Elden Ring, the latest game from famed FromSoftware developer Hidetaka Miyazaki, is said to be the most accessible game in the Souls series so far. And yet, if you’re playing it, you’ll already know: brutal, punishing death abounds around every corner. It’s true that the release’s sandbox structure gives you more opportunity to explore and find something you can manage, but the underlying reality is that you’re going to face some pretty stiff challenges persistently – there’s no way around it, and the only thing that can help are resources like our Elden Ring guide.
In fact, the game’s later bosses have already been crowned as among some of the most difficult the developer’s ever designed. For many, despite the addition of spirits you can summon and co-operative multiplayer, the game will prove too difficult to finish. “I do feel apologetic toward anyone who feels there’s just too much to overcome in my games,” Miyazaki admitted in an interview with the New Yorker. “I just want as many players as possible to experience the joy that comes from overcoming hardship.”
The difficulty, according to Miyazaki, is the secret to these games. But with more and more games including a deep suite of options to allow players to tailor the experience to their tastes, is FromSoftware just being stubborn by not incorporating a difficulty option? “We are always looking to improve, but, in our games specifically, hardship is what gives meaning to the experience,” he said. “So, it's not something we're willing to abandon at the moment. It's our identity.”
We’re torn. There’s no question that Souls’ success hinges on the impossible odds you come up against, but that means many never have the opportunity to experience them. We suppose it begs the question: should a game appeal to everyone? It seems FromSoftware has accepted that its titles are for a very specific audience, and while that ultimately means their appeal is limited, this is the path that Miyazaki and his team has taken.
Speaking completely personally, I do enjoy the euphoria of overcoming a stern challenge in these games, but I genuinely believe if I was "over-levelled" for the entire campaign, meaning I could generally beat bosses in under five attempts, I'd actually enjoy titles like Elden Ring more.
I find the exploration, discovery, art, and world building more interesting than the difficulty personally. I understand what Miyazaki is saying, and of course it's his vision, but personally I find the intense difficulty spikes a barrier to my enjoyment.
I do like these games and I am willing to persevere for that reason alone, but it'd be nice to be able to progress steadily and enjoy the fun combat and encounters without the punishment.
Well im lvl 34 and have been battered by Godrick more than 20 times, even with an NPC fighting along side me. Its the bosses i find infuriating.. correction, this boss.could do with a slider to deal an additional 1/3 damage right now.
lmao, how many more of this debate do we need? Souls games are punishing games but once you learn the mechanics and the patterns of some enemies, the game can be less challenging. I've been playing souls games for years now, and by no means I'm an expert with souls games and provided that I still die a lot, it doesn't mean I'm just going to beg FromSoftware to make their games easier, it just means I have to "git gud". Yeah, that infamous phrase has been said many times now by souls fans but there's truth in that. You just have to get better in the game. And if you can't overcome the challenges provided by Souls games, you may want to look for another game to play.
I’ve played all Soulsborne games at launch and it feels like Elden Ring is the most difficult yet IF (and it’s a big if) you don’t take the time to explore the world before attempting the main bosses. Godric the Grafted is not meant to be beaten by someone around level 30, which you can easily get to him by. For sure you’re meant to have a +7/8 weapon by that point and be 40+ with one of your atk stats sitting in the mid-high 30s.
Most approachable souls game yet! 👀👌
Of course it was never going to do, its the same thing every release and it leads to the same result no easy mode added. End of the day From make games for a certain crowd, they aren't interested in every person alive so i dunno instead of begging for easy mode play something else?
This is the least offputting game From have put out in that regard. There are so many little ways to help and fully exploring is a lot more rewarding. I genuinely think many people could have a great time with the game without even beating most of the bosses. It’s most like Skyrim and Breath of the Wild in the sense that you have loads of fun with the emergent gameplay wandering around never mind the main quest line.
For me it's just a simple do not buy, but not fussed since there are many other great games out there (currently playing Horizon Forbidden West). For me life is hardcore enough, I don't need to finish a hard day of work and go home to be punished by a videogame as well, I now prefer to just sit back and have casual fun.
I got harassed on another forum only because I said I won't play this game although it looks good simply because I am terrible at hardcore games. Called a sook etc.
But everyone has preferences and these days with the internet there is way too much of judging others despite everyone having different acquired tastes. Gaming forums are the worst these days, yet everyone on them is a gamer. Us gamers need to band together more regardless of our gaming tastes, and only pick on the non gamers
@ScottyG this is good to know. See comment #2. Im lvl 34 with a +1 Flail. Your comment makes me feel alot better now 😂
@Digit2021 yeah well golf was meant to be played in Scotland but that's not an option for everyone.
just add difficulty settings lol. and if you're so masochistic that the only way you can enjoy the game is on hard... put it on hard.
If you think people complaining about difficulty is bad, you aren't ready for what would happen if souls games put in an easy mode.
Miyazaki has spoken, deal with it...That's all.
I'm level 72 and still can get killed in a single hit. Love it. Only thing I don't like is the graphics being lower quality than Demon's Souls PS5.
I don't mind him making the game that he wants but he should provide some kind of mode or secret code that you enter on the main screen that makes everything easy so disabled players are able to experience the game.
Are there really people saying "don't care if you're disabled, just git gud son! You're blind? doesn't matter try harder!" The disability options of TLOU2 should be copied and pasted across all games.
I honestly stopped playing but not because of just the hardships but because the game is so massive, I have a newborn, and just don’t have time to play the game to fully invest in beating it, it’ll just take forever if I do so. Luckily tho my brother game shared it to me, I didn’t waste money
It's okay, not every games have to be for everyone, the most important things isn't whether the game is hard or not, but whether the game wasting players time or not.
Souls game usually let you memorize enemy placement, farm souls to level up, or use magic to make the game easier, so it's unlike, say, returnal, where only your reflex matters and the enemies are randomized.
Yeah I can only imagine how it’s been. I’m an Astrologer I fought him a few times around level 35 with a +3 staff before I decided to visit the south side of the map. To get enough rocks to upgrade your weapon you can find these “tunnels” that let you mine a decent amount. I also realized pretty quickly that the off-the-beaten-path bosses are much easier. None have killed me more than once or twice.
I mean I suck at Soulsborne games I'm not embarrassed to admit this but to me adding an easy mode to a Soulsborne game would change its identity. I suck yes but I always overcome hardship eventually.
@nessisonett My thoughts too.
I actually find the bosses a lot more telegraphed in Elden Ring than any previous game.
Beat Godrick after like 5 attempts - he’s relatively predictable if you study his move set for a bit.
Heck the boss to get into the castle took more tries; but, he, too, is very telegraphed. The trick is to just figure out when to dodge their long-winded attack pose before they actually strike.
Maybe later bosses are less easy to study?
As far difficulty, I think FromSoftware should take a number from Nintendo’s book - carefully craft the game it wants to create; but if a player dies enough time, allow them to collect an optional item that makes them uber powerful for that run until they kill the boss or rest at the next bonfire or something.
Like some kind of NPC will spawn at their bonfire to offer them a boon that adds +30 to all stats or something. Or give player an option of bonuses to suit their desired “difficulty decrease”.
That way, FromSoftware can balance the game as it does, gives players a chance to figure it out for themselves, else, but offer them a really good helping hand should said player need it.
I personally thank Miyazaki and FromSoftware. since Dark Souls 1, games are not the same to me anymore. most of them are boring these days. having one fixed difficulty and designing the game around it, is completely different than having options like hard, very hard, nightmare mode etc. Balance is crucial.
Why do people try to meld everyone into doing what they want ? let the man be free and make what he wants. if not everyone can experience it, move on and try something else there r plenty of great experiences out there. stop trying to kill everyone’s freedom and have everyone create the same thing.
Now everyone can enjoy the game as it should be.
I mean, props to FromSoft for sticking to their guns as it likely is costing them millions of dollars for not having the game be more widely accessible. They cater to a more hardcore audience, and so I suspect that most of their games would sell even better if there was even just a little difficulty adjustment. Even if it were something mild like a contingency drop in difficulty after dying to a particular enemy “X” number of times.
However… when Housemarque put in a save function into Returnal, the fandom applauded the increase in accessibility. Yet here we have a double standard whereby FromSoft are encouraged to “stay with their vision” at the expense of allowing more players to experience the games.
As sure as the sun rises the difficulty argument has come up yet again with a Fromsoft game release.😂
Let the devs make the game they wish to make. Period. We don't come at HazeLight games for requiring coop do we? It's the way the game is designed to be played. I'm terrible at RTS games so I simply don't play them. I don't demand the devs make it so I can play too. There is no shortage of great games to play.
The challenge is at the heart of the design in these games. Without it I doubt people wanting an easy mode would really enjoy the game at all anyway.
Just stick to your vision, no need to change to suit everyone, coming from someone still getting whooped by Tree Sentinel. Bloodborne remains one of my proudest platinums so I understand when he says - the joy of overcoming challenges. But like @get2sammyb said, the only downside is more people not getting to experience the art and gameplay.
Letting other people play a game that they payed for with a lower difficulty settings or Heath and damage assists does not ruin my enjoyment of a game.
I think he knows the combat alone wouldn't grab people's interest throughout the whole game if he made it easier.
Most of the fans would riot too, even if it doesn't change anything for them.
In my opinion, I think difficulty options would be great.
You like your typical Souls experience? Choose "Original".
You like it having a little easier? Choose "Casual".
Or however you wanna call it.
But I don't care, not really a fan of FromSoftware games even if they had difficulty options.
I’ve died more from gravity than bosses.
This is a stupid comment but why do a lot of articles have to say PS4 and PS5 in the headline? I understand that this is a PlayStation centric site but it’s weird and seems like you’re acting like these games don’t exist on other platforms.
Or in this instance like an easy mode may be added to other platforms but not PS4 and PS5. I don’t really see Pure Xbox headlines doing this on multiplatform games.
Being picky but for some reason it bothers me as a dual console owner, lol.
I have a feeling adding easy mode to these games would have the same effect as playing notoriously hard nes games with mods or cheats on them. You would cakewalk through the game with no barriers, and after beating it you would say “what, that’s it?!”
I tend to choose easy mode in games because I have nothing to prove to anybody and want to bust through a game as quick as I can due to life time constraints.
But not with these games. I savor every second I’m in them, if I’m succeeding or not. If I was to run through an area and blast everything super easily I wouldn’t remember any of it. Having to try again and find my efficiencies, my way, and ultimately my victory makes me live in this world and remember it like taking the morning trains from Shinjuku to Shinagawa Seaside. There’s things you don’t notice the first and only time you go through something, but the more you do it, the more routine it gets, the more details you connect with.
It’s like learning an instrument. Do you stop playing trumpet because you can’t figure out how to make the C and G notes not the same?
It’s not that it’s meant to be hard to be hard. They just made a game that they wanted to make. The original Legend of Zelda was hard, but they didn’t set out to make a hard game. But you can beat it be learning from it. Zelda II is a harder game, but again, not meant to be hard just to be hard. It is also overcomable by learning it’s rhythm. Some people won’t have time to live in the game and that’s fine. They can do them. There are other ways they can enjoy the game and know about it without wasting their time learning how to play it. We can’t play all games. We just got to focus on what works for us.
@Lup What about the online experience? That messes with co-op and some people will be able to steamroll to the games best equipment while others can’t. I know it’s all still obtainable, and some will, but it crates an uneven multiplayer experience. And with the way the game is structured, diving the playerbase could be bad given the vague way MP works and having enough people to summon.
I'm a big fan of GRRM's work, but I hate the difficulty in Souls games so I won't ever buy Elden Ring. I know if I did I'd get frustrated and never finish it.
Miyazaki says he wants "as many players as possible to experience the joy that comes from overcoming hardship." Mate, I have that in real life. When I sit down to play a video game, I don't need more of that. A difficulty option would be nice.
Give them an easy mode. I won't use it, doesn't bother me.
Normally I'm all about accessibility for games, especially regarding difficulty.
But Souls games? Nah, they're designed around their difficulty. Overcoming a boss after a number attempts is where the gratification is. It really emphasizes getting over a mountain sized hump by learning and executing successfully.
If challenge is part of FromSoftware's identity, that's fine. But that should also be a valid point of criticism for their games. You just hide behind the 'it's supposed to be hard' defense every time someone says that kt hindered their enjoyment.
I'm just never going to even play these games, in part due to this. Why waste my time with something that's too difficult to ever overcome? What's the point? I try most games on "normal" difficulty, which is often level 2 of 4. If I have to bump it down to easy to get through a hard part, then I do. If an entire game is level 3 at a minimum, I'm never going to be able to do it.
Why do people want this? From Softwares games aren't unfair. There well balance and become easier as you learn from your mistakes.
Nope, put an option. Make a Normal and explorer… or whatever you want to call it.
Again, it is an “option” - anyone who does not want to use it can simply not use it. Nothing lost by incorporating it.
Just get it on PC and tailor it with WeMod.
not every game needs to be targeted at a mainstream audience. fromsoftware should continue to make games exactly as they wish and absolutely should not give in to the pressure (this is coming from someone who nearly gave up on bloodborne but i endured the pain and eventually completed it. i can ackowledge that these games are not my cup of tea and that is fine, i'm not going to cry about it). let the artists create their art in peace. this is getting ridiculous. soon we will begin to hear calls about tarantino needing to tone down the language and violence to reach a wider audience. thankfully, tarantino won't stand for that. i do hope fromsoftware ventures out to different genres, though, but that is a different topic entirely.
Well... at this point anyone who buys souls like games not knowing what they are, are leaving themselves exposed to that possibility.
I don't like Souls like games. I think they waste my time. I don't buy them cause i know i won't enjoy the experience. I don't buy them and then complain they are too hard. That is the point, i get it. I don't want to force the games to change. I simply accept they aren't for me.
"Just git gud!" they yell, as if all of us have the ability to fight through frustration and become good enough through repetition over time that we may or may not have in our personal lives.
If you love these games, that's genuinely fantastic, but treating them as if they're some holy untouchable thing that would be defiled with difficulty settings is something I've always found a bit laughable.
I've played the majority of from softwares games..i've beaten ds1,ds2,ds3 multiple times..never got to beat bloodbourne as its the only game thats ever given me a headache because the mix of bad framerate and chromatic abhoration just killed me..sekiro is a brilliant game but i just dont possess the skills to beat the game but thats the beauty of it for me..its a challenge..my everest to conquer one day and if there was a difficulty slider then that for me would diminsh the experience..now elden ring,wow its a toughie for certain but i'm not finding it off putting and i know i'll best the beast one day too..for me the dark souls games and elden ring already have an easy(ish) mode in it called summons..if you study the image of the person you want to summon you can clearly see if that person is going to be of help to you..if elden ring had a difficulty option from the get go i dont think i'd enjoy it as much as i am because i relish the challenge and thats what i know i'm getting when i part cash with a from software game and thats what i expect..praise the sun..
Imo no difficulty setting is the main selling point and best feature and purpose of the game.
@awp69 I have the same thoughts and have brought it up before. It's weird and really unnecessary
If they ever do add an additional difficulty, maybe just make sure I can't switch difficulties afterwards if I choose to start with the hardest difficulty lol.
Edit: Could make some tougher bosses tempting to turn down difficulty.
Love the game so far and no it shouldn’t have to change its difficulty.
However… my issue is with it being branded 10/10 and game of the year by almost every reviewer - as millions will buy this purely on that score, and will hit the wall of difficulty, and never get past it - wasting £40-£50, and never experiencing the story or artwork.
If I were the developer or artist working on the game I’d be genuinely miserable my work would only be experienced by a relatively small number, and if I were the buyer I’d be annoyed at the game, the reviewer and the store for allowing me to waste my money.
It doesn’t happen in other forms of purchased media - it’s like going to the cinema to see the latest blockbuster and 20 minutes into the film someone constructing a wall in front and telling you only those fit enough to climb over could watch the rest of it - but no refunds were available.
Although it is George RR Martin so no one should be too surprised that most people will never see the ending 😂
That sucks but understandable they don't want to ruin the unforgiving vibes, since that's what their games are all about.
Again it’s pointless ‘debate’. 🙄
It’s like asking to change Chess rules and moves because you find it too complicated.
Also don’t mistake or pretend it’s the same thing as accessibility. No it’s very different.
People asking an ‘easy mode’ without any idea how to implement it. I’m waiting to see practical ideas.
Isn’t level up, finding ways to tackle the challenges and choose and upgrade you gear /abilities the whole point of the game? It’s an RPG.
There is a balance between the common enemy npc and the bosses who can already be very varied in strength or tricks you can do to beat them. Every challenge is different and giving a general buff for the player would make a lot of the world pointless.
It’s meant to be a progression.
@ScottyG thats what i will probarbly end up doing. Could probarbly use a better dex weapon aswell but thr Flail seems to be pretty good so far. Im enjoying the heck out of so far tho.
‘when Housemarque put in a save function into Returnal, ‘
But FS added easier ways to reload with check points already (compared to their previous games) . Why not giving them credit in the same way ? I thing Returnal would probably be too difficult for me.
Don't like it? Don't buy it. It's very satisfying that a super difficult game like FromSoftware games can be commercially successful, to the point where the GOTY version of DS1 was marketed as the "Prepare To Die Edition" and sold millions. Easy mode gamers just gotta suck it up.
@JJ2 yeah ER is far more forgiving. Check points at boss fights and anywhere fast travel for startes. Its a first. Hope these people have never played Demons souls and had to run back from the beginning of a checkpoint to a boss only to lose all those previously accumulated souls to a standard mob of enemy just before the boss 😂
Elden ringers have got it easy with boss levels and fast travel. Gameplay is still a challenge tho but i dont feel as frustrated when i die and travelling around is way faster now.
Personally there should be a option for difficulty level not everyones got the time too play games 4 hrs a day on one boss. What's it hurting having choices you can ramp up the difficulty if you want and soul veterans can keep it at that. I think it would open up to a bigger market aswell.
Thank God they don't bend. Bravo Miyazaki.
Actually I disagree when people say DS games are fair. They aren’t. The games and devs constantly troll the player. It’s up to the player to find ways to overcome and not follow the beaten paths they troll you to that are full of traps and BS.
I think it’s the fun part to find your ways around and use the tools they give you but don’t tell you or even push you not to use.
The first tree Sentinel boss is a good example. It’s a troll. It’s not fair at all. You don’t have to go at him just because the game put it there to troll you.
@JJ2 Chess games usually have "easy" "normal" and "hard" AI though. I wouldn't exactly call it a fair comparison.
Nice comment, but the people wanting easy mode have no solutions they just want "story mode"..steamroll the bosses and flex cause they completed.
It's a game it's scripted AI it doesn't change, so sadly the popular term "git gud" is exactly right, it's about learning and patience, but some just don't want too.
Souls games always have been built like this, but to be fair alot of reviews said this was the most accessible Souls no chance at all , yeah maybe until Stormveil that's it and even passing that will be a huge challenge
@bozz you have to see it from the dev perspective. If there was an easy mode, From Software would ruin their reputation due to bad reviews. Miyazaki is right: the games are designed with that learning curve in mind. "they make sense" with it. They have already added more than enough quality of life improvements in Elden Ring.
People act as if they are entitled to play every game the way they want. Hard enough for you? Fine, don't play it. There are thousands of other games to choose from. For instance, I suck at 2d platformers. Like seriously. And it pains me I'll never play Cuphead for that reason. But I didn't sit here crying, wanting them to add an easy mode. Because I can see that difficulty is part of the experience there as well and the game would be perceived in a totally different light with an easy mode
@JJ2 Agree 100% on your Returnal comment, and note about Grace-Point/checkpoint locations.
Housemarque adding the 'suspend' feature was a QoL improvement in my opinion, and a much valued one. It allows the game to 'respect the time' of the gamer, without really compromising or nerfing the perceived difficulty. I actually plat'd Returnal before the suspend patch, and believe me I am no pro!
Consumers who think ER is too unforgiving really want to give the DeS remake a go...... if you get nailed by a boss, then in some cases you are looking at facing a 30-40 min run back through all the mobs - just for another opportunity to tackle the boss and get whooped again ha
Honestly, as much as I believe that gaming is for everyone and that games should be as accessible as possible, there is a point where a game becomes cheapened and less rewarding because the common folk are reaching the same heights as those who are dedicated to overcoming the games challenges.
I mean a chess game is meant to be player vs a real person. In that perspective with the same time to respond the only easy mode would be to change the rules.
Yes computer games have different levels but that varies on the computer and simply is reducing the response time from the CPU. It’s basically changing the rules in giving the AI less time to respond than you have I think. Well somehow haha
In DS games you can level up and upgrade gears which you can’t do in chess.
My uncle who is a quadriplegic enjoys the Souls games a lot. He's beaten most of them as well, and it took him as much time as anyone else, playing while paralyzed from the shoulders down using his mouth, cheeks, and what little movement he has from his shoulders to cradle the controller.
It's not too hard. You just need to try, not give up, and better yourself even if people tell you you can't, and there's a lot of enjoyment and satisfaction in that. Some people don't want that from a game, they don't want to be challenged, they just want a nice casual adventure that's fun and cool, and that's great!
If it's not for you it's not for you (there are many other games for you), but if developers want to create games like this then more power to them; they absolutely should, and it is a good thing for an industry that is becoming more and more homogeneous in game design.
It has an audience, and Elden Ring is a masterpiece. That's really what matters.
It doesn't need an easy mode. The game is perfectly playable for everyone. It takes patience and understanding of the mechanics and fights can't be approached without a strategy or understanding of what you are facing. The game requires that you study its opponenets, and if you still find it too hard thats because this game doesn't suit you. Some people drive cars their while lives but are useless at driving games so they play something else. They don't whine about making the game easier.
Inclusion is a curse when it comes to Art! (To be clear, inclusivity in societal terms is generally a good thing). This is how the creator wants his games/art form to be. And I TOTALLY agree with the statement, ' I want people to enjoy the satisfaction of overcoming a difficult challenge'. I truly believe there are life lessons in these games, that anyone can learn, should they have the persistence or tenacity needed. Tenacity being, there are already a wealth of difficulty options in this game! Just look for them and build accordingly. I dont understand the pleas for easy mode, these games would have never have achieved the cult status they have without difficulty, its in the blood. As an example I just beat Ornstein & Smough no hit/no damage for my channel...I never thought I would be able to do this. But all I had to do was look, combine the right gear and be persistent. This comment is not meant to be elitist, I am however passionate about the creators vision.
@buckp25 brave comment dude and I truly believe you can still play these games, try a magic build and spam from afar, aswell as calling in co-op. You will absolutely fine, plenty of folks in the community would love to co-op into your game to help you with bosses. And arguably I think you could solo some with a high power magic build, just stay at distance and keep spamming those spells. It takes me a LONG time to learn patterns of bosses at times too!
Shouldn’t be easier, I say that knowing full well I might not actually be able to finish the game. If I can’t finish it, that’s where my story ends and I’ll always enjoy thinking about what might have been. I am going to try to beat it though!!
I have not finished loads of games because they were brain numbingly boring, a much worse reason to put down a game if you ask me.
Oh wow I actually agree with you 😅
Yes it’s about creating your own path and story.
Imagine after you die a few times the game keeps asking ‘would you like to switch to easy mode?’
I hate when a game is doing that. It’s not only tempting but it also makes you feel even more rubbish.
DMC 5's Dante Must Die mode is harder than any Souls game. Metal Gear Rising's hardest mode was harder than any Souls game. The sense of accomplishment by overcoming something extremely difficult does not have to come at the expense of an option.
I love that these games are designed, ground up to be difficult, that's ok. I still don't see why there isn't an old school "cheat mode" for those who want to cheese it. Everybody wins in this case.
The uproar if they made the game accessible would be monumental. Gatekeepers would be boycotting left and right. The people that want to enjoy the game aren’t the issue here.
@pip_muzz amen! I never understand why people seek to remove choice from others.
I feel like that's the design, you hit a seemingly brick wall and either give up, or find a way. You know it's possible. I've had to go away and come back a few times with these games over the years, but they have been some of the most compelling and challenging I've played. I know I don't have enough time to play Elden Ring properly at the moment, so have just been exploring and upping a few levels in preparation.
Why not just make some Easy Mode DLC? Pay to win in a whole new sense. Lots of games have options like this. Personally I think it's immature for people to say No to easier difficulty options. Gaming should be more inclusive and the world would be a better place if we all got to share the experience of playing these games rather than belittling those who find them too challenging.
I've never touched a Souls game because I don't find them interesting and I know I would ultimately find them too difficult and frustrating to play.
I personally really enjoy overcoming the challenge in games like this. That said, more options are never bad, compromise nothing, and hurt nobody.
My personal opinion is gamers are quite toxic in general and soulsbourne games have made things worse. It seems to get more people waving there digital dingus around and more people using the git gud argument. If they added a couple accessability options it wouldn't hurt. I also hate how the soulsbourne games have ruined most other 3rd person action games with most developers looking to copy the souls combat instead of coming up with there own ideas.
What is Hard for me is different than what is Hard for someone else. If I beat a challenging boss and feel a rush, who cares if that enemy was Easy or Hard?! The Git Gud'ers enjoy a sense of empowerment from learning and overcoming adversity, I'm sure – so why deny me, and many others, that exact same feeling just because I get it at a different pace? Not to mention, difficulty is always going to be an arbitrary choice. So many parameters will influence it, and every gamer is different.
Miyazaki should **definitely** present his games with a "this is how it's meant to be expereinced"-disclaimer. But in no way is that ruined by having options.
FromSoftware games should never have difficulty settings. People who reject this argument don’t seem to understand it’s not about elitism or even a general position taken on difficulty settings. It’s specifically about From games, where the fundamentals of the games – your stats, inventory, weapons, clothes, even your location – are inextricably informed and given meaning by the challenge. If you add an easy mode (beyond the difficulty-easing measures already there) you risk making any of these elements trivial. I’ve lost count of the number of games where the decisions you make in respect of any of the above lack weight or meaning. A game shouldn’t be forced to compromise on its fundamental principles in the hope of a bigger audience when thousands of games out there already do.
Also I think some are lumping accessibility and difficulty together, but they are different things people.
I've finished every Souls game on multiple NG+ and platinumed Bloodborne on three occassions. I explored the Elden Ring map for a good ten hours and believe I levelled sufficiently and even I struggled on the first mandatory boss (on a certain bridge) for the best part of a day.
But when I did defeat them it reminded why I love these games. With the sheer amount of freedom ER gives you — plus the absence of mechanics like Hollowing punishing repeated deaths further — this really is the most accessible souls yet if you're willing to put the time in.
Game doesn't need an easier mode any more than previous FromSoft titles did.
Once again, here we are with this pointless debate. The souls games do have various difficulty settings, they are just baked into the games themselves. If you want the game to be easier, just search where to find the best equipment and summon other better players to help you with difficult bosses.
On one hand you have all these developers trying to make their games as accessible as possible to all and then you have FromSoft whose entire ethos is "Git Gud".
Of course their games aren't impossible to finish and maybe it's okay if they're not for everyone, but I don't see the harm in offering a 'normal' setting but perhaps withdraw the platinum for completing the game on this level. It would still be a hard game but one more players could actually finish.
And all this talk of hardship, for pity's sake it's just a game man. Want real hardship, look to Ukraine!
Lol he basically said git gud scrub.
@Col_McCafferty I don't see any harm in letting the developers make exactly the experience they want to make. They know what there fans want and they deliver everytime.
Find a farming spot. Over level yourself for a few hours relative to current progress. Easier difficulty unlocked. It's as you say, baked into the game mechanics.
@starbuck2212 maybe you don't but I've heard a lot from ER developers regarding the difficulty of it and trying to convince gamers that it's their Most Accessible Game Yet simply because it's open world.
Great, go this way get owned. Go another way and get owned again!
Some people obviously lead very sad lives and finishing a Soulsborne game is the highlight of their lives. Take away the 'specialness' of this achievement and what have they got left?!
Not saying that's the case for people on here, you're alright by me.
Its kinda crazy to me the people who defend the idea of only having one difficulty when adding an easy mode is just as simple as decreasing the amount of damage received and increasing the amount of damage dealt. It’s not a big deal.
I have the capabilities for beating these games as is while many don’t and it doesn’t mean sh** to me if someone is playing on a easy mode to beat a game. I truly believe you have to be mentally childish to care.
Personally, I have no patience for games that require trial and error to learn enemy patterns; whether that be Soulsborne games, or stealth games, etc. However, given this game seems to have multiple options for progression and improvement, combined with the PS5s fast loading times, I have been considering getting this. Can I just ask, is it possible to do all the secret areas in order to level up and make required content easier, or do enemies scale with you (I hate that, btw)?
On topic though, I think that difficulty is different for everyone, so his argument doesn’t hold up. Some players, especially with disabilities, or just generally the elderly for example, might need an “easy” mode to get the same level of challenge as other might have from the normal mode. So they would still get that experience of overcoming hardship.
I am torn though, because if the option is there I’d probably go for it at the first real challenge I faced. My time is valuable, and frustration is a real thing. Those who might say “but if you want the challenge just don’t use easy mode” will never get how hard that can be. The only thing that would stop me doing it is if there would be a trophy challenge for never dropping the difficulty.
Due to its open world nature, and the fact you can materialise a horse at will for fast getaway, it's very easy to just ride around and loot decent equipment without even having to fight anything. There's also respawn points everywhere compared to their relatively scarcity in previous titles.
It's demonstably more accessible than previous FromSoft titles.
@OmegaStriver enemy doesnt scale. You will end up one hitting the enemy that used to 1 hit you, although they dont give off as many souls as a harder enemy and these are required for levelling your character so the grind will be alot longer but less difficult.
Tbf as weird as it may sound I'm glad there aren't difficulty options cause otherwise I'd probably already changed it to an easier option. But so I have to actually figure out the attack patterns of the bosses to beat them
Dark Souls 2 was hard to the point it felt unfair. Elden Ring is far from this. None of the Fromsoft games Miyazaki has been involved with have been “too hard” I’d say, sure certain bosses were more frustrating a challenge than others (Ornstein & Smough for ex.) but by that point I was so invested in the game that it felt like a delicate dance putting all i’d learned about combat up to that point to good use.
I think newcomers have this preconceived notion that From games are unfair or throw you to the wolves when early on by design it’s actually quite forgiving the enemies you face and a lot of the triumph & failure is on the player for letting their guard down or pushing just a little bit more for extra souls/runes that may or may not pay off.
An easy mode just doesn’t fundamentally work with Fromsoft games and veterans of the series will understand.
He literally said the point of the game is to feel the joy of overcoming hardship. In that case, NO there should not be an easier mode. Elden ring is not for me. I don’t want hardship in my gaming experience. I’ve experienced what I thought crazy hard bosses and felt that euphoric joy of beating them after numerous attempts…. But I like to keep that a rare experience for me. I don’t want to seek it out specifically by playing souls games. I’ve tried and just can’t get into them.
That said, not every game is meant for everyone, if you don’t like difficult, don’t play Elden ring
@Col_McCafferty they're not wrong it is easily the most accessible game they've made so far. So many ways to make most of the boss fights trivial. You just have to take the time to learn.
"experience the joy that comes from overcoming hardship" no thanks, games are a escape from real world that has enough hardship in daily life etc.
Not actually played this as of yet, but this series has become a staple for the difficulty. He shouldn't change his vision because some of us can't beat the bosses. I managed to plat demons souls having never played a souls game before, so there are ways to learn. I suppose persistence is needed for these games.
@thefourfoldroot I’m with you. Elden ring is the shiny new thing so I’m intrigued… but gameplay based on trial and error is historically annoying for me. I’m not getting Elden ring because I know though it’s shiny and new, it’s the same family as souls. I’m a casual and that’s ok, lol
I'm split on this. Had I been offered an easier difficulty in the first Demon's Souls I likely would have taken it, especially early on after dying so often while figuring out the mechanics. But then I would have missed out on one of the most enjoyable and rewarding experiences i've had in gaming and likely would have carried these easier settings onto subsequent games and missed out there too.
So I do agree with Miyazahi that in games, like in life, overcoming hardship is often what gives more meaning to the experience. I also feel that while many people are put off initially the vast majority would overcome the games IF they were willing, or able, to put in the time and learn, but they don't want to. That's OK too.
It's also fair to say that there ARE difficulty settings of a sort. In almost all souls games you can farm for souls and level up your character higher than you would normally be at that level. You just need to persevere to a point where you can find a route to run repeatedly. Though I get that grinding isn't for everyone. I certainly did this in Demon's Souls and Dark Souls first time round.
You can also summon human or NPC players to assist, though this is very obtuse and it's unclear how to this for many. While not a typical difficulty setting you can make the game easier of harder for yourself.
On the flip side we're all different, choice is good, and it would be great to offer this game to others who don't want to grind, learn or just want to experience the wonderful and complex world's Miyazaki and his team creates. But we need to accept that would have a detrimental effect on part of the game's reputation as many would just opt for the easier option and not have that sense of accomplishment that is inextricably tied to the games. Tough choice but I can understand why they stick with their decision.
Lastly that doesn't mean they shouldn't offer accessibility settings for players who need it, though of course these would also act as difficulty modifiers for those who don't need it. For me this last point is less forgivable.
I agree completely with the accessibility argument. Matter of fact, I insist that FIFA should have a "massacre mode" where all the footballers are kitted out with weapons and the objective is to slaughter the other side, because football itself doesn't interest me whatsoever and this is the only way I'd be remotely interested in playing one of these games.
Sammy is right to say that "more and more games include a deep suite of options to allow players to tailor the experience to their tastes" - but it's not enough. Every game should be tailorable to every taste.
For the record, I couldn't care less if From Software backed down and decided to include an "easy mode". But it's very clear that they're not going to at this point (there's a lot that they've done to make Elden Ring more accessible - they just don't give you personal control over your damage output/damage taken etc) - but let's not make out that they're morally inferior to developers who do decide to include accessibility options as a result
I suck at tennis, so i demand that my racket is bigger than the adversary’s.
I also demand that the adversary’s field is much larger than mine.
Oh, and did i mention i don’t care about tennis and wouldn’t play it anyway?
They could put in an easy mode and disable all the trophies.
FYI personally i would play it as made.
Removed - inappropriate
@JJ2 Yeah, that’s a good point. FromSoft has listened to some player feedback and made that adjustment to their game design over time, albeit as an evolution in subsequent games rather than a patch in a specific game. Having just finished Demon’s Souls (excellent game, btw) it definitely had moments of more frustration trying to trudge back to a boss after death.
And although I haven’t played ER yet and can’t say for sure, but it seems like the open world design in itself is a response to try mixing in a formula that might be easier to have accessible save points to help with the frustration of restarting after repeated deaths.
As an aside, if you’re Interested, feel free to check out my Demon’s Souls Remake review over on the forum review thread. I spoke about the game’s history and legacy a little in that piece and it’s interesting that Miyazaki said way back in 2009 almost exactly what he’s saying here - that his intent was never to make his game hard necessarily, rather to make them satisfying to play and overcome. Also an interesting tidbit is that Miyazaki actually hid some details of the game (like the the loss of progress upon death) from Sony at the time because he knew they’d make him change it to make the game easier. So it wasn’t known to them until the game was already finished and ready and it was too late to change. 😅
As for Returnal, it’s a blast and a wonderfully designed game. I played and completed it before the save function was added. I’m tempted to say that they shouldn’t have bowed to public pressure and change their original vision of keeping that difficult aspect present, but I actually think it was a good move in order to get other people more open to trying it. In a way, the open world and better checkpointing in ER is a similar win for increasing accessibility.
You should try Returnal! 😄
never change difficulty Miyazaki-san. Genre would be totally lost
Removed - trolling; user is banned
@BartoxTharglod I’m not familiar with Stranger in Paradise, but the “Souls formula with an Easy Mode” has been tried once with Jedi: Fallen Order. It worked out pretty well there and the game sold well, I think. Of course it’s tough to make a one-to-one comparison since Star Wars sells regardless. Also, Final Fantasy pulls people in based on name recognition too. But in essence, the addition of difficulty scaling in JFO was a nice foray into the difficulty options design choice.
I ended up playing JFO on the standard difficulty, but I had a friend who stubbornly chose to play on the harder difficulty settings and… he never finished the game. 😅. I finished it and loved it!
(Not saying that I advocate for FromSoft to add difficulty options, but I do think it would likely be fine if they did and wouldn’t ruin the games. It would only ruin it for the purists who wear their Souls fandom like a badge of honor.)
@awp69 Multi-console owner here. Agreed. Only Push Square does this. The practice is nowhere near as prevalent over on Pure Xbox or Nintendo Life. It’s awkward and off putting.
I can only speak from my experience. I think if we have an easy mode, it will ruin the experience of theses games. I started playing souls games with DS3 on PC. I was like these people who wants an easy mode. I died a lot. I didn't knew the mechanics of the game. So I had to learned them by seeing other players playing the game. I was always afraid of dying and losing all my souls. But dying is a part of the mechanics. It's not game over. This game don't have a game over. My cousin once said to me: Don't be sad to loose your souls. The souls are infinite. You can get them again and again. That was the spark! These games already have an easy mode. Play them online. Ask to be summon to see how is the boss fight. Learn their movements. Earn souls by helping other players, LVL UP. Help another player again and again. And when you feel confident try the boss for yourself or ask help from another player. That's the easy mode. The coop mode. Thats why Souls games are Masterpieces. The difficulty is on you. The game puts all the cards on the table for you to use them. You just have to try them. (sry for my English)
@thefourfoldroot "Can I just ask, is it possible to do all the secret areas in order to level up and make required content easier, or do enemies scale with you (I hate that, btw)?"
Surprised that nobody replied to you (even more because you're part of the long-timers). Anyways:
1-You cannot do all the secret areas from the get to go, but you can do the majority of them. Some secret areas (apparently) are hidden behind side missions, but the vast majority is there straight up. Also, you can overlevel yourself without even exploring new area if you care (I don't usually do that, I find grinding boring), just murder the same people rest at the
bonfiresite of grace, rinse and repeat.
2-Nope, I really appreciate that they didn't do that. It's fun going to an area getting one-shot by a feeble one handed 99 year old grandpa and realizing "huh, I'm not supposed to be here". On the other hand, there is that moment (that happened to a lot of streamers that I watch) where they 5-shotted a boss and realized that they are over-leveled.
Anyways, no matter what game you play, happy gaming!
Thanks for the answer, that’s really helpful (I would consider myself pretty new here by the way, but time does have a habit of slipping by faster than desired)
I’m personally glad to hear that you can grind a bit to make things easier, I do like to be able to go back to an area in which I previously was decimated and get my revenge, and also like just not having to concentrate so much and retread previous ground.
Generally don’t buy games new, and understand there are a few technical issues to sort out anyway, but this is now on my radar. Going to get past GT7 first though!
@BartoxTharglod Yes, I am definitely with you on a lot of your points. I’ve only played 3 FromSoft games — DeS, BB, and the original DS. DS is the only one I fell off of, and it wasn’t the difficulty per se, rather the cryptic nature of the game, it’s story, and it’s mechanics. I feel like if I returned to it now I’d stick with it, but at the time it just didn’t really do a good job of ‘teaching’ you the game and how to play it. (Which is ironic since Miyazaki and Kajji have said the whole genesis of the Souls games was to recapture some of the retro RPGs style and substance. The old games used to have instructional inserts to teach you the game mechanics! 😅 In FromSoft games you just have to figure it out on your own, to a large extent.)
JFO is indeed Souls-inspired and more of a hybrid homage to the genre rather than a direct duplication of FromSoft games, but I expect Stranger in Paradise to also have its own nuance gameplay mechanics and an attempt at a solid story to pull people in. There is a surprising lack of buzz about the game, for a FF product. I think the “Chaos!” cheesiness and weird trailer have put people off. As a fan of FF (played all mainline games from 7-13.2 and the 7 Remake) I haven’t really felt hyped for it. So I’m not sure it will be a good barometer for judging solely whether difficult sliders will bring people into Souls-likes.
But your point is well taken that game designers need not feel like they have to accommodate to every vocal group of gamers that call out for a change to their formula. And that’s why I say props to FromSoft for sacrificing potential revenue in order to keep to their artistic vision. Because at the end of the day, these companies have to make money, and they have carved out a sustainable niche, even though they lock out some potential sales by not having easier games.
@Col_McCafferty Comments like yours are the best because you think you know what you're talking about but really don't.
@WallyWest eh? I'm just asking why these games can't be made more accessible. What's the problem with giving gamers a choice? Play it as a 'pure' Soulsborne experience or through a more diluted path. Don't get how this would spoil others enjoyment of the the game.
@JJ2 “Actually I disagree when people say DS games are fair. They aren’t. The games and devs constantly troll the player…”
Quoted for truth. I just saw this comment and I think it’s why I haven’t felt guilty about doing some “cheesing” of enemies in FromSoft games from time to time. The game pulls cheap shots on the player all the time, so if it also allows for little quirks in the game design that I can exploit to take a cheap shot at an enemy, I’ll take it! 😅
I remember a few times in Bloodborne when an enemy would cheaply hit me through a wall due to poor collision detection, and so I decided to use that against some of the tougher scenarios and attack enemies through a barrier. In fact, if I remember correctly that’s the only way I got through the Shadow of Yharnam boss fight! 😅
Also to your point, I really spammed the poison cloud magic with a lot of the tougher enemies and some bosses in Demon’s Souls. If the game gives me an option to use it, I’m going to use it! Because it’s sure using every trick in the book against me! 😄
Thats good to hear.elden ring doesnt need a easy mode.the game is like wwf mr perfect as it is.bars.have fun.word up son
I think every game should give you difficulty options. It just gives people of different ages and strengths an option to use it if they want to. It will be up to them then. People who want it mega hard can just choose a higher difficulty
@dschons Their reputation wouldn't be ruined due to bad reviews if they implemented difficulty modes or sliders. Come on now.
I wonder what other creative works has so many making demands about what is and isn't included by the creators. Should be an easy mode for all books as well, surely? Don't be using any big words now, or the angry Internet will be after you.
All Souls games have had an easy mode, it’s called being a magic user There has NEVER been more options to get seriously OP in a Souls game like there is in Elden Ring. You have options, you just don’t have an option on a menu that says “easy mode”. (Edit: Every Souls game has been like this too, the difficulty settings are built into the systems). You still need to put in SOME effort but this game is the easiest Souls game BY FAR. There will never be a menu option for a difficulty slider in a Souls game and I am HERE. FOR. IT.
I hate this debate. Should authors offer an easier version of their books which avoid using difficult vocabulary or complex sentence structure? Should Jazz musicians stop using chords that go beyond a triad? Should Hollywood release multiple versions of a movie for people that Schindler's List to have a happy ending? Should Korean restaurants change 1,000 year old recipes for people that don't wantbspicy food?
Every experience doesn't need to be for everyone. I own all the Souls games and have only beaten one and I'm okay with that. It is okay to not finish a game and it is okay for a game designer to make the game they want and not cater to the whims of everyone on the Internet.
@thefourfoldroot Heck yeah man, glad to hear that.
There is also coop to summon if you're stuck on a boss (even a simple enemy, but people will usually leave summon signs near boss doors).
Good luck in the lands between (if you ever buy the game that is) and happy gaming!
@bozz Absolutely. Imagine what the game would be like then. The challenge and learning curve are essential to the soul of the game. Imagine what Returnal would look like with difficulty settings for instance. It would be nothing more than a generic 2-3 hours third person shooter, people would trash it. As a roguelite though, it achieves a lot. Same with From Soft games.
@dschons It'd be the same game for you, only more people would be able to enjoy it now. Absolutely no one would force you to play on a lower difficulty so no, it wouldn't get trashed because the option for such a difficulty would still be there. If your entire perception of a game's worth or quality is tied to its extreme difficulty gating people out then maybe the game isn't so great to begin with, and for the record I do think these are great games but not at all due to their difficulty. Be sensible about this.
@bozz I don't think you understand what I was trying to say. I couldn't care less if more people played it on a lower difficulty setting. But I wouldn't like the long term consequences that come with it for their future games and how they are perceived. And I disagree with the statement that difficulty or challenge isn't a valid design element for a game's quality. Miyazaki made this statement for a reason.
@dschons lol what consequences? It's just a difficulty setting, you're completely free to ignore it if it's not your kind of thing. These are made-up consequences, you don't see other difficult games with difficulty settings suffer because of them (look at Cuphead for example). Again, if the entire perception of a game is tied to its extreme difficulty then that speaks pretty poorly of the rest of the game's traits.
If a game HAS to be hard in order to have worth, then for me it's not a good game.
I played The Witcher 3 on Easy, it's still one of the greatest games of all time.
Elden Ring could be designed in exactly the same way in addition to having a normal difficulty setting. This would make ZERO difference to the hardcore lots enjoyment of the game.
I’ve beaten three story bosses and it’s cool but I can’t stand those wizards at the academy who bombard me with magic. It’s frustrating and very annoying, I had to turn the game off. If the game added an easy mode I don’t think the world would be turned upside down.
In fact, the only people you see defending the lack of an easier mode or pause feature are the basement dwellers who think beating a hard video game is a real life achievement.
@bozz I'll leave it at that. You won, I made no sense. Yes, there should absolutely be difficulty settings for all FS games going forward. It's a good thing and everyone would profit from it. It wouldn't make a long term difference at all apart from more people being able to enjoy them.
I’ve beaten ninja gaiden black on very hard difficulty, it’s one of my greatest gaming accomplishment ever. Now you have people that would play that on easy and pat themselves on the back because they feel the same sense of accomplishment. Nothing great come easy, it takes work and improvement with the time put in is a great feeling. Saying that I’ve only played DS3 and totally hated it, but I don’t fault it or want it to change because of my deficiencies. I might give elden ring a try but if I suck at it like before it’s my own damn fault for buying it.
Just patch in Ludvig's Holy Blade.
@Col_McCafferty You're really invested in this debate! (Just a remark, I seriously don't mean anything pejorative/meliorative by it).
"If a game HAS to be hard in order to have worth, then for me it's not a good game." It's in a way yes, it's a flaw in design after all. But does it make it a bad game not at all (IMO ofc), it's like saying a game failing at simplifying the story for every age group is a bad game; Sure it's a flaw in design but it's not a bad game.
"This would make ZERO difference to the hardcore lots enjoyment of the game." Some people will come to the game and start on easy (because they were put off by all the talk about difficulty), find themselves in front of a game that's not difficult, no reward in beating that boss he took only 2 tries, why explore my starting sword does the job pretty well. Which will make them review bomb the game "was that the acclaimed experience?!"
Let's not forget about the people that are already fans of the game, they are stuck at a boss that took them, say, 20 tries, they stop and given the opportunity switch to a lower difficulty and get absolutely no sense of achievement from beating the boss.
Just my thoughts, there's no absolute answer to the debate.
@LieutenantFatman @Ambassador_Kong Not to be pedantic, but I do think the comparison is not quite fair, with books or movies being passive and not interactive forms of entertainment. The jazz music comparison is probably closer though.
Nevertheless (and again I’m not advocating one way or another on this debate necessarily, but rather being a little fair to both sides of the fence) I feel like part of the difference here is the sudden and jarring difficulty spikes the games tend to have. Like Sammy said in his first comment, many players go along for several hours and thoroughly enjoy the game, only to hit a wall with a certain boss or section. After multiple deaths and frustration, they give up and curse the game. So there is a core element of enjoyment they were gleaning for the wonderful lore, world building, and addictive gameplay, but then they are shut out by an unexpected or intrusive spike in difficulty.
So, perhaps like the Korean restaurant comparison — you’re eating a delicious dish and enjoying it and then suddenly take a bite into a 10/10 spicy hot morsel and then can’t stomach the rest of the dish.
Over in the forums recently there was a user who was playing Demon’s Souls and he was posting how wonderful the game was and how much he enjoyed it, then suddenly there was a post after dying multiple times to Flamelurker and then dying in the Tower of Latria that his tone completely changed. He quit the game, and started to question why he even plays video games and subsequently deleted his profile. It was a drastic 180 on the game, and the hobby in general.
So, again, I’m not saying FromSoft need to change, but I do think there is a valid point out there which can be made that the developer may want to reassess their design choices.
@dschons Was reading the discussion, I still disagree with the difficulty option thing but I always respect people who are open to changing their opinions.
Props to you for that, happy gaming!
@lolwhatno sorry I still think that's nonsense. Just a load of gaming snobs desperate to keep out 'casuals' from their favourite games.
There is no real achievement finishing this or any game, not really. Typical Soulsborne cult in action though, quite possibly the most unreasonable fanbase in gaming. That's not trolling by the way, it's based on the comments I have read on this and other sites.
@lolwhatno it was ironic. I disagree with everything he said, I just wanted it to end as it was pointless, lol. Happy gaming to you as well.
@dschons Oh god, what a turn of events!
lol, well I didn't notice the irony.
@Col_McCafferty "There is no real achievement finishing this or any game" Of course there is not. There is no achievement in getting a platinum too, yet we have people doing it, nobody called them snobs really.
There is no real achievement finishing this or any game, not really. Typical Soulsborne cult in action though, quite possibly the most unreasonable fanbase in gaming. That's not trolling by the way, it's based on the comments I have read on this and other sites." Nah, nobody can blame ya for this, there are people like this, most aren't though. If you head to the subreddit, the most upvoted posts are about a newbie overcoming a difficult obstacle. A lot of people are ready to coop to help a rando, they call it "jolly co-operation".
My point in this paragraph is, most of the fans of the game aren't "elitists" they just enjoy overcoming a difficult obstacle (in a mental way, we are lazy shites
IMO "extreme difficulty" is the wrong way to view these games. They're not great games because of how extremely difficult they are - that's just something that's been blown out of proportion because apparently it counts as good PR when you're marketing to a certain masochistic class of gamer.
A lot of soulsborne players will describe the combat as "fair" - it's not an easy, power fantasy type of game, at least not unless you're going to spend time getting overlevelled for whatever area you're in. Fundamentally, the reason soulsborne fans really really don't like the suggestion that an "easy mode" should be added, is that part of the DNA of these games is that the difficulty of the combat is just something you can't do anything about. I have no doubt in my mind that if Souls games had an "easy mode" I definitely would have used it by now. But they don't. In not giving you the option to change the difficulty, they force you to change something that you do have the ability to change, whether it's a trying new tactic or play style, watching the boss more attentively and picking up on patterns, summon a friend/stranger/NPC, reading a guide online for some tips, finding an easy way to cheese the fight (not preferable for the purist, but a win is a win), or just plain grinding and getting overlevelled.
If what you want is a difficulty slider that lets you make the fight easier, then there are plenty of other games that will offer you that. Souls games don't give you that option, because the whole idea is that the game sets you a challenge and you can decide for yourself how you're going to overcome it - you don't get to simply take the challenge away. There are plenty of other games out there that will let you do that - because those games are more about telling you a story and letting you be a part of it, and letting you decide how much of a challenge you want. Whereas with Souls games, the challenge itself (not "extreme difficulty" - for the most part they're really not that hard, they just require more effort than most games) is part of the point. Like it or not, that's FromSoftware's deal. It doesn't have to be your cup of tea - there are tons of games that do offer difficulty settings, I really don't see why people think it should be dictated that FromSoftware abandon what they feel is an important part of their identity as a developer.
Video games are meant to be challenging. It's the reason why there is a losing and winning condition in almost every game.
FromSoft has been developing their games with punishing difficulty, but people still manages to complete the game. If you find the game time consuming, then play something else or if you only want to play the game for the story, then just watch video game walkthrough or cutscenes on YT. It's no different anyway.
@danlk1ng Exactly, FromSoft has developing their games for a specific genre and niche gamers. The game has a punishing difficulty, but you can learn the enemies attack pattern by observing them, and yet people are treating the game like it's rocket science lol.
Hopefully the next FS game will be criticised for being so unaccessible and for its technical flaws and poor graphics, instead of being hailed as the best thing ever made
Hopefully but I doubt it, any bad reviews and the cult will be out in force.
@Col_McCafferty Yeah, like the PS fanboys 🙄
@Col_McCafferty the technical flaws really aren't that much of a problem - it's nowhere near the point of being unplayable (although on PC strangely, it seems the only people complaining about performance are the ones with super expensive graphics cards - everyone running a moderately competent gaming rig - as opposed to a 2022 powerhouse - seems to be doing just fine) - it's not even a case of "I insist on playing it because I'm a souls fan, to hell with performance", a lot of people are genuinely loving it.
As for accessibility - it really does give you a lot more options than any other Souls game, it's just that "make bosses weaker" isn't one of those options. For someone who refuses to play it though, you sure do have an opinion
@Th3solution Movies and Books are artistic statements as are videogames. Like film they have a Director who tries to achieve a vision. Respect the vision and realize that every experience is not for everyone.
@Ambassador_Kong hit it on the head dude, the unearned entitlement some have is out of control. They think their opinion is the only one that matters.
@BrainHacker guy on PS site knocks PS fanboys.
Wow, whatever you do in life DON'T dare to criticise a FromSoft game. They really don't like it.
@Col_McCafferty - I seem to remember you commenting something along the lines of “maybe the haters should accept they don’t like the game and move on” in regards to TLoU II; just a suggestion, but perhaps you should take your own advice here, instead of sniping at the game and those who enjoy it.
What I feel isn’t brought up enough regarding this topic, is that Elden Ring, like most recent From games (Sekiro excluded) do have difficulty sliders, they’re just built in to the game itself in ways very similarly to JRPGs. Want to make the game easier? Level up your character/weapon, summon npc/player spirits to assist, track down some powerful weapons, increase the number and efficacy of your healing potions (and probably some other things I can’t think of). Want to make it harder? Don’t do these things. The way these games are designed, you can fine-tune the difficulty to suit how hard or easy you want it to be, you just have to use the tools the game provides.
To that end, I don’t see the point in having a blanket difficulty option, because that kinda makes all those elements redundant. Why bother levelling up your character when you can pretty much blow over everyone regardless? Why bother summoning help when facing a boss solo isn’t that hard?
Sure, for some games, a difficulty slider makes sense (e.g. Doom, DMC) but if the game is designed around not having a slider, and where including one takes away from the experience, then I can’t really see it as a benefit, let alone a necessity.
@Col_McCafferty from software doesn’t want your money dude, get over it. It’s like when a woman tells you she don’t want anything to do with you, except that’s not a good enough reason for you so you continue to be a crazy stalker instead of finding another woman or in this case a game. Not everything is for you
I typically play these types of games on easy, I don’t recall finishing a game and thinking “man, I wish I would have died more and had to replay more sections”. That said, I voted for no easy mode. Dying is part of the game mechanics in Elden Ring. Honestly you’re not massively punished like some of the earlier games. There is the odd time you die in a bad spot and lose some souls, but the difficulty is what gives you that feeling of dread when you’re exploring with 20k souls. If there weren’t a million fascinating places to explore while you’re grinding souls for leveling and weapons, maybe I’d feel differently. But they gave you everything you could want so you’re not sitting in some boring area killing the same thing over and over. If a boss is too tough, go explore one of the best and most dense open worlds ever created.
@Col_McCafferty So what if it's a PS centric website? I'm just calling you out over the hypocrisy of your statement. It's just funny that you call FromSoft fans a cult group. When PS fanboys will harass anyone with a negative comment about PS games and Sony,
@FullMetalWesker not sniping at all, not really. Just asking why FromSoft games can't be more accessible and why this would be a bad thing.
The hatred from some quarters towards TLoU 2 was obscene, to compare my comments to those is laughable, really insulting but also proves my point about the sensitivity of Soulsborne fans.
This is my first FromSoftware game. I have always avoided them due to the reputation of them being severely difficult games. However, now that I have actually put some hours into 1, I totally get it. Not only that, but I am absolutely loving it. Yes, you die a LOT. Get over it. Get stronger. Try again. If the games were easier, then the sense of achievement, and the sense of fear when entering new areas would be not be there. My heart has pounded several times when playing this game. Like, POUNDED. I swear I am burning calories just from playing this game!! So no, don't make them easier. They are designed that way. I am probably gonna pick up the Demon Souls remake now too.
@CyberWolf enjoy. DS Remake is a good "next step".
@Niktaw Complaining about the difficulty of Elden Ring or any FromSoft games is like complaining that a horror game shouldn't be terrifying because it's too scary for them.
Anyway, this article is open to all. Not as if I'm going onto the Elden Ring thread on the forums just to slag it off or mention other games.
Well put as always. But these games have always encouraged players to summon assistance if they are having difficulty, it's fair to say that is the easy mode, depending on who is helping you.
I understand not everyone wishes to play the game that way, but that's the way it's been designed.
The artist is very keen for his vision of a cruel, unforgiving world to show through and doesn't want the integrity of that vision compromised at all. Many are saying they don't want that experience, and that's fair enough, it's probably not the game for them.
And it's important to remember, that the game isn't meant to be for everyone. A product designed for everyone is unlikely to be very interesting for anyone after all.
@Quadalog @Ambassador_Kong Oh, absolutely. I wasn’t implying otherwise. Nor am I even implying that difficulty options need to be included in FromSoft games or that we are all entitled to have a creator change their vision to suit our word view or convenience. I was just pointing out that comparing an interactive experience to a passive one isn’t always analogous. Given the way the art is consumed depends upon some level of achievement in a video game, whereas a movie or book you are a more a passenger rather than the driver. But otherwise, yes, an author, musician, film director, etc — they all are creative orchestrators of their content. In the end, they want the consumer of their content to, as Miyazaki-san says, “just [have] as many players as possible to experience the joy” of their vision.
There not entitlement here from me, just presenting the viewpoint and reasoning behind what I’m seeing players experience. In the sense of a book or movie, when you see or read a bad one, surely you criticize and critique what you didn’t like about it or would change about it? It’s not entitlement (I don’t feel anyways) to say, “That movie was good but it really dragged in the middle and it relied on CG too much, and I wish they had got a different actor to play so-and-so…. maybe the sequel will address these pacing issues, etc, etc.”. I think it’s okay to feel like an aspect of the creators artistic vision be modified. It doesn’t mean they are bound to do so or owe it to me. It’s just a suggestion and feedback on my experience with the piece of art.
I hope that clarifies and I hope it comes across as intended, which isn’t from a place of entitlement.
Ah sh*t, here we go again.
You know, out of all the time spent begging for an easy mode in Souls games is time that could be spent just playing something else. Like something you actually enjoy. Instead of deliberately going out of your way to demand a game that you know isnt for you change to fit your needs, you could just play the hundreds of thousands of games out there that already cater to you, that have the options you're looking for
"It's not something we're willing to abandon, it's our identity" That's straight from the director and president of From Software's mouth dude. Just how more clear does it have to be? How clear does it have to be before it finally sinks in. Miyazaki and his team don't give a **** about adding an easy mode. They just don't. The sooner everyone realizes and accepts that the sooner we can move on from this incredibly tired debate
@BrainHacker these games can still be difficult though in addition to offering to play the game on a lower difficulty setting. Again, why is this a problem?
You can play on Ultra Hard mode (or normal as it is now) and others can play on an easier setting but perhaps lock the platinum behind completing it on the default setting. Everyone wins, no?
@Medic_Alert "What is hard for me is totally impossible for others"
So I read thru all 160 comments and this was the only sentence that seemed close to what I was thinking based on what he said:
"I just want as many players as possible to experience the joy that comes from overcoming hardship.”
The guy treats difficulty as an "objective" measure, but it isn't, it's completely subjective. While it may take 1 skilled player only 2 or 3 tries to beat a boss, it will take another player 12 or 20, and another 150 b/c they don't have the reflexes or hand to eye coordination. So the first player isn't getting any joy from overcoming hardship b/c there wasn't any, and the last player isn't getting any b/c no sane person is trying t beat 1 battle 150 times.
So, he's basically full of it and full of himself, b/c no game can have the same difficulty for every player, that's impossible. If he wants the difficulty to be rewarding for beating hardship then tell us what hardship is? How many attempts should it take to beat a boss, 5, 10, 15? When he settles on a number that he feels brings the joy of winning, then set optional difficulty skills to players of varying skill levels to obtain what he considers to be the proper amount.
B/c that's his cop-out, his idea that all gamers have the same skill levels. Its ludicrous. High school kids don't play football w/ college kids who don't play football with pro athletes. They have different physical attributes but they are all playing the same sport.
If he wants his games to be about enjoying overcoming difficulty, that's great, but the game could still have difficulty levels b/c DIFFERENT PLAYERS HAVE DIFFERENT LEVELS OF SKILLS. Has it ever occurred to the guy mist of the people finishing Elden Ring might be finding it easy and they need a higher difficulty to feel their sense of achievement?
Game can have difficulty options or not but his explanation is ridiculous. Just say, I'm too lazy to bother with that.
@rjejr it’s been said a hundred times. The game has difficulty levels. You can summon other players, NPCs, level up your character, level up your weapons, obtain new armour and special abilities. All while developing your own skills. And that’s before we even get into cheesing enemies. Elden Ring makes all this even easier than usual, and helps stop players bouncing off, as you can literally go do anything else if you hit a wall and come back once your character is stronger. A boss at level 20 is not the same boss at level 35 and there are no restrictions on gaining experience to level up.
Final Fantasy 7 doesn’t have difficulty levels. If you run from every random encounter, you will get smoked by the next boss.
I really don’t want to generalise but I do wonder if most people are forming their opinions of these games based on reputation or perhaps just 1-2 hours of trying one themselves. All I see from people actually playing ER is how much fun they are having.
YouTube is loaded with exploits due to the open world aspect of the game. You can even camp behind an ancient dragon and chip away at it with no risk for 100K souls. You don't have to fight any bosses till you're ready. So, no, the game doesn't need an easy mode.
@LieutenantFatman Agreed. I really have become enchanted with the FromSoft games after completing Demon’s Souls and now look forward to my next one. And I’ve never actually summoned for help in it or in Bloodborne. 😅 I’m too stubborn!
Another interesting tidbit in my researching the Demon’s Souls development history when I wrote my review a few weeks ago was that permadeath was an early part of the game’s planned mechanics. Could you imagine how that would have gone over! 😂 Fortunately Miyazaki had second thoughts about that.
@Col_McCafferty Because they designed their games that way.
In an interview with Gamespot, From Software president Hidetaka Miyazaki explained the reasoning behind this design decision. (Punishing difficulty)
‘”We don’t want to include a difficulty selection because we want to bring everyone to the same level of discussion and the same level of enjoyment,” Miyazaki said. “So we want everyone … to first face that challenge and to overcome it in some way that suits them as a player.”
“We want everyone to feel that sense of accomplishment. We want everyone to feel elated and to join that discussion on the same level. We feel if there’s different difficulties, that’s going to segment and fragment the user base. People will have different experiences based on that [differing difficulty level]. This is something we take to heart when we design games. It’s been the same way for previous titles and it’s very much the same with Sekiro.”‘
Removed - inappropriate language; user is banned
This is the reason why I don't play these games despite the gameplay mechanic looking good, if I know I'm going to be constantly frustrated dying time after time then the meaning that games are supposed to be fun and a way to relieve the stress of coming home from work/school gets lost if despite having a stressful day I'm going to continue being stressed out playing these games.
Its a pity, if their games were more accessible I'm sure they'd be selling even better.
That is interesting! Now that is proper old school difficulty. The last Armored Core game they made had a perma death mode for the campaign which had to be completed in order to obtain the plat. That was certainly an experience.
I usually summon for help randomly but decided on my first playthrough of the Demon's Souls remaster to do it all solo just see if I could. Managed ok but then I did grab the really good sword as early as possible so that helped.
@Tchunga Yeah, it is interesting that the quote actually was “it’s not something that we’re willing to abandon at the moment. It’s our identity”. He did leave the door open there for the future, and I think that’s telling. And I do think he listens to feedback, and likely watches to make sure the games are at least profitable. The fact he apologized to the player base who struggle to complete his games sounded sincere. And I do think Elden Ring (I haven’t played it yet so I’m just piecing it together from what I’m reading) contains some of its design changes in response to player feedback, such as increased spawn points and such. So I honestly don’t think Miyazaki is as hard-nosed as his games are. 😜
@Col_McCafferty They're pretentious because they designed their games for a specific genre and niche consumer? How does that make sense?
Whatever, it's not like FromSoft is forcing you to play their games.
So glad I skipped this one. Haha. I hate hard games.
@Col_McCafferty - Mate, your last post was literally just “haha, don’t criticism a souls game, the cult will roast you for it”. The post I responded to also wasn’t phrased like an honest comment, but essentially “I hope these games get the burning they deserve, because I really don’t like them haha”. Not to mention some of your other comments that have been pulled for being…less than constructive. From what I’ve seen, nothing can really be described as “just providing feedback” unless by that you mean “make barely concealed bitter comments about a game (and its fans) I think is getting too much praise”.
And sure, the level of some of the hate TLoU II got was obviously greater, but the general point still stands; you went from asking why don’t the haters just move on when it was a game you liked, to being a hater that similarly, can’t seem to accept that some people like a particular game, and move on when it was a game you didn’t like. As a result, I thought it might help to relay your own advice back to you, in case it helped.
Also, on a related note, you do realise FromSoft games are far from the only ones to not have difficulty options, right? Pretty sure Rockstar games for example aren’t much better in this regard, nor are most Roguelikes.
@Col_McCafferty "Wow, whatever you do in life DON'T dare to criticise a FromSoft game. They really don't like it."
Same can be said for you RDR 2 lover. Lol
@LieutenantFatman Yeah, my “easy mode” has been to just use Fextralife and YouTube. It’s why I am waiting on Elden Ring until a large library of online content exists (also until all bugs are patched) and then I know the first time I hit a difficult section I can get some online guidance. Like where to find that certain awesome weapon early on! 😄
Like. A. Cult.
Anyway, interesting 'debate' guys. FromSoft won't be getting any of my money but that's fine, I've got more tha enough to play with the wonderful Forbidden West, engaging Cyberpunk and now GT 7 (it arrived a day early!) sitting in my library.
These games are welcoming to all gamers.
I’ve never really understood this debate. I’ve noticed the vocal crowd who want difficulty modes or something to make the game more digestible (always falling back on “real life commitments” in an attempt to tell people that they are more important than you or when that fails, think of the crowd with disabilities who can’t play this game)…these people are much more selfish and self serving than the so-called elite gatekeepers who play FromSoftware titles for what they are offering and are not asking them to change.
FromSoftware makes the games they want to make and there’s enough players who want to play the games they make to support this style of artistry.
Believe it or not, people don’t need to play every game that is out there.
There are very few games like these, even when factoring in the clones and homages. Why should they have to change to cater to a player who is not their audience? It is a very fellow American mindset. “I want to experience another country but I won’t take the time to learn even the basics of that language.”
There are thousands upon thousands of games that offer what every naysayer complains about. Go or keep playing those instead.
@Col_McCafferty That's great. You didn't waste your money and FromSoft wouldn't care anyway.
That's fair, I often go with the buy it later when it's been patched plan. Good idea with this game, as good as it is, I'm not convinced it's been properly optimised for the ps5 yet what with all the pop up in busier areas.
@Grimwood it's a PlayStation site, so they frame everything as "for PS4/PS5" even if it's a multiplatform game, unless the article is to do with something Playstation users are missing out on.
Of course PC users may well get an "easy mode" in the form of mods, although they'd have to be wary of anti-cheat, unless they're playing offline
@JJ2 I don't think anyone is arguing for multiplayer games to be made easier, where you're up against another human. It's games that are single player that people want those options.
During a multiplayer match it should be a fair playing field for all involved, a proper test of skill and I haven't seen an argument contrary to that, so again I don't think chess is the best example because people want difficulty options for single player experiences.
@kyleforrester87 I'm playing it, and I'm having fun, but all I'm doing is riding my horse around taking photos.😂 Oh, and "liking" all the comments b/c it gives people health.😁
Not every game needs difficulty options, not sure how Animal Crossing New Horizons could get any easier or harder, and if the guy wants to say "I made it as hard as I wanted to" then fine, it's his game, he gets to do with it as he pleases. But that's not what he said. He said: “I just want as many players as possible to experience the joy that comes from overcoming hardship.” Do you know how you let as many players as possible to get joy from overcoming hardship? Difficulty options, so as many payers of all skill levels get to overcome hardship. He's saying one thing but doing another.
Doesn't matter how much armor you have or levels you go up, some of the boss fights are based on split second parrying and dodging, and not everyone has that same level of skill to be able to pull those moves off perfectly 25 out of 25 times.
If the game is too hard it's too hard, but he doesn't want as many people as possible to experience it, if he did, he'd put in sliders or something for people who are willing to fight a boss 15 times but not 150 until they get lucky.
How many deaths do you require before you feel joy at beating a boss? How many times would you have to die before giving up and playing another game? How few times could it take before the game was too easy for you and you moved on to something else? 🤷
Those numbers are going to be different for everyone, and difficulty options can be there to make the game the same for everyone, not different. That's how difficulty options should be viewed, giving people of varying skill levels the same experience, like a handicap in golf. I know pro golf doesn't do handicaps but recreational golf does. In an eSport everyone should play on normal, but for the people not living in South Korea gamng for a living a handicap doesn't hurt anyone, it gives him what he says he wants, as many people as possible.
Difficulty modes aren't only wanted by really good players to make the game easier, they are wanted by middling players to make the game playable as intended. Everyone has their own number of how many times they want to die before they can beat a boss and feel joy. I'm guessing around a dozen for most people. Nobody wants 1, that's not playing, it's watching, and nobody sane wants 150.
Maybe games can have a QTE at the beginning to gage peoples reflexes and auto set the difficulty based on that?🤷 Or just say - we only want experienced players to play our games, no noobs - and be honest about it.😁
@rjejr glad you are having fun!! 😉
@Th3solution What you've been reading is either marketing bs or just a lie. Elden Ring is From Softwares most challenging game yet. And that's not a hot take either. It's a widely shared sentiment online. A lot of the mid to late game bosses can two or even one shot you, and that's with a decently upgraded health stat to boot. And the "stakes of marika" that act as checkpoints are more so just there to account for the fact that the game is open world now. So you arent constantly having to ride around everywhere on horseback. They dont make the game "easier" they just cut out some of the time. There are still some bosses that don't even have the stakes of marika at all. Those were made out to be a much bigger deal than they actually are.
So no, Elden Ring isn't From taking player feedback into consideration. If anything it's them being unapologetically From Software 😉
I am intent on playing this one day. The visual style is stunning. Boss and enemy design is out of this world.
But, I'm a little reticent due to the difficulty level.
I am lucky if I can put over 12 hours a week into gaming, so don't feel I'll get to see even 95% the game has to offer.
@JJ2 When I play a Soulsborne game if im struggling to the point I want to quit I use a walk through to prepare myself for whats next and that seems to always work for me. Then once I leveled up high enough the game was nowhere near as hard as it is initially.
Yeah I mean it’s always full of traps and ambushes.
I don’t get why people get shamed and ‘cheesing’ is a silly word for saying someone is using their brains instead of constantly hitting a wall.
Look that giant spider in DS I just stood on a side and shot it with arrows. Not feeling guilty one bit. I don’t count how many dragons I killed the same way instead of going through the BS on trying to escape the fire by hopping about 😅
I’m using the tools the game gives me. It’s weird that some want to shame others for not doing it their way.
ER is somehow demonstrating there’s no wrong way. Often you use torrent speed to escape or hit and run to kill a monster.
I meant rolling for previous games. Much hopping in ER though 😜
Yeah I’m sorry I wasn’t very clear. My bad. I was trying to draw a comparison with the complexity of the (chess) game. 👍
There’s a lot of people that just say suck it up buttercup. This type of game is not for everyone nor is it meant to be. If Miyazaki wanted more people to play, he would make it easier or have difficult options. That is his choice. I have raged quit this game 4 times already but I also have come right back. It is a brilliant game(not perfect) and I can’t guarantee that I will be able to complete it but nor do I want an easy mode. I hope I get to finish so I can enjoy everything that this world has to offer. If not, oh well. I’ll find another game to play.
I am not entitled enough to tell a director to change something because I cant overcome it. Yes, I want to play Elder Ring, but, at the same time I have trouble playing these type of games. I know, I cant beat them, so I dont purchase these type of games. I am more in line with Ninja Gaiden, DMC, and Bayonetta games than Souls games. Some times as a consumer you have to let some things go, and especially if you're not good at those games dont purchase them. You should know how difficult these games are, it is on you if you buy it and cant beat it, not on the game developers/director.
game has an easy mode already.
you can level up - and the game is easier.
you can summon - and the game is easier.
thanks for the ez mode!
@rjejr I couldn't agree more.
Personally I don't have numerous hours to put into numerous attempts, I've done that before in games and only felt relief at finally becoming victorious, completely overshadowed by the frustration of hours of attempts.
“I just want as many players as possible to experience the joy that comes from overcoming hardship.”
Uh, no you don't lol. Maybe reword that to "as many players that enjoy getting their butts handed to them over and over" as possible. Some players love overcoming the challenge and all power to them.
Anyway at least I know what I am in for and I have a choice. That choice for me is to play FW and GT7 for now, and maybe pick up Elden Ring, when it is on sale, and when I have nothing else I'd rather play.
Absolutely. That’s the right way to do it.
So far I am 24 hours in and defeated the second end boss (she with the moon) and countless mini bosses.
I hear people saying that they derive satisfaction from finally taking down a boss they struggle with.
I just get annoyed really, yes most of the time I die from overreaching, getting the extra damage in.
But a surprisingly large amount of deaths are caused by the clumsy, wooden controls.
I'd rather they fix that than add a difficulty select.
@Tchunga Actually one of the things that is so fascinating about FromSoft games is the wide variance in which games and which bosses are the hardest. Blood-starved Beast is always the example I go to for me, that I beat that thing on the first try as one of the easiest bosses on BB, but I saw tons of people saying it was so hard. Yet I barely made it past Father Gascoigne after well over a dozen attempts. I’ve heard the hardest game is Sekiro, then I’ve heard some say it’s one of the easier ones. It’s quite variable which games certain people will struggle with as opposed to others. It speaks to the ingenious design of the games. So I’m not surprised that we’re hearing different assessments of the relative difficulty level of ER compared to the others. The forum here on PS is where I’ve gotten most of the player feedback I’ve read.
@JJ2 Yeah, I did the same thing with Armored Spider. And “kiting” the more difficult common enemies to take advantage of their agro distance and lure them to areas safer to fight them is one of my favorite techniques. Didn’t work so well for the blasted skeletons in Demon’s Souls though. Good grief, by the time they agroed they were on top of you in a flash! 😅
But it’s good to see that I’m not the only one whose not ashamed to use a bit of trickery where the game allows it. 😄
“I just want as many players as possible to experience the joy that comes from overcoming hardship.”
What this guy doesn't seem to grasp for some reason is that what qualifies as “hardship” isn't the same for all experienced/dedicated gamers due to differences in things like hand-eye coordination, reflexes & muscle memory. I've been playing video games for 40 years, usually for at least a few hours each night, but playing most games on easy mode the first time through really challenges me. To succeed, I have to overcome the dual hardships of learning how to play the game and finding a way to do it in spite of my weaknesses.
It seems to me that people who complain that they "need" games to not have difficulty settings should be trying to overcome the 'hardship' of developing the basic self-control required to not choose an easier setting when it's available.
I think it’s not just as simple as some people think. There’s a balance already in the games with really weak enemies, medium and more difficult ones. That’s for standard npc. Also depending on the area. There’s the landscape that can be a challenge like swamps or high ground you easily fall from. There’s the bosses who also have different levels from weak, medium, hard but most of all there are gimmicks you can find to destroy the bosses (they are in the game for you to find like a special weapon etc) and also there are complete BS bosses that are rubbish like run there hit that thing and repeat 3 times at different spots while the ground risks crumbling under your steps.
And then the you die lose your souls/runes mechanic which is very deeply part of what the game is about.
I think it’s just impractical to lower the general difficulty without method. Like if a fight wants you to use a trick then being able to destroy the boss easily without it kind of defeats the point of that boss. In the same way level up and upgrade your gear becomes pointless which means finding good stuff and exploration becomes uninteresting and pointless.
Enemies that were already weak become just annoying things without purpose.
It’s cool to ask ‘easy mode’ but I’d like to see real practical ideas to discuss. Not that I’d be in favour of it tbh but at least the discussion could be interesting.
ER has new addition making it more accessible with check points close to the boss for instance. Also a lot of different summons you can choose from to help. I think in ER there’s a genuine step for making an easier access if the player wants to look into it but not too heavy as to be annoying for fans.
Not every game is for everyone. If you can't beat a Souls game, who cares? I'm sure you'll be good at another game.
I think the difficulty in the game is meant to encourage cooperative play. Souls games are crazy punishing when playing solo, but the difficulty drops dramatically when you have a couple of real humans helping you out.
Edit: difficult games are also a lesson in emotional control and frustration management. Every failure is an opportunity to learn.
@CieloAzure I find souls games much easier than the Ninja Gaiden series. I think they have a reputation for being harder than they are, because we players like bragging about our mad skillz. But if you take advantage of the online play in souls games, they become much easier.
And this is why I fail miserably at Sekiro...
I've played and finished Demon Souls (PS3), Dark Souls and Dark Souls 2 and enjoyed them a lot despite the challenge. The problem for me is they're such a huge time commitment that it puts me off. Bloodborne and DS3 have been on my pile of shame for years.
This shows how entitled people are, don't buy the game if you don't want to play a game how the developer intended the game to be. There are hundreds of other game's to choose from.
The whole open world fast travel horseback thing makes it feel like maybe the easiest souls game I've played. Granted I've just been grinding / farming up to mid 30's until hardened and well stocked the checkpoint system doesn't feel nearly as daunting as demons souls though i know the bosses will break me, like that last bæstard in sekiro
NES games were hard.
There's entirely toouch "hand-holding" these days.
But to make a game intentionally unable to be beaten by all but a few, that's a big ol' NO!
Games are supposed to be fun. That's why they are called games.
@banacheck This doesn't have anything to do with people being entitled. We have people who can't enjoy some nice games because this is too difficult for them, what's the problem of asking the developers to have an additional level of difficulty? It's not interfering in the gameplay of anybody else.
I've platinumed Bloodborne and I've put hundreds of hours into each souls game, but I still believe that there should be an easy mode. Maybe with less trophies. They're such incredible games and it's sad to see people put off them.
Having beaten and loved Bloodborne and Sekiro, personally I think the talk about difficulty with FromSoftware games is slightly misplaced. They’re certainly not easy, but if item descriptions weren’t so ridiculously amorphous, and players given even basic guidance at the start, I think a whole lot more people would stick with them longer. I mean, I’m more than happy to earn knowledge by reading item lore etc, but it helps if what I’m reading isn’t essentially mysterious gibberish 😂
I've played and beat every Souls game up to Elden Ring and I 100% agree they should have an easy option for those who want it. Just turn off trophies etc for that mode and co-op. This by no means the dev's vision is ruined etc. since the normal harder mode exists. More people playing just means more people enjoying your games and more money. Having a walled off game in 2022 tied to difficulty is just a stupid business move that serves no one except internet trolls.
@Spider-Kev Don't forget a lot of NES games were hard because they were actually very short and they didn't want people renting them and beating them to then never buy them. It was a tactic that only hurt gamers. In 2022, there is ZERO reason to play most NES games because of their stupid difficulty. You'd think devs would want to have a good legacy.
@Salt_AU I hate to have you on a team trying to get sales for a game. More options mean more people play your game, you make more money and can make more games. Gatekeeping is never a good solution to anything, let alone video games. An easy mode would do nothing to hurt the Souls games. They could easily turn off trophies for anyone that plays on easy. Punish them in other ways, don't punish them by denying them the option to enjoy the beauty of these games. They might even get good enough to play on normal mode. It's a win for everyone.
@JLaw1719 Please explain how offering an easy mode would diminish the game or anyone else's experience? They would be separate things that never touch each other. The argument to gatekeep any game is dumb. They exist to make money, period. We do have fun playing some of them, but ultimately they exist to make money and for nothing else. You make more money by allowing more people to enjoy your thing. I play the games on normal, but I would love for my kids to jump in on an easier mode to also enjoy them. That would in no way hurt the game, the dev's vision etc. It's a tired argument. Grow up.
But the old games were at least FUN!
“It seems to me that people who complain that they "need" games to not have difficulty settings should be trying to overcome the 'hardship' of developing the basic self-control required to not choose an easier setting when it's available.”
Similar can be said for you.
You should be trying to overcome the ‘hardship’ of developing the basic self-control required to not play every game out there just because it is available to you.
FromSoftware must be pretty happy with their sales that only keep increasing regardless.
Seems like they have the best of both worlds. They can make the game they want to make and there’s enough people who love them as is to support them. Why chase an audience you don’t want? Why does every game have to the equivalent of the dollar store?
No, the tired argument is spinning Souls players as elitist, gatekeeping, and selfish because they meet one of the few games out there like this on its terms.
Amusing how few will say that the crowd clamoring for changes are actually the ones deserving of critique. They are the ones who are self-centered, selfish, sef-serving, entitled, and so on because they want these games to morph into every other game out there for them.
Also baffling that some fellow players don’t understand the game already has built in difficulty levels.
Countless other games out there to play and choices available, but these ones have to change because people can’t manage their fomo?
I wish he'd be honest and say "we have strong sales and we recognize that most of our market now comes from a bunch of internet elitists who would irrationally revolt if we stopped catering to their egos."
Literally nothing would be lost to anyone that likes From games playing as they currently do even if they added a total invincibility tourist mode, so long as "classic" mode remained as-is for the hardcore fans. The literal only thing that would change for the the ego-strokers on the internet would lost bragging rights of being so 1337 they can beat From games without difficulty and their epeen would shrink 3 sizes that day.
The argument always revolves around gitting gud, playing the game as it's meant to be played, based on one's own like of that gameplay, as though entirely unable to conceive that someone else might like something different. Then the argument shifts to "the game doesn't have to cater to others", without ever explaining how offering a different experience to others in any way affects one's own experience beyond watering down their elitist bragging rights.
This series brings out the very worst of the internet and "gaming culture." It's got to the point that I dislike seeing it succeed in sales, I want it to be gone so the world can move on from this toxic franchise.
@nessisonett I did hope that about the game and that makes me think I'll actually buy it when it hits $35 or less.
@Col_McCafferty We disagree far too often, but in this case I agree with everything you've said here, 110%! Well said!
@JLaw1719 Yeah, imagine people who play video games wanting to play more video games. The game they want to make still exists with an easy mode though. It literally changes nothing as the base game is there too. The bigger issue is that every game gets a new quote from the studio wishing that more could enjoy them. Okay, then if you don't plan on adding an easier mode, then shut up about it. Just make your games and stop blabbering about how you want more people to play if the solution isn't something you plan to offer. I'll always play and buy them for me, but I get tired of them saying this so often. Let it die it you are not willing to change.
@Spider-Kev Some were yes. But tell me you think Battle Toads if fun....or heck even Zelda 2 was brutal for no good reason.
@DarthKiwi Definitely a lot of grinding, but as a long time JRPG person - pretty much all I play - I expect that, but w/ a game like this I think it's more about the timing. I watch my kid play a lot of games on hard and very hard mode and they're always talking about the split second timing on parries that's required to beat a boss being different on the different settings. I don't think it's a matter of slowing the game down, I think it's basically - and I'm simplifying a bit here - how soon before you get attacked that you hit the block button. My kid talks in "frames". At 30fps we're talking fractions of a second. Some people can't move their fingers that fast. So if a parry requires you hit the block button between frames 15 and 25 maybe extend that to frames 5 to 50 to give people a chance, 2 seconds before rather than 1 second. Similar concept I believe for hit boxes, shrink them for the CPU to hit you, enlarge them for you to hit the boss.
Grinding is grinding, but you can't make fingers move faster than they can move.
Zelda 2 is my favorite Zelda game!
@NEStalgia Yeah @Col_McCafferty was getting attacked all day yesterday, more so in the other article than this one, unless is this that article and the other article was this one. Either way, rough day.
"we have strong sales and we recognize that most of our market now comes from a bunch of internet elitists who would irrationally revolt if we stopped catering to their egos."
You've always had a good way of putting into 1 sentence what it takes me 8 paragraphs to write. 😛 (167 & 188 if you somehow missed my Mario cat puppet on the PS site)
@kyleforrester87 I'm always having fun playing or else I wouldn't play it, it's commenting on PS where things tend to take a turn for the worse. 😉
@Spider-Kev Oh I love it too, but holy crap it can get hard and is so much harder than any other Zelda game. I'd love a remake!
If people would take the hint and realize the game is not for them instead of asking incessantly for changes to a game that are not going to happen, the studio wouldn’t have to answer these questions so much. They don’t come out unprovoked.
It’s as irrational as me coming to any other series of games that are popular, well regarded, and have sold millions of copies and having the gall to ask them to change for ME.
Here we go again with the selfishness. Because your feelings are hurt and you’re annoyed, you want a series to disappear off the map to satiate how you feel.
Give me a break.
@rjejr Yeah, somehow Souls brings out this bizarre "this is how I think everyone should be forced to play" mentality. Between players and the creators it's a very 1980's arcade machine mindset like hitting the high score list is their high school celebrity list.
But I do think Miyazaki is as full of it as he is outdated. He keeps, as you said, saying how much more he wants people to play it, while also saying he wants it to be this hard. He doesn't, he's just afraid of the result of changing it, and, unfortunately, for good reason, it would seem. But this is the same guy that was inspired to make Demon's Souls built around invasions because he watched people pushing cars up a snowy hill.... He has very sideways views of things.
I get that he wants DS to be a common frame of reference for achievement, but thanks to trophies, he can still have that with a trophy signifying who did it "the hard way" while also providing everyone a way to experience it all and learn on easier challenges if they wish. By his definition (since we're in Olympic season), all resorts should do away with the bunny hills and recreational slopes. Everyone that wants to ski should just be sent to Garmisch with no training or instruction. If you faceplant on 45 degree angled boilerplate, too bad. Get better.
@JLaw1719 No, I want it to go away because it inspires toxicity, aggression, and division among the otherwise shared gaming community in a way nothing else, not even Pokemon, manages to do. That's why I'd rather it vanish. Its existence makes the gaming community a worse place, not because of the game itself, but because of it's effect as evidenced in this very exchange.
Your entire approach revolves around the idea of celebrating the denial of others the experience they seek because you claim that them getting that experience denies you of the one you want, when that's entirely untrue. ADDING a reduced difficulty does not REMOVE the difficulty you know. Your experience would remain 100% unaffected if such addition were made. That's pure gatekeeping, keeping others out of something out of spite or elitism, plain and simple.
There's nothing to benefit you by the game not having a lower difficulty. None at all. Short of ego, of course.
I failed at Sekiro too 😭. I just think Souls games feel harder to me, I haven't played a Souls since Demon Souls. I quit on Bloodborne, that game punished me haha.
@NEStalgia "guy that was inspired to make Demon's Souls built around invasions because he watched people pushing cars up a snowy hill"
So what you're saying is, this guy built his game purposefully hard so hard men would go home and scream and yell at it and break their controllers rather than hit their wives, kids and dogs after a hard day? Kinda makes sense actually: "Had a hard day, had your fill of pron, need to take it all out on someone? Play our extremely difficult games! You may never get that raise b/c the boss hates you, but you can beat on this boss all night b/c it will take you 147 tries before you win! But you'll feel so good about yourself when you do!!! Manly games for manly men inc."
@rjejr I'm pretty sure that's the actual Japan marketing copy!
@NEStalgia It probably does sound much better when read in a deep voice in Japanese. sub>dub 😎
@rjejr Heck, bamco is publishing. I'm surprised there's not an mtx revive item sold 10 for $10 and an exp booster in a $100 deluxe edition
@Tchunga sorry, buddy. (Replying to you over here on this comment section if that’s your preference… although pretty sure your first comment on that other article was a direct reference to what some people were saying in this article…). I wasn’t trying to paint you as anything. Just confused at differing opinions and enjoying having discourse with people about the game and hearing everyone experiences and the reason they feel the way they do. It’s clear I have somehow unintentionally irritated you so I’ll leave it at that and just bounce ideas, questions, and discussion off of some of the other interested parties on the forums. Have a good day and happy gaming!
@Th3solution I also enjoy engaging in discourse but if I believe you are misrepresenting or misquoting what I'm saying then I am going to take issue with that. As I'm sure anyone else would. It's fine though, I got nothing against ya mate. Just some of your words that's all 😛
Wow, such a conservative and occasionally toxic display of gate-keeping and elitism amongst a sizeable part of the fanbase here.
If a sad and embarrassing mindset overall, on a more comical note I've typically found that "get-gud" gamer righteousness more often than not correlates with the small penis size of the gatekeeper (and if not that, some other insecurity).
You check genitals because of a game? Seems a little over the top
@JLaw1719 If that group is vocal enough then it might be worth reviewing their concerns honestly. Souls Games are not some high end art that can never be tinkered with or something, its just a game. I love them but again, in the end it only hurts to not have more options. Regardless of sales, there can always be more sales with added options.
@Salt_AU Every game should have multiple modes to ensure the most amount of people can play them. They are games, not competitions and no one cares if you are good at a game. Its all about sales and popularity. I just heard this weekend some pretty popular podcast hosts saying again that they'd love to enjoy these games but just cannot. There is nothing wrong with opening up other modes to allow more players. There just isn't a good argument against it outside of gatekeeping.
I don’t go for these types of games. Just insanely difficult without giving the option to at least adjust the difficulty of the game. I don’t get satisfaction of being one hit by enemies. All game should at least give a difficult setting. You don’t have to use it but it’s there if you want to. Some people will want it easier some will increase it to make it harder. At least you have the choice and if it you finish the game quicker because it easier we’ll then that’s your own choice. Should always be an option. I know some people won’t agree but we all have opinions and this is mine. But anyone who enjoys the game with the option then have a blast on it. 👍
Absolutely not, they should never add an official easy mode to this game.
They already have easy modes, it's called using magic or overlevelling for bosses.
Outside of that don't let some insecure, incompetent whiners ruing a game for the rest of us.
The only way I would be ok with an easy mode in these games, is it completely disabled trophies while active, & that you had to launch an entirely new game from normal mode to get any trophies.
If you want a baby mode, you don't deserve to have trophies as well.
The beauty of these games, apart from the absolute masterful world building & lore, is that they make you work for it & don't hold your hand all the way through like some lesser games such as AC franchise or Horizon.
There's hundreds of mediocre games that have quest logs, constant directions & reminders, & babying mechanics, thank god we have a few that stick to their guns & don't be the same as everyone else.
The respect I have for FromSoft goes through the roof whenever Miyazaki says things like this & doesn't let the pathetic whiners sway him into ruining something that his true fanbase has loved for decades.
@Shredderlovespizza there's an obvious argument against it. Its his game, he can do whatever the hell he wants & doesn't have to put training wheels on it for anyone that is too dumb to play it well or adapt.
There's absolutely nothing that states he has to put multiple difficulty options in there, that's just a whining expectation from you because of your own deficiencies as a human being.
Like I said before, my own personal opinion is simple... If they were to ever add an easy mode, then they need to disable trophies/achievements for that mode. Make it a clear choice you have to make between learning to adapt like everyone else, or not getting any rewards for playing the dumbed down version.
I often wonder what people are like in real life that cry about no easy modes in games... People that adverse to challenge & difficulty must be living lives of either utter failure, or absolute mediocrity because real life doesn't let you succeed while simultaneously being so mental weak & unable to adapt ..at least in most situations.
There's 1000s of other games that have easy mode, and cluttered UIs...go play those instead. Better yet, My Little Pony might be more suitable for you.
@WildFireX Okay first, this is a GAME and has nothing to do with people as real humans. Second. I’ve beat every Souls game so this isn’t about me or what I can or cannot do. It’s about making it more accessible to more people. Of course the creator can do what he wants, but that doesn’t mean people cannot request it to have some sort of easy mode so they can enjoy it more. If he isn’t open to any changes then fine, but that will never quell people asking because it’s a damn game and nothing else. Also it doesn’t mean they are weak, bad, or anything else your smug comment seems to be saying. Get off your horse and live real life and maybe try to talk to real people sometime, it might help with your understanding of what’s real and what’s not. And don’t ever assume to know anything about someone else just because of a video game.
@Shredderlovespizza I've lived and worked in 7 different countres & by the end of this year it will be 8, I likely know a lot more about reality & talking to real people than you do, consider I've had to adapt to 6 different cultures so far, & complete changes of lifestyles not to mention the overwhelming difficulty of moving across the world, making new friends, finding new work etc... Try moving country one time, without having a job waiting for you or a place to live, or knowing anyone & then tell me all about life... & Then do it a whole bunch more.
Whether it's a game or not makes no ***** difference. The simple psychological truth is that how you approach difficulty is the same & often similar under all circumstances. Just because something's a game, doesn't mean you don't approach problems in the same way.
The fact that you would look for an easy mode, absolutely legitimises the idea that you would avoid difficulty & only look for the comfort zone easy things in other areas of your life too ..
& I'm going to call it right now, you've never beaten a souls game in your life, or any difficult game for that matter, AND if by a miracle you have its because you 100% used soul duping exploits, or flat out got carried through every zone by 2-3 co-op players. Don't try to ***** & lie on here because you don't have to prove it, the very fact you were calling for an easy mode, plus the response you have exposes they you've never beaten a single one of these games by yourself, & we all know it
Piss off back to Call of Duty where the game can aim for you & you can go believe you're a "skilled human being" at something. Ignored
@WildFireX I’m not sure why you care this much but I have nothing to prove to you. I started with Souls 2 then played 3, Bloodborne, and recently beat Demon Souls about 5 times, all without help or exploits. Again, I’m not asking for this pal. But I think they should consider it as I know people that would 100% play if they had an easy mode. Id love to play with them if that happened too. Gatekeeping with difficulty is just dumb and limits your audience, period. I truthfully don’t care and you’re responses are a big reason why I sometime don’t even comment as I end up having to argue with children and I’m not doing this. Don’t bother replying, I’ll ignore it and never see your response. Grow up.
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