Dark Souls Remastered
From Software, QLOC, Virtuous
PS4, Xbox One, Switch, PC
Release Date:May 25, 2018
Prepare to die…Again! Dark Souls Remastered takes the original classic Dark Souls game that would go on to define the Xbox 360 and PS3 generation and brings it up to a modern standard, all without ruining that core that made the original trip through the world of Lordran so compelling. Maintaining all the mechanics from the original title and updating the visuals and online mechanics to take advantage of modern systems, Dark Souls Remastered launches for PS4, Xbox One, PC and Nintendo Switch on May 25, 2018.
Dark Souls Remastered launches for all modern systems, but was originally revealed as the final surprise at the Nintendo Direct Mini that launched without warning on January 11, 2018. In addition to including the Artorias of the Abyss DLC, the remaster also boasts improved shadows, music effects, frame rate and visuals.
From a report by industry insider and Kotaku UK News Editor Laura Kate Dale, we know that Dark Souls Remastered is likely being worked on by in majority by QLOC, a studio that has handled numerous ports of games to new platforms, with From Software’s involvement to help it along. In addition, it’s suggested by other industry insiders such as @vaatividya on Twitter that the remaster is based on the Dark Souls 3 engine, though tweaked to keep the game from showing combat differences.
All versions of the remaster include a bump to 6-player online support, right out of Dark Souls 3, and include the DLC. The Nintendo Switch runs at 1080P docked, 720P in handheld mode and at 30 fps, and is said to be tailored for the system by developer Virtuos, meaning it likely won’t share quite all of the visual enhancements that the other systems enjoy. Xbox One, Xbox One X, PS4, PS4 Pro and PC all run the game at 60 fps, with the PC at native 4K resolution, Xbox One X and PlayStation 4 Pro at upscaled 4K, and the vanilla Xbox One and PS4 running the title at 1080P.
The game will release at a budget price of $39.99 USD.
The story of Dark Souls is, like everything else in the game, not going to be spoon fed to the player. Much of it is left up to discovery and interpretation and without going out of your way to think through the implications of a piece of scenery and read the descriptions of a lot of the items you pick up, you might go through the entire game without knowing what’s going on.
The vaguest idea can be gained from the one expository scene, the prologue introduction. In the beginning there was only a chaos, where the dragons would live among the Archtrees. But when fire came into the world, so too did life and four beings who would claim the powerful Lord Souls. When these beings went to war with the Dragons, and won, the Age of Fire began.
By the time of the game, the world is descending back into chaos, and the First Flame that brought about the Age of Fire is fading fast. The kingdoms of Lordran are overcome by death and entropy, with the curse of the Darksign leaves those inflicted at risk of becoming a feral Hollow with each subsequent death and rebirth, losing themselves piece by piece. You are one of these Undead, and originally set out without much of a direction, but are told that you are chosen to go restore the balance.
I don’t dare spoil the adventure from there, because piecing together the incredible lore of the game for yourself is one of the main highlights. Subtly is the name of its game, and every little piece could be another clue as to what got the world into its sorry state.
Dark Souls Remastered is an Action RPG controlled from a third person perspective. Players progress through the game in a mostly linear, though unguided fashion, with the player’s level, skill and the enemies of an area as the only real gatekeepers. As the player progresses, they’ll take on different kinds of enemies in melee based or magical ranged combat, using a wide variety of weapons and equipment that can be swapped out to effect both your moves and stats. During combat, the player must be careful to manage their stamina gauge, as allowing the green stamina bar to run completely dry will leave them completely open, and likely defeated. Bonfires placed throughout the world act as checkpoints for the player, setting their respawn position, allowing them to spend their Souls on levelling up and moving between any previously lit bonfire.
Souls, which are earned from specific items and from killing enemies, act as both currency and as experience points. They can be spent at any shops the player may or may not come across in exchange for items and equipment, or poured into levelling up the different attributes of your character. The attributes are mostly fairly standard WRPG faire such as strength, stamina, dexterity and the like, and the game is mostly open with you about how your character is going to be affected by adding a point to a stat. The player is left to create their own build around how they like to play, whether that’s anywhere from a quick character with a heavy emphasis on magic to a heavy knight who can turtle any attack and have stamina to spare.
Of course, the game is famous for its difficulty, and will punish players who don’t pay attention and grow consistently. You as a player have to be very deliberate with your actions in Dark Souls Remastered if you’re going to get past its many encounters and traps. Falling in battle will return the player to their last bonfire, given a hollowed state, which reduces their maximum HP, and without any of the Souls that they’ve collected. If the players hopes to recover that which was lost, they need to make their way back to where they died, without dying once again. If they die before recovering their loot, then it will be lost.
Fortunately there’s a lot to be said about community. The breakout feature of the Souls series is the engagement of the community, which takes several forms. Firstly, players are able to leave small messages for players connected to the network. Players can choose to leave these messages to help clue players into traps, or troll less experienced players. Players however are encouraged to post helpful messages as other players can upvote, which would result in a small health boost for the message sender. A bit more directly, players can also be summoned to another players game in a few different ways. Up to five other players can be summoned to help a player progress in the game in a PvE manner, while players can also choose to be the aggressors, and appear in the other game as a dark spirit, for a form of PvP gameplay where the victor gains the loser’s Souls.
Much like the story is shrouded in mystery and what’s there is left to the observation of the player, so too are the very few major characters within it. You as the undead chosen have really no personality to speak of, and we dare not spoil the larger backstories of the bosses you face. It’s something you really should just experience.
Note: This wiki will be updated once we have more information about the game.