 users at least should expect some visible LoDing issues. I just hope we don't inherit them on the PC versions. They do owe us to go the extra mile after the last time methinks
Yep, it's interesting that they're claiming both superior visuals and a faster framerate compared to the first game. My first instinct is to assume that they're cutting details somewhere, but it could (hopefully) be that this game is just that much better optimized.
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January 24th, 2014, 06:42
Well most of the People that have played the Beta (Podcasts articles etc) seem to back them up and I am confident that they have indeed done some significant work optimizing for this one. You can see the better lighting, textures (in most cases at least ) and ssao and the general increase in detail (even in some of the awkward unflattering close ups) in the screens that have surfaced. I doubt that would have been possible in the previous iteration of the Engine with any sort of playable fps.

Of course things might have changed a bit for the worse since the Beta if they are still going for that optimal framerate.

Personally though I can handle some subpar graphics, for a game like this (which draws its looks from its Art Direction/design and indeed is of the kind of game that looks better on your screen than in pics for just that reason). What I wouldn't want them in any case to do was to compromise their vision and World design in the hunt for a few more fps. But there is no indication that anything like that took place (quite the contrary)…
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January 24th, 2014, 08:02
One concern I have for the moment is just on a general point of feeling that the sequels' overall gameplay speed will increase to the detriment of the mildly plodding strategic style of the original game. Maybe this is just an impression from the limited footage I've seen and a contrary position can be easily made, but it's a thought I'd like to have eliminated at any rate.

I'm also curious as to how strongly memorable and unique the locations are in comparison to the original game. I don't want to see the waters muddied too much on this front; the footage I've spoiled myself with from the PvP video didn't show anything especially interesting thus far, but I do hope the sparsely remote alien beauty remains somewhat in tact.

Regarding the graphics, to be honest I'm not particularly fussed, as long as this time around the PC is indeed the main platform pushing things forward and getting the love it deserves. I have faith that it'll be up to scratch in the end.

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January 24th, 2014, 08:17
Originally Posted by Pessimeister View Post
One concern I have for the moment is just on a general point of feeling that the sequels' overall gameplay speed will increase to the detriment of the mildly plodding strategic style of the original game. Maybe this is just an impression from the limited footage I've seen and a contrary position can be easily made, but it's a thought I'd like to have eliminated at any rate.
Indeed, They are actually slowing down some aspects of the game (blocking i.e) while upping enemy aggression etc. It is very difficult to get a firm grasp of how exactly things will turn out from the beta as from what I have gathered this was just a network test and every single aspect of the game there is subject to tuning and change (more on that below).

Also they nerfed the lock (that some people seem to think waters down the action a bit ). Considering that I played at least 1/3 of the original with it off when it became a nuisance, I'll probably be ok. But it sure made things less stress inducing at times

Originally Posted by Pessimeister View Post
I'm also curious as to how strongly memorable and unique the locations are in comparison to the original game. I don't want to see the waters muddied too much on this front; the footage I've spoiled myself with from the PvP video didn't show anything especially interesting thus far, but I do hope the sparsely remote alien beauty remains somewhat in tact.
There are a few articles and podcasts around claiming (that sources indicate) that huntsman's copse was more or less something thrown together for the beta test and might not be (in this form at least) even in the final game (The twin humanities podcast is one I can think of from the top of my mind but I did read it in a recent article too. I guess they got some mention from a Namco rep ?). i.e. we do know that the female merchant seen there might actually be on another location (or move around?) and stuff like that. I've really found the recent screens more interesting than the beta footage (the little I've seen) on that regard…

Anyway this is indeed my main concern (and main requirement as I was saying) for the sequel too. But I worry in principle mainly and I don't base it on anything I've seen. If anything they are promising a more open, more puzzle focused world than #1 and if you see the original reveal video it shows locations quite a bit beyond anything seen on the original…

I doubt that From would spoil many of those before hand though
In the end the only thing to do at this point:
Last edited by JonNik; January 24th, 2014 at 08:29.
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