In an interview in the December issue of Edge Magazine, one of the new directors for Dark Souls II says that the sequel will be more "understandable". In Edge's comments section, initial reaction to that word has not been kind.
Here's one commenter:
Ugh. No, we do not want to see Dark Souls become The Elder Scrolls. Having new directors who want to bring "direct, not subtle" to Dark Souls is already worrisome enough (and I hope Miyazaki has the power to rein them in if they get too stupid), but adding journalism like this to the situation is just nauseating. It's quite possibly inevitable that Dark Souls sequels are going to become diluted un-FromSoft AAA shitgame fare as the series gains popularity, as is the way of all video games once great, but I am disgusted with Edge's sycophantic propping up of bad ideas right now. If you're looking, From/Bamco: keep Dark Souls obscure!!
And another concerned fan:
For a series like the Souls games, such an uttering is tantamount to blasphemy. These titles are renown for being ridiculously tough games to beat and that bare-knuckle difficulty has won it a hardcore fanbase. You die a lot. Other players invade your games to either help or hurt your quest. Players need to suck down a lot of pain to snatch victory. And those acolytes don't want anything about their sacred journeys to change. Edge says:
An eternal battle rages at the heart of Dark Souls II. On one side stands the stern force of challenge, the very soul of the Souls series. It has inspired thousands of fans to hack their way through two of the most demanding and rewarding games of an era, fans who expect at least the same test on the next go around. On the other side is the bright promise of accessibility. And why not? Why shouldn't FromSoftware and Namco Bandai open Souls up to a wider audience when it could otherwise be in danger of becoming stuck in a cult cul-de-sac?
Entire systems, such as Dark Souls' covenants and Demon's Souls' World Tendency, remain mysteries to even reasonably experienced players — wouldn't it be a service to the games to help everyone understand them better? On the other hand, isn't the very nature of the Souls series about obfuscation and what it makes you work for?
Despite the fan reaction, the possibility of changes in Dark Souls II could be a useful thought exercise for even the most hardcore fans of the series. Something in Dark Souls II will likely be different from Demon's Souls and Dark Souls. If change has to come, what aspect of the Souls franchise do you think could benefit from a re-think?