On the Demon’s Souls topic, I just have to say that Bluepoint has become one of the most disappointing and disrespectful studios (aside from devs that make wildly inappropriate/sexist/racist/etc games) in my eyes.
I can’t put into words how much I despise the Shadow of the Colossus remake, and now this Demon’s Souls remake looks even worse. Neither of them really capture the essence or vibe of the originals, because of course those art styles and gameplay choices are “outdated.” It was bad enough with SotC, but in this DeS trailer they seem to be going for maximum hype, the once understated OST has been AMPLIFIED to get the blood pumping, the practical and utilitarian design of Boletaria is now excessively ornate and overly lush, the color-grading has almost entirely been removed or reworked to be more realistic or hype.
And yet this is supposed to be Demon’s Souls, it’s supposed to be the same game, it’s supposed to “capture the spirit” of DeS, it’s supposed to allow those who haven’t played DeS to now “relive the classic, BUT BETTER!” It’s the excact same issue I had with SotC remake, it’s just so sad that gamers and critics alike buy into this ridiculous narrative.
THIS IS NOT DEMON’S SOULS, this is not the same game that Fromsoft made in 2009, this isn’t even a port. You might be wondering, why is that a problem? If it’s mostly the same fundamental gameplay (even though I’m sure most are clamoring for gameplay “updates”) and the remade graphics mostly capture the same/similar vibe, then isn’t it all just as well the same as playing DeS on PS3?
NO, it’s absolutely not the same. There are clear graphical/art direction changes already, and as I said, I’m sure they’ll “update” some gameplay systems, or have minor touch-ups to the existing framework. That’s not okay, that’s not preservation, that’s not Demon’s Souls. It is, just like SotC remake before it, this weird middle ground of being Bluepoint’s game while also trying to be “as faithful to the source material as possible.”
And most importantly, the true reason that isn’t Demon’s Souls, the reason I find the notion of these sort of remake so disrespectful, is because the game players will consume in 2021 will be made by an entirely different group of people. What I mean to say is, when you play Demon’s Souls on the PS3, or emulate the PS3 rom, you’re playing the game that the artists and designers at Fromsoft envisioned, warts and all. You’re experiencing their art, their creative vision, you’re in direct communication with the original creators through that game. However, when you play DeS remake, you’re not experiencing the work of the original creators or their vision, you’re experiencing a game made by american that’s trying to be “a better version” of another game they didn’t originally create.
The thing that frustrates me the most is people saying “ah, I never played Demon’s Souls on PS3, but now with this remake I’ll be able to.” Like I said, you’re not playing Demon’s Souls, you’re not in direct communication with the original creator, you’re not experiencing their original vision. You’re playing a knock-off remake that’s trying to be a more hype version of what artists already created, you’re playing a deception. And yet so many pretend that they’re playing Demon’s Souls now, as if they now know what it means to have played it.
I should clarify, I’m not mad at the casual players that don’t consider this sort of stuff. I’m mad at the Capital “G” Gamers and games critics for not seeing an issue with this sort of remake. I’m not sure I’d call it erasure of history per se, but it’s adjacent, and this discussion is important to the fuller understanding and respect for the medium.