In a nutshell: Games like Dark Souls and Sifu are somewhat off-putting to many players. The learning curve and difficulty are just too much for some gamers to handle. To make its kung fu game Sifu more approachable, the developer is adding difficulty modes to the settings. The modification could make the game much more attractive to the casual gamer and result in a few more sales for the studio.
Sifu developer Sloclap announced on Tuesday that it would add difficulty modes to the Souls-like game in a content update coming May 3. There will be three levels — Student, Desciple, and Master. The game is already very challenging, so presumably, Student and Disciple are degrees easier than the game's current default difficulty.
In addition to making the game more approachable to those not patient enough to try and die a gazillion times, Sloclap is also adding "Advanced Training" and the ability to change outfits. It also laid out its roadmap for the remainder of the year.
The Summer update brings advanced scoring and gameplay modifiers. The Fall patch adds even more modifiers and new outfits. It also includes a replay editor to create film-like replays of your best fights, which sounds pretty cool.
Check out our free content update roadmap for #Sifu! At this stage, four major updates are planned - the first one will be available next Tuesday, May 3rd, along with our physical edition! "" #SifuGame pic.twitter.com/8UBEWwJKS4— SifuGame (@SifuGame) April 26, 2022
Finally, the Winter update will add an Arena mode. That patch will have new gameplay modifiers and outfits, as well. Sloclap didn't elaborate, but it sounds like Arena might be a PvP mode pitting online players against each other to show who is the true Sifu.
We're working on an upgrade bundle that will be available soon! All the updates above are free and for all editions, although we might add a few more exclusive outfits for the Deluxe owners !— SifuGame (@SifuGame) April 26, 2022
Sloclap points out that all its planned content updates for standard and deluxe owners are free. However, it may add some extra costumes exclusively for the deluxe version of the game. It's also working on an "upgrade bundle" so that standard players can upgrade to deluxe for the extra perks.
With new outfits coming in each update, it causes one to wonder what kind of cosmetics will be available. Someone made a Matrix mod for Sifu on PC. Could we see some Matrix-like costumes? Probably not. It would likely require expensive licensing, so don't hold your breath. But it wouldn't hurt for console player to cross their fingers since they don't have access to cool mods like that one.
For me, lowering difficulty levels seem to water down Sifu somewhat. After all, like the Souls series, Sifu was designed to be super challenging, with the reward being the immense sense of accomplishment when completing the game — heck, for defeating a level boss for that matter.
It also makes a core gameplay element less exciting. As you progress, each time you die, you are revived but become a bit older. With that age comes wisdom in the form of more powerful moves and combos, while also making you more frail. Adding an easy mode limits that game mechanic greatly. Fortunately, Sifu has a lot of replay value, so bumping up the difficulty and playing through again wouldn't be so bad.