Dark Souls Remaster Coming in May

48 minutes ago, dethtoll said:

Hahahaha calling DS1's world design "poor" hahahaha

Yes. A major reason DS2 was panned by the players is because its level design is so very different from the first game, but I argue that this is in fact an area where 2 majorly improved over 1. I challenge you to play DS2 without the preconception that its level design is "inferior to DS1 because ... it's different". Compare DS1 and DS2's level design critically.

Edited by DILDOMASTER666

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1 minute ago, DILDOMASTER666 said:

DS2 without the preconception that its level design is "inferior to DS1

Thing is, it's not a preconception but a fact.

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19 hours ago, Bauul said:

You backtracked the entire way through Blightown, the Depths and the Lower Burg? Yeah, fair enough, that would have been a bit of a dull slog! But that's not the route you're meant to take. I'm actually more impressed with the game that it's even possible.

A not-so-fun thing I found out during a Master Key playthrough is that if you try and play the area backwards (descend from Valley of Drakes, fight Quelaag, ascend up through main Blighttown toward the Depths), you'll find the door to the Depths hopelessly locked from the other side, forcing one to go all the way back down the long way. Welp. :P

 

Regarding DS1/DS2 level design, one thing that I've always maintained is that the best parts of 1 are the best parts of the series by far -- everything leading up to (and possibly including) Anor Londo is individually fantastic (sans maybe Blighttown/Depths, YMMV), plus you've got that famous level connectivity that's pretty much unique to DS1. Problem is, the peaks are followed by valleys of similar magnitude; the post-Anor-Londo stretch of the game loses a lot of its magic and Demon Ruins / Lost Izalith in particular is quite rubbish.

 

DS2's high points aren't quite as high, and it certainly trades away the connectivity for more location variety even when it doesn't make sense (the Earthen Peak -> Iron Keep transition is particularly WTFerriffic), but it's a way more consistent experience and there isn't really any place I'd point to in the game as bad (though I know a few folks who'd fight that claim over Black Gulch alone ;). And maybe I'm crazy, but I find locations like Iron Keep, Lost Bastille, Drangleic Castle, Dragon Aerie, Shulva, Brume Tower, and so forth to be just as iconic as the locales from the first game everyone's keen to remember. Not that I'm not already crazy, mind you. :P

 

Having said all that, I don't expect the remaster to be anything more than a remaster, but I'm absolutely looking forward to it just to have all the technical stuff ironed out.

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16 minutes ago, Xaser said:

I don't expect the remaster to be anything more than a remaster

Same here but I'm looking forward to PVP and replaying some of the covenants which are mostly inactive in the original game nowadays. I also hope they'll adjust the combat speed to be more on par with BB or DKS3.

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I've never sought out PVP but it'll be good n' proper to see the invasion floodgates open once more. :D

 

*dies six trillion times*

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Bloodborne is best SoulsBorne, but I'll take whatever I can get. Being someone who started with DS3, I'm hoping the rumours about the combat being overhauled are true, and this isn't just DS1 with better graphics and multiplayer. And please change that god awful inventory system.*

 

*Not that Bloodborne's was a lot better, what with constantly having to go back to the Hunter's Dream to restock items.

Edited by DoomUK

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4 hours ago, Xaser said:

DS2's high points aren't quite as high, and it certainly trades away the connectivity for more location variety even when it doesn't make sense (the Earthen Peak -> Iron Keep transition is particularly WTFerriffic), but it's a way more consistent experience and there isn't really any place I'd point to in the game as bad (though I know a few folks who'd fight that claim over Black Gulch alone ;). And maybe I'm crazy, but I find locations like Iron Keep, Lost Bastille, Drangleic Castle, Dragon Aerie, Shulva, Brume Tower, and so forth to be just as iconic as the locales from the first game everyone's keen to remember. Not that I'm not already crazy, mind you. :P

Sure, I'm not saying the levels in DS2 are particularly iconic, I'm not even saying they make any sense physically. What's wrong with a few free-associative paradoxes every now and then, though? ;) In the context of the universe DS2 takes place in, maybe I'm stretching to say this, but it makes me feel as though the world I'm inhabiting is physically untrustworthy, and on a first playthrough, I felt like I could never guess what to expect next. It was a feeling I didn't get from the original where, looking back, I feel as though it should have opted for such a design.

 

The fact that regions of space physically overlap and elevators into nothing give way without warning to impossible lava fortresses was done in such a way to give me the sense that I inhabited a fantasy world beyond my comprehension. It's something I wish I had seen in DS1, looking back. Maybe in an alternate universe, there is a Dark Souls 1 remaster being released that takes cues from DS2 in this regard.

 

5 hours ago, tourniquet said:

Thing is, it's not a preconception but a fact.

[citation needed]

Edited by DILDOMASTER666

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KAZUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUL WILL RIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIISE AGAIN. PRAISE THE PRULD SUN!

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Dark Souls 1's world design worked for the tone they were going for -- you're basically in a single large city-state that has come to ruin. Dark Souls 2's world design, as nonsensical as the transitions and the way they overlap can be, gives it a broader sense of scale.

 

If there's something I would knock DS1 for over DS2 it's that Dark Souls 1 felt more like a slavish remix of Demon's Souls (lots of elements lifted wholesale from Demon's, occasionally not even pretending that it's different, i.e. Patches, as well as generally looking similar in terms of graphics quality.) DS2 in contrast feels much more like the truer spiritual sequel while simultaneously doing its own thing.

 

The above is probably why the Oolacile DLC was so great, because it stepped away from "this is a lot like Demon's Souls, huh?" to create something new. Plus it has what's probably my two most favorite boss fights in the game.

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The  WTFness of DS2's world design makes it my favorite of all 5, burn me at the stakes if you want.

 

Running from a crappy ruined village to the half-submerged ruins of an ancient kingdom, or from the manor to the seemingly floating dragon-infested hills feels so much more epic in scale, along with the overlapping sections and impossible transitions which makes it feel as if time and space themselves are falling apart.

 

That is not to say DS1 and 3 don't have amazing locations, they just didn't have the same impact on me as DS2's did.

 

But we all know Yharnam has the best aesthetics :p

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I think it's better to distinguish level design and world design. Level design here would refer to the layout and interconnectivity of one area. World design would refer to the same aspects but between different areas. I use interconnectivity to mean useful shortcuts that enable minimal backtracking after death. Spoilers for anyone who hasn't played Demon's Souls follow...

 

Spoiler

I consider Demon's Souls to have the best level design in the series. Boletaria 1-1 and 1-2 are ideal introductions to the two types of levels in the game. The first represents levels that allow the player to access / unlock shortcuts that make returning to the spot of death easier. The second represents linear levels featuring a straight run to the boss with a series of gauntlets against enemies. Boletarian Palace, Stonefang Tunnel, and Tower of Latria mostly consist of levels of the first type while Shrine of Storms, and Valley of Defilement are predominantly of the second type. Tower of Latria is a triumph of level design for all I care. Shortcuts in Demon's Souls are consistent and believable given the World you are in. Finally, the Arch Demon levels feature straight runs to the boss, but you do not face any enemy until the boss fight starts.

 

Dark Souls has, in my opinion, the best world design of not only the Souls series but also of any game I've ever played. The first half features some remarkable level design as well (where multiple paths are accounted for) although I do consider Anor Londo to be a disappointment compared to Boletarian Palace. Demon Ruins has the first bad shortcut with the elevator back to Quelaag's Domain. And while I still find The Catacombs, The Duke's Archives, and New Londo Ruins to be competent levels with a few nifty tricks here and there, the level design plummets in all of the Lord Soul areas, which are merely linear runs to the boss room with some annoying heavy-hitting enemies which, when combined with the gimmicky nature of the areas, result in a somewhat poor experience.

 

Dark Souls 2 has a grander world than Dark Souls, but suffers from mediocre world layout and level design. The world is a poor combination of Demon's Souls' levels and Dark Souls' world. After Majula, you have multiple paths that branch out but, never really connect to each other (outside of the Raven warp from Cardinal Tower to Lost Bastille, which comes off as a cheap way of connecting branches since Cardinal Tower isn't a tutorial area), which is similar to The Nexus in Demon's Souls. All these paths lead to dead ends. Furthermore, Dark Souls 2 has several bonfires right in front of boss rooms and these linear runs are filled with multiple strong enemies. The only useful shortcut that I can recall is, ironically, in the Forest of Fallen Giants, the first area in the game. Huntsman's Copse also features a tree you can kick down, although that leads to another bonfire and isn't a useful shortcut in my view. This reflects From's excessive usage of the bonfire warp rather than interconnected level and world layout, a problem that starts to appear in the latter half of Dark Souls. The three Crown DLCs do feature a return to form though. One good aspect of Dark Souls II's world is the admirable variety the locations have. Note that I didn't include the hilarious transitions between Dark Souls 2's areas, which give the game some charm I suppose...

 

Dark Souls 3 also suffers from poor world layout, although the level design is good for the most part (there are some atrocious bonfires though). The world of Dark Souls 3 is too linear and offers too few options for routes and bosses at any given time. Demon's Souls, Dark Souls I and II featured a plethora of bosses to fight at any given time, rewarding players who knew the world(s) well. The level design is excellent but makes heavy use of ladders, doors, and elevators which does seem repetitive. The Ringed City DLC does have a fantastically presented shortcut with the tree(?) crashing into the church. This reminded me of the excellent shortcut in the Forest of Fallen Giants. Again the early bonfire warp results in questionable to repetitive world and level design.

 

Demon's Souls and Dark Souls work the best because of the restrictions From had / placed on themselves. The lack of warping and separation of Worlds in Demon's Souls forced From to make interwoven levels or long linear gauntlets. The late warping and unified world in Dark Souls forced From to make a tightly connected and easily traversable world. Dark Souls II's and III's over-reliance on the bonfire warp weaken the world design in both games and in the case of Dark Souls II, the level design as well.

 

With that in mind, according to me...

 

Level Design - DeS > DkSIII >= DkS > DkSII

World Design - DkS > DkSII >= DkSIII

 

I still haven't played Bloodborne though (No PS4...) hence, only Souls series.

Edited by SGS Man

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18 hours ago, dethtoll said:

occasionally not even pretending that it's different, i.e. Patches

Isn't Patches in every one of Miyazaki's games?  He's even in Bloodborne and that isn't even a Souls games.

 

Edit: 1000th post!  And it was about Patches of all people.  He would be proud!

Edited by Bauul

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47 minutes ago, Bauul said:

Isn't Patches in every one of Miyazaki's games?  He's even in Bloodborne and that isn't even a Souls games.

 

Edit: 1000th post!  And it was about Patches of all people.  He would be proud!

Then he'd kick you off a cliff.

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28 minutes ago, Shanoa said:

Then he'd kick you off a cliff.

Not before gankers use him as achtung-detector

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