From Software's Hidetaka Miyazaki, the mastermind behind the likes of Dark Souls, Bloodborne, and the upcoming Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice, has shared his thoughts on the (oft-requested) possibility of a Demon's Souls remaster.
Demon's Souls is, of course, the 2009 PS3 game that first introduced the world to Miyazaki's mesmerising, and hugely influential, action-adventure template. We're rapidly approaching its tenth anniversary on February 5th this year, and that (alongside the fact that its official servers are no longer online), would seem to make 2019 the perfect time to give Demon's Souls the respectful remaster or remake treatment. As Digital Foundry's Tom Morgan argued last year.
But does its creator agree? Somewhat disappointingly, Miyazaki has now revealed to Game Informer that, even though the decision to create a Demon's Souls remaster would ultimately lie with IP holder Sony, it's not a project that he'd personally be interested in working on.
Sony owns the IP - which opens up some mouthwatering possibilities.
Developed exclusively for PlayStation 3, Demon's Souls is arguably the most overlooked game in the Souls series. It was a revelation in 2009 and also something of a mystery as players took their first uncertain steps into Boletaria. From the gothic palace front to its dragon-besieged bridges, every area was built to create a unique sense of dread. The game's status as being playable on just one console has only added to the game's allure over the years. With Dark Souls getting imminent remaster treatment, Demon's Souls will soon be the only Souls game that isn't playable on PS4. And with online servers having shut down earlier this year - almost a decade on from release - the appeal of a modern-day remaster is undeniable.
Last month, From Software's Demon's Souls suffered the cruellest death of all, its servers going offline nine years after the game's initial release. No longer could players invade each other, or help wayward newcomers best one of the kingdom of Boletaria's famous roadblocks. But while everyone else was readying their chisels to etch their epitaph onto the remains of the game, one dedicated fan was putting the finishing touches on their own attempt at a revival.
Two things happened this week that made me think about beautiful stuff vanishing from the world, and about the strange notion that there might be a kind a melancholic pleasure to be had - if melancholic pleasures can be had - in the spaces created by fresh absence. I'm not ghoulishly thinking of death or anything as serious as that. More the weird kind of beauty you sometimes get when you look at a wall of framed pictures and notice the ghostly parchment patches where something else once hung and now hangs no longer. Ghoulishly, ghostly. We are not off to a great start here.
From Software's seminal action RPG Demon's Souls will, after nearly nine years of unremittingly bleak multiplayer adventuring, see its wonderfully idiosyncratic online services discontinued on February 28th, 2018.
From Software might have already made games that inspired the Souls series, but history wasn't adding up to much when Demon's Souls was first in development (around 2006). Internally, it was considered a failure.
Jeffrey revisits Boletaria and finds much has changed.
Souls. Souls have changed. As a colossal fan of From Software's Souls series, I found myself pining for more demon slaughter even after finishing the latest Dark Souls 2 downloadable content. Yet Dark Souls 2 itself was still too recent in my mind, while the first one I replayed a couple of years back when its Artorias of the Abyss DLC came out. So I decided that it was time to revisit the game that started it all: 2009's Demon's Souls.
Demon's Souls was never about winning, but learning how to fail. I'd spent most of the latter half of the noughties clocking up more game completions than the previous 25 years put together, and few of them really lingered in the memory that long. By 2009, it seemed like most games were almost designed to play themselves. Most of them were all mouth and no trousers, and it was making me lose interest. I do love my trousers.
Mad Dog McCree! Revengeance and Dead Space 3 demos! Dust 514 beta!
This week's PSN update is lead by Ron Gilbert's platforming adventure The Cave for £9.99 / €12.99, along with my favourite game from the last few years, Demon's Souls at £15.99 / €19.99.
Elsewhere, FMV western classic Mad Dog McCree has surfaced for £6.49 / €7.99, along with top-down action game Zombie Driver HD (£7.99 / €9.99), Mix Superstar (£7.99 / €9.99), Split/Second Velocity Ultimate Edition, (£19.99 / €24.99), and Doodle God (£4.79 / €5.99).
On the demo front, such highly anticipated games as Metal Gear Rising: Revengeance and Dead Space 3 have released trials ahead of their release dates next month, and the beta for the upcoming FPS MMO Dust 514 is out as well.
It's Wednesday, so it's time for our weekly roundup of cut-price games. This week's comprehensive selection includes a classic from yesteryear, a hidden gem that you might have missed at its lowest price yet, a cheap pre-order and a couple of new releases nicely discounted. If you want more cheap games pumped into your web browser around the clock, get yourself over to SavyGamer.co.uk, the home of cheap gaming in the UK.
Hard games are enjoying a revival right now. But while Demon's Souls may be notorious for offering a gruelling RPG experience, the most punitive titles are often to be found within the platform genre. And it's indie developers who seem keenest to add liberal dollops of pain to your gaming pleasure.
PS3 action RPG Demon's Souls was infamous for - and defined by - being bastard hard. Bravely, developer From Software has decided to make PS3 and Xbox 360 successor Dark Souls (formerly codenamed Project Dark) even harder.
If you're one of the many who imported the North American release of the From's modern classic Demon's Souls, you'll be happy to know that Atlus is guaranteeing that servers will stay switched on until at least March 2011.
Director Hidetaka Miyazaki discusses the origins and ideology behind From Software's masterpiece.
Since we reviewed it in March last year, Demon's Souls has gone from potential cult hit to wildly acclaimed classic, earning itself a US and, soon, European release, several Game of the Year accolades and thousands more enthusiastic disciples. It is one of the greatest unlikely success stories of modern gaming, and proof of the power of community in the internet age.
Update: Namco Bandai has told VG247 that it will make a formal announcement on the European release of Demon's Souls tomorrow. Which is almost a formal announcement in itself, to be honest. It's happening!
The old Japanese adage 'The nail that sticks up will be hammered down' could be the design brief for Demon's Souls. You are the nail. You must be hammered down repeatedly, without mercy, with extreme prejudice, forever. The end.
Editor's note: Demon's Souls is finally released in Europe this week. Here we present our original import review of the game from last year, which to the best of our knowledge is still completely accurate with respect to the European version.
From Software is a strange and fascinating developer. Mention the name and Armoured Core is what usually springs to mind, or occasionally Otogi, but when it's not making mech games From's output encompasses a vast range of extremes - cutesy co-op platformer Cookies and Cream, Tenchu, card-battler Lost Kingdoms, horror adventure Echo Night, broken, miserablist cult series King's Field. And this, the most interesting PlayStation 3 exclusive I've ever played.
Demon's Souls is a brutal, bleak action combat RPG that pits your lone character against a universe full of violent demons. They range from former human soldiers to agile, double scimitar-wielding skeletons, pouncing flame-creatures, octopus-headed guards, embryonic plague-carrying monstrosities, even Death himself. The game's five worlds - all massive - are split into four different sections, each guarded by a horribly large and hardcore boss monster. Everything in the entire world is designed to kill you, quickly and often without warning.
PS3 action role-playing game Demon's Souls debuts at two in Japan this week, helping Sony's flagship console go from strength to strength in the region.
Developed by From Software (Armored Core, Enchanted Arms), Demon's Souls adopts a medieval fantasy style and follows an armoured fighter around various dingy dungeons full of baddies whose souls appear to be absorbed on death. Presumably that's got something to do with the name.
The real-time combat is quite similar to Oblivion, with thrusts and blocks and timing playing roles. We're investigating European details now.