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The Dark Souls and Elden ring reminded me that bigger is not better

The Dark Souls and Elden ring reminded me that bigger is not better
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September 12 2022, 15:29


Dark Souls is a journey that creeps in with the power of Tarkovsky Stalker – it draws attention to the great and the less resonant. From those realities – the first Souls game reminded me of how great choices work in small games.




I have to confess something to you. Although I am very fascinated by this game and it is simply beautiful, I don’t know if I will ever play it Elden Rinja. Over the past few days, I’ve watched the boss grab a roommate, including Malinia and the Elden monster. I loved everything about this game, and when I took the board for a while, it felt like a fairy tale with a great fighting feel and speed. However, the scale of FromSoftware’s latest work is far from me – And no, not by strange quests (Miyazaki, you genius bastard, learn to do comprehensible chain quests!). Plus, I get the impression that in such a massive game, all the choices you make are a little overwhelmed by this great space, even if the plot says otherwise. It’s a bit like our life decisions – almost insignificant on a global scale.


What’s Next Evil spiritsI am playing at the moment. Despite the fact that it lacks the conveniences of Miyazaki’s later products, it does provide me with more convenience, and the transverse nonlinear feature looks better here. This is perhaps one of those instances where size matters. But not as you think – In a smaller game, if it is well designed, it is better to feel the importance of the decisions made. It is easier to understand its consequences.

Curse of the open world

Open worlds have captured the minds of designers. It is easier to create the illusion of a living universe with them, to convince that a large game rich in content is being created, to show freedom to the player. Of course, it’s also easier to smother him for such long hours of production, so that he can pick up some collectibles while solving main and side quests. Two, three, maybe seventeen.



Bigger is not better, Dark Souls and Elden Ring reminded me of that - Illustration #1


Ironically, the open worlds have to be sturdier so they don’t fall apart and the designers and the rest of the studio don’t turn gray before the premiere. in Witcher 3 if Skyrim In most cases, we will visit the same locations and will be able to access a large part (if not all) of the rooms from the same “pool”, no matter what we choose. Maybe the order will change sometimes. Our choices determine which of the invented pawns we will meet on these wonderful “chessboards” and what will happen to these pieces. But the world, apart from individual scenes and things, does not change, does not change, and still remains there.

Of course, choices in open worlds matter too, they engage emotionally, make us cry, and even force us to think about the state of our reality (hell, Cyberpunk 2077 movie He was great in that knot when the match clearly showed that we have a really tough decision ahead.) However, they don’t build that beautiful, totally incorrect sense of significance that we can even move mountains here. These are games for the “maximum”, because we’ve bought an open world and want to see all doors open to fully explore it. Small games are easier in this regard.

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Micro . strength

In smaller and more compact games, it is easier to create completely different ramifications. A long time ago, they were flirting with these solutions Gothic And the Gothic 2But also carefully. The choice of faction strongly determined the location to which we would be bound the most, in what order we would visit the world, what tasks we would solve and at what pace, it gave access to other mysteries. A bit like guilds with Morrowind and later Sheikh manuscriptswhich is only the mandatory and most important option in the game.

Two compact games have taken a step forward – tyranny And the The Witcher 2. Of course, there will be quite a few examples, but the productions of Obsidian and “Reds” remained especially in my memory. The middle part of The Witcher trilogy is so impressive that depending on our decisions – a third, if not half, of the game looks completely different. (Ignore the various small selections). Depending on whether we followed Roche or Iorweth, we got a completely different experience, with the maps set in a different perspective and context. We got completely different sets of missions, a different story background, and a view of the same events.

An interesting treatment, which was supposed to sound obvious. z elections Witcher 3 It could have had more imaginative power, but it had not had such a great influence on the perception of the world and events as what we encountered in The Witcher 2. We are talking about a game that has reached the size of a postage stamp compared to its successor. You have to go through both of these situations a few times to be able to talk about the full experience, but in “the two” it’s more difficult – and easier to achieve. Is it king killers better game than Wild Hunt with additives? no. But it is worth keeping this part of the course in mind as a very interesting design approach.



Bigger is not better, Dark Souls and Elden Ring reminded me of that - Illustration #2


with isometric tyranny It is similarly. Obsidian made a game that expands more in width than length. And so it provides 20-30 hours of gameplay (if we look under each stone), but two or three times less than pillars of eternity Or the competitive RPG at Larian Studios, not to mention the brutal cast of the classics Baldur Gate 2. tyranny It puts quality over quantity (not that this RPG lacks it).


With the right elections, we encounter different groups, the political situation, travel through other locations, learn secrets and other political aspects. Thanks to the smaller area in which the event occurs, it is densely packed with the variables we influence. And even if sooner or later many of these choices hurt us—we feel everyone matters. We will also know why we bite.

Either way, we’re dealing with stories that are highly juvenile, but downright cliched. Sometimes intimate. And this intimacy looks better than it does in “monsters” of size The elderly scrolls. Elections, too – because they often resonate throughout the available space. Is it in line with reality where what we do is, with exceptions, of moderate importance to the general public? no. Creates a nice illusion. But that’s what we get for for fantasy RPGs (be it post-apo, cyberpunk, or something else) – to immerse ourselves in this illusion and experience something different from our ordinary, if not simple, life. We’re supposed to be important. This significance is easier to establish in a small space. With the right sense and balance on the part of the creators, this patting on the player’s back doesn’t really get him out of the rhythm of the game.

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What does Miyazaki say?

Finally back to souls. Hidetaka Miyazaki speaks to the player in a slightly different language than “Redzi”, Obsidian, BioWare, Larian, and Eidos (choose what works for you). It defeats us, and it sets puzzles, often without solutions. And so in every subsequent game, though time has passed – be it in Sekiroor in elden ringLike the narrator, it becomes more open and transparent. However, even in his new works, the tasks require abstract thinking and out of the ordinary.



Bigger is not better, Dark Souls and Elden Ring reminded me of that - Illustration #3


What is happening in the world and what has happened before, and the importance of the role we play in all of this, we have to find out for ourselves. Make up incomplete clues, descriptions of items, weird word games for characters, or half-mouth letters that are perfectly understandable to NPCs – but only to them. It is worth noting at this point that most of Miyazaki’s works except elden ringIt was actually small. Universe soulsAnd the blood borne if Sekiro They connected the sites quite well, but they were small lands, rather representations of the world presented than they might appear in reality. (Although it created the illusion of spaciousness thanks to its massive architecture.) In these specially crafted facts, including an aquarium with tracks specially crafted for the player, it was easier to find the elements of the story puzzle than to painstakingly collect them while wandering around a huge and open map.

Evil spirits It didn’t hit me like the “three” I called first. Compared with the Sekiro It’s absolutely an outing. However, some effort has to be put into this game. W exploration, discover the secrets of the history of this world. You must first find the individual pieces of this puzzle – NPCs, items, and environmental and visual hints. On the one hand, due to the fact that we are growing up a lot, the sites seem huge at first. On the other hand – when we review it with more certainty, it turns out to be a few corridors, rooms and courtyards, but cleverly arranged. Thanks to this, they do not overwhelm us when we are looking for fragments of this mosaic.

And each of these puzzles is required in the final. During the game we make some decisions – whether when the game tells us something directly or with some less obvious interaction. Each one has weight to the characters and the world, for this a specific and silent reenactment of the hero as he traverses the rotting, rotting Drangleic kingdom. But it’s the latter that really matters. For the characters and their world. It influences our perception of the myths created by Miyazaki. The curse of the living dead, which we have been struggling with since the beginning, and which we were supposed to find a cure for. In understanding fire and souls, humanity and darkness. Sure, if you’re going through challenges and tough bosses, it doesn’t matter. But if you love to live this mystery from Uncle Hidetaka – you know how I feel.

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Bigger is not better, Dark Souls and Elden Ring reminded me of that - Illustration #4


And honestly? If the game, for example, is twice as big and you expect me to run and run and run after these snippets of info, maybe thank you. And he was content with playing what he saw from the sofa, hum Duel of Fate In fierce battles (the v . room is used elden ring With a dual weapon, so his character moves like Darth Maul – I can’t help myself).

a little souls They give me enough space to believe in the illusion of exploring the world, but they don’t really let me get lost and lost. Every corner or lane is a reference point, and I won’t get lost, even though there is no map. And thanks to the fact that I look in every corner and savagely beat walls (for perhaps a hidden passage awaits me), I will approach Lord Gwen’s severance of respiration with a full set of information about this world – and if necessary, I will support myself with the material of a YouTuber who has made souls investigations insightful for years. Anyway – I will know exactly what decision I make in the end and why.

Given the efforts that went into collecting this information – you will feel very satisfied. And I love to end up feeling the emotional consequences. Much larger than cool sandboxes, as the weight of the whole is distributed over a very large area. and in Evil spirits… in Evil spirits It will be really important.

from the author

I will not become a scavenger of the soul. I won’t even go. I test out these games at my own pace, love to empathize with them, and at the same time get my dose of adrenaline and dopamine when I mess with bosses. souls Miyazaki is a drug that works in many areas to not give absolute joy in moments of triumph. And since I got so deeply into it, I can’t be alone, I’m taking you with me. Hence this text.

want to talk to me about SolsachTell me a secret from this world that I had no idea about? Please visit me fan pageAnd the Twitter or Instagram.












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