Transforming Skyrim into Dark Souls

Transforming Skyrim into Dark Souls

what makes a game, “Souls like?” is this souls like? Or this? Well how about this? Wait! Ive got it! What about this?! Okay ! Alright! i get it! Not even a little
bit ay… Sheesh.. But wait. What if i said there was a way to
make this innocent little sweetroll of a game into the hardest, most brutal Souls like experience
since Ecco the Dolphin? Well, as with the spirit of game change, where
theirs a will, theirs a way. The term “souls like” has been thrown about
so much over the past couple of years that the sub-genre has become so muddled with any
game that poses even an inch of difficulty that it’s kind of lost its meaning. But what made a game “souls like” to begin
with? Was it a linear open world with difficult bosses guarding each stage? Or was it the
classic lock-on dodge roll backstab combat we came to know and love? To crack this code
we need to take it back to my first Souls experience and the place where it all began
, Dark Souls 1 On the 22nd of September 2011, From Software
released their first critically acclaimed Dark Souls title. The game threw you into
a brutal hallowed land with little to no explanation of where you were supposed to go, who you
were supposed to talk to and generally, how the f*ck to play the game. Less than 2 months later, Bethesda Game Studios
released their highly anticipated 5th Elder Scrolls instalment set in the cold Nordic
land of Skyrim. And while both games we’re placed in a similar thematic genre they couldn’t
be further apart in terms of tone, level design and game play. And full disclosure, Skyrim is one of my most
played games of all time, heck, i built my bloody computer just to play the darn thing.
But while ive continuously found new ways to play the same game for the past 9 years…
No game has quite compared in terms of the feeling of accomplishment i experienced after
beating dark souls for the first time. I remember literally jumping off my chair
with glee after killing Gwyn for the first time and tears welling in my eyes as that
infamous end credit soundtrack marked the end of my month long journey trying to beat
the game. Yes, All that over a video game… granted i was about 13 at the time, but back
then nothing had quite tested my patience and will power like dark souls did. The amount
of times i launched that xbox 360 controller at the wall fighting Orenstein and Smough
swearing that id never play the game again only to find myself just “giving it one more
shot” the next day is just a testament to how empowering and addictive that feeling
of beating a boss you’ve spent every night for a week trying to beat was. So is extreme difficulty the thing that makes
a game ‘souls like’? Yes, …and well.. no. You see, some games can be extremely unnecessarily
difficult and its often the case that you feel its designers made it hard just for the
sake of it. The thing that made dark souls feel so special to beat is the fact that not
everyone could do it. Game Designer Jesse Schell calls this “The Sword in the stone
effect” , Everybody wants to be able to pull it out, no one can, but they try anyway. And
that notoriety goes a long way. How many times have you seen an article that reads “Player
beats dark souls without taking a single hit” ? Or more recently “Guy beats dark souls 3
using only a banana” ? these kind of feats are the video game equivalent of pitching
the perfect game in baseball. Dark Souls creator Hidetaka Miyazaki once
said he “wants to keep both the possibility of accomplishment along with the difficulty
itself.” Miyazaki wants to ensure the game is difficult, but accomplishable and enjoyable. Meanwhile, Paul Schrater, a psychologist in
the University of Minnesota, has a different theory – and enjoyment has nothing to do with
it. He say our brains are designed to be very complex constraint-satisfaction machines.
We’re goal seeking, and having a goal means defining a constraint on an outcome. Satisfying
that constraint can involve a whole path toward the goal that can be un-enjoyable, like climbing
a mountain to reach food or safety. Achieving the goal involves releasing the goal, which
is satisfying although is a peculiar kind of nonhedonic satisfaction. To Schrater, a person playing Dark Souls for
the first time is not motivated by the pleasure associated with competence. Instead, it has
more to do with autonomy: the mere act of setting and releasing constraints in a specific
behavioural context is inherently motivating. So how can this possibly be applied to a game
where ,admittedly, killing an enemy comes down how fast you can mash RT? Well, much
like the previous episode on turning Fallout 4 into a horror game, which you can check
out after this video if you haven’t already, we need to drastically alter the way we play
Skyrim, while also making the game look as close to Dark Souls grim and sombre tone as
possible. We’ll begin once again by altering the games atmosphere. I try in this segment
to offer a good balance of graphical mods that bring the tone that we’re trying to create
while at the same time mixing in mods that purely serve to make the game look as good
as possible. So without further a due , take a look at the difference: I’ll leave each one of the mods used in this
video in the description below with any specific instructions if required. For this, I’m using
the Ominous ENB, Obsidian weathers and an additional 33 other visual mods to give Skyrim
a look inspired by the dark souls series. But while graphics are important for the overall
tone, the gameplay is really what will create that ‘Souls like’ experience we’re striving
for. Unfortunately, as much as we can change almost every aspect of Skyrim’s gameplay
to match dark souls, we can’t change the level design. The world is already created,
the quests already set. But what we can do, is offer a new way to navigate this world
and a new way to face its many enemies. To achieve this, we dont just have to change
the way our character fights, but also the way the enemies fight. See this bandit? On the vanilla combat system
enemies are programmed to find the shortest possible route to the player and if not interrupted,
continuously attack until the player is killed. While ranged enemies will obviously stay at
range, their mindset is relatively the same, “repeat attack until player is dead”. Yikes, unlucky there fella! Now lets give this criminal scum a bit more
of a challenge. In Skyrim the combat choices really only depend
on the weapon class you choose to wield, sword, bow, spells etc, but even then its basically
just a matter of mashing RT with the occasional shield bash to stagger an enemy if they’re
particularly strong. So whats so different about dark souls combat?
Well, while its not a particularly advanced system as far as combat is concerned, it does
offer a limited rule set that each enemy and boss is confined within. There is no attack
you cant dodge if timed correctly and no enemy you cant kill if given enough skill. Although
fighting the nameless king at level 1 with a broken sword hilt will take a long time,
it is possible. Where as killing Alduin at level 1 with nothing but an iron dagger, isnt
really an option without exploits or glitches. Each attack in Dark Souls is a part of a move
set, and each enemy and weapons move set can be learned and overcome, unlike a game like
skyrim where you cant really avoid taking damage if someone is just duel casting flames
at your face, you kind of just have to hope you have enough cheese wheels to stay alive. So changing the way enemies attack and limiting
them to move sets is the answer? Well yes, partly. In Skyrim, you can never predict exactly
what an enemy is going to do. Their AI is designed that way. They don’t have a pre-defined
set of movements and attacks in the same way that dark souls enemies do. So what mods exactly could even change this?
Well a couple to be honest, Im using Ultimate Combat and Wildcat which both alter enemy
combat AI and also change the way you the player fights as well. Take a look at how
the same bandit approaches combat now: And now, with the addition of some animation
mods along with TK Dodge, lock on, Mortal Enemies, and critical hit backstab and parry,
lets see how we fare against our criminal scum friend this time : Pretty close right? But we’re not done there.
Throw a plethora of mods in that alter the heads up display like skyhud, souls quick
menu, floating damage and health bars and now we’ve finally turned Skyrim into the
closest thing to a dark souls experience possible. And yes, all of this can be played using a
controller mapped to the exact controls that you would expect playing dark souls or bloodborne.
I’ll leave the details for that mod in the description as well if you’re interested. Okay, I know I said I was done. But there’s
one last thing that I mentioned at the start of this video that makes for a big part of
the dark souls experience. And that’s level design. Remember when I said that we couldn’t
change Skyrim’s level design? Well, while that is true, we can offer an alternative
instead. Introducing, Darkend. Darkend is a new world filled with new enemies
and a whole new story. There is no in game quest, no hand holding and is clearly heavily
inspired by the Dark Souls games. In Darkend you travel to the new island of Pharos and
explore its many detailed environments. Fight your way through each new area learning small
hints along the way of what dark force overthrew the island and its people. This mod has bosses
with unique arena’s, new weapons, armours, enemies and most of all, fantastic level design
that mimics that which you would find in dark souls. With the visual mods, gameplay, sounds, Animation
and HUD mods this is the closest thing to a dark Souls Experience in Skyrim you could
possibly get. And yes there’s quite a bit of depth to some of these mods, yes it’s
a bit complex, and yes it would take you less time to just download and play dark souls
for yourself…. But let’s be honest… its more fun this way

4 thoughts on “Transforming Skyrim into Dark Souls

  1. If you enjoyed this video, be sure to leave a like, and comment below any ideas you have for future game change episodes, if i choose one of your ideas , I’ll be sure to credit you at the start of the episode. Also tell me what you like and dislike about these style videos, im trying to improve the structure as i go along so feel free to hit me with your comments.

  2. just found your channel through reddit, actually amazed with the quality for the level of subs. cant wait to see more, and to see you blow up!

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