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Dark Souls 3 will play a little faster, have fewer but bigger maps than its predecessor

Dark Souls 3

E3’s Dark Souls 3 trailer began with a bonfire, the series’ much-needed symbol of hope. “Now,” said developers FromSoftware, “only embers remain.”

The world of this second sequel from original director Hidetaka Miyazaki looks even more dilapidated than the last two – a place in mourning for a past players will never get to see. Thanks to an interview with Famitsu this week, we now know a little more about the game nested within it.

“The sense of something having ended, or destruction, is stronger,” said Miyazaki, as translated by Gematsu.

While there’ll be slightly fewer maps in Dark Souls 3 than in its predecessor, each of those areas will be “much larger”. With any luck, that’ll enable more of the winding, layered level design and concealed pathways of the original.

Miyazaki and his team have “kept the handy things” – perhaps UI improvements – from Dark Souls 2, and expanded character creation and tactical options “without sacrificing the feel of the series”.

“We added new action elements that contribute to the sense of role-playing,” said the director.

Miyazaki appears to have brought a little of Bloodborne’s speed back with him. It’s now possible to rapid fire with the short bow, and animations for the crucial transition between rolling and walking have been smoothed out.

“The speed of the action is slightly increased compared to the previous two games and balanced so you can move intuitively,” he said. “I don’t think we’re going to employ the idea of agility, otherwise the action would be stressful until you raise your stats.”

Miyazaki can’t be under the misapprehension that Dark Souls isn’t stressful, can he? Must be the translation – I ground my teeth to bone dust playing the last one.

Dark Souls 3 will come to the PC early next year.