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Showing 1-10 of 737 reviews(Verified Purchases). See all 846 reviews
on January 12, 2015
As a game, Dark Souls is excellent for it's genre, but there are a few things to keep in mind when purchasing this product that everyone should be aware of.

- It is an exceptionally difficult game. If you are not used to 3D action games, where positioning is very important and thinking outside the box is key, then this game will prove challenging. To the tune of dozens of deaths challenging. It is NOT poorly designed, however it is definitely geared toward those with familiarity of the product.

- Nearly impossible without a controller. An Xbox 360 or Xbox One controller would be ideal, especially because Microsoft just released official PC drivers for Xbox One controllers. That is what I use, and it has gone off without a hitch. Minus my deaths, of course.

- This is a digital purchase, which means you will not receive a physical copy. You will receive a code that can be redeemed on the game distribution platform Steam, a very helpful service, but nonetheless one you will need in order to play this game.

- The merits/traits of the game are these: Challenging boss battles, meaningful gameplay, explorable areas with tangible rewards, puzzles and a story that don't spell themselves out for you, but leave you to figure them out for yourselves, a great and intriguing world to explore, and finally a rock solid combat system.

It's hard, but it's worth it.
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on June 10, 2015
I get it, everyone says the port sucks and that you absolutely NEED a controller to play this game. The port is pretty bad, but I have not had ANY issues. A controller isn't necessary once you get used to the relatively simplistic PC controls. The game itself runs very smooth.. I definitely wouldn't worry.

As for the game itself, it's got that challenging and frustrating feel to it, but it also feels fair and balanced. If you die, you can't say the game is "too hard" or "rigged." You die because the lack of strategy/skill or even something so simple as evading a second too soon. The game is never to blame. With that said, it's literally the only game that I've come across that has been able to challenge me.

For all the PC players, here's the default keyboard map:

Tab = dodge attack and retaliate (hardly works)
Space bar = run/jump/roll
Shift = block
Alt = two-hand your weapon
W, A, S, D = move forward, right, backward, left; respectively
E = Use item selected in utility slot (i.e. Flask)
F = Change item selected in utility slot
H = Generic attack
U = Strong attack
J, I, L, K = Look to the left, up, right, or downards; respectively
End = Open menu
Page up/Down = Navigate through menu
Enter = Select

As aforementioned, it's really easy if you get the hang of it. It does become intuitive.. You don't need a controller.
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on May 13, 2013
If you had not read up on this previously (or searched prior product reviews), the PC version of Dark Souls is a console port which feels a bit rushed. The folks behind this had mentioned prior to its PC debut that they were not too familiar with bringing games to the PC, or porting an console title to the platform and it shows. The game runs at a maximum of 30 frames per second out of the box (more on that in a moment). While this is normally OK, it suffers from all the same issues with graphical lag as its console counterparts. Control-wise, the mouse and keyboard is not recommended, although I suppose to each their own.

If you are willing to do a minor amount of tinkering, there is a community-created tool called DSFix which can change a few things about how the game runs. It allows for unlocking your frame rate as far as 60fps (going much higher may cause issues) and a few additional graphical options if you are up for it. It also allows for using custom textures (the images which are applied to the various models and interfaces within the game) so that you can customize your experience even further. It even allows you to make the interfaces larger or smaller, hide portions of it and hide your mouse cursor while in the game.

The game natively supports the Xbox 360 controller, although with third party drivers, you can use a Playstation 3 controller on your PC as well. Using this in tandem with DSFix may cause some errors, so you may need to tweak the drivers slightly for them to work properly. If you are using a Playstation 3 controller and DSFix, you can look for a texture modification which will change the Xbox 360 button icons to Playstation 3 icons.

Lastly, the game requires both Steam and Games for Windows Live to run. The game will always play in 'Online Mode' while you are connected to Games for Windows Live, unless you create a Local account OR by tricking the game client (which involves disconnecting / turning off your computer's internet connection after logging into GFWL and Dark Souls, then re-connecting your internet). If you do the latter, you will be able to play in 'Offline Mode' while still being able to use your Games for Windows Live and internet features as per usual. If you are using the 'Big Picture' mode in Steam as well as a supported controller (PS3 / Xbox 360 in this example), the Home button will trigger both the Steam Community overlay as well as the Games for Windows Live overlay at the same time. This last bit is more of a conflict between Steam and GFWL, but since Dark Souls requires both, it's essentially a potential issue with the game.

Regardless of its troubles on the PC, it is still a very solid, challenging game well worth the trouble. The use of community-created mods can make the game far more playable for the PC and indeed brings the game closer to what one would expect of a PC port.
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on July 26, 2013
I wanted to absolutely love Dark Souls and throughout much of the game's 15 hour journey I did. However, there are a few important issues that hold this game back from being spectacular and keeps it merely great.

The game's control are simply clunky. I played with an Xbox 360 gamepad and I recommend only going into the PC version of Dark Souls similarly armed. The game was designed so that combat felt deliberate and "weighty," and in that respect it greatly succeeded. Weapon slashes, contact, and blood splashes are all appropriately meaningful and accompanied by good sound work to sell the experience. However, the result of this deliberate pacing to movement and combat leaves the player feeling like they aren't always in control of their actions and reactions. Even with a nimble character, I felt like I wasn't able to dodge or parry with a degree of consistency that the game seemed to expect of me.

I also never felt really connected to either the story or the world in general. Again, this was a deliberate choice by the developers to craft a world that focused more on lore and atmosphere rather than a narrative-heavy experience like a Japanese RPG. Still, I feel like this design choice led to me feeling disconnected from the world and, as a result, I never really felt the weight of my actions in a deeper context. I have been told that there is a deeper story and more lore to discover, but I often found myself fighting strange creatures in dark places where I hadn't the slightest idea of why or what I should accomplish there.

This disconnectedness from the game world also carried over to main quest objectives. Many times, I simply had no idea where I was supposed to do next. The game does a poor job of guiding the player without directly telling them what or where to go. I must admit that I was forced to consult walkthroughs online to see what area I was supposed to progress to next. Again, this seems to be a deliberate design choice that lends to the feeling of helplessness that pervades the game's setting and lore, but it didn't sit terribly well with me.

All of those negative things out of the way, I still had a wonderful time exploring the world of Dark Souls. The combat, even with its faults, is unlike anything you've tried before and is truly rewarding once you've figured out how to beat a certain boss or difficult area. The feeling of progression is likewise wonderful; it is truly a joy to revisit areas that gave you tremendous difficulty hours past and simply wreck through like you're the hulk.

Overall, I can recommend Dark Souls to anyone looking for a difficult, complex, and rewarding combat system. Those who thrive on exploring without a specific direction or instruction will be drawn to the lack of hand-holding in Dark Souls, even if the game itself must progress in a linear fashion. In the end, Dark Souls is a rewarding and at times frustrating experience that I wouldn't miss.
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on September 14, 2015
This game is hard as nails. While that's it's main appeal to most players, I have too little time and too many games to play. I cannot stand getting killed over and over for silly reasons. Worst of all, the game doesn't really give you the chance to improve your skills and overcome it's challenges since your gear deteriorates over time and this carries over life to life. So while you might finally figure out that bosses attack cycle it won't matter since your sword might shatter next time you hit him. Moreover the game punishes you hard for choosing the wrong skill options, even though you have no idea whats going on when you first start it up. It's an unforgiving game and while that might be fun for some, I prefer a game I can have fun with, not fight against.
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on August 7, 2016
I don't think I can recall quite as much of a pleasant experience I've ever had of playing through a game for the first time as "Dark Souls". It's been almost five years since this games release in 2011 and it still stands out as my favorite ARPG game ever.

Dark Souls: Prepare to Die Edition is the product of a nearly year-long public outcry to "FROM SOFTWARE" to port the game to PC. The outcry was so great that FROM decided to release a definitive edition of the game that included the "Artorias of the Abyss" DLC for both consoles and PC side by side, it was a huge success, with a still thriving community of players in the game to this day. The PC version deserves some merit as it does have modding capability (NOTE: "Capability" is NOT the same as "Support") that allows you to fix some of the minor issues with the game (the only real issue being the framerate), and to customize the game to perform how you would like.

Speaking about gameplay itself, you won't find much more of a genuine ARPG experience that balances the level of challenge with the use of game mechanics perfectly. Dark Souls is a throw back to the days of old where games didn't hold your hand -- and Dark Souls truly does not. Laden with mechanics and features of the game that you must discover yourself, or -- if you're lucky, discover a short handed message from another player trying to assist, or even, mislead you.

I recommend this game to anyone looking to have a truly unique experience playing a game with so much hidden character to it.
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on June 17, 2013
For a long time before I played Dark Souls I have heard exuberant tales of it's legendary difficulty. I thought that it would be a game where I would have difficulty progressing after only an hour of playtime. I was very, very wrong. The game might be difficult if you cripple yourself by purposefully refusing to level up, never going out of your way to collect souls, refusing to summon help in boss fights, and constantly staying in human form so you get invaded by other people. If, however, you play this game normally without purposefully trying to make it hard, it's really not that bad.

I had not used any guides to build my character nor had I looked up strategies on fighting enemies and for a good part of the game I could just slash at any boss, take a gulp of a healing potion when hit, and then resume merrily slicing it to bits. This is a huge departure from my initial expectation of the game; that good dodge/block timing, character placement, and general strategy would come into play for every boss fight. Instead of getting epic encounters that would leave my heart racing and my palms sweaty, I got encounters against ugly looking bosses who could do little to stop me from killing them.

Another weak point of the game is it's lack of direction. By this I don't mean the absence of a ridiculous amount of annoying hints that pop up for doing any simple kind of action as in most modern video games. Major concepts of the game such as covenants, humanity, human form, and others are never really explained. This almost necessitates the use of wikis in order to grasp certain intricacies of the game as you will get no explanation from the game itself.

False advertisement and lack of direction aside, the game world itself is actually fairly refreshing for an action/RPG. The game takes place in a huge map where there are no area transitions or separate instances. In addition, almost any NPC can be killed and, once this occurs, you can do nothing to bring them back (unless you crash the game before it has a chance to auto-save). This last feature is a great example of choice and consequence, where the decisions you make actually impact the game world forever. The art style of the game is also fairly nice, and there is a large variety of weapons and armors to choose from.

The game itself may deserve a 4 star rating, however I have to take another star off for the piss poor port that is the PC version. If you install DSfix and the mouse fix on top of that, the game is very smooth and easy to play. This, however, does not excuse the fact that unmodified the game is one of the crappiest PC ports I've ever played, and there are no fixes that will replace the button prompts of "X" and "Y" and other PS3 controller buttons with the PC bindings. As a result, I found some features that would have been very helpful in equipment comparison only towards the end of the game.

Overall, Dark Souls is a pretty good effort in the action/RPG genre. It lacks any solid trace of a story, but this is probably a good thing. The difficulty is not what people say it is, and the game is very much prone to munchkin-ism. The world is dark and gritty, and the PC port is s***y. If you're looking for a fun, good-looking action/RPG where you can hack and slash some baddies with ease, this is the game for you. If you're looking for a challenging and deep RPG experience go play Gothic, cause Dark Souls ain't it.
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on July 24, 2015
Dark Souls is an essential game that anyone who plays games should have. Don't let the "bad PC port" reviews scare you from buying this game. With a bit of fixes, this game can really come to life on PC. First, as others have said, DSFix is a must and it can be found on the NexusMods site. A few tweaks within DSFix will fix numerous issues wrong with the regular PC port of the game. Second, by all means a controller is a must have and you should not use keyboard/mouse under any circumstances. Once those requirements are met, this game will be much better than the console version. There are still many PC players who you can play with online or you can team up with a friend. Whatever route you take, as long as you pick up the essential requirements, this game can be a blast and I highly recommend it.
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on November 27, 2012
Having already played and enjoyed this game on the XBOX 360 last year, I was anxious to play through it again with better PC visuals and the additional content offered in this version. For the price of under $15, I figured I couldn't go wrong. I'll get the negative things out of the way first:

1. By default, the resolution is locked at 720p. Obviously, most PC gamers expect more from their visuals. Luckily, there is an easy fix for this that will bump up the graphics significantly. It's already been mentioned in several other reviews, so I won't go into detail, other than to say it's an extremely easy fix. Just Google "Dark Souls PC graphics mod" and that'll get you on the right path. Even with this fix in place, the game is never going to be the graphical showcase for your PC, so you should temper your expectations. With the fix in place though, it's a good looking game, and certainly several notches above the console version.

2. Games for Windows Live. Yes, this game requires Games for Windows Live. Yes, GFWL sucks. I'm willing to put up with the inconvenience. Some people aren't, and that's understandable. Buyer beware.

3. Steam. This purchase only gets you an activation code to be used on Steam, so again, buyer beware. If you don't like Steam, this probably isn't the purchase for you. I actually don't mind it, but that's just me.

4. Keyboard/Mouse Controls. I use a XBOX 360 wireless controller to play this game, and it handles beautifully. I haven't tried it with a mouse/keyboard setup, but I've heard from numerous people that it borders on being unplayable. Remember, this game was built for a console, by console developers with no PC experience, so please cut them some slack. If having to use a controller is a deal breaker for you, you might want to pass on this game.

Now for the good, which amounts to everything else. This game will challenge you like no other. It will frustrate you, and you will die. A lot. And then you'll die some more. The thing is, the game is always fair. Death is inevitable, and it's always your own fault. Get better at the game, die less. It's as old school and simple as this. If you can deal with this, every victory will truly feel rewarding, unlike most modern games that hold your hand along the way. This one is on you and only you, and I love it for that. The only thing that keeps me from giving the game a full 5 stars is the requirement for GFWL. If half stars were allowed, I'd give it 4.5
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on November 30, 2013
This game is for those who want real challenge. Honestly the game is difficult and causes a lot of stress. If you haven't memorized everything in the game or don't have something like a 'Dark Souls Complete Guide', you will never know when you will die. The devs have really created a backstabbing experience in this game. Your joy of slaying a boss disappears in 10 seconds by another monster that appears and kills you. Black knights will haunt you and all monsters are a challenge. There is no easy button mashing in this game. You learn and fight to overcome the enemies. If you like that, this game will be 100 % fun. If you don't like 'too difficult' games, just leave it, there are other games with less stress.
There are two cons in this game. First, the graphics are terrible. They come straight from the console version so the resolution is very very low. There are user patches so keep this in mind. The another one is that THIS GAME CAN NOT BE PLAYED WITH KEYBOARD AND MOUSE! Really the key bindings are sad! You must have a game controller.
Still if you can face the challenge, grab this game. It gives you fun which you can't find in other action games and RPGs.
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