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Red Hook Studios recently released the Redemption Road early access update for Darkest Dungeon II in order to prepare the game for its upcoming May 8, 2023 release. Which makes now a good time to look back at the game's early access journey. This recent VG247 interview with the studio's design director Tyler Sigman and creative director Chris Bourassa does exactly that.
As a result, we can learn a thing or two about the impact of player feedback on the final game, the areas that weren't all that well received initially and were subsequently improved the most, and even some cut content that may still make its way into the game post-launch.
Here's a couple of sample paragraphs to give you an idea of what to expect:
These include, but are not limited to, an underground region where every fight would be against a giant enemy, flipping the typical battle system on its head in a unique way. “So, we had a huge four-slot enemy there, so every fight would be a massive drawn-out slug fest,” teases Bourassa. “We kind-of thought that would be a neat twist on the combat and there are lots of implications to that – if there’s only one target you’re able to really set-up and execute combos.”
Then there are characters. Funky, awful hags, crones, gargoyles, and other horrific monsters. None of these have been thrown out the window. Instead, they could very well come back as post-launch content injections. As Sigman notes, they all go in the hopper for potential post-1.0 content. Nothing is left on the cold, dank, cutting room floor of this dungeon.