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Dark Souls PC to Have Voice Chat? Nope

This isn’t really a news story because it ended up being a non story. Apparently Namco listed that the game would require a microphone for voice chat. The specs flat out said:

Additional: Multiplayer requires microphone headset support

So Eurogamer ran the story (perhaps maybe a phone call next time before going to print rather than after?) assuming it was true when in fact Namco just listed it incorrectly, which yet again caused the PC gamer crowd to get all twisted up and mad. If you don’t know, general voice/partychat in Dark Souls is disabled on the consoles. This is a solo game, even when playing with someone during a boss fight. It’s kind of a big part of the design so adding built in and required voice chat would be…bizarre.

Then again so is the reaction from some PC gamers to the entire Prepare to Die edition.

Here’s a brief rundown:

*PC gamers read about this awesome game on the Xbox 360/PS3 called Dark Souls. It’s a wonderful game. Console only.
*Phone calls are made, petitions are started, Namco and From Software are surprised by the outpouring from fans who want to play a PC version of their beloved hardcore RPG.
*The publisher decides to release a PC version and will also include a slew of new goodies — areas, bosses, new PvP etc. Woo.
*It’s reported that the game is basically a port and will not be optimized for the PC and that From Software had a hell of a time making it work. (Now, keep in mind From didn’t say that it didn’t get it to work, just that it was a bitch to do.) I saw it at E3, it looked great, ran fine, and I was floored when I read about the gnashing of teeth after the show was over.
*Some PC gamers are mad.

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Here’s a snippet of what I mean, taken from the Eurogamer comment section (and there are a LOT like this in various threads)

What was the point of that whole petition we all signed if we gonna land up with a game that is sub par?

No optimisation? Ok my dual core is going to be 100% all the time, nice job Namco Bandai

All the joy from the PC version announcement has completely dissipated. This is really sad.

I’ll say this: if Dark Souls on the PC has the exact same framerate as the Xbox 360 version, even the choppy bits in Blighttown, but adds solid new content and allows those who play games exclusively on the PC to experience this wonderful game even if the framerate dips below 30FPS from time to time, then PC games should thank Namco and From Software from the bottom of their hearts and be happy that there is a PC version to play at all. There wasn’t going to be.

(Oh, but if the framerates are worse than the 360 then I reserve the right to retract my comments and agree with them.)

Lastly, there is an interview over at IFC (Yeah, IFC) with Nobu Taguchi of Bandai who discusses some of the concerns as well as some of the new goodies, including the new PvP arena.

“In order to maintain the authenticity of what the consoles already have, we basically did make a direct port plus a few tweaks to kind of make things a little bit better. I won’t say it’s moving at 60 frames per second or anything, but it moves to the extent that it satisfies a lot of people’s concerns that they had with it.”

The horror.


Bill Abner

Bill has been writing about games for the past 16 years for such outlets as Computer Games Magazine, GameSpy, The Escapist, GameShark, and Crispy Gamer. He will continue to do so until his wife tells him to get a real job.

13 thoughts to “Dark Souls PC to Have Voice Chat? Nope”

  1. While I think it all started back during the ridiculous out cry over Valve having the audacity to release “Left 4 Dead 2” only a year or so after releasing “Left 4 Dead”, it really seems to me that recently – over the last several months – gamers have become an insanely whiny and self entitled group.

    Always with the petitions and the outcries and the whinging and the demands. I don’t see this so much as consumer empowerment, considering there is an outcry over any and all perceived slights.

    1. Let’s face it though, 2012 has become the year of disappointment (with a few rare gems of course). No one is entitled for expecting there money’s worth. If Dark Souls: PtDE was free, well sure, the complaints would be egregious. But even at $40 clams, if the game’s core engine mechanics hinder game play (on the target PC requirements) due to being a quick & dirty “port” then I have little sympathy for Namco Bandai.

      We’ll see in two months when it comes out.

      1. ‘hinder game play’

        That’s the key here though. There is no evidence anywhere of that being the case. The framerate on the 360 was fine. There was a few areas where it dropped, and it was noticeable, but in the 150 hours I spent with it, I can count on one hand the number of times I noticed a slowdown and I never died due to it. I died due to stupidity.

        If the PC version is a direct port and plays identically to they console version, contains new areas, new PvP, and new bosses…wtf do people want?

        If, however, the PC version runs like a dog and is worse than the console version then of course people should get miffed and simply not buy it until/if it get fixed.

        But as I said there is absolutely no evidence of that being the case.

        1. Maybe it’s a “lost in translation” with the company’s comments (not being the usually “it’ll run on even a doritos’ chip with 60fps @ 1080p” type marketing BS).

          I’m hoping the for the best. I’ve been eye balling that green unlock bar on my steam account for awhile now, but the comments from the producer;

          “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.”

          Yikes! Thanks for the honesty Daisuke Uchiyama, but shit that doesn’t sound good at all. I’d be more at ease with a follow up of “we’ll get around to making it work better in later patch”.

  2. As a PC gamer, man I sure do understand why we get stigmatized as whiny bitches.

    And come on Eurogamer you’re better than that

  3. I weep for humanity when I see that there are people signing petitions for video games.

    Talking to somebody while playing Dark Souls would just be _weird_.

    1. ACT 1

      Two men sit at their computers. Each of them are playing Dark Souls. Each has a headset mic so that they can speak to each other.

      Man 1: Whoops, I died.
      Man 2: Me too.

      ACT 2

      Man 1: Dammit, I died again.
      Man 2: So did I.

      ACT 3

      Man 1: Hey, I beat the—nope, I died.
      Man 2: Yep. Me too.


      1. You left out the details.

        Man 1 is listening to Tupac the entire time, and Man 2 can hear it through the mic.

        Man 2 calls Man 1 a “fag” after burping and farting. Man 1 sighs deeply.

        Man 1 is actually a twelve year old boy.

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