The Return of Talking Time

Go Back   The Return of Talking Time > Talking about media > Talking about television games

Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
  #1  
Old 08-26-2016, 10:07 AM
dosboot's Avatar
dosboot dosboot is offline
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2007
Posts: 4,373
Lightbulb It's like a Dark Souls thread except about progenitors, impact, and influences

Worth it's own thread: Dark Souls and its impact on gaming and/or comparisons with other games. The topic isn't super precise since we're starting as a spinoff from some tangential Zelda thread discussion. (i.e. if you want to post something Dark Souls related that fits here but is unrelated to the previous replies, go right ahead.)

random reply to the Zelda thread:

Quote:
Originally Posted by Adrenaline View Post
I don't think Dark Souls is actually that hugely influential yet, at least on a AAA level. Not many obvious imitators, and "hard games" is a bit simple since it's a trend in general.
I agree, and I think this is an interesting observation. There's been Lords of the Fallen and at least a few indie games like Salt and Sanctuary. There are tons more indie games if you are willing to expand this to "laterally inspired by Dark Souls". But in AAA there seems to be very few games that could even be laterally inspired. Yet a lot of developers do seem to have something to say about Dark Souls in comments or interviews.

Blame AAA for being stupid I guess? Or do they think they can't pull it off? Do they think Dark Souls isn't successful enough? (or more to the point: not successful enough for an imitator to carve out a market?) Do they just firmly believe that key elements like difficulty or hands-off guidance are no-bueno? (Whether this is just the "AAA being stupid" explanation again is left to the reader)


random reply 2 to the Zelda thread:

Quote:
Originally Posted by Issun View Post
Dark Souls was basically Miyazaki putting Zelda 2 in 3D and polishing off the rough edges.
Quote:
Originally Posted by ASandoval View Post
Nah, I agree with this. I mean, I don't know if Zelda 2 was a deliberate inspiration, but the focus on exploration, punishing death with a loss of experience and the way combat has a feeling of ebb and flow all feel very Zelda 2. At the very least, I get much more of a Zelda vibe than I do Castlevania (though I do get why people make that comparison).
I'd like to encourage more discussion here, especially from those who do find the similarities between Zelda 2 and Dark Souls to be striking. I've been thinking about it and I invariably come up feeling like the comparisons are somewhat unremarkable (which is why I'd like to learn more about how others see it). To me, the most important potential connection that Dark Souls would probably have with an NES/SNES-style game would be where each screen doesn't respawn enemies every time you enter.

Thread Rule (?): let's try not to derail too deeply when the "gripe about Dark Souls comparisons" come up.

Last edited by dosboot; 08-26-2016 at 10:32 AM.
Reply With Quote
  #2  
Old 08-26-2016, 10:12 AM
will's Avatar
will will is online now
>TRANCE
 
Join Date: May 2012
Pronouns: They / Them
Posts: 2,343
Default

Having not played Zelda 2, I still have a strong impression that Dark Souls feels like an alternate-universe Zelda where the 3d games evolved more directly from Zelda 1 rather than LttP. Maybe this is just because it's a slow, deliberate game of exploration and sword-fighting against strange monsters, but maybe that's close enough?
Reply With Quote
  #3  
Old 08-26-2016, 10:22 AM
TE-Ryan's Avatar
TE-Ryan TE-Ryan is offline
Not 100% a dick
 
Join Date: Dec 2010
Location: Winterpeg
Posts: 4,774
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by dosboot View Post
There's been Lords of Shadow
Are you thinking Lords of the Fallen?

Because Lords of Shadow came out before Dark Souls. Also it's nothing like Dark Souls.
Reply With Quote
  #4  
Old 08-26-2016, 10:26 AM
Solitayre's Avatar
Solitayre Solitayre is offline
Not much of a donkey
 
Join Date: Mar 2011
Location: Michigan
Pronouns: He/Him
Posts: 9,099
Default

So Dark Souls is like the Dark Souls of Dark Souls?
Reply With Quote
  #5  
Old 08-26-2016, 10:28 AM
dosboot's Avatar
dosboot dosboot is offline
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2007
Posts: 4,373
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by TE-Ryan View Post
Are you thinking Lords of the Fallen?

Because Lords of Shadow came out before Dark Souls. Also it's nothing like Dark Souls.
Yes, that's right. Edited my goof.
Reply With Quote
  #6  
Old 08-26-2016, 10:55 AM
Regulus's Avatar
Regulus Regulus is offline
Boom
 
Join Date: Aug 2010
Location: United States
Posts: 5,480
Default

Wasn't Watchdogs' multiplayer system inspired by Souls? I haven't played it, so I can't comment. That's considered AAA, right? I'm fairly sure a lot of asynchronous multiplayer features these days were inspired by Souls as well. As I recall, they were mentioned specifically as inspiration for the PS4's social features.
Reply With Quote
  #7  
Old 08-26-2016, 11:06 AM
Issun's Avatar
Issun Issun is offline
Mega Man 4 Superfan
 
Join Date: Aug 2007
Location: Sad Lesbian Capital of the World
Posts: 16,620
Default

I think the caveat that it hasn't been as influental in AAA games isn't quite fair. The indie scene counts too, and off the top of my head both Shovel Knight and Ori and the Blind Forest are fairly successful indie games that owe a lot to Dark Souls. Heck, the Soulsborne games almost feel like indie games in a AAA skin.

As for a more in-depth Zelda 2 comparison, I'll have to do that when I have more time.
Reply With Quote
  #8  
Old 08-26-2016, 11:33 AM
conchobhar's Avatar
conchobhar conchobhar is offline
[kɾoˈxuːɾ]
 
Join Date: Oct 2014
Location: Snowy climes of Canada
Pronouns: He/Him
Posts: 3,011
Default

I don't mean to diss the thread, but I find "Dark Souls is a modern version of Castlevania/Zelda/Metroid/Faxanadu/Mega Man/any old game" discussions both tired and tiring. It's such a simplistic and reductive comparison.

Dark Souls is clearly the culmination of all the things rattling around in Miyazaki's brain: boiling the games of his youth, Dungeons & Dragons, various works of fantasy and historical fiction down to what he specifically took from themm then mixing them into something distinct and unique. Trying to pin Dark Souls to this particular thing not only misses why the game works, but is so broad as to be a meaningless comparison. "Like Dark Souls" is no more useful than "like Shovel Knight" or perhaps "like Star Wars".

Rather than looking at Dark Souls as a modern take on whatever, it would be more worthwhile to look at Dark Souls as its own thing. I think it's earned it.
Reply With Quote
  #9  
Old 08-26-2016, 11:38 AM
narcodis's Avatar
narcodis narcodis is offline
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2011
Location: Salt Lake City UT
Posts: 4,241
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by conchobhar View Post
I don't mean to diss the thread, but I find "Dark Souls is a modern version of Castlevania/Zelda/Metroid/Faxanadu/Mega Man/any old game" discussions both tired and tiring. It's such a simplistic and reductive comparison.
Yeah, but is it the Dark Souls of reductive comparisons?
Reply With Quote
  #10  
Old 08-26-2016, 11:51 AM
Falselogic's Avatar
Falselogic Falselogic is online now
Threadcromantosaurus Rex
 
Join Date: Aug 2007
Location: Falselogic Sucks
Pronouns: they/they
Posts: 32,812
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by conchobhar View Post
I don't mean to diss the thread, but I find "Dark Souls is a modern version of Castlevania/Zelda/Metroid/Faxanadu/Mega Man/any old game" discussions both tired and tiring. It's such a simplistic and reductive comparison.
Then dont read the thread! It's so simple!
Reply With Quote
  #11  
Old 08-26-2016, 11:54 AM
Bongo's Avatar
Bongo Bongo is offline
oh my car
 
Join Date: Nov 2008
Location: Colorado Land
Pronouns: he/him
Posts: 21,697
Default

Dark Souls 3 is the Dark Souls of Dark Souls
Reply With Quote
  #12  
Old 08-26-2016, 11:57 AM
conchobhar's Avatar
conchobhar conchobhar is offline
[kɾoˈxuːɾ]
 
Join Date: Oct 2014
Location: Snowy climes of Canada
Pronouns: He/Him
Posts: 3,011
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Falselogic View Post
Then dont read the thread! It's so simple!
I have things to say about it! In fact, I expanded on my thoughts right after that sentence!
Reply With Quote
  #13  
Old 08-26-2016, 12:03 PM
Adrenaline's Avatar
Adrenaline Adrenaline is offline
Mr. Jackpots
 
Join Date: Aug 2007
Location: Upstate New York
Pronouns: he/him
Posts: 19,624
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Issun View Post
I think the caveat that it hasn't been as influental in AAA games isn't quite fair. The indie scene counts too, and off the top of my head both Shovel Knight and Ori and the Blind Forest are fairly successful indie games that owe a lot to Dark Souls. Heck, the Soulsborne games almost feel like indie games in a AAA skin.
I'm not seeing a big connection there. One game lets you destroy checkpoints to gain treasure but make dying a bigger risk, the other lets you spend a resource to make your own checkpoints. Both interesting systems, but neither really resemble how Souls works. Of course influence on the indie scene is relevant, but I was specifically speaking to games that are actually in the same realm of budget as Souls.
Reply With Quote
  #14  
Old 08-26-2016, 12:09 PM
conchobhar's Avatar
conchobhar conchobhar is offline
[kɾoˈxuːɾ]
 
Join Date: Oct 2014
Location: Snowy climes of Canada
Pronouns: He/Him
Posts: 3,011
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Adrenaline View Post
I'm not seeing a big connection there. One game lets you destroy checkpoints to gain treasure but make dying a bigger risk, the other lets you spend a resource to make your own checkpoints. Both interesting systems, but neither really resemble how Souls works. Of course influence on the indie scene is relevant, but I was specifically speaking to games that are actually in the same realm of budget as Souls.
Yacht Club did specifically cite Dark Souls as an influence, but I agree it's a very tenuous connection since that influence is apparently just "tough boss fights and you can't get a game over."
Reply With Quote
  #15  
Old 08-26-2016, 12:22 PM
Regulus's Avatar
Regulus Regulus is offline
Boom
 
Join Date: Aug 2010
Location: United States
Posts: 5,480
Default

Also the "bloodstain" mechanic.
Reply With Quote
  #16  
Old 08-26-2016, 12:28 PM
Adrenaline's Avatar
Adrenaline Adrenaline is offline
Mr. Jackpots
 
Join Date: Aug 2007
Location: Upstate New York
Pronouns: he/him
Posts: 19,624
Default

If you mean cash left behind when you die, that's true. I'm not saying influence isn't there, but sometimes it seems overstated.
Reply With Quote
  #17  
Old 08-26-2016, 12:43 PM
Issun's Avatar
Issun Issun is offline
Mega Man 4 Superfan
 
Join Date: Aug 2007
Location: Sad Lesbian Capital of the World
Posts: 16,620
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Adrenaline View Post
I'm not seeing a big connection there. One game lets you destroy checkpoints to gain treasure but make dying a bigger risk, the other lets you spend a resource to make your own checkpoints. Both interesting systems, but neither really resemble how Souls works. Of course influence on the indie scene is relevant, but I was specifically speaking to games that are actually in the same realm of budget as Souls.
Generally "influential" doesn't just target games like Salt & Sanctuary that borrow wholesale, but the pervasiveness of little gameplay and/or aesthitics finding their way into other games. Shovel Knight and Ori both took the mechanic of dying as a part of making you better at the game (rather than wringing quarters/game length out of a short game) and put their own twist on it.

Looking for influences and comparing is valid both as thought exercise and cluing you in on how much you might like something.
Reply With Quote
  #18  
Old 08-26-2016, 12:43 PM
Bongo's Avatar
Bongo Bongo is offline
oh my car
 
Join Date: Nov 2008
Location: Colorado Land
Pronouns: he/him
Posts: 21,697
Default

It combines several factors: 1) using an opportunity to mitigate loss to 2) dynamically create a new goal 3) of the form "do better than last time."
Reply With Quote
  #19  
Old 08-26-2016, 12:59 PM
Adrenaline's Avatar
Adrenaline Adrenaline is offline
Mr. Jackpots
 
Join Date: Aug 2007
Location: Upstate New York
Pronouns: he/him
Posts: 19,624
Default

See, I think giving Dark Souls credit for giving the player the goal of "do better than last time" is outlandish.
Reply With Quote
  #20  
Old 08-26-2016, 01:23 PM
Bongo's Avatar
Bongo Bongo is offline
oh my car
 
Join Date: Nov 2008
Location: Colorado Land
Pronouns: he/him
Posts: 21,697
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Adrenaline View Post
See, I think giving Dark Souls credit for giving the player the goal of "do better than last time" is outlandish.
Game design is in the particular structure of incentives. "Do better than last time" is not game design at all.

Making an actual mechanic out of the concept of matching the immediately preceding attempt - not breaking an old record, just specifically the one single prior go - is game design. Hooking a reward and punishment structure into this measurement of progress is more game design. Making the measurement organic and implicit is more still. Do you know of any antecedents for that combination?

Last edited by Bongo; 08-26-2016 at 01:34 PM.
Reply With Quote
  #21  
Old 08-26-2016, 03:09 PM
dosboot's Avatar
dosboot dosboot is offline
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2007
Posts: 4,373
Default

I'd be interested in finding those antecedents too. To me, the antecedent of Dark Soul's bloodstain was always the MMO-type mechanics that require you to loot your corpse each time you die. In those cases it is your inventory that is at risk though and not your EXP.

Did MMOs ever really do that actually? I remember it being basically a staple feature of MUDs. Doesn't Diablo do something like that as well?

I'm also curious if we can find earlier games that handle respawning enemies in an interesting way like Dark Souls: A game where enemies don't respawn most of the time, but some vital mechanic like a checkpoint/savepoint that you want to make use of will cause them to respawn.
Reply With Quote
  #22  
Old 08-26-2016, 03:11 PM
narcodis's Avatar
narcodis narcodis is offline
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2011
Location: Salt Lake City UT
Posts: 4,241
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by dosboot View Post
I'd be interested in finding those antecedents oo. To me, the antecedent of Dark Soul's bloodstain was always the MMO-type mechanics that require you to loot your corpse each time you die. In those cases it is your inventory that is at risk though and not your EXP.

Did MMOs ever really do that actually? I remember it being basically a staple feature of MUDs. Doesn't Diablo do something like that as well?

I'm also curious if we can find earlier games that handle respawning enemies in an interesting way like Dark Souls: A game where enemies don't respawn most of the time, but some vital mechanic like a checkpoint/savepoint that you want to make use of will cause them to respawn.
It was more of a thing in pre-WoW MMOs... games like Everquest and Ultima Online are all that I can think of off the top of my head. Dark Age of Camelot might have...
Didn't diablo 2 as well? Or was that just gold?
Reply With Quote
  #23  
Old 08-26-2016, 03:17 PM
Falselogic's Avatar
Falselogic Falselogic is online now
Threadcromantosaurus Rex
 
Join Date: Aug 2007
Location: Falselogic Sucks
Pronouns: they/they
Posts: 32,812
Default

Diablo 1, 2, and 3(?) did this. If you die you have to run to your body in order to reclaim all your equipped gear.
Reply With Quote
  #24  
Old 08-26-2016, 04:09 PM
Paul le Fou's Avatar
Paul le Fou Paul le Fou is offline
We just don't know.
 
Join Date: Sep 2007
Location: Seattle
Posts: 19,602
Default

Not Diablo 3. You become a ghost when you die and can resurrect at your body or in town with all your gear. No corpse runs at all except maybe as a ghost, I forget??? But you can't lose anything by dying I think. D1 and 2 did as well. Everquest, I'm pretty sure, was the last big online game to do that.

And yeah, that led into Dark Souls' bloodstain mechanic, which worked because Souls were basically everything, your experience and your currency, but it also never gave you the permanent setback of Losing Everything. You could get punished by losing quite a lot of accumulated souls if you were careless or unlucky (and lord knows we all were at one time or another), but never actually harmed in a lasting way.

For what it's worth, when I played Shovel Knight I immediately recognized the DS bloodstain in the dropped money mechanic, but I'd have to say it's basically the only thing SK took from DS. It fit really well in SK too! Although having a cap to money you could spend made dying late game less of a punishment. But that's also a good thing because some of the late-game platforming is... grumble mutter mumble... ANYWAY
Reply With Quote
  #25  
Old 08-26-2016, 04:15 PM
Bongo's Avatar
Bongo Bongo is offline
oh my car
 
Join Date: Nov 2008
Location: Colorado Land
Pronouns: he/him
Posts: 21,697
Default

Though in the cases of MMO corpse runs, the corpse would disappear based on real time, so you could fuck up the return trip as many times as you want as long as you fucked them up fast. The greater persistence and volatility of the world state also contributes to a different overall effect. But that's a good observation.
Reply With Quote
  #26  
Old 08-26-2016, 05:00 PM
dosboot's Avatar
dosboot dosboot is offline
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2007
Posts: 4,373
Default

Imagine playing a MMO (or MUD) where the established etiquette is that you don't loot someone else's corpse (robbing them blind of everything), but where this isn't actually enforced by the programming.

And people complain Dark Souls has trolls/griefers :P

In retrospect, the 90s had a much more optimistic outlook about online behavior, I tell you what.
Reply With Quote
  #27  
Old 08-26-2016, 05:04 PM
Voncaster's Avatar
Voncaster Voncaster is offline
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Dec 2008
Location: Floating down here
Posts: 1,997
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Bongo Bill View Post
Game design is in the particular structure of incentives. "Do better than last time" is not game design at all.

Making an actual mechanic out of the concept of matching the immediately preceding attempt - not breaking an old record, just specifically the one single prior go - is game design. Hooking a reward and punishment structure into this measurement of progress is more game design. Making the measurement organic and implicit is more still. Do you know of any antecedents for that combination?
Dark Souls seems like it ripped off the game design of From Software's Demon's Souls.

Kidding aside, the one thing the souls series has me wanting to do is check out From's earlier work. Kings Field and Echo Night. At least watch a few Let's Plays. I don't know if I could go back and play those old games myself. But I am somewhat interested in the genesis of the Souls series. From what I gather off the HG101 podcast, aspects of the Souls series were established with King's Field.

I think Dark Souls biggest influence, with Spelunky, is spreading the popularity of the rogue lite. I don't see Rogue Legacy taking off with out Dark Souls. Steam has a ton of rogue lite games. I don't see this design trend taking place without some heavy hitters (commercially and critically successful games to point the way).
Reply With Quote
  #28  
Old 08-26-2016, 05:21 PM
dosboot's Avatar
dosboot dosboot is offline
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2007
Posts: 4,373
Default

Yeah, I want to play From's early RPGs too sometime. Kayin recently wrote some mini reviews of From Soft's RPGs on PS1 and PS2: one, two. The second link has a handy summary at the bottom of which ones to play if you just want to skip the bad ones.

(Kayin, come back to TT!)
Reply With Quote
  #29  
Old 08-26-2016, 11:02 PM
LancerECNM's Avatar
LancerECNM LancerECNM is offline
I am a Gundam!
 
Join Date: Apr 2011
Location: Space Virginia
Posts: 8,896
Default

The VERY first King's Field is pretty playable by modern standards if you're willing to whip out some graph paper, and it has translation patches available these days. I love King's Field 2, but man. They expanded the scope and scale of the world significantly, took away transitions between floors of the world, and then handed the world's shittiest map in a video game. AND THEY MAKE YOU PAY SOME UNGODLY SUM OF MONEY TO GET THAT MAP IN THE FIRST PLACE. It is not a good experience for a new player.

Shadow Tower is pretty good, if you have maps, but like. Dark Souls is for casual babies compared to Shadow Tower. Shadow Tower's on a whole other level that has constantly degrading everything and limited resources in existence, and no reliable method of doing anything.
Reply With Quote
  #30  
Old 08-27-2016, 12:52 AM
MetManMas's Avatar
MetManMas MetManMas is online now
Come, noble knights!
 
Join Date: Jun 2007
Location: Kissimmee, FL
Pronouns: He/Him/His
Posts: 21,230
Default

When I first started playing Dark Souls, certain aspects of it reminded me of the Monster Hunter games. The stamina bar, different weapons having a different feel to them, enemies in general coming off as a little more intelligent and/or aggressive than your standard kill fodder, armor choice mattering for reasons besides base defense stats, minimalism as far as cutscenes go, etc.
Reply With Quote
Reply

Tags
dark souls , from software

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump


All times are GMT -7. The time now is 12:01 PM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.7
Copyright ©2000 - 2018, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
Your posts İyou, 2007