The Souls games are hard. That’s by design. They require a degree of careful, cautious play that simply isn’t demanded by many modern games. But how do the developers at From Software avoid frustrating and driving away their players?
In an, series creator Hidetaka Miyazaki says “There were of course several moments where I had to stop things and take a step back and consider the difficulty. But it’s not necessarily that I say ‘oh, this is too difficult,’ but instead the term I usually use is ‘unreasonable.’ So, that’s the term I tend to use when I have these conversations with the development team.”
He added ”When you think about it, the difficulty in the Dark Souls franchise so far has been something that players have eventually been able to overcome. So when I show concern to the development team members, that’s why the term I use is unreasonable – basically, we don’t want to go too far. It’s about striking a balance.”
Miyazaki also discussed the game’s narrative design, which is similarly demanding of players, requiring them to piece together their own conclusions about the plot in the absence of much explicit storytelling. ”Only those storyline elements that actually make it into the game are something that I need to force players to accept as a base for building up their own interpretation of the world. There are things in my head that aren’t in the games, after all – so after that, it’s all up to the players. I have no intention in forcing any of the storyline upon any of the players out there, and there will be no official statements made about the ‘true’ story of the game.”