Dark Souls 2 apparently isn’t coming to next-gen consoles, but From Software has said it designed the sequel’s engine with the PlayStation 4 and Xbox One in mind.
Speaking to IGN, From Software programmer Takasuke Ando said tech developed for Dark Souls 2 is From Software’s first tentative steps towards new hardware.
“We always had in mind the next generation, such as DirectX11 and next generation hardware when creating our technology, and also challenged ourselves as programmers to simultaneously create for the new generation,” Ando said.
“The thing we prioritized when re-creating our engine was, as a concept, taking the graphics to a more photo-realistic look, and in order to fulfil this, we had decided to discard our old engine and create a new one.”
The new engine takes advantage of deferred rendering and physical-based rendering, resulting in more flexibility in asset creation and better lighting.
Colleague Yoshitaka Suzuki said that the new engine also utilises Morpheme, a runtime animation engine by NaturalMotion, and Havok Cloth, both for the first time.
“Both Morpheme and Havok Cloth are middleware that can be used in the next generation, and by implementing these now, they function on PS3 and Xbox 360, we wanted to implement now to be prepared and have a strong understanding,” Suzuki said.
Dark Souls 2 hits PC, PS3 and Xbox 360 in early March. These comments probably mean From Software is preparing for new titles on next-gen rather than a port. From Software has said it hasn’t even thought about a next-gen port – not that this has stopped the speculation, given the original’s late debut on PC.