Hey, did you know that Bloodborne is still exclusive to PlayStation? Of course you do – the internet will never let you forget. Sony recently deleted a Bloodborne-related tweet after a legion of fans followed it in the vain hope that an announcement was in the works. In fact, it doesn’t take much for the game to be trending on popular social media sites like Twitter in 2015. Even a well-aimed tweet from a well-known figure in the Souls community is liked Lance McDonald can stir up the wasps’ nest.
But while the constant whirl of fan fervor can be annoying at times, it’s ultimately based on one fundamentally solid fact: Bloodborne is one of the few modern classics limited by aging hardware. Regardless of where you fall 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 misconduct. But I’d much rather play it at 144 fps on my shiny gaming PC, and I’m far from the only fan who thinks so.
Other high-profile PS exclusives like Ghost of Tsushima, God of War and even the humble Days Gone have received patches that improve their performance on PS5 and support 4K and higher framerates. And it’s clear that Sony is committed to porting its exclusive games to PC, as God of War and Days Gone are both on Steam. Even so, Bloodborne remains stuck in the past.
These games were all developed by Sony’s own first-party studios, of course, but Elden Ring has shown developer From Software to be more than capable of performing great on these new machines. So it’s clear that FromSoft has the technical know-how to make Bloodborne run well on a PS5 or PC. In fact, McDonald itself developed an unofficial 60fps patch for Bloodborne, only playable on modded PS4 consoles. So what is the raid?
From a purely business perspective, you could argue that holding back or pausing specific IPs is beneficial for a company as big as Sony. Building anticipation for new titles is a strategy that has worked well for some in the past. That’s exactly what happened with Demon’s Souls, From Software’s cult prequel, which stuck on the old PS3 until Bluepoint’s remake brought it to a whole new generation of gamers on the PS5. While that’s a decent point, even the big Sony franchises that haven’t seen a new entry in a few years (like Uncharted) have received 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 impeccable Sekiro and highly ambitious Elden Ring pushing the boundaries of their achievements even further. Despite this, many Souls fans – myself included – insist that Bloodborne is still their greatest achievement. Surely Sony is putting money on the table by ignoring Bloodborne to this extent?
In a world where already good-looking games like The Last of Us Part 1 can get full remakes – mind you, after they’ve already been remastered once – it seems unthinkable that a game of Bloodborne’s popularity and reputation would go idle long. But this is exactly the situation we are in.
Fans have a variety of theories to explain this radio silence, ranging from the plausible to the ridiculous. For years, rumors have been circulating that Bluepoint is secretly working on a 2020 Demon’s Souls-style Bloodborne remake, or maybe even a sequel. Given that Sony owns the rights to Bloodborne and that Bluepoint has just delivered a well-received FromSoft remake, that seems entirely within the realm of possibility. However, some fans have gone so far as to suggest that Sony specifically halted production of a 4K patch to fuel the hype surrounding such a hypothetical remake. Needless to say, this seems pretty far-fetched as a business strategy.
Recent reports from reliable insiders like Jeff Grubb suggest Bluepoint is working on an original project rather than another remake. Grubb also stated that Bloodborne’s messy code would make it difficult for any developer other than From Software to actually create a remaster, and that From himself is too busy with Elden Ring to tackle such a project.
The PS3 was notoriously a difficult console to work with, but Bluepoint 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 say, but I think it’s in the ability of the studio – it’s just a matter of whether management wants to get involved or not.
For my part, I think Miyazaki’s well-established love for Bloodborne probably contributed to the current situation. Considering it’s Miyazaki’s pet project, it makes sense that the director would want to remaster or remake it for himself. Given that DLC for Elden Ring is undoubtedly in the works, it’s likely that the developer will prioritize it over any hypothetical Bloodborne-related project.
Regardless of the specifics of the situation, the bottom line is that Sony could issue a patch to bring Bloodborne’s performance up to modern standards on the PS5. 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 and one of the most critically acclaimed games of the last 10 years. While fans might annoy you with their memes and overreactions to every porridge of news, it’s important to remember that they really do have a point here. Bring Bloodborne to PC, cowards. The Old Blood demands it.
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