Elden Ring: The Convergence is a massive overhaul feature that doesn't want to feel like a mod

Elden Ring: The Convergence is a massive overhaul feature that doesn't want to feel like a mod

Mods can go beyond putting the Teletubbies in Left 4 Dead. They can alter the structure of entire games, modify how they begin, or otherwise create entirely new games unto themselves. Gargantuan in design, these large-scale projects may give new life to older games or completely revisit how we play them, and this years Elden Ring is getting one such mod.

Elden Ring: The Convergence is a massive project that will completely rewrite the playbook for FromSoftware''s most recent title. Throughout the process, a team of seven modders have begun modifying their skills, weapons, armour, spells, and bosses to the open world game. It''s a massive success, one that follows in the footsteps of Dark Souls 3: The Convergence.

We started it as a simple game with intentions to revamp the spellcasting system in Dark Souls 3, according to creative director Paul CouchJockey Gooch. After a while, we realized that we might really create the Dark Souls game we had always wanted to play.

Gooch considers the experience as a way to inform the teams approach to Elden Ring, which you can keep an eye on in the group Discord. We now understand that it''s better to be ambitious from the start and have confidence that the pieces will fall into place.

Elden Ring: The Convergence is being both planned and developed concurrently, to provide the players the opportunity to get the ball rolling and make modifications when necessary, like if a FromSoftware upgrade puts a lot of work out of place.

My major concern for this new version of The Convergence was whether or not the team would handle the Elden Rings open world, as that one design choice might completely change how this mod takes shape. According to Gooch, it means that The Lands Between will not receive the same level of meticulous treatment as Dark Souls 3 did, but this might be very beneficial.

It''s similar to when you clean a small portion of the kitchen counter and the one clean spot makes the rest look moist, making the rest look sluggish, thus you''re forced to clean the whole thing, according to Gooch. One small area in Elden Ring might be a major contributor to the company''s development.

Gooch said that the team will leverage Elden Ring''s open world vision. Right now, we are grappling with the idea of several starting locations for different classes, but I''ll no longer make promises.

According to Gooch, the current concept is that there will be ten or eleven starting classes, and once you select one, you will begin the game in a small building or platform out in an ethereal plane. Next, on the platform there will be a certain number of altars that you may interact with.

These altars are then the subclasses. For example, if you start the game as a Warrior, there will be three altars. One might be for the Gladiator (powerstance focused), one for the Berserker (two-hand focus), and another for the Dreadnought (weapon and shield focus). However, the team is currently lacking the tools to pull this off, although it does not mean that someone else will make them in the future.

Changeing the game as expected might result in some serious balance issues, but Gooch explained how this will be taken into account and hopefully resolved with a lot of work throughout the development.

Elden Ring is set to perform the best tests for the player, the first being Margit and The Fell Omen. Through the aforementioned testing, Gooch wants players to create these moments for themselves.

The player should, in a sense, be able to create their own choke-points in a way. If a player wants to defeat the main boss in the mountaintops before the one in Limgrave, he can, but it won''t be easy, according to him.

According to Gooch, the above class starting system will hopefully be incorporated into this idea. Each room will have its own best path, which will include everything that benefits that character, and if they follow the path, they get access to every beneficial item throughout the playthrough.

We want that new players and veteran challenge runners to feel involved by delivering a wide range of potential paths, according to Gooch. Each with a very unique route through the game.

Gooch says that his projects have a successful planning process. I placed myself in the shoes of a player who has mastered their ability to make a certain type of character and see how that would be done. If the game is viable, then it will be great. However, if the game leaves me out in the cold, I will build bridges to support that playthrough.

These bridges will become highways of advancement and create a system in which there are no closed doors, according to Gooch.

With a project sized for The Convergence that improves the game''s efficiency at its very core, there will be ongoing issues with the mods balance, and Gooch explained how his previous experience has prepared the team for this.

According to Gooch, the balance process is a case of whack-a-mole. First, you adjust the most visible unbalanced things and let the next unbalanced things rear their ugly heads then repeat adnauseum. There is absolutely no rushing it.

The goal of achieving this balance is near impossible, with the team plummeting to honoring previous FromSoftware games instead. This level of reverence for the Souls genre fits deep within Gooch and his organization, extending to their own lore expansions and the overall quality of the experience.

I always strive to reflect on the story and themes of the original game. Adding on lore via headcanon or commonly agreed upon concepts opens all kinds of doors for original designs, explained Gooch, adding we have a very high standard for polish and presentation. We never want the mod to feel like a mod.

Elden Ring: The Convergence is set to be one of the most important modding tasks of recent memory, with its development team accumulating their previous experience to tackle a new model that will improve how every player interacts with one of the gaming''s most impressive open worlds. It is not something the team takes lightly, who understands the mammoth challenge ahead of them.

We have the benefit of time, but we do this only because we love it. This gives us the opportunity to finish things and expand on things that game companies simply cannot do.

If you want to support the Convergence team directly, check out Patreon. There is currently no release date on the project.

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