‘Elden Ring’ director claims expansiveness to the game’s dungeons due to verticality

Elden Ring Summer Game Fest 2021 presentation snapshot

Elden Ring director Hidetaka Miyazaki suggests of a bigger dungeon than any of the studio’s previous projects for its vertical element.

For the first time ever, audiences have managed to take a glimpse at FromSoftware’s latest project, thanks to its E3 presentation. It gave waiting fans an idea of how it would look like, particularly from the gameplay standpoint. Much of what was shown would already be familiar to existing Souls fans. But the game more than tries to be just another rendition in the genre than what it seems from the outset.

Direct Interview

Speaking at an interview with Famitsu, following the game’s trailer appearance, Miyazaki gave information about the developing title. All of which coming directly as answers to the interview questions. Although the interaction was originally in Japanese, Redditor theangryfurlong made a translation of said interview for the international audiences.

One of the most interesting aspects of the discourse is in the magnitude of the game’s dungeon. Particularly, in how the creative director frames it, relative to the company’s previous undertakings. Simply put, Miyazaki is claiming that his current project as being comparatively bigger because of its vertical element. Meaning, the ability to traverse high places in-game, somewhat akin to Monster Hunter Rise, Sekiro, or Breath of the Wild.

In retrospect, the ability to climb or jump to high places is indeed something alien to the Dark Souls series. Instead, it is known more for its linear gameplay as set in a world within a sandbox. The franchise, after all, has a heavy emphasis on action and narratives rather than the ability to explore a strange world. Although the latter is still possible, especially to the curious mind.

Fall Damage

As Elden Ring puts major importance on its verticality, one implication to this choice is to mitigate the impact of falling. Whereas in FromSoftware’s other previous titles, a fall from height would imply serious repercussions, the game will not be as punishing. This is a good consideration that could possibly offset any frustration that would accompany the idea of going high places in-game.

However, being from the same creative people that set a genre, Elden Ring shares the same DNA as its older siblings. This means that certain elements are expectedly the same, but may be better as the latest game improves upon the existing. While this is not a guarantee that it will be greater overall, it does, however, set a very interesting premise.

Image used courtesy of BANDAI NAMCO Entertainment Europe/YouTube Screenshot

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