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Dark Souls Review

Posted by xxxAceBlade on October 7, 2014 at 9:20 PM

Dark Souls is a critically acclaimed hardcore action rpg developed by Fromsoft and Bandai Namco.


Story: 8/10:


Dark Souls doesn't have much of a story. It's a game in which you are meant to draw conclusions and make assumptions about the world around you. You're meant to feel truly alone in a world that seems to be entirely against you, thus cutscenes are dialogue free, and dialogue is somewhat depressing at times. The reason I give the Story a 8/10 is because it's more of a "world development" rather than character decelopment. Like the Legend of Zelda series, Dark Souls encourages you to project yourself on your character, giving it a greater sense of immersion.


Another critical aspect of Dark Souls "story" is the lore that the game revolves around. The game is a collection of stories, you just have to look around to find them. Talking to characters can yeild a wealth of interesting stories that all meld together to create a world that seems very real.


Graphics: 7/10


I guess that this is one of the hugest downfalls with the game. It is never right, when a game is released for a console, for it to then lag on that console. No, I'm not talking about pc elitism and 60FPS or riot, I'm talking about a game that is supposed to be running at 30fps plummeting to 10-15 in specific areas of the game, or in situations where there is a lot of activity on the screen. Yes, I am aware that this was fixed on pc by a modder in the community, but the community should not have to "fix" the game. That should be done for them.


Level Design: 10/10


Dark Souls can safely lay claim to having one of the most intricate and beautifully well-crafted worlds in any game to date. Each area of the game fits together like clockwork, they are linked in a dozen different ways. There is no *wrong* way to go at the start, it truly feels as if you are exploring another world.


The seperate areas themselves are a whole new masterpiece. One of the game's main claims to glory lies within it's difficulty, and that difficulty is well implemented within the level design. Enemy placement is such that it is difficult to "cheese" the game with ranged attacks, making the game much more hands on and difficult to exploit.


In the end, the biggest glory the game holds is in the unknown, and the design of the landscape adds to that immensely.


Gameplay: 8/10


The control scheme for Dark Souls is very different, even for those experienced with the ARPG genre. Attacks are bound to the shoulder and trigger buttons, a strange concept for games with real time combat involving light and heavy attacks, where the general consensus seems to be Square for light attacks and Triangle for heavy attacks. However, the controls seem to fit the game perfectly, even going so far as to make it far more versatile a system than the standard control scheme.


The online play is incredibly innovative. The concept of invading another player's game in order to kill them is an idea that I've never seen in any game outside of the Souls series. For some, the forced pvp (not truly forced, but it is if you want to play cooperitavely) breaks the game. For others, it adds an edge of competition that keeps them coming back to the game for hundreds of hours.


The biggest issue however, lies with the lag involved in pvp. The game has no servers, therefore everything is done peer to peer. Thus, even with the most perfect connections, players still experience half a seconds delay between them, often leading to players warping to make backstabs, backstabs going through the animation but doing no damage, parries not registering until half a second later, and players taking hits as they back away from eachother. And while the community has learned to account for and even use the lag generated in pvp, it still counts as a flaw in what could otherwise be a perfect combat system.


Summary: 9/10


The game is incredible. It is well put together. Though it has a few flaws, they pale in comparison to the end product: A game that will be played and loved for generations to come.


 

-Ace

 

Categories: Reviews

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