Dark Souls: Prepare To Stutter

By John Walker on June 7th, 2012 at 10:30 am.

So what’s happening with Dark Souls: Prepare To Die? After a spirited campaign convinced From Software and Namco Bandai to port the game across to PC, we’ve heard some troubling stories about how they aren’t going to be optimising it too much for the madness of a mouse and keyboard, and for some insane reason are choosing to cripple it with GFWL, and now Eurogamer are reporting that they’re having trouble getting the port to run smoothly. Concerning, but hey, they’re putting a ton of effort into this it seems.

I’m about as ignorant about porting as I am about hairdressing, but it’s my understanding that porting from 360 is a cinch. It seems the PS3 isn’t nearly as simple, as From have explained to EG.

“To be completely honest, we’re having a tough time doing it due to our lack of experience and knowledge in terms of porting to PC. First we thought it would be a breeze, but it’s turned out not to be the case. We’re still developing right now – we’re crunching right now.”

It seems the console version also suffered with some framerate issues, and despite the extra power on offer from a PC version, that’s not going to get addressed either.

“In terms of the PC version, the quick answer is no, [we won't be fixing the frame rate problems]. Because we wanted to get the PC version out as soon as possible, it’s more strictly a port from the console version. We haven’t been able to step up into doing any specific optimisation for PC.”

This is balanced out, they say, by including a ton of new content – another ten hours or so – seamlessly entwined within the main game. And PC will be getting that a few months before it’s DLC for the consoles. That’s 31st August for us, Christmas for them.

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210 Comments »

  1. Njordsk says:

    What a shame.

    • John Connor says:

      Why even bother if you’re going to do such a shit job?

      • Ringwraith says:

        As their publisher is telling them to get it done as quickly as possible.

        • MordeaniisChaos says:

          Hardly an excuse, the team has shown total fucking ignorance of how to make a game engine throughout the Souls franchise. From the beginning, it’s been mediocre at best. The games aren’t even terribly pretty yet are plagued with issues with performance. On PC, these issues should go away. It’s nice their doing this, but there’s only so many apologies you can make for them. If the product is shit, the bottom line is all that matters. Hopefully they’ll iron out the kinks but until they do, I don’t see the point in acting like it’s all ok that they aren’t doing a quality port job. I mean, how quick can the turnaround be on this project if they are making meaningful new content? That content didn’t come out of no where, ya know?

      • Kelron says:

        Because people were loudly demanding it on the internet.

        • Unaco says:

          Fairly sure people weren’t demanding they rush it out and not make a decent port of it.

        • Hendar23 says:

          I think the opposite. Think about it: They had no plans to release on PC until the petition. The petition still represents only a small minority of PC gamers. In porting to PC they are taking a financial risk, and it makes sense for them to spend as little money on it as possible, at least until it proves profitable. So they give it to a inexperienced team and give them little time or resources because thats cheaper.

          Letting said team tell the whole world it’s going to be a shit port is something of a tactical error :)

          It’s very frustrating, but I’m still really surprised and impressed they took the risk and changed their plans for PC. Perhaps if it sells well they will spend some money on patching it?

          • SiHy_ says:

            If it sells well they’ll have to invest more money in it and face complaints that it’s not optimised; if it doesn’t sell well they’ll blame the platform and never release anything on PC again. It’s another wonderful lose/lose situation.

          • Jay says:

            It’s kind of refreshing they’re being so honest about it. Especially when there’s “PC ’til I die” developers out there flat-out lying to people’s faces, acting like everything’s fine then releasing games entirely broken. At least people know what they’re letting themselves in for I suppose.

          • InternetBatman says:

            I’m also glad they’re being honest about it. I think people were expecting a bit much from them anyways. Honestly, how many Japanese games have had good PC ports? Street Fighter? If there aren’t that many people used to programming for either the x-box or the PC, porting will be a huge challenge.

          • grundus says:

            I’m also glad they’re being honest. The way I see it, they’re probably thinking the audience for this will be relatively small anyway and those who demanded a port will pick it up anyway if the problems aren’t TOO bad, so they might as well be upfront about it. I kind of admire them for trying to appease demand for the port, actually, but I suppose they did say they thought it would be easy. It’ll work wonders for From’s goodwill, being honest like this. I like them more already (I already quite liked them because of Armoured Core, though), even though I’m not in the least bit interested in this game.

      • Shooop says:

        Because so many people demanded it, they figure they’ll just buy it no matter what.

        When considering the sales of the CoD games, BF3, and Diablo 3, they’re probably right.

      • bakaohki says:

        I love the xbox version, but the framerate is garbage (mostly because the textures are crap, with zillions of added shaders) – so the chance that I’ll be able to play this one on my oldish laptop is exactly zero.

    • RegisteredUser says:

      Reports like this should come with a postcardable address we can send fuck you notes to.

      • xavdeman says:

        Might as well address that postcard to yourself, if you’re one of those gamers who asked for, nay demanded this port be made. Another example of ‘be careful what you wish for’.

        • DK says:

          We were careful what we wished for. We wanted Dark Souls on PC. Having it actually playable and a working port is implicit.

          If you get a present at christmas and the parcel is stuffed with shit, you’re not gonne be placated by a “careful what you wish for” because you wanted a present for christmas and didn’t specify “no excrement stuffing please”.

          • stupid_mcgee says:

            WAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAA! We’re not getting preferential treatment! Our version will suffer from the same problems as the consoles! What don’t they understand about PC Elitism!?

            Seriously, people. They’re not giving a lesser game, it’s just that they’re not giving the PC version any special treatment. But, whatever. Back to throwing temper tantrums.

            If you get a present at christmas and the parcel is stuffed with shit, you’re not gonne be placated by a “careful what you wish for” because you wanted a present for christmas and didn’t specify “no excrement stuffing please”.

            No. That is a horrible analogy. A better one would be, “I asked for a bike for Christmas and instead of getting a Bianchi Sempre I got a Walmart mountain bike.”

            Similar to From Software, the hypothetical parents in my analogy aren’t going to throw tons of money simply at your request. You asked for a bike, and they got you a bike. Again, it may not be the top-of-the-line bike, but it’s on par with what the other neighborhood kids are playing with. But, still, that’s just not good enough for some, so instead they’ll throw a temper tantrum and proclaim that they’ll just return the bike for store credit and go over to the next neighborhood to steal one of their bikes instead.

          • Vorphalack says:

            Stupid_Mcgee, did you get lost on the way to the PC Gamer forums again? Be gone, foul retard.

          • Dominic White says:

            He’s right, though – if the game is just a straight port and still has all the problems of the console originals (but no additional issues), then it’s still the exact same Dark Souls that reviewers spooged all over last year. Better, even – it comes with the expansion for free.

            If you find yourself enraged over the possibility of merely getting the same game as everyone else, rather than a better version that only exists in your head, then you’re being particularly infantile.

          • Toberoth says:

            Vorpal, he does have a point.

          • Vorphalack says:

            Sarcasm, bad analogies and being the resident industry apologist qualify your post as having a valid point now? I don’t buy it.

            Also, wasn’t kidding about PC Gamer. You should read some of the trash this guy posts. Good for a lol on a slow news day, at least.

          • Toberoth says:

            There are more thought-provoking points in his post than yours, unless your aim was to provoke people into thinking “What an unpleasant fellow with nothing meaningful to add to the discussion,” in which case job done.

          • Consumatopia says:

            Like everyone else here, I have no idea whether Dark Souls on PC will be as good as on consoles.

            The important point, though, is that if it’s not as good as the console–if new problems are introduced–then that is not the fault of the people who signed the petition, and would they have no obligation to purchase it. If the port is inferior to the original, then there’s no “be careful what you wish for” about this whatsoever–just don’t buy it.

          • Dominic White says:

            @Consumatopia – Amen to that. If this port is broken, and the game somehow looks, runs, sounds or plays worse than the PS3/360 versions, then I’ll probably stick to the console versions and buy the DLC there. If it turns out that it looks, runs and plays better and has the DLC thrown in as a bonus? Well, there’s nothing to complain about, unless you’re one of those people who won’t be happy unless the game is entirely re-tooled as a PC-exclusive title.

          • Vorphalack says:

            Toberoth. His point vaguely aligns with your personal agenda so you are quite happy to back the childish soap box ravings of a known troll. Who is more foolish, the fool, or the fool who follows him……

          • noodlecake says:

            @Volphalack Because someone has the opposite opinion to you that makes them a troll? That makes nearly every response to this comment trolling apart from yours.

          • Toberoth says:

            @noodle, I don’t actually know what Vorpal’s opinion is on Dark Souls, because he doesn’t seem to have mentioned it, as far as I can tell. I do know what his opinion on some of the other commenters (myself included) is, however, as he’s been loud and clear on that.

            @Vorpal, I always thought my “personal agenda” was thinking about and discussing games in a level-headed and hopefully (sometimes) amusing/thought-provoking way. I’m not “backing” stupid_mcgee, but I do think he has a point about entitlement, even if the way he expresses it is slightly over the top. Where are your points or counterpoints in this debate? All I see is insults, and that’s really not the basis for an argument. It’s not credible to denounce someone as a troll if you can’t provide any convincing evidence that you yourself aren’t, in fact, the troll.

          • Vorphalack says:

            Hey noodle, care to tell me what my opinion was? I’ll wait……..whats that? You can’t find it? Perhaps that is because I never posted my opinion on Dark Souls, and will not until it they release it.

            I’m pointing out that a well known troll from PC Gamer is trash talking on our beloved RPS, and you guys are lining up to defend him. I can only presume this is because his mad rant lines up with whatever agenda you want to push, and no matter how juvenile he makes his comment sound you would rather back him than call him out. Yes Toberoth, i’m looking at you, I did read the rest of the comments…..

            Never thought I would see the day when a guy who starts his post with ”WAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAA!” is taken seriously…….

          • Pointless Puppies says:

            So you’re really just here to troll against stupid_mcgee? As boorish as he presented his viewpoint, he still presented a viewpoint. You’re the one providing nothing to the discussion crying about someone else “being a troll”. The only troll I see here is you, to be perfectly honest with you.

            And no, before you jump on that easy card, I’m not “defending” his viewpoint. I don’t even agree with it.

        • lordfrikk says:

          And fuck you, too. Because no one demanded for them to push it out of the door as an afterthought and before doing so even daresay to their would-be fans “DEAL WITH IT”. If it doesn’t sell they’ll blame piracy, too, or what?

          • PopeJamal says:

            So they’ve said that:
            -You can play it with an Xbox 360 Gamepad on the PC -> Just like the console version
            -It will still have framerate issues on the PC – > Just like the console version

            So exactly HOW are they giving us a worse product than the console version?

            Sure, they COULD improve the PC version, or they could follow their current plan: get the game running on the PC as quickly as possible. Nothing added (besides FREE DLC!) and nothing removed.

            I see absolutely nothing wrong with this.

          • Kuraudo says:

            A lot of people are defending this and I have no idea why. Honesty is good, but terrible console ports are not. There is no good reason for frame rate problems on pc no matter how you slice it – if I wanted to play the game *that* badly I would go out and buy it on console. Gamers demanded a pc version not because we didn’t have access to the game, but because we wanted to see an actual pc version being released.

            That means no terrible “xbox for windows live,” pathetic framerates, and mouse and keyboard controls among the other things involved in successful pc releases.

          • Jay says:

            One things about this piece though – the From Software guy never really said much about explicit framerate issues. All he said was that the PC version wasn’t getting any specific optimisations. There’s a lot of mention of framerate, but it’s mostly been paraphrased by EG themselves, who don’t seem to have actually had access to a playable build yet.

            All it seems to be really saying is that the PC port is going to have the same choke points the original version had, but with a decent system that should be irrelevant, surely?

          • Toberoth says:

            Jay, it seems that way to me too. A lot of this panic seems entirely unwarranted in light of how little we actually know about it.

          • discordance says:

            ps3 is an ancient piece of hardware, whatever framerate issues there are my pc will eat them for breakfast, and really I wouldn’t want to play on anything but an xbox controller.

            But GFWL is a terrible dead platform noone in their right mind would pick, potential deal breaker for me. Is their publisher in bed with MS or something, there were only 3 holdouts last time I checked.

  2. Maldomel says:

    So we’ll get a bad port, but with more content? Don’t know if it’s really worth it.

    • Prokroustis says:

      It’s not.

      • Torn says:

        Meh, I dunno.

        If it runs similar to the PS3 version (which only had framerate issues in Blighttown) with more content then I would consider buying it, as I really quite enjoyed the PS3 version. I imagine those with beefier PCs will likely also suffer less slowdown.

    • oceanclub says:

      “Two elderly women are at a Catskill mountain resort, and one of ‘em says, “Boy, the food at this place is really terrible.” The other one says, “Yeah, I know; and such small portions.”"

    • Toberoth says:

      It depends exactly how bad it is IMO. If it’s bad in the sense of being a worse experience on PC than on console (ie., crashing, glitches, etc.) then I probably won’t bother with it. If it’s “bad” in the sense of being the same as the console experience (30fps, controller required) then I don’t have a problem with it. I’m glad they’re bringing it to PC at all, and I appreciate the effort they’re putting in to trying to make it work.

    • smg77 says:

      Not if we have to suffer GFWL on top of the bad port.

      • zakihashi says:

        Where did the bad port part come in? Not a single time that have been mentioned, a port is a port, it’s not a remade game, if the console version had the issues, the PC version will have the same issues if it’s an engine problem that is on the consoles as well.
        And the reason GFWL is issued should be fairly obvious for any clear thinking soul? If an online system is already is used for the game, and known to work, which Live is for this title, it will work on this as well. You can’t expect them to create a whole new damn online system for the game.
        And tbh, there is no good alternative for an easy fix for it either, Steam is just as shitty as any other systems, and it force it self upon players, just like anything else. I got as little intrest in having Steam as I do with GFWL, Origin, and what not. But they all have been forced upon me because I have games I wanted to play.

        • discordance says:

          GFWL is garbage. Most companies now quite happily run xbox live on xbox and steam on pc, theres no excuse for GFWL unless your publisher is one of the last 3? holdouts everyone else dropped it. It hasn’t been updated in 3 or more years, everything about it is terrible, its DRM is worse, its GUI bloated and sluggish, its login prone to errors and only occuring after launch. Its patch certification process laborious and prohibitive. Steam has problems yes but its nowhere near the festering cesspool of GFWL badness.

    • ShineyBlueShoes says:

      But it’s ten more hours that will be choppy and likely bordering on unplayable!

  3. Phinor says:

    I was expecting this. Dark Souls PC was NOT in the cards in the first place and only due to fan demand they decided to create the PC version even though they have no PC expertise and PC games do not do well in Japan. As long as it’s a) at least as good as the console versions and b) I can use my X360 gamepad (because it was designed for gamepads) with it, I’m happy. That’s all you can realistically expect in this case, all things considered.

    • Malarious says:

      If they tossed in some large-eyed anime maidens and a boob-mousepad I’m sure they could corner the Japanese PC market.

      • Miltrivd says:

        Sterotypes are so funny! Even when Dark Souls already sold pretty well on Japan, it’s PC gaming that’s not big.

    • iteyoidar says:

      Someone tell From Software to send me the source code, I’ll port it for them.

    • Casimir's Blake says:

      From Software do have PC experience.

      But then NO-ONE seems to know or care about the fact that From Software came to Demon’s Souls and Dark Souls from a series of outstanding FIRST PERSON melee action RPGs: King’s Field.

      In 2000, From Software released a “King’s Field”-style RPG creation kit called “Sword of Moonlight”, for Windows PCs.

      • Buzko says:

        Footage of this masterpiece can be found here.

        Be sure to check out the amazing graphics and sound at around 7:30.

        • Casimir's Blake says:

          I would love to see you achieve something better.

          How many first person 3D RPG creators are there? This is the only one.

          But then 99% of people slagging off King’s Field and its related games are graphics-obsessed cretins that clearly don’t understand the notion of compelling exploratory gameplay. Go back to Call of Modern Warfare ffs.

      • Zitacos says:

        Remember Ninja Blade? A much more recent and relevant port job they’ve done. Still junk.

  4. Toberoth says:

    I don’t enjoy being pedantic, but isn’t it “cinch”?

    I’m a bit worried about these framerate issues. Anyone have experience with the console version? How bad is the stuttering? That kind of thing can really kill immersion for me, and this is the kind of game I’d really like to get totally lost and absorbed in.

    • Njordsk says:

      30fps locked, going down to 15/20 in some places AFAIK.

      No go for me. Seriously, 30 gives me headachen but 15….

      • Toberoth says:

        Hmm, that is pretty bad :-( I guess when it comes out I’ll decide whether or not I can put up with that. If it was a consistent 30fps I could get used to it (most films are 30fps after all) but if the frame rate fluctuates it might draw my attention to it a bit much.

        • Squire says:

          Nah most films are 24fps or even less in action scenes, tv is close to 30fps in america, tv here is 25fps.

          • Durkonkell says:

            24FPS films are ‘double gated’ – each frame is shown twice within a 24th of a second. So you get 24 ‘pictures’ per second, but the ‘refresh rate’ is 48hz (i.e. the gate opens twice before advancing to the next frame). If you were shown only 24 frames per second, you’d see flicker.

            (Note: This was the case with film projectors. I assume the new-fangled digital projectors just refresh the image at a multiple of 24).

            Traditionally in television, each individual frame was recorded as two fields (odd lines in one field, even lines in the other) and shown at twice the frame rate – two fields made up one frame. In the US (NTSC TV system) you’d see 60 intervals of motion per second making up 30 frames (29.97 actually, for some brain-damaged reason). In the UK, you’d see 50 intervals of motion and 25 full frames.

            Modern HDTVs use the same method of displaying an image as computer monitors – progressive scan. Some HDTVs go all the way up to 120Hz.

            The important point is, because the frame rate of displayed content is constant, playback appears smooth. You’re always watching 25 frames per second refreshed at 100Hz (for example). With computer games, the frame rate is variable and so changes are easily perceived. Additionally, because it’s interactive user input is ‘held back’ by a lower frame rate which impairs the experience.

            So, frame rate in computer games and frame rate on televisions aren’t really comparable in this way. Recording video at 25fps is fine. Playing a game at 25fps may not be.

            You won’t notice any flicker though, no matter how low your frame rate goes. Your monitor is always showing you 60 frames per second!

          • Toberoth says:

            Thanks for the explanation! I had genuinely no idea that was the case. Good to know :-)

        • kraken says:

          Seriously, do you really need someone to explain how 30 fps in a movie is nothing comparable to 30 fps in an game?

      • frightlever says:

        PC gaming in the 80s would have killed you dead, princess.

      • Gundato says:

        This is one of those things that kids these days are spoiled on. When I was a youth, we had to walk fifteen miles, uphill both ways, to play games at 4 frames per second. And we liked it!!

        Seriously though, I grew up playing the original UT at about 18-26 FPS (I remember having my mind blown when I got a new card and reached 120 FPS).
        Playing through Dark Souls on the PS3, I noticed a bit of slowdown at times, but never anything horrible. I would actually put it on par with Zone of the Enders 2 on the PS2, if that helps. Most of the time, it is crisp and pretty. When lots of chaos is happening, it lags a bit.

    • AJ_Wings says:

      It was mostly stable at 30 FPS but there is one god-awful part of the game called Blightown where the frame-rate drops into the single digits. Still a lovely game though.

    • 100sr says:

      i presume the word is kind of an occasional neologism, a mixture of “to sync” and “cinch”, meaning that porting from 360 to PC is not really a big deal.
      though i’m not sure how occasional and neologistic it is, since even my en-en dictionary knows about it.

      oh lol, it’s just a typo after all :/

    • Koozer says:

      “I don’t enjoy being pedantic…”

      What a shame.

  5. Xzi says:

    No KB/M support, GFWL, lack of any graphics improvements, lack of any real optimization, and no fix for the framerate problems despite running on much higher-end systems. All of these things are NOT balanced out by adding some extra content, as that extra content will ALSO be affected by these things.

    Does anybody really still believe this game will be worth a day-one purchase? I’ll certainly be waiting for a 66% off or better. It probably won’t even be deemed playable until around that same time, anyway. Going to need a lot of community fixes.

    • Kaira- says:

      >No KB/M support

      Um, where was this confirmed? All I remember is that they said that gampad would be the optimal way to play.

      • Xzi says:

        Sorry, I should say MINIMAL keyboard and mouse support. All they have to do to make it decent is allow us to bind our own keys, but that’s clearly not going to be the case.

        • Dominic White says:

          And how do you know this? Those complaining loudest about this port seem to be coming to some very solid conclusions from some very vague (and in the first instance, poorly translated) statements.

    • Stromko says:

      It really makes me wonder. This thing apparently led on the PS3 first, then a bunch of people on the internet demanded it on the PC, so they’re going to put GFWL on it since everyone who demands things on the internet really hates GFWL … They’re also on record saying they’re not going to fix performance issues or make the controls work well, they just want to put this thing out as soon as possible.

      It doesn’t give me a lot of hope for the product, honestly. I can just imagine that they’re going to put out a technically flawed version of a very hardcore game and then blame the abysmal sales on piracy. Because developers / publishers like to blame piracy, it is entertainment for them. They read all the message boards and are aroused by all the angry internet people arguing about piracy.

      I feel a bit silly today.

      • MSJ says:

        These are developers unfamiliar with the PC, who are from Japan where PC gaming is not popular. They probably see Microsoft’s GFWL and thought that this is the standard thing for PC games and they have made game for a Microsoft system so it would save them a lot of trouble (the game is also on Xbox 360, its predecessor Demon’s Soul was PS3 only).

        • nyarlathotep-88 says:

          In these kind of cases, it would just be best to outsource it to a team of developers that knows how to make games for the pc. A good example would be Deus Ex Human Revolution.

        • Unaco says:

          You know, they could ask someone who knows about PC Gaming.

        • Casimir's Blake says:

          A lot of people are passing around opinions with regards to From’s experience here, and very little fact.

          Fact: From Software DO have previous experience on PC, google for “Sword of Moonlight”.

          • Buzko says:

            Casimir, I did google ‘Sword of Moonlight’. It turns out these guys released a PC-based level editor in 2000. So there’s that.

            Fortunately, nothing about PCs has changed in the intervening twelve years. Obviously Dark Souls PC is in good hands and we should stop worrying.

          • Phantoon says:

            That was a bajillion years ago, and since then, FROM has experimented with turning their stompy mech series into fast moving lightweight gundams.

        • grundus says:

          I’m sure at least some of them play PC games, let’s not patronise them or anything… I think you’re right to an extent, though; they don’t have much experience developing for PC as a studio so maybe GFWL is very easy to implement compared to other forms of DRM. I just don’t have all the facts.

    • 13tales says:

      Japan, god knows I love ya (live here), but this just smacks of some of the problems that bedevil Japanese business culture. Japanese companies aren’t known for their flexibility.

      • Baines says:

        Sadly, the lesson they learn from this might be to not be so flexible.

        Just putting out a PC port at all was being more flexible than probably anyone expected, and it sounds like it isn’t going to be an experience that ends well enough for From Software to want to try it again.

        • grundus says:

          Or they’ll recognise the need to strengthen their PC porting/developing and make some suitable hirements (that’s now a thing) to fulfill that need.

  6. mixvio says:

    Yeah, the console version had pretty bad framerate issues in two areas (Blighttown, especially once you got down to the tar area at the base, was like a slideshow) and I didn’t expect that to change. They’re also locking the framerate to 30FPS a la console, but frankly I think the higher PC horsepower will let the areas of the game that performed poorly on the console run better (or at least hit that 30FPS bottleneck) if only by accident. It was only a handful of areas that had framerate issues, most of the game ran quite well given the artistic scope.

    Dark Souls (and Demon’s Souls before it) was a fantastic game, and I’m one who hates playing anything on a console. The additional content has me very excited and I can’t wait to get it.

  7. Enzo says:

    This will be a disaster.

  8. Bilateralrope says:

    No amount of extra content can excuse faulty content. Especially if the extra content is faulty.

    Though I am surprised that the framerate issues didn’t simply go away when they encountered the PCs more powerful hardware. Then again, these are the people who decided that the low framerate of Blightown was a good idea since it would only show up for everyone.

    Actually, how did Blightowns framerate issues get past testing ?

    I’m not too concerned about them not optimizing for a mouse and keyboard.

  9. nasenbluten says:

    I rented it for 360 and it was pretty bad: 30 fps with drops here and there. It was like an added hurdle to the difficulty of the game, I really liked the setting and the gameplay but I couldn’t stand the shuttering and let go after 3 or 4 hours.

    I saw it running on PS3 an it was quite smooth, I guess they made it for PS3 like Demon Souls, then ported it to 360 and now from 360 to PC… GFWL + shuttering on PC, I’ll pass.

    • Jay says:

      Going by most reports, there’s actually little to no difference between systems for this game, they both have their relative strengths and weaknesses but there isn’t really a definitive version. The game does suffer some fairly terrible performance spikes on both systems depending on where you are/what you’re doing though.

  10. Inigo says:

    for some insane reason are choosing to cripple it with GFWL

    “We’re porting a game onto a platform we’re unfamiliar with, but there’s a online framework available that’s very similar to the one we used on the Xbox 360. Should we use it?”
    “NO! NOW HELP ME SHOVE THIS TREE BRANCH UP MY ASS AND SET IT ON FIRE WHOOP WHOOP WHOOP WHOOP WHOOP”

    • Starky says:

      I know right, it’s pretty idiotic of the PC community to complain in a case like this about GFWL, yes it is a bit shit – but it isn’t like this is a PC exclusive, or even PC focused title by a dev experienced with PC development.

      Better to use a working, solid and known system for online connectivity (and as much as GFWL sucks in most other area’s the networking and matchmaking is pretty damned solid), one that they’re already familiar with and half the work is done – than botch trying to make something new or port to a system they don’t know (such as steam).

      Or it will be Borderlands all over again, which was a game that made me wish that it had used GFWL.

  11. Clavus says:

    Then why not outsource the porting? Deus Ex’s PC version was outsourced to a Dutch studio and those did a fine job.

    • ThTa says:

      They’re currently busy with the new Tomb Raider torture porn thingy.

    • PopeJamal says:

      Because porting isn’t free? At the very least because doing it yourself is almost always cheaper, even if the results aren’t as good.

  12. Dowr says:

    I’d rather wait another year with no new content if it would result in a better port – what I’m hearing so far doesn’t surprise me but it still irritates me.

  13. oceanclub says:

    The real dealbreak for me here is the 30fps. I know there are people who claim this is playable and one doesn’t really notice it, but I can only presume these people are far below me on the evolutionary scale, Eloi to my Morlock.

    P.

    • Henke says:

      How are we below you if we can play the same game at a lower framerate? It’s not like the game gets harder with a higher framerate, more like the other way around.

      I played through Quake 1 on a 66MHz 486DX2, at about 12-16fps, so I can’t quite understand all this bitching about 30fps.

      • John Connor says:

        Congratulations on tolerating mediocrity.

      • oceanclub says:

        BEGONE FOUL BEAST OF THE SURFACE.

        Oh, it’s not that I’ve never played games with low FPS. But that’s usually without knowing beforehand they would be so slow, and with the proviso of knowing that at some point in the future after an upgrade I _could_ play the game with higher FPS. I think once, after my desktop was temporarily kaput, I even played WOW on a really shitty laptop at around 8 FPS.

        The most annoying example of framelock had to be Bioshock, where the physics were locked at 30fps, which means that when an enemy or item ragdolled, there was a weird strobing effect which I could never ever ignore.

        P.

    • epmode says:

      The game reportedly has an FPS option in the menus but I haven’t heard of anyone testing it out. If From’s last PC port* is any indication, you can set it higher than 30. It’ll probably be unoptomzed as hell though.

      Buying this on day one would be pretty stupid but hopefully high end machines can brute force a good framerate.

      *Ninja Blade, outsourced

  14. puzl says:

    For literally any other game, i’d say the usual “fuck the developers who can’t be bothered to optimise their game for the PC” spiel, but Dark Souls is genuinely the best game i’ve played in the last 10 years. I play the PS3 version every day for the PVP and despite some slowdown in areas like Blightown and Anor Londo, it generally doesn’t get in the way of the gameplay too much. Chances are you’ll rarely return to Blightown after you finish that area anyway (apart from getting to the Great Hollow)

    I *really* hope they fix it for the final release, but it’s not a game breaker by any means. Millions of people enjoyed (and continue to enjoy) the game in it’s current state on the PS3 and it genuinely doesn’t stop the game being one of the smartest, most innovative, unforgiving games of a generation.

    • Heisenberg says:

      Agreed on everything you’ve said.
      I’ve been playing it on the 360 ever since its release.
      Blightown really isnt a problem for me anymore (it was only really a problem on my very first playthru) and the rest of the game is just so good people shouldnt be deterred by this.

      • Acorino says:

        May be true.
        I haven’t played Dark Souls before, and personally, the news of a bad port won’t exactly encourage me to do so on day one either, especially when there are so many other great games I have barely touched yet. The Witcher 2 I just started, Skyrim I haven’t even bought yet, and then who knows what the future will hold. Dark Souls may be a great game, but since it’s badly ported I can’t muster up much enthusiasm for it, not enough to put the other games to the side and play it the first chance I get.
        I dunno, I guess I’m spoilt by choice at the moment.

  15. Jamesworkshop says:

    It’s no shame to struggle in an environment of symmetric and asymmetrical machines, but surely the publisher should be stepping in by now to put it in the hands of an outsourcing operation to get it done.

  16. Snids says:

    I’m not deliberately trying to go against the grain but:

    1. I just want to be able to play it.

    2. I don’t understand the frame rate business. Isn’t a low frame rate a sign of the hardware not being able to render frames quick enough? So maybe owing to the PC’s more generous hardware this might not be an issue.

    3. Beggars can’t be choosers. “We” almost literally begged for this game to come to PC and here it comes. If someone said to me that I could play GT5 and MGS4 and Red Dead Revolver on PC “as is” I would leap at the chance.

    4. If you don’t like it don’t buy it. There’s a million other games out there.

    • Toberoth says:

      I agree with point three completely. I’d rather be able to play the game in its current form than not play it at all.

    • sneetch says:

      On point 3, we can be choosers: as you say in point 4 there are a million other games out there.

      There’s an unspoken caveat whenever we call for any game/port: make a good one or we won’t buy it.

      I’m certainly not going to if it doesn’t work well and no-one should feel they have to buy a crap port just because they/we asked for it to be ported.

      • Tyrone Slothrop. says:

        Erm, you don’t understand the phrase in the context. People were begging for this game, not games generally, you can’t be choosy therefore when it comes to a specific game coming to your platform that one wants to play. “Excuse me sir, due to some metaphysical obstruction, you cannot see Melancholia… might I suggest that you be choosy and pick a film that isn’t Melancholia?”

        I don’t really have the enthusiasm as others do for Dark Souls, but if Red Dead Redemption came out for the PC, I’d play it at 24fps locked at 720 if I had to, hell I’d do everything short of buying a PS3 for that game.

        • sneetch says:

          I take your point, I believe that just because we asked for this particular game it doesn’t mean we should buy it if it’s a poor quality port but that just means that I don’t want it badly enough to accept a bad port (if this turns out to be a bad port, that is, I’m not writing it off).

          (I personally didn’t like Red Dead Redemption).

        • Brun says:

          The request carried an implicit demand for quality. Even people who signed the petition will refuse to buy the game if it’s a bad port. I see this “beggars can’t be choosers” defense thrown out all the time but that is not an excuse for a bad port. I’d rather them not make the game at all – despite how much I want it – if they’re going to do a sloppy job of it and then whine about being “betrayed” when PC gamers rightfully refuse to buy their game.

          • PopeJamal says:

            And everything I’ve seen doesn’t seem to say “sloppy port”. They’re just copy-pasting it onto the PC, blemishes and all.

            I guess it just depends on your definition of “sloppy”. Every “sloppy” port I’ve ever played was WORSE than the console version, so that’s the basis for my definition.

    • frightlever says:

      I think there’s some confusion over the term frame rate vs latency in some people’s minds.

    • Mehbah says:

      We asked for the game, and then they gave us a version that not only is held back by all the issues the console version has, but actually has even more problems in the form of GFWL. This is like ordering in food at a restaurant only to get a layer of feces on top of it. Complain about it, and a number of morons start calling you a hypocrite or whiner “because you ordered it and they gave you what you asked for”. No, we did not order in any feces and there is absolutely no excuse for the chef to have them there, no matter how inexperienced he is. PCs are significantly more powerful than any console; how could they possibly have these problems with the framerate?

      Having playing the PS3 version for hundreds of hours, the acceptable framerate was the main reason I was interested in this. Now it turns out even this version will have the borderline unplayable framerate.

      Of course, this thing is going to be pirated to hell and back, and clueless morons will take that as proof that PC players pirate everything. They will conveniently ignore that GFWL outright stops people from buying it in certain countries and that the port is beyond terrible. Piracy is mainly a service problem, and this service is really bad.

      • Toberoth says:

        “This is like ordering in food at a restaurant only to get a layer of feces on top of it.”

        I don’t think it’s actually like that at all. Sticking with this analogy, you haven’t actually “ordered” anything yet. You’ve sat down in the restaurant and you’re being shown the menu, and it says quite clearly on there: “Warning: food may have been lightly farted on, order at your discretion”. You haven’t paid anything or invested any effort yet in obtaining your food, you’re still free to walk out of the restaurant, and nobody is going to suddenly thrust shit in your face or start shouting.

        • Snids says:

          This is hilarious. Thank you!

        • Acorino says:

          Haha, good laugh, would lol again.

        • Phantoon says:

          Except people are shouting in the comments, and if we didn’t order it, why are they bringing it out?

          GFWL is a cancer. A pox. A curse! It’s not okay. It’s also not the end of the world.

          I think people should complain loudly, since they’re all going to buy it anyways. It’s the best we’re going to get for standing on principle anyways.

          • PopeJamal says:

            So should I complain about GFWL too since I’ve only ever had exactly ONE problem with it…that I caused myself trying to be Mr. Cool IT Guy?

          • Toberoth says:

            I see nothing inherently contradictory or hypocritical in bemoaning the inclusion of GFWL but also buying the game and thanking the developers for bringing the game to the PC after we all asked nicely. I don’t see why everything has to be made into a massive do-or-die stand all the time. I love this website and I love reading the comments, but some of the rhetoric and hyperbole does get to be a bit much after a while.

        • Mehbah says:

          I was referring to how less intelligent people act like PC players are at fault for petitioning for the game and then not wanting to buy it. Because apparently you should smile and say thank you when the food you “ordered” has a layer of feces on top of it and is half-cooked.

          • Toberoth says:

            I get that, thanks for clarifying, but I still think your analogy is flawed.

      • puzl says:

        Piracy might not be as big of an issue as you think. Online play is VERY important in this game…. almost crucial actually. You can play it in offline mode, but you’re missing everything that makes this game so much fun. No co-op, no invasions, no hints, no PVP, most of the covenants become useless etc.. the whole online aspect is woven so deeply into the SP game that they’re both essential to the whole Dark Souls experience. Hopefully those who do pirate the game will realise this and want to buy it so they can experience the game as it was intended.

        • malkav11 says:

          As someone who has played Dark Souls on 360, where all of that is locked off unless you pay Microsoft’s extortionate rate for Live Gold (a function I never used when I did have it), Dark Souls is a bloody excellent game without that stuff. Sure, it’s nice to have – it’s one reason why I’m interested in a PC version, which shouldn’t be locked out of that – but it’s not essential.

      • Snids says:

        You played a game for hundreds of hours and you were not able to “accept” the framerate? Sounds like it really must have been “borderline unplayable”.

        I know what you mean. I ordered some soup in a restaurant and they served me an enormous bowl of used cat litter. I found this completely unacceptable. So I ate the entire bowl and demanded more of the unacceptable cat litter soup. I was not able to accept that at all. AT ALL.

        I know you wont care but I’m sick of your ridiculous hyperbolic language. By you I mean about 80% of the internet. You sound like someone that writes into the Daily Mail.

    • Xardas Kane says:

      Your point 3 would make sense if we were in fact begging. But we aren’t, we are going to give them MONEY and expect a fully working product in return. That’s anything but begging.

      • malkav11 says:

        Signing an internet petition is pretty much exactly begging.

        No preorders were placed. No Kickstarter campaign was backed. People just said, “Hey, From, we really really want to play this on PC. Could you do that for us?” And From, bless them, was like “Uh, well…we don’t really know what we’re doing and we hadn’t originally planned to, but if you want it that bad, sure, we’ll see how it goes.”

        And from the sound of it, we’ll be getting a working product – the same product as on console, but with more content. A more PC native release would be nice, and maybe they’ll work something out before it happens, but even if it’s essentially the same as it was on 360, it’ll still be nice to have on PC.

        • Phantoon says:

          What if it’s broken, though? What if it is actually unplayable at launch?

          • PopeJamal says:

            What if we get eaten by giant centipedes?
            Do you really walk around all day being upset about things that haven’t happened yet? Or things that COULD happen? Or even things that PROBABLY will happen?

            100% serious and sincerely, that’s probably not the healthiest and happiest way to live.

          • malkav11 says:

            IF it comes out and it is actually, unarguably broken (in the sense that it does not work, not in the sense that it is merely a 1:1 console port), then that would be a shame and it would be unwise to buy it. But it’s way premature to make that kind of judgment.

    • lordfrikk says:

      “Beggars can’t be choosers”

      Except we pay money for it which kinda disqualifies us as beggars.

  17. Diogo Ribeiro says:

    Funny that many are criticizing Dark Souls’ lack of optimization, but leave it to Bioware and Bethesda to launch technically stunted games and players will rush to defend and fix them. NWN took around two years to be fully “fixed”, and to this day its pathfinding is still atrocious – on day one, it was 9/10s like Christ was coming again. Same with Oblivion.

    • Jimbo says:

      That is funny how different people prioritise different things isn’t it? I had never noticed that before.

    • Xzi says:

      Optimization issues aren’t the only thing at play here. Even on the day of launch, I have yet to play a Bioware/Bethesda game with GFWL, minimal keyboard/mouse support, 30FPS locked, and no advanced graphics options.

      So it’s hardly comparable.

      • Bhazor says:

        Fallout 3 used GFWL.

        For many people DA:O was broken for months by various patches doing very stupid things that prevented the game from running and Skyrim was notouriously buggy on release. No one seemed to care.

        • Unaco says:

          FO3 used a very light GFWL, that was easily bypassed, without having to download or edit anything (just run a different exe, iirc). It also didn’t handle/mishandle saves.

          Skyrim may have been buggy, but I think many people saw through the bugs (which weren’t crippling, and were quickly patched if they were) to the brilliant game beneath.

          Maybe it will be the same for Dark Souls. I guess it just depends how much sh*t we have to wade through to get to it. I’m not confident of that though.

        • Brun says:

          Skyrim had fewer major bugs and issues than pretty much all of Bethesda’s previous games up to Oblivion.

      • Diogo Ribeiro says:

        And even without GFWL, with keyboard/mouse support, with no FPS lock and with advanced graphic options, Oblivon still ran like utter crap at release. And not every patch made it better. The comparison, in fact, seems more than apt – all the knick knacks in the world, all the “do what I say, I’m a PC gamer, goddamnit!” demands are pointless if they have no bearing on the final product. They usually don’t on Bethsoft games on release, and it’s too soon to tell about Dark Souls.

        • Xzi says:

          Hey, I’m no fan of Bethesda post-Morrowind, anyway. I was just saying, to be fair, that none of their games have had anywhere near the amount of confirmed issues at launch that Dark Souls already has. Every news article is just another negative piling on. Although it’s hard to imagine how it could get much worse from here. Maybe something like:

          “Namco Bandai today announced that any person who buys Dark Souls for the PC will have a developer sent to their house personally to drop a big fat deuce in the customer’s open mouth and then piss in their eyeballs.”

          Explained the developer, “we felt this was our best option for a user-friendly DRM.”

          The problem here is that it’s NOT too soon to tell with Dark Souls. You could paraphrase everything they’ve told us about the port directly so far into a single sentence: “no matter how powerful your system is, it’s going to run like shit.”

      • Phantoon says:

        Not a good comparison.

        Dark Souls is actually fun.

    • Ringwraith says:

      Although usually the console versions are still worse than the PC versions of those games. Dragon Age Origins in particular, which was retooled to work on consoles, including toning the difficulty down, changing the interface and still horrifically bad texture work to simply to get it to fit.

    • Shooop says:

      Hence why I didn’t buy Skyrim until several months later and on sale.

  18. amisysally says:

    I am very impressed on knowing that this information is being shared here and actively discussed by these commentators here.wood pellet mill.

  19. sneetch says:

    “Because we wanted to get the PC version out as soon as possible”

    I’ve read that in a number of places, the rush to get this out so quickly seems to be breaking it and it will harm their reputations (“they’re just trying to make a quick buck!” outrage to follow). Sure, like most people I’d like my games NAO but not at any cost.

  20. JackDandy says:

    It’s a damned shame. Namco-Bandai should simply delay it for a while and make sure it comes out properly.

    I’d hate to have the franchise name tarnished due to a rushed port job.

    Still gonna get it in any case, since I want to see the next game in the series on PC as well.

  21. Keirley says:

    I’d say this definitely shouldn’t be an issue for people who haven’t played it already on the consoles. Sure, the framerate occasionally dropped to single digits in certain areas, you’ll probably not have a great experience with mouse and keyboard, there are no graphics options, AND it has GFWL.

    BUT it’s a fantastic game. The framerate issues were annoying, but only found in a couple of areas (and they never seemed to cause gameplay issues). And I can’t imagine why anyone wouldn’t want to use a gamepad for it anyway.

    The lack of graphics options is very annoying, and I’ve heard enough horror stories about GFWL to be seriously concerned about that as well. But The game is definitely worth all this – it’s simply one of the best games out there.

    But since I played this already on the 360 I don’t think I’m going to be buying it any more. I was looking for it to be a day 1 purchase because it seemed like it was going to be the superior version, and I wanted to support the devs. But it doesn’t seem likely that the PC version will be any different from the consoles, and I don’t really want to support a business practice that thinks a fast but poor port is somehow better than a slow but good one.

    • Edlennion says:

      I hope you’re right, and that the game is good enough that these problems don’t matter, but, as someone who hasn’t played this yet, it’s hard to believe that it will be.

      The biggest problems for me are that the framerate goes into single digits at points, and even in the good areas it sounds like it’ll max out at 30fps. If I’m playing a game at 30fps, I usually turn all the graphical options I can find down until it hits at least 50fps. I seriously doubt I’ll buy any game that runs that badly, and so I’ll probably never get to experience it for myself to decide whether the game is worth all the problems. Which is sad, because I was looking forward to this.

      If they bring out a demo, on the other hand, then at least I’ll be able to try it and see, but demos seem to be all too rare these days.

      • Keirley says:

        I honestly do think it’s worth all the troubles. The single-digit frame-rate is, in my experience, exceptionally rare (only happening in one area). The locked-at-30fps was never an issue for me – it’s not exactly a run-and-gun game where you need it to be at 60fps. But obviously if you tend to dislike games at 30fps then it might indeed be a big issue for you. Unfortunately, as far as I’m aware even if you managed to unlock the frame-rate it wouldn’t help, since the animations in the game are set by the frame-rate (so if you make the frame-rate go faster the game will just become an unplayable sped-up mess).

        In terms of it being worth all the problems – your mileage may vary, and I can certainly understand not wanting to pay without trying it out first. It’s also a game that may frustrate people to an unbelievable degree. But in my opinion it (like Demon’s Souls before it) is a phenomenal game, with an atmosphere unlike any other. Worth, I think, dealing with the issues at hand, but I can understand that it requires a lot of restraint and patience, which can tend to turn people against it. Also, it doesn’t exactly ease you into the experience, and the system of weapons, armours, spells, and stats can often be completely opaque without experience with the game or a quick look at one of the game’s wikis.

  22. Ravenger says:

    It’s not as straightforward as you might think to port from console to PC.

    Consoles are memory and GPU limited, and are optimised for high bandwidth streaming of assets in and out of memory as required. Consoles often do more on the CPU because of the GPU limitations.

    PCs are bandwidth limited. They have faster CPUs and GPUs, with more memory, but transferring data from the main memory to the GPU is not as optimised as for consoles. If the game is ported across with little or no re-working to fit a PC architecture you can get problems where the CPU just can’t transfer data across to the GPU quickly enough, leading to a game which is CPU limited and the GPU is hardly used.

    Also draw calls to the GPU are more expensive on the PC compared to consoles. Properly optimised PC games will minimise the number of draw calls by batching them up and sending them across to the GPU in one go. This requires a lot of re-working of the core game engine, and explains why some PC ports require much higher system specs than their console equivalents.

    So I understand why From Software are having difficulties, though they could outsource at least some of the development to programmers with experience in PC porting.

    • Chippit says:

      While your argument is indeed sound, and it’s absolutely true that every platform needs its unique collection of optimisations and tricks and cheats, even (especially, in fact, because of the immense variation in hardware on the platform) for PC, the draw calls argument’s a bit flawed.

      DCs are expensive on every platform, often the most CPU (yes, CPU) intensive task that games perform. On PC, they’re complicated somewhat due to driver abstraction, but they’re not truly significantly more time consuming on PC than they are on consoles. They’re just generally a bottleneck everywhere. Bearing that in mind, it’s safe to assume any engine on any platform anywhere will have loads of tricks in order to batch shared materials and vertex buffers in order to minimize draw calls, an optimisation that’s valid and valuable on every device you can play 3D games on.

      Either way, this is not to dismiss the effort required in porting a game. It’s never as trivial a task as it sounds. I think, at this juncture, it’s best everyone just be happy that it’s being done at all, and judgement be reserved for when the game is actually installed on our PCs.

      Because, having played this religiously on Xbox, it truly is a game everyone deserves to experience, on whichever platform is closest to their heart. I hope the extra content is good, so I won’t be disappointed when I buy it again.

  23. pkt-zer0 says:

    Well, at least they’re honest.

    “I’m about as ignorant about porting as I am about hairdressing, but it’s my understanding that porting from 360 is a cinch.”

    See Ravenger’s post for an explanation of some of the problems. Or refer to RAGE as a working example of how architectural reasons can make consoles outperform PC hardware.

    • DrEnzyme says:

      I’m surprised how few have commented about From’s honesty. I understand people’s frustration with the limitations of the port, but at least no one is going to be blind-sided by it.

      I hope that they’ll continue to be honest if the ‘Souls doesn’t sell well. It would be so easy for them to lay the blame on the PC audience, and the damage that could cause would be immense. I feel there is some responsibility from supporters to follow through with a purchase (The frame rate issues are hugely valid, but the inclusion of GFWL should not automatically discount a purchase) but it would be wrong for Namco to blame poor sales on the audience, when they’re openly acknowledging these problems now.

      At the moment it seems Namco have trapped everyone between a Rock and a Hard Place. If the game doesn’t do well after so many have asked for it, there won’t be another port like this for a long time. On the other hand, if the game does well despite the issues, then some publishers will be encouraged to spend less time and money on their PC versions. It’s Mercenaries 2 all over again.

  24. neems says:

    Have they actually specifically stated that it will be locked to 30fps and have no graphic options? I must have missed it. It seems to me that when he says “We haven’t been able to step up into doing any specific optimisation for PC.” he is referring to the code – so Blighttown still runs at a lower frame rate than elsewhere, but presumably if you have a sufficiently powerful pc it will still be perfectly playable in comparison to the console versions.

    Have reservations by all means, but let’s not string em all up until the game is actually here and we know what we’re dealing with.

    • Dominic White says:

      Yeah, this sounds like they haven’t optimized areas like Blighttown any further specifically – it’s a ridiculously open-plan environment with a ton of physics objects that really strains the PS3/360 – but if you’ve got a PC sufficiently powerful enough, it shouldn’t be an issue.

    • kraken says:

      They said in another interview that the game will be locked at 30 FPS.

  25. SteamySashimi says:

    Could this be fan-patched by mods i wonder?

  26. Kaira- says:

    Curiously enough, this other article says that

    Performance-wise, the game ran smoothly in the demo footage. While the game will not offer high resolution textures, it will offer a full range of scalable settings exclusive to the PC version. Additionally, I was flat-out promised that Blighttown will run as smoothly as the rest of the game.

    • JackDandy says:

      Well, that’s pretty good to hear. I guess we should wait for the final product to see how it fares.

  27. Lemming says:

    Taking GFWL out will net you a couple of frames per second, I’m sure.

    They should have outsourced this. Hell, if MS are involved with GFWL why the fuck aren’t they doing the porting job?

  28. Shortwave says:

    Welp, I can say I won’t play it if it runs as bad as it does on consoles.
    Easy. I’m really hoping they get this fixed up though.
    I’d love to give this apparently very hardcore game a go!

  29. lociash says:

    Throw enough hardware at it and I imagine fps won’t be such an issue, it’s the GTA4 of today.

  30. dudeglove says:

    Regardless, it’s bloody fantastic game. Can’t wait for some DLC on the console.

  31. BTA says:

    I thought it was already confirmed that the Steam version doesn’t have GFWL, though? I’m pretty sure I read that somewhere, at least.

    In any case, this is… troubling, but hopefully things will turn out decently…

    • Unaco says:

      Where? It has a Steam Store page… but there’s been no word on whether they’ll be dropping GFWL from the Steam version. I would have thought that, with the difficulties they’re having with the PC Port, they probably don’t want to introduce a second online framework, and the work required to make the 2 compatible.

    • Baresark says:

      Ugh. That was never confirmed by anyone who understands a thing about this. They are not using GFWL for DRM, they are using it for matchmaking and net code. They didn’t rewrite all of that for the Steam version. If they did, it would just be a Steamworks title. The Steam version will have Steamworks overlaying the GFWL aspect of it. This is pretty common fair, so I don’t know why people don’t seem to understand this kind of thing.

      • Lemming says:

        The steam overlay is not Steamworks, FYI.

        All they’ve said, actually, is that it’ll be available on steam for sale. Like quite alot of GFWL games on Steam without Steamworks. ie. Fallout 3, Insanely twisted Shadow Planet, Dawn of War 2, Batman: Arkham city etc…

  32. ohfouroneone says:

    And now PC gamers will look like dicks because they requested the game and then complained and pirated it because it was a bad port.

  33. fish99 says:

    I wonder if they can come up with some more reasons for me not to buy it.

    The shame is – I’ve avoided playing the PS3 version we already own because I was hoping the framerate issues (which aren’t just in blight town btw) would be fixed on PC. Sad.

    TBH I don’t really get how a much faster GPU wouldn’t equal better framerates.

    • Baresark says:

      It typically should. But if the problem is with the game code itself, then the much stronger GPU won’t make much of a difference. I think the much better GPU/CPU combo of any modern computer will make a huge difference though. The areas that it chunked up pretty bad had a lot of graphically intensive stuff going on, things that are well beyond either the PS3 or the 360. When they say they are not optimizing the frame rate part of it, they are saying that they don’t plan to go over the game code and iron out the issue in that. I think the problem will still be present, but not nearly as bad. I mean, Blighttown went down to single digit frame rates.

    • Kirian says:

      A faster GPU won’t make a difference because the slowdown in question is not graphical in nature, from what I’ve been told. From said that the slowdown is generally due to AI pathfinding. That’s why Blighttown is a particular issue- it’s a very complex environment.

      There is some graphical slowdown; the Hellkite Dragon causes some when it breathes fire, for example.

      What surprises me the most is that people who’ve played the game didn’t expect this. It seemed to me, when I played, that the game wasn’t stuttering due to the limitations of the hardware but due to engine issues that arose in that specific area. I kinda expected this to be the case.

  34. PC-GAMER-4LIFE says:

    PC high end hardware will eat this for breakfast regardless of optimisation. From Software should have contacted Nvidia/Intel both would be happy to help where possible but what game engine does this use anyway if its a custom engine that is the problem it can take 6 months plus to optimise.

    GFWL is obviously a lock then that sounds like the least of the issues here if they are publicly admitting its going to run poorly for most.

  35. Shooop says:

    This is balanced out, they say…

    No. No it isn’t. More content does not balance out a game which doesn’t run properly. What good is any content if it doesn’t work?

    I’m not sure whether or not it’s a good thing for once someone’s being completely honest about just rushing to make a quick buck instead of trying to deliver a great product.

  36. Lord Custard Smingleigh says:

    “Just as we thought we had earned the sweet oblivion of death, suddenly this petition means we have to make a PC version too. Don’t you people have any pity? I can’t sleep, I can’t breathe, I can’t walk more than two paces in any direction and I haven’t seen daylight in five years. They keep us in the clamps day and night until our work is done. I’m tired, and hungry, and I haven’t seen my family since they herded us into trucks. Oh god oh god the clamps… they chafe!”

  37. PC-GAMER-4LIFE says:

    Just found out it uses this free game engine (which was designed for PS3′s).
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/PhyreEngine

  38. MeestaNob says:

    My interest is nearly rock bottom at this point, they’re MURDERING this games chance of being any good.

    For christs sake, take an extra 6-12 months and outsource to someone who ports games for a living. And ditch GFWL too, dingbats.

    • Snids says:

      It will be exactly the same as the widely acclaimed original version. Puh-lease…

      • Baresark says:

        This is an absolute truth. I am a hard core PC gamer for a long time now, and I’m a little embarrassed after this whole fiasco. They are giving us the same game they gave to the PS3 and 360 crowds. I’m not gonna complain, and I’ll gladly trade in my PS3 version for the PC version.

        • Kuraudo says:

          Why? You are getting no reason to play on your pc versus the console version you already own. If anything, it will be worse because of GFWL.

  39. RegisteredUser says:

    To be fair, whining about lacking mouse/kb support in beat-em-ups(or sword-em-ups or whatever) is a bit like whining about lack of controller support in an FPS.
    Although sadly enough that has actually become commonplace there..ugh.

    • Starky says:

      Hey Controller use in FPS is really a nice thing for single player – some of us just want to play games on our mediabox on our couch.

      Playing Serious Sam split screen with mates using using controllers makes for a damned fun experience.

      Sure M&K is better for FPS games (though I’d trade WASD for analogue UDLR any day of the week – All gaming keyboards should have pressure sensitive WASD imo) and I’d never use anything but mouse for online, or competitive FPS play.

      But any single player (or local co-op) FPS should offer controller support. There is literally no reason for them not too.

      • malkav11 says:

        Sure there is. It takes time, effort, attention, and introduces potential bugs. It also requires additional usability testing. It might be worth it (although I maintain that playing an FPS with a gamepad is madness if you don’t have to), but it’s not automatic.

  40. Flappybat says:

    News flash – It’s not 2008. This kind of stuff is unacceptable. We expect ports that work well and if you want to sell copies you better pay attention to that (see Gears Of War).

    New content as compensation my ass. They are selling it on the consoles.

  41. Jraptor59 says:

    I think they don’t understand PC gamers either. I appreciate the honesty, but I won’t buy a game that doesn’t run well on my machine.

  42. AltF4 says:

    poor port is better than nothing, at least they’re honest. poor people, stop being poor and get 680 sli setup

  43. best_jeppe says:

    Like Gabe Newell said: “”a game won’t be delayed forever, but a game can suck forever.”

    Seems like the PC-version of Dark Souls will suck forever.

  44. Kuroko says:

    At least they are honest.

    If they were Bioware, they would be saying how the game looks and runs 10000x times better than the old version or something (plus INFINITE number of endings).

  45. Sparkasaurusmex says:

    If they want to rush it out like this they should at least allow for some modding so’s we can fix it

  46. shiromar says:

    ” we’re crunching right now”

    Please please no crunching take your time, PC gamers have patience. Do it right or not at all.

    This is something I hate TBH. So if they release a bad port and it doesn’t sell they’ll go on and blame piracy and PC as a dead market.

    Take your time! Don’t CRUNCH!!

    • Starky says:

      PC gamers may have patience (a statement I disagree with), but investors don’t. Budgets don’t. And most of all, publishers don’t.

  47. senorpoco says:

    I am very torn. On the one hand they listened to the gamers and ported it and I want to reward that kind of behavior and encourage other studios to do the same. On the other I don’t want to buy a shoddily done port, especially one hamstrung with GFWL. I still can’t seem to play bioshock2 because of that piece of dross.

  48. sharkh20 says:

    How can you make something for xbox and ps3 and then have trouble making it run on a pc…

  49. TwwIX says:

    Quit making up excuses for lazy and incompetent developers like this! Nobody is asking them to rush the release of the game. They could have easily hired a third party PC developer to port it for them if they are incapable of doing it themselves. They won’t even invest any resources in this let alone port it fucking properly. They’ll release it and it will be met with poor sales and negative reviews. They’ll still end up blaming piracy thus perpetuating that bullshit excuse even further.

    Either do it properly or fuck off!

  50. stupid_mcgee says:

    I do not have specific knowledge of porting between 360 and PC, but it’s not really a complete cinch. There’s PLENTY of issues that can still come up. And beyond just initial porting, there’s other issues that can come up, such as the actual game engine itself. Most likely the problem is within the engine itself and not solely the fault of inferior console hardware. Hence the reason why the framerate issues are going to be existent on all platforms.

    So, my guess would be that it’s an engine thing, and no matter how much of a cinch porting may be, it isn’t going to make that kind of issue go away.