Hidetaka Miyazaki’s RPGs are well known for their online features. Starting with Demon’s Souls and then with Dark Souls, he and his teams created new ways to see other players as enemies or allies. The upcoming PS4 exclusive Bloodborne will have its suite of online features as well, and Miyazaki-san gave us some hints on his plans in an interview on 4Gamer.
We have the new online features, even though I am still unable to say anything concrete at this time. A key component is “the free sharing of the exploration” among the players themselves, but past that I must unfortunately ask that everyone wait just a little longer before I can reveal any further information.
Yet, Miyazaki-san didn’t stop there, and continued by saying that, like with Demon’s Souls, the team has already put a lot of thought on what kind of online features we’ll see in the game:
I am. Specifically, I have spoken with trusted members on my team, and it is something we really enjoy talking about. We shoot various ideas back and forth, though in the beginning these conversations could easily become quite conceptual or abstract. While we gathered substantially more ideas than if one person were to do it themselves, it also made my idea awfully hard to understand (laughs).
Interestingly enough, Miyazaki-san also admitted that he doesn’t have much knowledge at all in the field of online design, which is surprising, considering the great ideas included in his previous games. He even mentioned that he has some bitter memories of the times in which he and his team had to draw up the concept for the online features of Demon’s Souls.
He then continued by explaining that he has a bit of a background in social science from his college days, and that might have influenced him:
I touched on social science in graduate school, but it was a time when the internet had just become a global phenomenon. Even looking back now it was quite the interesting time, and it has given me quite a bit to think about. In college I was an avid gamer and not very studious, and didn’t major in anything worth noting, but I still think it may have somehow had an impact on me.
Finally, Miyazaki-san explained his vision on the impact of online features on games:
I think network features are very interesting for a game. They greatly expand the title’s gameplay experience and value. It may sound like a bold statement, to be sure, but I feel so fortunate to be making games at a time like this.
While Miyazaki-san never said it explicitly, it definitely sounds like we can expect much deeper and more extensive online gameplay in Bloodborne than in his previous games. Time will tell, but hopefully we’ll hear something more precise about it soon.
[Translation by Tim Roy]