Hidetaka Miyazaki, the director of Dark Souls, is considering making the game easier in order to be more accessible to a wider gaming audience and wants to find the right balance between “satisfying” and “difficult”.
Chances are that the reader has not played either Dark Souls or its predecessor, Demon Souls, or if he did then he did not make it past the first level, but if he did then it is more than likely that he or she thoroughly enjoyed the experience, as frustratingly satisfying as it was.
The game was praised for not holding the players hand and providing the first real challenge for players since the age of the merciless arcade games, which were a blast in their own right. However, the director of Dark Souls, Hidetaka Miyazaki, is having second thoughts the design of their game, or more specifically, the difficulty.
Hinting at possible developing a second game mode aimed at the less hardcore gamers, the director expressed his desire to create “another difficulty that everyone can complete or carefully send all gamers the messages behind our difficult games.”
The reason for the move seem to stem from the fact that a large number of gamers “hesitate to play” Dark Souls because very few would actually spend money on a game that takes them to school every chance it gets, especially when there are games that are easier to beat.
However, Miyazaki, also believes that making games too easy would destroy the purpose as well and that finding the right balance is the key. He believes that what gamers “want is interesting and worthwhile games to play,” before continuing, “it is natural that hindrance or stress that does not attribute to such interesting and worthwhile elements will be removed in the end.”
The news has caused an uproar among the Souls faithful, who believe that the game’s identity and charm lie in its uncompromising consistency and challenging gameplay and believe that taking that away will make the game just like any other RPG on the market.
In fact, the series has created a brand image of itself and has garnered quite the cult following as well, changing up the formula could jeopardize all of that, especially when it comes to the online multiplayer.
However, one also needs to consider the developers position. Millions of dollars are spent on development and although catering to a core fan base is great one has to allow the developer to make some money as well and that means allowing more mainstream gamers into the mix.
Whether or not the developers can manage to keep a balance while doing so remains the key otherwise things could become extremely messy and that too not in a good way.