In an interview with From Software's Hidetaka Miyazaki it was clarified that the direction for their Sony exclusive Bloodborne would not be another "Demon's Souls, or be anything like Demon's Souls for that matter, but rather it's own entity, using similar but tweaked gameplay mechanics that we've come to know from the souls series and flipping the normally cautious combat in place of a more aggressive one. When questioned by the interviewer, Miyazaki replied: "Those of us actually working on the game never even considered making it Demon’s Souls 2."
Not another Demon's Souls
During a 4Gamer.net interview with From Software's Hidetaka Miyazaki it was clarified that the direction for their Sony exclusive Bloodborne would not be another "Demon's Souls, or be anything like Demon's Souls for that matter, but instead it's own entity, using similar but tweaked gameplay mechanics that we've come to know from the Souls series and flipping the normally cautious combat in place of a more aggressive one. When questioned by the interviewer, Miyazaki replied: "Those of us actually working on the game never even considered making it Demon’s Souls 2."
The replacement of the staple Souls series shield weapon for a gun was the first step in exploring this new direction. Delving more into the ideas of the game itself Miyazaki went on to say that the aesthetic choices and setting chosen were meant to fit new concepts and themes worked into both Bloodborne's story and gameplay; themes of survival to the point of bitterly fighting for ones life and exploration of the unknown.
"From the very beginning of this project, the whole premise was to make a serious game for people who like games. On top of that premise, we have multiple themes throughout the various layers of the game, but three big ones would be “exploring the unknown,” “the feeling of fighting for one’s life,” and “new online elements.” — Hidetaka Miyazaki
Relating to the third concept of "new online elements;" The fans will have to wait for another announcements to get more details. Miyazaki remained very secretive, leaving a hint in the words: "free sharing of exploration.” What could this mean?
Setting and Gameplay
The game was said to take inspiration from such settings as Victorian era remote English towns and Bram Stroker's Dracula, stating that they related to the first two themes mentioned earlier. The original Dark Souls had an element of varying paths, in which one had no particularly clear, or direct order in which to explore the game. It seems as though Bloodborne will take some of these elements to heart as well and perhaps even expand upon them.
"Going back to the theme of “exploring the unknown,” we want to apply that concept to the various gameplay elements, too. The tactical aspect of having more active battles is part of that, but we also want to include a variety of unknown elements in the other facets of gameplay, such as character builds and the routes and strategies that players take through the game. We want players to enjoy groping their way through the game and exploring." - Hidetaka Miyazaki
What the Souls series does right in design is taking the concept of difficulty and applying it to a feeling of accomplishment, utilizing this is no easy task either. A perfect difficulty setting needs to be a challenge, but also a possible obstacle for players to overcome.
The new fierce and hectic battles mentioned are intended to be an expansion upon the rewarding sensation gained from overcoming these obstacles.
"You encounter an enemy and know it’s going to be a tough battle. You start fighting and your hands get sweaty, and you feel like you barely scraped through by the end of the encounter. We knew we wanted elements to make players feel that way other than just numerical difficulty settings.
In Demon’s Souls, the battle system was really defined by swords and shields, particularly shields, and it ended up feeling a bit passive. With Demon’s Souls, we had that more passive feeling in mind when creating the battle system, but with this game, we want to make it more active—make it more of something where you’re fighting your way out of a dangerous situation." — Hidetaka Miyazaki
Another interesting addition to combat is the ability of the player's main weapon to transform. The trailer for the game showcases an original cleaver bladed weapon that later flips open into a machete-like one. These new transformations are said to alter combat by giving the player a variety of different moves while in said weapons varying states. Some moves are even said to be unique to a weapons semi-transformed state. This could possibly be a timed mid transformation move,
From Software's greatest challenge earlier this year was proving to us that with Dark Souls 2, change was something we need not fear, especially after Miyazaki stated himself that he would not be directing the project, fortunately fans were not disappointed. It seems that the idea behind Bloodborne's chilling atmosphere and concepts are to do just the opposite; They want to invoke fear and a sense of urgency in the game's combat, and I like that idea very much. As a fan of the Souls series myself, I can't wait to experience this new level of intensity in the games combat, adding something fresh to something familiar, in addition the eery atmosphere is sure to make every turn of a street corner into a hesitant, and cautious one.
Tell us what new features you're most excited about in the upcoming Sony exclusive.
Bloodborne is stated to release March 31, 2015 on the PlayStation 4.