Cinematic trailers are a mixed blessing. On the positive side, pre-rendered CGI footage allows for some beautiful, dramatic, high-definition teasers that are a perfect recipe for hype – from the eventful jogging session of the Dead Island 2 announcement trailer to the ominous tone of the Uncharted 4: A Thief’s End reveal.
One major problem with cinematic trailers, however, is that they often show no actual footage from the game that they are advertising. It’s often difficult to get any idea of what the gameplay will be like, or even of what the story will be about. Such was the case with the trailer for Bloodborne: a grim, bloody, monster-hunting game set in the Victorian era, being developed exclusively for the PS4 by Dark Souls and Demon’s Souls developer From Software.
The director of the aforementioned games, Hidetaka Miyazaki, was interviewed by Japanese magazine Weekly Famitsu (translation courtesy of Kotaku) and offered some details regarding the combat and enemies that players will encounter in the game. The mysterious character in the trailer was shown using a huge, vicious-looking, serrated blade weapon as well as a heavy-barrelled gun, and Miyazaki explained that this is From Software’s way of moving forward from the fantasy combat in the Souls games.
“We were already thinking of a shift to a combat system where you would enter battle more actively than the sword and shield-based combat of Demon’s. So we adopted the idea of guns, but there was a prerequisite that we didn’t want the game to turn into a shooting game, and the Victorian age fit perfectly. It’s an era where the imagery of old guns still remains.”
Demon’s Souls and Dark Souls are notorious for the toughness of their enemies, with players frequently having to die over and over again in order to learn the correct strategy to use against them. So, does the addition of extra player firepower in Bloodborne mean that combat will be much easier? Not according to Miyazaki.
“The enemies are strong and fierce, and if you wait passively to respond, you’re going to be eaten and killed. So, in order to get out of a fix, you need to actively advance. When I say ‘active’ you might think that it means the player characters are stronger and the enemies are weaker than in Demon’s Souls, but that’s not the case.”
The player combat of Bloodborne is designed to be so aggressive, in fact, that Miyazaki says that the option for defense is much less important than other aspects of fighting. Players will also still need to get cozy with enemies even when using guns, since they will work much better at close range than they will at long range. Think shotguns, not sniper rifles.
As for the enemies themselves, the cinematic trailer showed some zombie peasants, some nasty undead dogs and an enormous looming creature that we didn’t get a good look at. Miyazaki said that From Software’s goal is to mix things up when it comes to the different enemies in Bloodborne, and teased some creative creature designs.
“I don’t think there will be any dragons. However, since just fighting humanoid enemies will get boring, there are other creatures. There are some creatures that not only fit the game’s atmosphere, but are very much something our team would come up with, so please look forward to them.”
When asked about the projected release date for Bloodborne, Miyazaki said that development is “going smoothly” and that the projected release date is spring 2015, though he couldn’t get more specific than that. We certainly look forward to seeing some gameplay footage from this visceral monster-slaying game.
Bloodborne is coming exclusively to PS4 in spring 2015.