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Elden Ring is probably the easiest souls game so far [An interview with FromSoftware’s Hidetaka Miyazki]

Draugoth

Member

When asked about Elden Ring's difficulty, and how it ends up excluding more casual players, Myazaki says it's a valid discussion, and that this time the team worked to make the game more accessible and intuitive:

In other games, Myazaki says that because of linearity, players were forced to use all their skills to beat bosses, which ended up causing long frustrating fights and many players ending up giving up on the game. In Elden Ring, with the open world, if the player gets stuck in a boss, he can go elsewhere to improve his character, and come back stronger and more confident. Myazaki also says that Elden Ring makes co-op easier; making it easier to call friends to help you this time:

How has the ongoing discourse around game difficulty and accessibility impacted the way you’ve tailored and maintained FromSoftware’s trademark difficulty in Elden Ring? Was this something your team has been trying to be more mindful of?
Yes, we have. It’s a valid discussion. I feel like our approach to these games, not just Elden Ring, is to design them to encourage the player to overcome adversity. We don’t try to force difficulty or make things hard for the sake of it. We want players to use their cunning, study the game, memorize what’s happening, and learn from their mistakes. We don’t want players to feel like the game is unfairly punishing, but rather that there’s a chance to win a difficult encounter and make progress. We understand that Souls-like games are regularly associated with impossible levels of difficulty with high barriers to entry. But we try to design the games to make the cycle of repeatedly trying to overcome these challenges enjoyable in itself. So we hope that with Elden Ring and the new options it provides, it will be a success in that respect.


In Elden Ring, we have not intentionally tried to lower the game’s difficulty, but I think more players will finish it this time. As I mentioned, the player’s level of freedom to progress through the world or return to a challenge later are all elements that I feel will help people get through the game at a more leisurely pace. Also, there isn’t a focus on pure action. The player has more agency to dictate their approach against, for example, the field bosses in the overworld and how they utilize stealth in various situations. We’ve even reduced the number of hoops that you have to jump through to enjoy it in multiplayer. So we hope the players embrace that idea of receiving help from others. And we feel like the overall clear rate will go up this time because of these things.

Other stuff:

  • He loved playing It Takes Two with a friend & praises its quality (finished it in 3 days)
  • Miyazaki can imagine to collaborate with another creator again, but he'd probably choose someone outside of gaming
 
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Fake

Member
Dat title. This is not even the title of the Playstation Blog ('An interview with FromSoftware’s Hidetaka Miyazaki').

Yeah, is so funny every discussion around a souls game need to be about difficult. I guess some gamers get traumatized by this genre.
 
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Im more curious about coop, if its drop in and drop out like say most modern games and you dont have to keep resummoning/re-inviting every time they die, that'd be cool as I have some friends that I need to make them try souls-like games more. They enjoyed The Revenant but doubt they would've played it solo. If its still annoying I'll just stick to playing alone.
 
I'm OK with this. Sekiro was absolutely brutal in its difficulty, I think I made it 3/4 of the way before I tapped out.
Bloodborne was rough for me too, but I was able to beat the vanilla game. Made it to Orphan of Kos in the dlc but never did beat him, after a billion tries, the frustration factor was just too high.
My old man reflexes just may not be up to the task anymore. Which is weird cause I can make hell runs in Spelunky and lich runs in gungeon.
 

Kuranghi

Gold Member
Can't wait to play this beast game:



I'll have to buy three (3) more PS5s so I can play all the other games coming out around that time as well. I'll need to borrow some arms from that boss in the trailer.

My flatmate was totally dark on this, hasn't (or hadn't rather) seen anything outside of the first trailer and he was watching a random video the other day and they just put footage from the network test at the start with no warning, it was the bit where the dragon shows up suddenly and I just had to say to him that while that looks like a crazily epic "best bit" event its actually just the tip of the iceberg of the cool moments in the game from what I've seen and now he's even more excited.
 

Arthimura

Member
I think they decided to lower the difficulty after the reception of Sekiro.

Journalists kept crying about accessibility, From Software games being elitists and about "what's the limit of the difficulty in games".

Like, "I can't beat this game, so it should not exist." :messenger_tears_of_joy:
 

Draugoth

Member
I think they decided to lower the difficulty after the reception of Sekiro.

Journalists kept crying about accessibility, From Software games being elitists and about "what's the limit of the difficulty in games".

Like, "I can't beat this game, so it should not exist." :messenger_tears_of_joy:

I finished Sekiro before Dark Souls. All i could think was how brutal Sekiro was compared to Dark Souls. I can see his reasoning.
 
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Kuranghi

Gold Member
I'm OK with this. Sekiro was absolutely brutal in its difficulty, I think I made it 3/4 of the way before I tapped out.
Bloodborne was rough for me too, but I was able to beat the vanilla game. Made it to Orphan of Kos in the dlc but never did beat him, after a billion tries, the frustration factor was just too high.
My old man reflexes just may not be up to the task anymore. Which is weird cause I can make hell runs in Spelunky and lich runs in gungeon.

You did 800x better than me mate, I stopped after 2 hours haha. I wouldn't say I have old man reflexes yet, I'm 35, I think they're pretty good still, I just didn't understand how to play the game really. Sometimes you just have to accept and move on, even though its so beautiful and I wanted to continue very much.
 

Saber

Member
Myiazaki is basically saying what people try to explain to people who cries for an easy mode. Soul is a learning process, he didn't make it hard for the sake of it. He "encourages to overcome adversity", he wants basically you to not to give up and learn from it.


But nah...these people don't have time for gaming.
 
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Sekiro is a great game, but was ultimately past the point of being worth it for me. Possibly the only action game ever made that made me feel that way. Played tough action games my entire life. I honestly can't imaging that 95% of gamers are fine with Sekiro as is. And that's okay with me too. I don't want him to change the game. It has its fans. I bet that completion rate is absolutely abysmal though.

For an open world game emphasizing exploration, I wouldn't think that was ideal though. Demon's Souls was seen as difficult at the time, but honestly it was more about observation and preparation than only roadblocking you into numerous bosses. Played more like a survival horror game than an action game half the time.

Sekiro doesn't even have a second weapon. There's just very little room to experiment. You pretty much do what is required, or leave. Even Ninja Gaiden has like a dozen weapons. Some players will click with one more than another, and more people can find ways to excel at the game.
 
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Kuranghi

Gold Member
This is all Brandon Jones' fault. I'm joking, sorry BJ.

Myiazaki is basically saying what people try to explain to people who cries for an easy mode. Soul is a learning process, he didn't make it hard for the sake of it.


But nah...these people don't have time for gaming.

I think a part of it is, and I'm not talking about myself here, if you only have a few hours a week to game and you aren't really feeling like you're progressing in a game (because Sekiro is so punishing so if you dont do the right thing then you'll just fail over and over and you cant win by luck really). Imagine playing something for 2-3 weeks of your gaming time and you feel like you don't understand it still and aren't having fun.

Some people just won't keep playing it because they are the type of person that wants more leeway for error in their games before going back to an earlier point. I can relate to it because I quit on Sekiro, but not for the time reason, I just didn't get it and I wasn't having fun so I moved on. Same as I've done with other huge titles that I loved many aspects of and waited 3+ years for them to release, but did gameplay things in a way thats not fun for me.
 
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Boneless

Member
More options is easier by the default. This was the thing I personally didnt like with Sekiro, only one way to progress, you HAVE to get through this boss and you can't do a sidequest to find an epic sword that would help you in the fight.
 

ANDS

Thought gaf was racist. Now knows better, honorary gaffer 2022
That title doesn't really capture the meat of what HM was saying. Network test already happened so we know the level of difficulty in the game. You've always been able to "go somewhere else" in a Souls game and get better.

I'm OK with this. Sekiro was absolutely brutal in its difficulty, I think I made it 3/4 of the way before I tapped out.
Bloodborne was rough for me too, but I was able to beat the vanilla game. Made it to Orphan of Kos in the dlc but never did beat him, after a billion tries, the frustration factor was just too high.
My old man reflexes just may not be up to the task anymore. Which is weird cause I can make hell runs in Spelunky and lich runs in gungeon.

I don't really consider SEKIRO a Soulslike. I saw someone refer to it as a rhythm game and I feel like that's apt (if a bit reductive).
 

Ladioss

Member
As an unskilled player who nonetheless finished Dark Souls 1-3 and Sekiro, the demo was far from being easy. As long as they didn't bring the difficulty done to walking simulator level, ER should be fine.
 

RoadHazard

Gold Member
From the beta footage I've watched it definitely looks like if you just get the right magic and assist summons you can absolutely murder pretty much everything with little issue. So yeah, I think if you're the kind of person who likes to explore and find everything you'll have an easier time than in the Souls games. If you want to just mainline it it's gonna be much harder of course. And obviously the game is gonna have more difficult stuff than what was in the beta.

The one thing that does concern be a bit is magic and summons looking rather overpowered combined with the game seeming to be made for you using them, like that's how you're meant to play it. Is a melee build actually feasible?
 
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GymWolf

Gold Member
No shit.

Stealth + invocations + skills + easy to run away if in danger because it is an open world game + horse combat that looks pretty op + even more op looking magic.

I still expect a good challenge but it was hard to not foresee this...
 

Bartski

Gold Member
Nice clickbait title.
He's just reiterating the concept of all souls games where you play to increase your power in order to beat a challenge while this time there are so many different ways now to get OP and gain an advantage.
As opposed to Sekiro where you had two choices - GIT GUD or leave.
I'd be happier to see them compensating for the number of options given to the player with the even greater relative difficulty of boss fights, but I accept it and I'm ready.
Inept crybaby journos can go eat a dick.
 
From the gameplay beta videos you could tell this game will be significantly easier than other souls games. It being open world alone makes it easier cause theres no skill checkpoints. If you hit a wall you can go somewhere else and if you hit another wall you can go somewhere else.

Theres a major skill check like every hour in Sekiro which is why so many people dropped it
 

j0hnnix

Member
No shit.

Stealth + invocations + skills + easy to run away if in danger because it is an open world game + horse combat that looks pretty op + even more op looking magic.

I still expect a good challenge but it was hard to not foresee this...
Case closed. Report to casuals.

This is pretty much how I see it as well. You have more tools at your disposal , the added freedom to pick and choose your battle for preparedness. Sekiro had the freedom but had the requirement to master parry, once this was mastered the game was incredibly approachable for those who invested the time - this goes for all souls games - practice makes better.
 

Lognor

Banned
I don't know how I feel about the fact that it's easier. While Dark Souls could be challenging and frustrating at times, it felt so rewarding when you finally beat that difficult boss. Hopefully there are plenty of side quests that will be extremely challenging. I suppose if they make the main quests easier, but supplement that will extremely difficult side quests I could live with that.
 

22•22

Doesnt need recognition
Nice clickbait title.
He's just reiterating the concept of all souls games where you play to increase your power in order to beat a challenge while this time there are so many different ways now to get OP and gain an advantage.
As opposed to Sekiro where you had two choices - GIT GUD or leave.
I'd be happier to see them compensating for the number of options given to the player with the even greater relative difficulty of boss fights, but I accept it and I'm ready.
Inept crybaby journos can go eat a dick.

Pretty much.

Nothing has changed except gaining flexibility (freedom) regarding progress in relation to your playstyle/skills. More walls to run into doesn't equate to weaker walls.
 

Arthimura

Member
I like the lack of options and alternative paths in Sekiro. I think it's good that From Software made at least one game this way.

A lot of people can get away with Soulsborne difficulty by using co-op and guides to get overpowered weapons and magic/miracles. In Sekiro, or the player achieve the necessary mechanical skill level to beat the game, or he don't.
 
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GymWolf

Gold Member
Case closed. Report to casuals.

This is pretty much how I see it as well. You have more tools at your disposal , the added freedom to pick and choose your battle for preparedness. Sekiro had the freedom but had the requirement to master parry, once this was mastered the game was incredibly approachable for those who invested the time - this goes for all souls games - practice makes better.
I mean, i still expect casuals to be absolutely crushed by this game.
 
When videos of the beta test (or whatever that was late last year) came out the enemies looked braindead. It was like run up, hit, hit, hit, use spirit attack thing, hit, dead. Obviously there is much more to the game not seen but it seemed very simplistic and easy from what was shown.
 

GermanZepp

Member
Sekiro is a great game, but was ultimately past the point of being worth it for me. Possibly the only action game ever made that made me feel that way. Played tough action games my entire life. I honestly can't imaging that 95% of gamers are fine with Sekiro as is. And that's okay with me too. I don't want him to change the game. It has its fans. I bet that completion rate is absolutely abysmal though.

For an open world game emphasizing exploration, I wouldn't think that was ideal though. Demon's Souls was seen as difficult at the time, but honestly it was more about observation and preparation than only roadblocking you into numerous bosses. Played more like a survival horror game than an action game half the time.

Sekiro doesn't even have a second weapon. There's just very little room to experiment. You pretty much do what is required, or leave. Even Ninja Gaiden has like a dozen weapons. Some players will click with one more than another, and more people can find ways to excel at the game.
Sekiro has room for experiment. You got your arm protesis, your skill arts and consumables. Some are useful in different context, on regular enemies and bosses.
 

SlimySnake

Gold Member
It's funny every From game Ive played with the exception of DS3 gave me nightmares. But then I would restart the game on a new save and because i had learned the game's systems, combat and level design, i would have no problems flying through the game even without every using NG+ loadouts. Sekiro especially is surprisingly easy when you finally understand how broken parrying is in the game.

I thought Demon Souls was bullshit, but again, it's about learning the game. I had so much trouble with 4-2 i literally dreaded it even on NG+7. But then i realized that you can use soul remains that are dropped by every enemy in that level and in 4-1 to distract all the enemies and literally sleep walk through the whole level. the boss in that level is blind so if you use a thieves ring, you can easily kill him. same goes for all the other enemies in the game.

If you learn the systems, they are some of the easiest games ever. I literally killed the final boss of bloodborne by parrying him three times. He joined the hunt for like a minute.
 

0neAnd0nly

Member
So I have long wondered if I would enjoy these, and have throughout the years never tried a From game.

Here is my question, as I see so many people always frustrated or talk about how frustrating it can be.


If you have also played Kingdom Hearts, on a scale from Jafar to Riku-Ansem Castle Boss Battle, how frustrating we talking? Like... the Riku boss battle in KH1 is the one I hate the most of that game (even more so than later bosses), so I can curious. LOL.
 
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