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Dark Souls - "Remember, Caesar, thou art mortal"

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  • Dark Souls - "Remember, Caesar, thou art mortal"

    Anyone play this game?

    I started playing it about a week ago, and all you hear about it is true - the game hates you. To say it won't hold your hand is an understatement - the thought of a tutorial repulses the game and only hands out token "Press X to do something vague that we won't explain". Some say that's part of the challenge, but those people have their head stuck so far up their own butt that they might as well check themselves for polyps. The game lacks polish in many areas and the graphics border on bad.

    But with that said, once I mastered the huge learning curve and watched a few YouTube tutorials, I have to say that I'm in the zone. The game, for all its faults, is actually quite amazing in about three key ways.

    1) The game rewards out of the box thinking - Okay, sure, the game fights dirty; but that road goes both ways. See that humongous demon with the even larger warhammer? If you fight fair and square, that demon will pull out some moves up its abyssal sleeve that no one save a physic can predict, but you know what? You can make the boss fight a joke if you keep going up the ledge above the demon and falling on its head with the point of your sword aimed at his right brain lobe. Or even more hilarious, just kick the massive black knight in adamantine armour off a cliff if he foolishly gets too near the edge. In short, the fights are challenging (and sometimes stupidly unfair), but thinking outside the box can reward you greatly.

    2) The game world is superbly designed - The world of Dark Souls is massive, detailed, and varied ranging from standard medieval castle to foggy eldritch forests and traversing through the game makes you think you've travelled many miles far away, only to realize that you've only gone up or down a few stories around the same castle. The verticality and interconnectedness of the game world is inspired. I can think of no other game that pulls off the same thing....and all of this without a single loading screen.

    3) The story - Actually, I don't know much of the story; but that's only because the game eschews standard exposition dumps. You slowly piece together the backstory and lore of this crumbling and decrepit world by carefully listening to the few non-hostile NPCs, reading item descriptions, and analyzing the subtle environmental storytelling. I do think the story writers could have been less coy, but they get credit for avoiding massive text or cut-scene dumps (are you listening, Hideo Kojima?)

    For those of you who have played, I'm playing as a pyromancer with a heavy emphasis on sword and shield and maneuverability with a smidgen of bow and arrow for range. It's hard to say how far I am into the game given the non-linearity of the game, but I just got to the bonfire before the Valley of the Drakes....which is apparently meant for players far more leveled than I am.

  • #2
    Originally posted by Manwë Súlimo View Post
    Anyone play this game?

    I started playing it about a week ago, and all you hear about it is true - the game hates you. To say it won't hold your hand is an understatement - the thought of a tutorial repulses the game and only hands out token "Press X to do something vague that we won't explain". Some say that's part of the challenge, but those people have their head stuck so far up their own butt that they might as well check themselves for polyps. The game lacks polish in many areas and the graphics border on bad.

    But with that said, once I mastered the huge learning curve and watched a few YouTube tutorials, I have to say that I'm in the zone. The game, for all its faults, is actually quite amazing in about three key ways.

    1) The game rewards out of the box thinking - Okay, sure, the game fights dirty; but that road goes both ways. See that humongous demon with the even larger warhammer? If you fight fair and square, that demon will pull out some moves up its abyssal sleeve that no one save a physic can predict, but you know what? You can make the boss fight a joke if you keep going up the ledge above the demon and falling on its head with the point of your sword aimed at his right brain lobe. Or even more hilarious, just kick the massive black knight in adamantine armour off a cliff if he foolishly gets too near the edge. In short, the fights are challenging (and sometimes stupidly unfair), but thinking outside the box can reward you greatly.

    2) The game world is superbly designed - The world of Dark Souls is massive, detailed, and varied ranging from standard medieval castle to foggy eldritch forests and traversing through the game makes you think you've travelled many miles far away, only to realize that you've only gone up or down a few stories around the same castle. The verticality and interconnectedness of the game world is inspired. I can think of no other game that pulls off the same thing....and all of this without a single loading screen.

    3) The story - Actually, I don't know much of the story; but that's only because the game eschews standard exposition dumps. You slowly piece together the backstory and lore of this crumbling and decrepit world by carefully listening to the few non-hostile NPCs, reading item descriptions, and analyzing the subtle environmental storytelling. I do think the story writers could have been less coy, but they get credit for avoiding massive text or cut-scene dumps (are you listening, Hideo Kojima?)

    For those of you who have played, I'm playing as a pyromancer with a heavy emphasis on sword and shield and maneuverability with a smidgen of bow and arrow for range. It's hard to say how far I am into the game given the non-linearity of the game, but I just got to the bonfire before the Valley of the Drakes....which is apparently meant for players far more leveled than I am.
    Yeah, I remember that game. I still can't get pass skinny guy and fat idiot.
    Better to illuminate than merely to shine, to deliver to others contemplated truths than merely to contemplate.

    -Thomas Aquinas

    I love to travel, But hate to arrive.

    -Hernando Cortez

    What is the good of experience if you do not reflect?

    -Frederick 2, Holy Roman Emperor

    Comment


    • #3
      Say who?

      Comment


      • #4
        Prepare to die.
        "Kahahaha! Let's get lunatic!"-Add LP
        "And the Devil did grin, for his darling sin is pride that apes humility"-Samuel Taylor Coleridge
        Oh ye of little fiber. Do you not know what I've done for you? You will obey. ~Cerealman for Prez.

        Comment


        • #5
          I bought the PC version around Christmas and my first impressions were not all that great. PS2-era graphics yet it runs horribly on my PC that can run games like Battlefield 3 on max settings, awkward controls even with a controller,...and the dreaded Games for Windows Live *shudders*

          Granted it was their first game on PC, there's mods that greatly improve performance and improve textures, and they did eventually make a patch that removed GFWL, but I've just been playing too much Skyrim at the moment. Maybe I'll check it out again in a few weeks.

          Comment


          • #6
            Originally posted by Knowing Thomas View Post
            I bought the PC version around Christmas and my first impressions were not all that great. PS2-era graphics yet it runs horribly on my PC that can run games like Battlefield 3 on max settings, awkward controls even with a controller,...and the dreaded Games for Windows Live *shudders*

            Granted it was their first game on PC, there's mods that greatly improve performance and improve textures, and they did eventually make a patch that removed GFWL, but I've just been playing too much Skyrim at the moment. Maybe I'll check it out again in a few weeks.
            Yeah, Dark Souls is one of the few games I've bought for console (Xbox 360) rather than for PC.

            Personally I got to to first bell and rung it and then I progressed a bit further, into the depths, up until the first Butcher.

            It's been a while since I played it though, I'm currently busy playing Civ IV, V, and Heroes of Might and Magic III (Which I used to own a long time ago, but had to re-buy on GOG since I lost my original CD )
            ~Formerly known as Chrawnus~

            Comment


            • #7
              I love this game, and I hate this game. I beat Demon's Souls, almost beat Dark Souls before I lost the disc to it, and then beat Dark Souls 2. I hate them all, but they're so good.

              Ornstein and Smough took me a solid thirty minutes to beat, on my second attempt. The final boss in Demon's Souls, the False King, took me ~40 attempts (I lost count of exactly how many).
              Last edited by Zymologist; 02-06-2015, 10:25 AM.
              I DENOUNCE DONALD J. TRUMP AND ALL HIS IMMORAL ACTS.

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by Chrawnus View Post
                Heroes of Might and Magic III
                I DENOUNCE DONALD J. TRUMP AND ALL HIS IMMORAL ACTS.

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by Manwë Súlimo View Post
                  Say who?
                  I think he means Ornstein and Smough...my personal favorite boss fight in the trilogy and arguably one of the hardest boss fights in all three of the games. It's a doozy.
                  I DENOUNCE DONALD J. TRUMP AND ALL HIS IMMORAL ACTS.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by Manwë Súlimo View Post
                    Say who?
                    Executioner Smough and Dragonslayer Ornstein.
                    Better to illuminate than merely to shine, to deliver to others contemplated truths than merely to contemplate.

                    -Thomas Aquinas

                    I love to travel, But hate to arrive.

                    -Hernando Cortez

                    What is the good of experience if you do not reflect?

                    -Frederick 2, Holy Roman Emperor

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      The Capra Demon can go to hell.

                      That is all.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by Manwë Súlimo View Post
                        The Capra Demon can go to hell.

                        That is all.
                        The Royal Rat Authority in DS2 is similar to that one. Very frustrating fight.
                        I DENOUNCE DONALD J. TRUMP AND ALL HIS IMMORAL ACTS.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Alright so I'm giving the game a second chance. Having trouble picking a character and sticking with it though. Will post screenies once I get farther than the Undead Asylum.

                          Also:

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Originally posted by Knowing Thomas View Post
                            Alright so I'm giving the game a second chance. Having trouble picking a character and sticking with it though. Will post screenies once I get farther than the Undead Asylum.

                            Also:
                            The game is very rewarding, but...well, you already know the but. Keep us updated.
                            I DENOUNCE DONALD J. TRUMP AND ALL HIS IMMORAL ACTS.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              2) The game world is superbly designed - The world of Dark Souls is massive, detailed, and varied ranging from standard medieval castle to foggy eldritch forests and traversing through the game makes you think you've travelled many miles far away, only to realize that you've only gone up or down a few stories around the same castle. The verticality and interconnectedness of the game world is inspired. I can think of no other game that pulls off the same thing....and all of this without a single loading screen.
                              I discovered this after taking the elevator from undead parish. The vertical level layout really makes the game stand out.
                              community_image_1426508489.jpg

                              I'm enjoying the game a lot now. I've become more accustomed to the controls, I disabled Games for Windows Live, and I've installed a mod that improves framerate, but I still have one issue with the game. You have this super interesting world with great aesthetics with enemies, locations, and armors, but the story is so barebones and the world is not explained well. What is Lordran? Was the killing of all the dragons by Nito, Gwyn and scary witch lady a good thing? Is everyone I'm meeting an undead? Is EVERYONE in the world undead? I think I barely scratched the surface but I get the impression that I'm never going to get any answers.

                              Here's me hanging out with one of my favorite characters so far.
                              2015-04-17_00001.jpg

                              Comment

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