Hey, did you know that Bloodborne is still a PlayStation exclusive? Of course you do: the internet will never let you forget. Sony recently deleted a Bloodborne-related tweet after a legion of fans piled on it in the vain hope that an announcement was underway. In fact, it doesn’t take long for the 2015 game to trend on popular social media sites like Twitter. A pointed tweet from a well-known figure in the Souls community also likes it Lance McDonald can move the hornet’s nest.
But while the constant whirlwind of fan fervor can be annoying at times, it ultimately rests on a fundamentally sound fact: Bloodborne is one of the few modern classics limited by aging hardware. Regardless of where you are on the console/PC divide, the fact that the version of Bloodborne you can play on your shiny new PS5 is still locked at 1080p/30fps borders on publisher negligence. But I’d much rather play it at 144fps on my shiny gaming PC, and I’m far from the only fan who feels this way.
High-profile PS-exclusive companions like Ghost of Tsushima, God of War, and even the humble Days Gone have received patches that improve their performance on PS5, supporting 4K and higher frame rates. And it’s clear that Sony is busy bringing its exclusives to PC, as God of War and Days Gone are both on Steam. Despite this, Bloodborne remains stuck in the past.
These games were all made by Sony’s own studios, of course, but Elden Ring has proven that developer From Software is more than capable of delivering great performance on these new machines. As such, it’s clear that FromSoft has the technical expertise to make Bloodborne play well on a PS5 or PC for that matter. In fact, McDonald himself has developed an unofficial 60fps patch for Bloodborne that can only be played on modded PS4 consoles. So, what is the problem?
From a pure business perspective, you could argue that withholding or suspending certain IPs is beneficial for a company as big as Sony. Building anticipation for new titles is a strategy that has worked well in the past for some. That’s exactly what happened with From Software’s cult progenitor, Demon’s Souls, which was stuck on the ancient PS3 until the Bluepoint remake brought it to a whole new generation of PS5 gamers. While that’s a decent point, even big Sony franchises that haven’t seen a new entry in a few years (like Uncharted) have been getting collections, ports, and remasters.
In the seven years since Bloodborne’s release, From Software’s legacy as the greatest developer of all time has only grown, with the immaculate Sekiro and hugely ambitious Elden Ring pushing the envelope of their achievements even further. That said, many Souls fans insist Bloodborne is their finest achievement yet, including me. Surely Sony is leaving money on the table by ignoring Bloodborne up to this point?
In a world where already good-looking games like The Last of Us Part 1 can receive full-blown remakes – having already been remastered once, mind you – it seems unthinkable that a game with Bloodborne’s popularity and reputation would remain fallow. for so long. Yet that is exactly the situation we find ourselves in.
Fans have a variety of theories explaining this radio silence and they range from the plausible to the ridiculous. Rumors have circulated for years that Bluepoint is secretly working on a Demon’s Souls 2020-style remake of Bloodborne, or possibly even a sequel. Given that Sony owns the rights to Bloodborne and Bluepoint just delivered a well-received FromSoft remake, this seems to be within the realm of possibility. But some fans go so far as to claim that Sony specifically halted production on a 4K patch to build excitement for such a hypothetical remake. Needless to say, this seems pretty far-fetched as a business strategy.
Recent reports from reputable insiders like Jeff Grubb indicate that Bluepoint is working on an original project rather than just another remake. Grubb also said that Bloodborne’s messy code would make it difficult for any developer other than From Software to actually create a remaster, and that From itself is too busy with Elden Ring to tackle such a project.
The PS3 was a notoriously difficult console to work with, yet Bluepoint has managed to capture many of the eccentricities of the original Demon’s Souls in its remake with minimal input from FromSoft. It’s hard to know for sure, but I think it’s within the capabilities of the studio – it’s just whether management wants to commit or not.
For my part, I think Miyazaki’s established love for Bloodborne has probably contributed to the current situation. Considering it’s Miyazaki’s favorite project, it makes sense that the director would want to create a remaster or remake for himself. However, given that the DLC for Elden Ring is no doubt in the works, it’s likely that the developer is prioritizing any hypothetical Bloodborne-related projects.
Regardless of the peculiarities of the situation, the bottom line is that Sony could release a patch to fix the performance of Bloodborne on PS5 to modern standards. We’ve seen the fan patch in action – we know it’s possible.
Even if you’re not a fan of the game, there’s no denying that Bloodborne is a major Sony exclusive, as well as one of the most critically acclaimed games of the last 10 years. And so, while fans might annoy you with their memes and overreactions to every crumb of news, it’s important to remember that they are indeed right here. Bring Bloodborne to PC, you cowards. The Old Blood requires it.
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