If Project Beast is Demon’s Souls 2, here’s what must happen

By Dave Cook, Friday, 30 May 2014 11:25 GMT

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Demon’s Souls 2 rumours are firing out of the internet like a volley of Heavy Soul Arrows following the leak of Project Beast gameplay clips. Resident Souls addict Dave Cook has some suggestions on what needs to be done if it’s going to keep the series fresh.


So yeah, the leaked Project Beast video is essentially a series of gameplay GIFs cobbled together with old Souls music laced over the top, but man does it look impressive. I really hope it is the rumoured Demon’s Souls PS4 sequel we’ve heard of, but then again, it could be Dark Souls 2 DLC.

Either way, the Dark Souls series has proven popular and with enough lifetime sales under its belt to warrant a sequel, you can bet good money that someone at From Software has already considered what will come next. That’s just how this industry works. It’s a numbers game.

Regular readers will know that I’m a Souls obsessive, and if you missed my six-part Dark Souls 2 review journal, you really should check it out. Seriously, go leave me a comment so we can geek out over stats and all that amazing shit. Based on that, you can guess how hyped today’s Project Beast leak made me. Actual back-flips.

So if Project Beast really is Demon’s Souls 2, here’s what this lowly, yet long-time series fan would like to see happen:


Make it harder

This is a no-brainer, considering the Souls games are known for their difficulty, but I felt Dark Souls 2 was by far the easiest game in the series with a seriously pitiful final boss. But then again – and I’ve thought on this long and hard – maybe it felt easier because I put so much time into Demon’s and Dark Souls? I knew the rules, I understood that in many cases Poise and stamina are more valuable that raw health.

When I think back of all the bosses I felled in Dark Souls 2 by simply keeping my block up then strafing around their slow attacks, I actually yearned for something as punishing as Ornstein and Smough. The sequel didn’t have an encounter comparable to their difficulty spike, and I killed many bosses on the first try. It shouldn’t have been that easy.

I just hope that Project Beast ups the challenge, because more difficulty equals greater gratification. By the end of Dark Souls 2 I just felt a bit, ‘meh,’ and this is a serious fan talking. That’s not to say the game wasn’t brilliant, because it still excels as a standalone title, but comparing it to its baby brother is like guessing who’d win a fight out of Gywn and Barney the Dinosaur.


Stop pandering to the rushed audience

Around this time last year, Namco and From Software were dealing with the fallout after calling Dark Souls 2 “accessible,” which understandably got a lot of die-hard fans upset. I’ll admit it; I was worried too. What that meant in the final game was less space between bonfires, boss fog gates in rapid succession, a simpler boss soul weapon system, lots of vendors in Majula and everything placed deliberately for ease of access.

I didn’t like that. So what if a few people didn’t like the chore of running for ages, fighting lots of enemies and then taking on a boss with whatever health they had left. The sense of achievement that came from doing that then felling a boss like Queelag was more tangible and gratifying than almost anything I experienced in Dark Souls 2.

Both Demon’s and the original Dark Souls made you work for their prizes, giving you a slight rush of empowerment and satisfaction before beating you down again with its cleated boots. I’m not a fan of making games easier or more accessible for those who don’t have time to level up, grind or learn the intricacies. That’s where the Souls beauty lies, and Project Beast needs to retain that.

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