Sekiro’s progression will involve skill trees, upgrades, and more.
Based on everything we’ve seen so far, FromSoftware’s upcoming action adventure, Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice is looking like it’s going to be a very different beast from the Soulsborne games the studio has grown synonymous with over the years. Though they’re promising a similar level of challenge, things such as its resurrection mechanic, tonal differences from Souls, and an increased focus on stealth look like they’re going to give the experience a very different flavour.
Another thing that is going to be quite different in Sekiro is its progression mechanics. While Souls fans are used to a certain method of upgrading their character – spending a currency to power up certain attributes – Sekiro is going for something different and a little more traditional, as explained in an article over at Game Informer. That, of course, means experience points, which will fill up a meter, which, in turn, will award you with skill points.
You can then use those skill points on various skill trees at Sculptor’s Idols, which function as Sekiro’s bonfires. Skill trees can focus on anything from stealth (shinobi tree), to combat (samurai tree), to upgrading your prosthetic arm. There is a twist, though- you can only upgrade skill trees after you’ve unlocked them, which, in turn, can only be done by tracking down items specific to those skill trees in the game itself. Additionally, players can also equip special combat arts that pertain to specific play styles, and will “make you feel like you’re roleplaying in a certain way”, as per FromSoftware’s Yasuhiro Kitao.
Game Informer’s story also reveals that experience points and gold, the in-game currency, are now separate things, and that you lose neither of them once you die- though FromSoftware does give assurances that dying will have other detrimental effects regardless.
Each of the three skill trees will also allow you to shape your character in the way you see fit, and pertain to different play styles, focusing on either stealth, traditional one-to-one combat, or some trickier stuff with your prosthetic arm. The final bit is particularly interesting, because you can upgrade your arm with everything from the ability to shoot shurikens to being equipped with a giant axe. Players will also be able to collect items known as prayer beads, which will upgrade your health and posture stats.
It’s all definitely sounding very interesting, and exciting for all the right reasons- it’s very different from the formula FromSoftware has stuck to over the last few years, and it’ll be very interesting to see how well they pull it off. Both the studio and Hideki Kamiya, of course, have an excellent track record, so I, for one, am definitely excited to see how Sekiro shapes up. It launches for PS4, Xbox One, and PC on March 22.