5 Things You Didn’t Know About Dark Souls…
From the Dark Souls Design Works Book
Dark Souls Design Works is a gorgeous collectible book which was released in Japan in 2012. Last month it was finally translated to English and released. The oversized coffee book is split into three chapters. Chapter 1 features stunning full page concept art. Chapter 2 contains art, sketches, and notes on just about everything in the game from weapons, bosses, npcs, locations, armor sets, and more. The final chapter is a massive 11 page interview with the game’s director Hidetaka Miyazaki and four of the lead designers where they explore every aspect of the design choices and creation of the world of Lordran.
Buried in these pages are many hidden revelations about one of the biggest games of the last generation, so how many do you know?
1. The Hat’s Not All – What Kind of Underwear was Big Hat Logan Wearing?
Before settling on his iconic Droopy Wizards Hat, Logan tried on a few different styles at Lordan’s Oversized Hat Emporium. I personally like the snail hat or the one that makes him look like a Russian czar.
The amount of detail work that went into the characters is incredible. They designed Logan all the way down to the breeches and rather skimpy underpants he inevitably soiled as he slid into insanity.
2. The Hidden Story of Andre the Blacksmith
Andre the Blacksmith is one of the first NPCs you meet and one of the only real friendly characters in the game. He wasn’t always content to just sit in the church basement and wait for you to bring him embers though. He once played a much more vital role in the story.
Originally, the developers intended Andre to be the mysterious Sun’s firstborn and help the player on his quest. There was even a storyboard drawn for a sequence where he would help the player progress at a certain point in the game by moving a giant statue, revealing a hidden passage leading to the catacombs!
3. The Harry Potter Connection
Miyazaki is apparently a huge Harry Potter fan. Not only were the Duke’s Archives and it’s moving staircases based off Hogwarts, but underneath those onion-y layers, Sieglinde’s face was actually modeled after Hermione!
4. Amazing Chest Ahead
The rather giant proportions of the godess Gwynevere are kind of hard to miss. Her massive gifts weren’t originally part of the design process, just the dream of an over zealous designer who Miyazaki didn’t have the heart to stop because he looked so happy!
It gets even weirder when you consider that in the game narrative, this image of her is really just an illusion created by her brother (ew.) who was raised as a girl (huh?) lives in a secret room with his fathers grave (issues?) and has snakes living underneath his robes (…).
5. Unused NPCs
There is a section of the book dedicated to unused materials and designs for the game including some cool environment and weapon designs, but the most interesting were the NPCs. Specifically this guy with his epic bear armor, who I get a definite Yurt the Silent Chief vibe from, and these two samurai wielding what looks like Uchigatanas. One of whom rings a bell to mourn the death of infants. He must really love The Tomb of the Giants then.
So how many of these facts did you know? Would you have liked Andre to have a bigger role in the story? Any other Harry Potter references you think you’ve seen? From Software has a history of reusing characters and ideas across games (Patches!) so maybe we will see some of these NPCs appear in one form or another when Dark Souls 2 is released March 15th. Until then, for more Dark Souls action check out our preview of the recent Dark Souls 2 beta test, purchase the Design Works book (you won’t regret it), and keep praising the sun on TheNerdyBomb!