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"Death is a big part of Dark Souls, but it's also the loneliness when you're facing the difficulties, you're that close to giving up, but you want to take that extra step, and having this loose connection with other players is one of the things that helps you to stride on."
Miyazoe was mum as to the specifics, as you'd expect/hope, but he was able to confirm a few returning features - player invasions and summoning, blood stains that display a ghost player's final few seconds of life, and the celebrated Covenants, divine or demonic allegiances that partly determine how you'll operate online. It's not clear whether any of the original's Covenants will return.
"We still have yet to reveal a lot of the enhancements, but the core elements of the network play in Dark Souls, such as summoning other players, Covenants that help or interrupt other players, will carry over to Dark Souls 2," Miyazoe continued. "Our dev team's goal is to enhance some of these elements even further, so that you still have that loose connection - how you interact with other players will be an enhanced experience, a new experience."