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189 of 197 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars a love/hate relationship
Months ago, the boyfriend called from Gamestop while returning a couple of Silent Hill games we foolishly bought one weekend. "Google games & tell me the first one that comes up that looks good."

For the next few weeks I sat beside him & watched in awe as he struggled to get through the Asylum Demon (the very first boss, maybe 10 minutes into the game). As time...
Published on June 20, 2012 by mmccullah17

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34 of 43 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Impulsive non-gamer
I'm not a huge gamer, but a few times a month I might waste half a day or so dorking out on a rpg. I bought this on impulse because of the large text "PREPARE TO DIE"! They are not joking. I died 6 times in the tutorial. Yea I suck, whatever. I guess the creators were going for strategy because if you suddenly find yourself fighting 3 or more enemies at once you better...
Published on April 19, 2012 by hated and proud


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20 of 26 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Obsessively fun, amazingly real, sharply dark, hauntingly beautiful gaming perfection., January 13, 2012
By 
Storylover (Philadelphia, PA USA) - See all my reviews
(TOP 500 REVIEWER)    (VINE VOICE)   
= Fun:5.0 out of 5 stars 
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This review is from: Dark Souls - Playstation 3 (Video Game)
I almost skipped this game. I was pre-ordering several games (can't even remember what they were) but I was not familiar with this title. I don't know why I pre-ordered it, but when I did, I almost cancelled my order. Then, when it came, I popped it in the PS3 and played for about 10 minutes, died about 3 times, and got very frustrated. Why is this fun? What is going on? I took it out of the game, and played Drake 3 (which really is a fantastic game in its own right).

I was about to move on to Skyrim when my wife put Dark Souls in one night. Why? I'm not sure. Neither is she. But she died. Quickly. And died again. And again. And then we realized that dying was part of the point of the game, and we should just let it roll. So we did. And then about 12 hours later, we came up for air.

We have been playing this game nonstop, every day, for a couple months now. We have not yet completed this game to our satisfaction. We will continue to play it. It inhabits our thoughts, our plans, our dreams. It is beautiful, frustrating, haunting, and fascinating. The slow spinout of the story line is incredible, told with much inference and deliberation. The graphics are peerless--simply magical--and the sound design of worthy of the Lord of the Rings movies!

We love this game. It is amazing. If you are into dark fantasy, and are willing to be a little frustrated up front but know you can hang in there, then get this game. This is easily the best game of this genre that we have played, and one of the best in the last 3-4 years. I give it an enthusiastic 10/10.
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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Try Dying, February 1, 2012
By 
C. Cross (Fayetteville, Georgia United States) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
= Fun:5.0 out of 5 stars 
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This review is from: Dark Souls - Playstation 3 (Video Game)
I purchased this game on a whim. I was reading about Skyrim on many news gaming sites (IGN, Ars, etc.) and noted several mentions of this game as something to whet one's appetite while waiting for Skyrim's release. After 40+ hours of gameplay, I've never purchased Skyrim and realistically I have no reason to play the game now.

I've been gaming for over 20 years and it's extremely rare to experience the thrill, challenge, and obsession with a game such as Dark Souls. I cannot even remember the last game that occupied my thoughts all hours of the day. The environment is rich, rewarding, and extremely dangerous. An encounter with a low-level enemy can easily result in death. There is not a moment in this game when one can be reckless unless death is the goal.

If the single-player action is not enough, Dark Souls contains one of the most innovative multiplayer environments in gaming: all players are essentially in their own world, but because of the flow of events in the universe, one can observe the deaths of others as they are playing by activating blood stains. This is useful for avoiding the same fate as someone else as well as an opportunity to laugh at another's misfortune as their character jumps down a well or falls off a cliff. One even has the ability to become human again and thus become subjected to invasions or choose to offer help to someone in need.

The multiple paths through the story line, the many covenants one can join in order to gain favor or new abilities, and the innovative multiplayer environment are really unparalleled in any game on any platform.

If the one star reviews are not enough of a warning for gamers accustomed to the "easy" way of gaming developers have offered over the past 10 years -- an approach where death is not important -- expect to be frustrated. Expect to die early and often. Expect a challenge. Expect the greatest game you've ever experienced.

UPDATE (02-25-13):

My review above still stands, but I would like to add that I only have two character slots left in the game and I no longer play video games -- I play Dark Souls.
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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars One of the most well constructed video game worlds in gaming history, October 25, 2011
= Fun:5.0 out of 5 stars 
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This review is from: Dark Souls - Playstation 3 (Video Game)
For the most part, it's Demon's Souls. It feels like Demon's Souls, it controls like Demon's Souls, it looks like Demon's Souls and it sounds like Demon's Souls. And that is an absolutely wonderful thing. Demon's Souls's combat just felt so good. The hit detection was damn near perfect, the player and enemy move sets were all really good, and it was just the most rewarding and fluid combat I've ever seen in an Action-RPG. The new, additional moves like leaping, plunging and lunging attacks are a nice touch. Excluding one particular change, that is how I would describe Dark Souls; Demon's Souls an extra nice touch.

However, the changes to world design absolutely blow Demon's Souls out of the water. While the level design is very similar to Demon's Souls, the way the world is constructed and connected is simply genius. I cannot praise it enough. It is similar to a 3D Metroidvania game like, for example, Soul Reaver 1, but without the permanent upgrades that open up new areas. It is, excluding the Tutorial level, Anor Londo and the Dukes Archives, simply one huge world with branching paths, hidden passages, and a crazy amount of secrets. I think Dark Souls is going to go down in gaming history as arguably the best, most realize gaming worlds ever devised. FROM Software's decision to make Dark Souls's world a single, flowing interconnected world provides this game with a sense of scope and scale that was simply impossible for Demon's Souls hub based, level select design.

The environments themselves are better both graphically and artistically. The decrepit and weathered Undeadburg is definitely a set up from Demon's Souls Boletaria Palace. The vines and plan life in the first stages of overtaking the city really help it "pop" more than Boletaria Palace. Blackroot Forest is amazing, and a unique departure from traditional zones while still feeling appropriate and well made. Not only that, the game's levels are for the most part, MUCH more well lit. You will usually be able to see your surroundings very clearly. Demon's Souls, while a beautiful game, was often way too dark. Dark Souls strikes a much more appropriate balance.

Almost every aspect of Dark Souls can be described as "Like Demon's Souls, but improved upon." The music? Like Demon's Souls but heads and shoulders above its spiritual predecessor. The Bosses? Like Demon's Souls but heads and shoulders above its spiritual predecessor (Speaking of which, bosses dropping special loot under certain circumstances similar to Monster Hunter was an absolutely amazing addition, although they should have gotten more creative than "Cut off the tail.")

The covenant system, while it does need a lot of improvements to realize its full potential, is much better than Demon's Souls World Tendency mechanic. What makes the covenant system so much better is that, unlike world tendency and like everything else about Dark Souls, it really helps build and realize the game world. While many covenants are shockingly lacking in lore, useful items, and things such as that, there are several that are actually really good in that regard, namely the Chaos Servants and the Darkwraiths. It is unfortunate that the other covenants haven't been given the same attention to detail and often don't make sense. There is one faction that, just based on who leads it, should be one of the more important covenants and yet joining them only wields a very good intermediate weapon, some useless miracles, and absolutely no lore. What does the faction leader want? Why would players want to serve him and help him fulfill his goals? Why is it you can align with the faction leader, only to be forced to fight him later on in the game? At the very least, joining this faction should make the leader and optional boss. The final act would have been much more interesting if instead of requiring all four Lord Souls to open the final level, it could have been reduced to three depending on your covenant. If you join Nito you won't be forced to confront him in the final act. You could have done something where if you reach his boss room while a Gravelord Servant, he would become an active NPC that you could talk to, similar to Kaath and the Daughter of Chaos. The same could apply to the Path of the Dragon with Seath and the Chaos Servant for The Bed of Chaos. It is definitely a missed opportunity and one that would have really complimented the world design and the varying optional secret zones.

Unfortunately, the final three areas of the game fail to capture the brilliance demonstrated in the earlier sections of the game. While the zones prior to these three areas are well made, with brilliant enemy placement, layered level design focusing on exploration, the final areas of the game feel comparatively rushed and comparatively linear. It is a common element in games called Xen Syndrome, where the later sections of the game do not compare to the earlier sections. In Dark Souls, it doesn't ruin the game, but it's disappointing that they don't live up to the brilliance shown in the previous sections of the game.

Despite my complaints about how rushed the covenant system and final three areas of the game feel, this is still an absolutely top tier game. This game is easily a contender for both Game of the Year and Game of the Generation. It is an absolutely sublime, moody dark fantasy adventure that people will fondly remember for years to come. Only a select few of games have managed to enrapture me as Dark Souls has. I almost guarantee that after finished Dark Souls, you'll immediately start a second play through simply because of how satisfying this game is.

Here's hoping we see a "Devil's Souls" that takes the improvements made in Dark Souls, namely the nonlinear world and covenant system, and takes them to new heights as Dark Souls did for Demon's Souls.
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12 of 15 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars from KING'S FIELD to DARK SOULS 10+STARS if Possible!, October 10, 2011
= Fun:5.0 out of 5 stars 
This review is from: Dark Souls - Playstation 3 (Video Game)
First off, this is a love it or hate it game. I played and finished all the original King's Field series games and loved everyone of them. Unfortunately I had to take some time off during the Demon Soul period but am happy I have time now for Dark Soul's. I logged about 30 hours so far but am only about 10-15% done with the game. Most of the time I spent grinding and learning the controls.

Many people ask why I would play such a game which, in their opinion, is boring, slow pace, not enough action, clunky controls, enigmatic story line that doesn't make sense, easy to die, repetitive...if you are one of those people that feel this way, this game is probably not for you.

So what makes this game great?

The game is epic. The evils of the dimensions come together to destroy all that is good. Each evil lives in their own land of death. You are but one human who start off on a long legendary quest to rid the evils. There are many mysteries to discover. The feel is very folklore-ish and magical, no technology) The monsters are huge beasts that are simply awesome to behold.

The game is rewarding. It is a tough game that requires smarts and skills and you have a sense of accomplishment after reaching milestones. Other recents games I beat with ease lately are infamous 2, dragon age 2, dead space 2, dead island, and mass effect 2. I liked DS2, DA2, and ME2 a lot but just very easy games (without setting it on hard mode where the game is only harder because enemies have 100x more HP rather than being smarter).

The game develops nicely. You can level up your character and still have plenty to go (rather than other games where you get all the final weapons and upgrades and level ups at the end of the game and have one chapter left).

The game has a distinct style. I love the style. From the intro narration to the conversations with the NPCs you get a sense that some of here to help you, some are here to kill you, and some are here to drive you nuts with their cryptic speeches and sarcastic laughs.

GamePlay

Combat:

The very first RPGs I played were the Ultima series and I have to tell you I am used to the grinding mentally. You will have to grind in this game. You may think it is boring but actually it is not. You pick up items, you experiment with different moves, you learn the attack patterns of different enemies. It makes you better at controlling your character. Previously I mentioned it is not a button masher. You have to precisely time your buttons. Press the button too many times and you fire an extra shot of magic. Press the button at the wrong time and you do not time your riposte correctly. Combinations buttons require you press the back dash button and R1 button to lurch forward to attack while you see your character in the "ready" mode to lurch forward from dash back. You have to learn to circle your enemies (it is okay to touch the enemy, you do not get hurt until they attack). Every enemy has strengths and weaknesses. You can also strategize your surrounding (i.e. try to get on a ledge to use the dive attack to do critical damage. Many times I run around to find an advantageous position especially when I can't go toe to toe with multiple enemies. Don't be discourage if you get shut down after a few hits. There is no situation that is impossible. Think about it and adapt. There is a lot more to combat then just attacking. The enemies also have intelligence for the most part. They chase you indefinitely, strafe, block and counter, etc... This is very enjoyable. Also you noticed that the time it takes to fire off a spell or to swing your weapon is time delayed causing you to miss sometimes and even die. This is to force you to use your skill and makes it much more real.

Control:

The control feels slow and sluggish at first but that is by design. The game would be much too cheasy if you were able to shoot a million soul arrows in a row, run around fast, and shoot a couple of more, and then just run real fast around the enemies straight to the final boss and hit them a million times in a row without regard to the stamina bar. No, you will have to learn the controls because every button you press makes a big difference. Not only that but if you choose the wrong spell with the wrong item, you will try casting a spell but do nothing and get hit by an enemy. You are in total control of your character so if you were bested by an opponent, it is almost 100% your fault. The flip side is, when you go through the land and run through tons of enemies (whereas previously you died after the 2nd or 3rd enemy) you know that you have mastered your character with great satisfaction.

Camera Angle:

The camera angle is mostly perfect. Sometimes you may be on a ledge trying to twist and turn the camera to see where you are going but the view is still obstructed. But it is not a big deal as these situations are few and far between. The only issue with the camera angle I have is locking onto an enemy. You can lock onto an enemy as long as the enemy is in view on the screen and if the enemy is within a certain distance from you. I have learned to turn my camera to show the enemy on the screen and target them. The only problem I have is if there are multiple enemies. I have a hard time switching from one enemy to another. To me it is random whether the camera locks onto another enemy or simply unlocks altogether. Does anyone else have this issue? I have grinded between 20-30hours and been trying to master my controls but can never figure out if this camera issue is a glitch or not.

Real Time:

The game is very real time. You cannot pause the game. You cannot press the PS button to pause the game. The only time you can pause the game is at a bonfire and you are in the LEVELUP screen or something. One time my PS controller battery ran out and for any other normal game it automatically pauses the game for you until you switch controller. But for me I got killed when my controller ran out of battery and I was in the middle of switching to another controller. It was okay though since I only lose one humanity point to unhollow and quickly retrieved my green soul afterwards. I like real time, it keeps you going!

Leveling Up:

It takes a very long time to level up in the early levels. I am sure there is a faster way to level up later but it makes every level up attribute distribution count. I am unsure how leveling up and enemy level lock works. This mystery adds to my enjoyment as I experiment with new things. For example, if I level up vitality and gain more health or level up resistance to gain more defenese, does it even matter? When you get to a new staging area the enemies should appear similar to your level. So even if you leveled up greatly, the enemy would deal damage proportional to your level. I therefore prefer to level up to get more stamina, intelligence, faith, attunement, strength, and dexterity. I think leveling up vitality only helps if you are going back to a previous level where the enemies are weaker since they locked onto you previously when you were weaker. But to me it doesn't make sense if I have 100 health or 1000 health if they lock onto my level and do 75% damage anyways. Am I wrong about this? Not sure. Also you can use any character and become any character. Just because you choose sorcerer doesn't mean can't cast miracles or use battle axes. It is not that important what you choose in the beginning.

Walkthroughs:

I believe this game is tough enough where the walkthrough can tell you to do one thing but it is a totally different matter if you can perform that feat or not. Good stuff. Walkthroughs make it too easy these days. To me this is similar to an open book exam. You think the exam is easy because it is open book but boy are you wrong. So many things can be on the exam with limited time to look them up and whether you take the right notes or not. So whether you can perform as the walkthrough says is a totally different matter.

Weapons/Items/Rings:

From the Gifts you can choose at the beginning of the game to the items you pick up later, you get a sense of mystery, a secret to be unlocked. I have no idea what half the items do in this game especially some item descriptions are especially cryptic (like the pendant and the old witch's ring). I am old school and prefer to go over the game once before looking at walkthroughs and going a second playthrough. For those who like the mystery, it just adds to the excitement of whether or not you will ever find out what the items do. It will always be in the back of your mind. Similar to keys. Go back to the maps to find locked doors to see if your keys will work. I am always going back to past maps to see if there is anything new.

Maps:

I like how the maps are intertwined and you go back back and forth between them. I also like secrets and scour every nook and cranny for hidden passage ways and previously unaccessible routes. I smash my weapons against walls that look like they can break. It is just how I grew up playing RPGs and I believe this game fits nicely with that.

Saves:

This game automatically saves. You will notice a little fire icon at the top right of the screen everytime you pick up souls, humanity, weapons, items, etc... because it saves every little thing you do. I do not have a problem with this because I do plan on a second playthrough with the help of a guide so that I am able to find all the secrets I missed but it can be a little frustrating for those not planning to go through a second playthrough, not using a guide for their first playthrough, and still want to be able to get everything in the game while knowing all the choices available. For example, I want to know what happens if I kill an NPC. I want to know what happens if I use this one time item. I want to know what happens I don't perform a certain quest in the game. Will I lose that piece of the story forever because I made the wrong choice? You cannot simply save your game, try it out, then reload if you do not like the outcome. Really depends how your approach is in playing this game.

Multiplayer:

I haven't played multiplayer yet because I am having connection problems but it sounds promising. It is like a whole new game with different rules of engagement. I will have to spend some time on that once I get my intermitten connection issue up and running. Maybe I'll help or maybe I'll hunt other players. We will see but sounds like a bonus in additional to playing single player. It is always good to have more features than less.

Graphics:

Simply Awesome! And the intro cinema was awesome. I can't wait to fight those bosses with archaic names especially the one who betrayed the dragons. I did notice frame rate issues in some small parts of the game. It is no big deal.

If you like what I mentioned above, then this is the game for you to get. If you are not sure whether you'll like the game or not, think how much free time you have. Many have mentioned to me they simply don't have the time to pour into a game and want a nice easy relaxing quick gaming session (sounds like maybe uncharted 3 or modern warfare 3 type of gamer). This may not be the type of game for you. With this october and November having many great games coming out (IMHO like skyrim, batman AC, mw3, uncharted3, assassin's creed and BF3 i'll just throw in there), you may find another game that you would like to play instead. But trust me on this, Dark Souls is a one in a lifetime game, very unique, and perfectly catered to those looking for a good RPG story and challenge. This game is reminiscent of the good old RPG games from long (like how we say they don't make good music like they did back in the 70's, 80's, and 90's). Ahhh memories!!
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Best Game Ever., January 25, 2014
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This review is from: Dark Souls - Playstation 3 (Video Game)
I love it. Absolutely a great game. Literally writing this just to give the game a five, d d d.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Short and Sweet Review, January 28, 2012
= Fun:5.0 out of 5 stars 
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This review is from: Dark Souls - Playstation 3 (Video Game)
I picked up this game after platinum-trophying Skyrim (which was incredibly fun at first, but then became incredibly unchallenging after boosting all my gear, practically making me invincible even with light armor and master difficulty.)

I also plat'ed Demon's Souls, so I thought I'd have few troubles with Dark Souls. Nope. The first couple hours are pretty insane (and like many others, I tried to fight my way through the skeletons at Firelink.) Best advice I can offer for new players is to follow an online walkthrough guide. Even in the first couple areas after the tutorial boss, there are so many T-intersections that turn into more T-sections, very confusing. After surviving the first couple hours or so, you can farm certain areas (easiest place is Darkroot Garden) to boost your stats if you need, but even so, you will still die multiple times when exploring new areas, which keeps the game fresh and challenging.

tl;dr Fun game (difficult, but very gratifying) for hardcore gamers.

More tips: Drake Sword is the best weapon first half of the game until you can find and upgrade other weapons. Lightning Spear+5 is my weapon of choice.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars One of the most engaging and satisfying gaming experiences out there., February 18, 2013
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This review is from: Dark Souls - Playstation 3 (Video Game)
Games are fun. Most games today "give" you fun, i.e. you boot the game up and the fun begins. Games like Skyrim (a great game) put you into a world and lets you do your thing. Not Dark Souls. In Dark Souls (and its predecessor Demon's Souls, which also comes highly recommended), fun is not given, but it is found and earned.

The fun from Dark Souls comes from learning and discovering. Learning how to get through a group of tough enemies, outsmarting a boss, opening shortcuts, and besting invading players in PVP are all difficult things that will kill you many times. But, in learning new ways to confront a situation that has killed you many times may frustrate you, but it engages you. It keeps your brain working , and when you finally triumph, this feeling of a accomplishment washes over you.

Dark Souls is difficult, it is beautiful, and it is a prime example of excellent game design. The combat is engaging, the setting is fascinating, and the whole online aspect of it is pure genius.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Everything I expected, December 4, 2011
= Fun:5.0 out of 5 stars 
This review is from: Dark Souls - Playstation 3 (Video Game)
I played Demon Souls and loved it. I decided to buy Dark Souls when it came out instead of waiting for the price to fall. I wasn't disappointed.

But, first let's get the one overpowering thing about the game out of the way. IT'S A HARD GAME!!!! If you like easy games, don't buy this. If you're a cry baby, don't buy this. If you're spoiled, don't buy this. If you always have to buy the "Offical Guide" to a game, don't buy this. This game is for the Diablo 2 Hard Core gamer.

Dark Souls is dark. The mood is dark, the game play is dark, the characters are dark, you are dark (You look like a red ghoul for most of the game). The whole game play is set to terrifying. Every new area you step into is stepped into with fear and trepidation. Every time you see a new monster, you engage it with fear and trepidation. Every time you get new equipment you use it with fear and trepidation. Because you know that everything new will kill you!!!

If you didn't understand it in the first 5 minutes of the game, YOU WILL DIE A LOT!!!!

The authors of the game built it stacked against the player. There is no hand holding. If you ever played Dungeons and Dragons and had a sadistic DM that was just out to kill you; this game plays the same way. There are ambushes everywhere. The are traps everywhere. There are monsters that are way above your level that you can run into. There are areas way above your level you can run into. The game is designed to make you play carefully or die.

But is the game hard in the cheap kind of way? no.

Monsters are hard because some hit too hard, some have incredible armor, some have a special attack that is just devastating, some are hard because of the terrain you have to fight in, some are hard because they outnumber you, some are hard because they are small, some are hard because they are faster than you, some because they fly, some because you are like a fly, etc. Fighting against the creatures in the game takes different play styles.

Areas are hard because they are unfamiliar. Some areas slow you down, some have cliffs, some don't allow you to see, some make your camera angle funny (I'm pretty sure the designer planned that), some areas are just plain dangerous.

Fighting is hard because there are many play styles of combat. Each play style is dependant on the armour, weapons, rings, spells, and weight of your character. If you use small weapons you play style is will be fast, furious, and frantic. You'll have to hit a lot because your damage is small. If you use big heavy weapons your play style with be slow, but heavy hitting. If you wear light armour you have to be quick and be able to dance like a butterfly in combat or else three hits and you're dead. If you wear heavy armour, you'd better get use to always getting hit. Your spells have to complement your equipment and play style. Same with your rings. Every time you change your equipment and spells your play style will change also. So to fight you have figure out a play style and then you have to practice it. Then you have to figure out the other play styles because you'll end up needing them at some point. The fighting isn't as complex as Soul Calibur, but you do have to learn how to fight. There's no room for button mashing in this game.

Weapons:
Though many weapons are similar to each other, nearly all of them play differently. Some play differently because of their length, some because of their swing path, some because of their damage, some because of their speed, some because of their own uniqueness. Choose a weapon that fits the way you play.

Story:
The story gets told indirectly through item descriptions and conversations from NPC's. In other words you don't know what's going on unless you pay attention. The story is good, but it won't get handed to you. Also, considering how enjoying it is to just hack and slash in this game, the story is almost unnecessary.

Grinding:
The coolest part of this game is the fact that if you are skilled at movement, attacking, and running; you don't need to grind. You can. And grinding does make defeating bosses easier. But you don't have to. At least not to the point where grinding become an over nauseating part of game play. Plus, there are some parts of the game that grinding won't help your game at all. This game is definitely made for people who have skills, ingenuity, and brains.

Farming:
Yes, at some point you'll have to farm. To get the best weapons requires certain types of shards (that are dropped by certain creatures) to be forged into your weapons. But the farming is worth it. As of patch 1.05, farming has become easier. If you played before patch 1.05, you'll feel the game is easier, now. Ummm, well, easier than it was before. It's still a hard game.

Re-playability:
There are many different characters, but their differences only affect the beginning of the game. The differences come with the way you pick your character points, the weapons you choose, and the spells you use. A different weapon means picking your character points differently which means you'll be playing differently. If you don't use any guides you'll probably play into New Game+ (means you've beaten the game and the new game will be at a hard difficulty setting), and New Game++, and New Game+++, and New Game++++. If you use the guides, you'll still be playing at least into New Game+. Also, its fun to forge the different weapons and you'll have to play at least New Game+ to get them all. Then there is also the different Covenants you can be a part of.

Length of Game:
I've already logged 200+ hours and I'm only half done. And I'm not bored of it. It's still exciting and new with every new area I go into.

Multi-player:
Multiplayer isn't what you'd expect. There is no co-op mode. You can call in help from another player when you are in Human form, but the help you get is fairly random and the help you get must be near your level. However, at the same time, being in Human form allows your game to be invaded by other players. I've mostly played offline because I didn't have internet for the longest time. Now that I do have internet, I still don't play multiplayer because I'm almost always in Hollow form and only go Human when I'm about to meet a Boss. Also, I'm a bit afraid of the Multiplayer game. It adds a level of danger to the game that I can't predict and I fear it.

If you're a Hard Core type player you'll enjoy this game. If you're a Soft Core type player, you won't like this game. Its unforgiving. This is a good Hack n' Slash game that you'll probably still play many years later.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Amazing step up from Demon's Souls, November 1, 2011
= Fun:5.0 out of 5 stars 
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This review is from: Dark Souls - Playstation 3 (Video Game)
Let me start by saying this "If you are looking for a game to pass the time with, a game that won't take much effort or thought. This is (without a doubt) NOT the game for you. However, if you are looking for a game to get sucked into, a game you can obsess about, a game where you count the hours where you can get back to your console to play, this is the game for you. Hard-core gamer is a must for this game. But keep this in mind, you will die a lot in this game. But somehow the more you die the more you'll want to keep on going."

This game, oh man ... this game. People should not play this game because it will set the bar so high no other game will seem fun or even worth playing. It's an upgrade from Demon's Souls, all the small problems you had in Demon's Souls are a non-issue in Dark Souls. In Demon's Souls, finding the right enemy to kill to get a high level grass for healing up, searching for a merchant or an enemy that drops "Old Spice" to regenerate mana. All that is no longer there in Dark Souls, which gives you more time to make your way through the game and focus only on killing bosses and exploring new areas. Though things like that have been made easier, bosses/mini bosses/enemies are much harder to defeat in Dark souls. It's gonna take more than just brute force to defeat bosses and make it through a new area. Also Dark Souls takes you out of your comfort zone, there isn't a place where you can call home in Dark Souls (as opposed to the Nexus in Demon's Souls) your home is at the last bonfire you rested at. The map is so big, first open world game I've played that was really open world. But still moving around the world seemed easy, it didn't seem to take so much time going from one place to the other. Even if you haven't played Demon's Souls before you will enjoy this game as much as anyone who has finished Demon's Souls many times will, they are two completely independent games. Even though I'm still 40 hours into this game (savoring every last moment of the game), I can safely say this game is a game of ages. I can't wait to be one of the few people in the world that can say "I've finished Demon's Souls and Dark Souls to the very end".
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21 of 29 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Prepare to Die, October 5, 2011
= Fun:5.0 out of 5 stars 
This review is from: Dark Souls - Playstation 3 (Video Game)
A couple of years ago a game called Demon's Souls came around and was met with surprising praise. The reputation of Demon's Souls was that it was a ridiculously hard game. Those who played it and survived were quite passionate about the game. While those frustrated with it were equally passionate. Regardless Demon's Souls became a success. Dark Souls serves to be the spiritual successor. And it makes one thing clear right off the bat. You will die. Several times. And it's not exaggerating that.

You'll begin the game by creating your character and choosing between an assortment of classes. Each with their own strengths and weaknesses. While initially it's important to keep this in mind because of how the different stats vary, you'll eventually find enough equipment and items to really experiment with the class. But for the beginning this is your chance to figure out just how you want to play Dark Souls. You can be a well rounded warrior for instance or you can start off as a tank of a Knight... or a heavy hitting bandit or evasive thief. Or, if you're really gutsy you could choose to be deprived at the start where things ramp up considerably in the beginning.

After that you'll awaken in an asylum. There isn't much story given to you at the start of Dark Souls. What becomes obvious, however, is that you're playing a very different kind of dungeon crawler. Dark Souls has a small tutorial where you'll be able to learn the basics of combat. And you'll definitely want to take this time to read the messages scrawled about and learn the mechanics of the game. Because it's not long after that Dark Souls cuts you lose and you're on your own. And for the most part combat strings itself together really well. In several games the goal is about hacking and slashing through a ton of your opponents without much regard to what your doing. This approach will get you killed in Dark Souls. Combat is surprisingly strategic. It isn't just about landing blows but learning how to effectively dodge, strife, block, parry and go for the counter attack. Each of the game's various enemies have different approaches to them and different strategies. The game is incredibly challenging but it adds on newer challenges at a decent enough pace.

The game is, however, unapologetic about it's difficulty. Whenever you complete a specific area or down a boss you'll feel more accomplished than you've ever felt. And the rewards are usually worth it. You will find yourself in moments where you may have to grind. Each time you defeat enemies you gain souls which go toward leveling up your class. If you should die, you'll lose all your souls, though. You can easily continue, though, and if you manage to make it to your corpse before you die again you can regain all the souls you've lost.

The good news is that not everything done in Dark Souls has to be done alone. You can invite others into your world to help you. But more than that, Dark Souls utilizes a fantastic online component that most games don't offer (except for Demon's Souls). The first is that you can view apparitions of other players who may have tackled specific tasks. You can see what happened to them just the same. The other aspect that's nice is that you can leave messages to other players. Warning them of upcoming threats or giving them tips. You can also rate how helpful they were giving them a longer time to be around. The point is that it is a community effort. All you need to experience this is an online connection. Playing Dark Souls in offline mode makes the game a daunting one to play through. You won't get many of those helpful tips and you won't see any spirits of players who have already been where you are. The online aspect of Dark Souls is easily the best part about it. Especially because after the first small dungeon, the game pretty much lets you loose and doesn't offer to really teach you anything beyond that. You're at a point where you'll either be learning on your own or relying on other players to help you along the way.

It all comes together really well. The strategic combat and the way the online works make Dark Souls feel like a one of a kind game. The only major downside is that so many gamers may just find it to be too difficult. If you're an easily frustrated gamer, Dark Souls may not be for you. You'll find yourself dying several times. The bosses hit unusually hard and if you don't take the right approach to the right enemy they'll do you in easily. Some areas also feel like trial and error. If you don't take the hints you're given to heart, Dark Souls is going to punish you several times. The good news is that once you really figure out what your doing the challenge becomes less mitigating. But you'll die several times before this happens. And just when you master taking down a certain enemy, the game introduces you to new ones. Of course the end result is that you feel like you actually accomplished something the further you get. Dark Souls just requires patience and meticulous strategy to get through.

There are other things that make the game difficult as well. Everything about it is treated as though you are online. This means that you can still be attacked by enemies even if you're in the menu. You can't really "pause" the game, you can only find specific safe havens away from combat such as bonfires which serve as checkpoints where you can rest and heal up as well as level up or your character. Another aspect that can add to the difficulty is that other players can "invade" your game and engage you in combat. The good news is that the game tries its best to balance things. Often times you'll be invaded by someone of your own level. And you usually have a chance to escape from them. The emphasis, however, is definitely on helping out other players rather than competing against them.

Dark Souls is also a gorgeous game. In fact, from a production standpoint it's hard to really find any fault with the game. The environments are detailed and varied. The atmosphere is always setting the right tone, and best of all the music compliments it all brilliantly. There is also a lot of great voice acting to accompany things. It's a gorgeous game all around.

The difficulty might be a bit much for some gamers, but those who undertake the challenge and meet it head on are in for a treat. It's a well crafted game that offers up an experience unlike anything else you've seen. If you're looking for a decent challenge then Dark Souls is the game for you.
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Dark Souls - Playstation 3
Dark Souls - Playstation 3 by Namco (PlayStation 3)
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