Dark Souls is known for its punishing difficulty, but you don’t hear too much about its story. A new animated storybook on YouTube covers the game’s journey of the Chosen Undead with some cool illustrations and a simple explanation of the lore.
Back in a 2011 interview, Hidetaka Miyazaki spoke about the games story, its connection to the idea of death, and the reflection of this story in the game’s design.
“The game focuses a lot on death, but what is death? What does it look like? What does death mean in this world? What does it mean to live and to die? That is something we discussed very closely,” he said.”
“The story is about a fire in the world, a symbol of both living and death'” he continued. “The fire is what brought death to Dark Souls’ world, but also the only hope for life. Demons, chaos, dragons, all of them are different incarnations and representations of our idea of death in Dark Souls.”
“Dragons, for instance, emerged as a concept somewhere between a living and a dead thing – neither one nor the other. At the same time, though, I wanted to create something beautiful, with this idea of death at heart. But again, people have a lot of different definitions of what beautiful means. We had deep discussion about what beautiful should mean for Dark Souls.”
FromSoftware’s upcoming game, Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice, approaches death in a different way, giving players the opportunity to jump back to life as if nothing happened. But Miyazaki claims that this doesn’t make the same easier. In fact, he says the game will be harder.
“We think the level of enjoyment is going to really vary and be very broad from player to player,” he said. “If you are that player who likes to take their time and carefully piece things together and learn the enemies’ weaknesses and positioning, and observe everything, you’re going to have a great time.”
“It’s that sense of discovery as you explore the three-dimensional maps–you’re going to find something, maybe a new prosthetic tool that makes you think, ‘Hey, why don’t I use this against that enemy?’” he continued. “When that clicks and when it works, that’s going to be the sense of satisfaction for that player.”
Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice is set for release in 2019.