Elden Ring wouldn't be the same without Dark Souls 2, says FromSoftware head Miyazaki

Dark Souls 2
(Image credit: FromSoftware)

Elden Ring's director believes Dark Souls 2 ultimately helped the overall series, partly because it had different directors.

Speaking to IGN in a new interview, Elden Ring director and FromSoftware studio head Hidetaka Miyazaki looked back on Dark Souls 2. Opinions vary wildly on Dark Souls 2, depending on who you ask - some call it the worst Dark Souls game to date, while others praise it as the black sheep of the franchise, with its open-ended gameplay and player-driven exploration.

"In regards to Dark Souls 2, I actually personally think this was a really great project for us, and I think without it, we wouldn’t have had a lot of the connections and a lot of the ideas that went forward and carried the rest of the series," Miyazaki said. The director also agreed with IGN's belief that Dark Souls 2 is the Dark Souls game that bears the closest resemblance to Elden Ring.

Dark Souls 2 is also the only time Miyazaki hasn't personally directed a game in the 'SoulsBorne' series. That honor went to Tomohiro Shibuya and Yui Tanimura, who co-directed the game while Miyazaki took on a more supervisory role. Tanimura would go on to co-direct Elden Ring and help make Armored Core 6: Fires of Rubicon, while Shibuya departed FromSoftware to head up the Earth Defense Force series. 

Miyazaki believes Dark Souls 2 having different directors ultimately helped the game. "We were able to have that different impetus and have those different ideas and make those different connections that we otherwise might not have had. There’s really no way of telling how or if the series would have continued the way it did without Dark Souls 2," the Elden Ring director said.

"I think it’s very likely that we’ll see new directors going forward. And I think if we do that, I’d like to step away from that supervisory role and give them full direction and full control over those projects. I think really this is the best way and the easiest way for them to flourish within that environment and with those new projects," Miyazaki also added.

Considering Armored Core 6 was directed by Masaru Yamamura, who actually took over development from Miyazaki very early on, it seems like the FromSoftware studio head is gradually becoming more comfortable with letting others take the reins. It probably helps that Yamamura previously worked alongside Miyazaki as Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice's lead gameplay developer.

Elden Ring: Shadow of the Erdtree brings a new map called the Land of Shadow, and it might well be bigger than the substantial map of Limgrave from the base game.

Hirun Cryer

Hirun Cryer is a freelance reporter and writer with Gamesradar+ based out of U.K. After earning a degree in American History specializing in journalism, cinema, literature, and history, he stepped into the games writing world, with a focus on shooters, indie games, and RPGs, and has since been the recipient of the MCV 30 Under 30 award for 2021. In his spare time he freelances with other outlets around the industry, practices Japanese, and enjoys contemporary manga and anime.