“You cheated not only the game, but yourself. You didn’t grow. You didn’t improve. You took a shortcut and gained nothing. You experienced a hollow victory. Nothing was risked and nothing was gained. It’s sad that you don’t know the difference.”
That infamous tweet has come to encapsulate the controversy that raged around the difficulty level of Dark Souls developer FromSoftware’s latest release, Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice. The unforgiving combat that anchors the game was so white-knuckle hard that game critics over at Kotaku and Gamecrate pushed for an easy mode to make the game accessible. The Kotaku article, in particular, notes how players with chronic pain, fatigue issues or other physical disabilities could find the game impossible to complete.
Predictably, there was fan backlash to these calls: Completing FromSoftware games is often considered a sign of player skill on account of their brutal difficulty. The above tweet, for example, was in response to a PC Gamer article detailing how the author modified the game to slow down the final bosses’ attacks. Now this early cheat has been expanded upon with a new mod that allows Sekiro players to play a full-fledged easy mode.
Instead of slowing down your enemies (as a previous mod did), this mod provides more traditional stress-reducers. It ups the item drop rate, makes the player hit harder and makes weapon buffs last longer, among other goodies. Without those albatrosses around your neck, diverse players can enjoy Sekiro’s carefully crafted environments, subtle storytelling and lonely atmosphere.
FromSoftware has announced no plans for Sekiro DLC, so don’t hold your breath for an official easy mode anytime soon. If you want the best approximation of one, you better check it out over at Nexus Mods. This mod, as usual, only works for Sekiro on PC.