Dark Souls 2 PC mod adds downsampling and texture modding

Durante returns with a bag of new tricks.

The industrious modder who fixed the PC version of Dark Souls has returned to give the new PC version of Dark Souls 2, released today in Europe, a kick up the technical backside. (Edit: that should say that it's out on Steam today and in shops on 2nd May.)

Dark Souls 2 on PC is a much better port than its predecessor, as Digital Foundry has been discovering this week and will report on shortly, but Durante, the maker of DSfix, still wanted more. Writing in PC Gamer, he introduces GeDoSaTo for Dark Souls 2, which adds downsampling, the facility for future texture modification, more configurable in-game effects and post-processing options.

Downsampling involves rendering the game at a much higher resolution and then having your PC GPU rescale the image before presenting it to your monitor, which is desirable because it gives games a much cleaner image with less aliasing.

The most promising thing about GeDoSaTo, though, is that it stands for "Generic DownSampling Tool". Durante is perhaps best-known for DSfix, but his tinkering extends beyond the borders of From Software's masterpiece and, as he explained on his blog recently, the vision for GeDoSaTo is that it will downsample any game.

"GeDoSaTo works by telling everyone who asks (generally, games and their configuration programs) that a given, configurable, arbitrary resolution is supported, and once that resolution is selected, it will actually use a different resolution in hardware, while pretending to use the other resolution to the software client," he wrote. "The final image is then downsampled (in a very high quality fashion) before being displayed on the screen."

This alpha version of GeDoSaTo is mostly aimed at Dark Souls 2 for now, then ("Downsampling and texture modification should also work in many other DirectX 9 games, but no guarantees for that"), but it will grow in scope.

In the meantime, GeDoSaTo for Dark Souls 2 allows players to introduce things like less buggy ambient occlusion (the way enclosed areas are darkened based on their exposure to ambient lighting) and will also brighten the days (or rather blur the backgrounds of the days) of people who worship at the altar of Bokeh depth-of-field. What's more, it's all configurable in text files, so if you don't share Durante's preferences, you can define your own with a bit of tinkering.

There's more to come from GeDoSaTo for Dark Souls 2, of course, and users need to be careful installing and using it (there's already a warning that the Steam overlay breaks things if not disabled), but if you've been waiting for the PC version before heading into the dreamy world of Drangleic, this is definitely one to bookmark.

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