Hidetaka Miyazaki, the head designer behind Elden Ring, Dark Souls, and Bloodborne, has made Time’s 100 Most Influential People of 2023. And you don’t have to take our word for it. Miyazaki has been praised by none other than Naughty Dog’s Neil Druckmann, who describes Elden Ring as “a great ambassador for video games” in a way that “a passive medium like TV can never re-create.”
Miyazaki’s approach to storytelling will influence Naughty Dog’s future games
In the blurb for the Time piece, Druckmann describes the feeling we all felt playing a Soulsbourne game for the first time. He felt “miserable” dying over and over again, but then he learned to pay attention to the details and be more deliberate. Soon enough, he was able to explore a world that rewarded him “with tension, beauty, and surprise.”
Most of all, he commends Miyazaki’s games for making the player “feel accomplished and smart” without having “to overexplain the mechanics or the lore.” They trust the player and the community to figure out how to beat a tough boss or enemy on their own. This has led the developers at Naughty Dog, who spoke with Miyazaki this year, to hand the reins over to the players in future games without so much handholding.
Miyazaki joins Nintendo’s Shigeru Miyamoto, who was named one of TIME’s most influential people back in 2007.
In 2021, it was revealed that Miyazaki was compelled to enter the games industry after playing the PS2 classic ICO.