Dark Souls, after 2 Years

Dark Souls, after 2 Years

Postby MosImba » Fri Apr 11, 2014 6:28 pm

I beat DkS2 twice in two weeks of release. It took me a total of 10 MONTHS to beat DkS. I bought Demons Souls after beating DkS because I have never played it, and quickly found a cheap way to farm souls and made a DEX/END Build around Makoto/White (IF you guys don't know what this means, check the wiki out and search "Makoto" and "White Bow"). I wanted that love-hate relationship again I had with DkS. So, two years later, I bought a Collector's Edition of the game. Honestly I was more excited for it than the wait for DkS2.

I'm not knocking down DkS2, it's one of my favorite games, and will be buying a Collector's Edition of that real soon. But to me, it didn't have anything like DkS2 did. I hardly raged, barely felt the accomplishment, and thought that beating it so fast, something was wrong. I missed how unforgiving DkS was, and how it forced me to think about my actions before going about them. I missed those "memorable" moments, moments that I can brag about to my friends, those near-misses, stupid deaths, and how I beat so-and-so boss. When I got DkS again, in 30 minutes, I already had a memorable moment, and found out something I never knew, even though I THOUGHT I gleaned the whole of the game!

To any of you guys who played the first one, how do guys feel the second one comes up? Early on, DkS2 CAN be difficult, but in time, it feels like a chore. To me, anyway. How do you guys feel?
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Re: Dark Souls, after 2 Years

Postby Vumsy » Fri Apr 11, 2014 6:55 pm

Demon's Souls - "Wtf, who puts a hole there?" "Omg, this red eyed asshole is OP" "Who the hell puts lava in a boss fight room? WITH THE MOST AGGRESSIVE BOSS EVER???" "I'm poisoned, lost, alone, it's dark... I wanna go home..."

Dark Souls - "Damn holes, I just never learn" "That guy look pretty badass... Yeah he was." "Oh wow, breaking floors? Really? That IS cheap" "I'm poisoned, it's dark... But it's not as bad as - Wow, my PS3 is getting death cramps..."

Dark Souls 2 - "AHA! I knew it!" "I wonder if that guy drops anything good? Yup, he did." "Don't step into the fire, Don't step into the fire..." "I'm poisoned, alone... But it's not as bad as - WTF! Those explosion guys are HERE as WELL???"

Every Souls game is good, but you'll always have the one where you did your virgin trip closest to your heart. And remain forever thankful that you are capable of learning from past mistakes, and endure the trolling level design.

Demon's Iz Best, Darks be izi. :ugeek:
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Re: Dark Souls, after 2 Years

Postby spacehamster » Fri Apr 11, 2014 7:09 pm

I actually thought some of the levels in DkS2 were harder to get through than in DkS1, and conversely, some of the bossfights are a lot easier. In that respect it's definitely more like Demon's Souls was, where getting to the boss was sometimes harder than the bossfight itself, and a lot of the bossfights were very cheese-able. DkS1 definitely has by far the best and most memorable bosses out of the three - no doubt about that in my mind.

But I dunno, I kind of poo-pooed Dark Souls after I first played through it because it wasn't enough like Demon's Souls and didn't fall in love with it until a lot later when I was willing to approach it on its own terms, so I decided not to make that mistake again with DkS2, and it's paid off for me. It's just different, and you have to appreciate its dynamic for what it is, not expect it to play out the same way as the other games. Early on, it's very open and most of the places you go to are bright, and then you pick up the souls of the Old Ones, and suddenly the game kicks you in the nuts with one of the darkest (and most difficult) areas of the game. It's like you're being punished for doing what you were told to do, which is the exact opposite of the feeling when you get the Lordvessel in DkS1. Look at it more that way, maybe? It's set in the same world, but it's a different game, and like the other two before it, it has to be taken for what it is, not expected to be the same as its predecessor.
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Re: Dark Souls, after 2 Years

Postby rkzhao » Fri Apr 11, 2014 8:12 pm

How about "Demon's Souls, after 5 years"

DeS was definitely the most memorable for me. I think many would agree that it had the best ambient atmosphere.

While the bosses were cheesable, almost every boss fight had a unique feel as opposed to DkS1 and 2 where boss fights are essentially just bigger monsters with more health. In that respect, I found DeS bosses to be much more memorable, especially for an initial run through. I found the actual boss fights in DkS to be kind of just what ever but it had a couple interesting boss designs. In DkS2, I really just liked the throw back touches in certain bosses for nostalgia.

DeS, just about every boss was memorable and had a unique gameplay element and approach to them. Plus the music was soooo much better.

As for the whole open world aspect of DkS1&2, I know a lot of people like that but it's not really a big deal for me. In DeS, I liked the feeling that I was entering a completely different world for each area.
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Re: Dark Souls, after 2 Years

Postby MosImba » Sun Apr 13, 2014 5:00 am

rkzhao wrote:How about "Demon's Souls, after 5 years"

DeS was definitely the most memorable for me. I think many would agree that it had the best ambient atmosphere.

While the bosses were cheesable, almost every boss fight had a unique feel as opposed to DkS1 and 2 where boss fights are essentially just bigger monsters with more health. In that respect, I found DeS bosses to be much more memorable, especially for an initial run through. I found the actual boss fights in DkS to be kind of just what ever but it had a couple interesting boss designs. In DkS2, I really just liked the throw back touches in certain bosses for nostalgia.

DeS, just about every boss was memorable and had a unique gameplay element and approach to them. Plus the music was soooo much better.

As for the whole open world aspect of DkS1&2, I know a lot of people like that but it's not really a big deal for me. In DeS, I liked the feeling that I was entering a completely different world for each area.


I feel you bro, I bought Demon's Souls, and every boss feels so unique. Sometimes Say that DeS is better than DkS. But the thing with me, DkS was my first Souls game, and will always be cherished with me. :) Subbing to you BTW
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Re: Dark Souls, after 2 Years

Postby Anubite86 » Mon Apr 14, 2014 8:58 am

I will always love Demon's souls the most, as it was so out of nowhere and fantastic. It's the game my imagination always wanted. I recently got another copy so I can help my girlfriend play in co-op. :)

I'm kind of dipping in and out of all three at the moment, they are my favourite games by a mile. The only games that ever came close for me in obsessiveness (is that a word?) were the Final fantasy games and Devil may cry series.
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The flow of time itself is convoluted; with heroes centuries old phasing in and out.
The very fabric wavers, and relations shift and obscure."
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Re: Dark Souls, after 2 Years

Postby plaintomato » Sun May 11, 2014 11:24 am

So I was playing some DkS1 last night for the heck of it and some of the differences from DkS2 are pretty striking.

I can understand why DeS fans prefer the DkS2 PVP over DkS1, there are a lot of improvements that take the PVP back to a little more of a DeS feel. And server based matching...ugh, the P2P system in DkS1 was almost as annoying as the DkS2 Soul Memory system when all you're trying to do is get good fights.

But overall, as a game, I think it's pretty clear that DkS2 was a stop gap to collect a return on the new engine they put together for whatever the next game will be. It's a pretty amazing game for a stop gap, but the lack of attention to detail compared to DkS1, the programming and world design shortcuts, the terrible animations, uninspired bosses, and matching system that seems more like a test-case than a thoughtful change-up; it delivers a game that is still great compared to other games, but really looks like it was rushed to market.

I'm going to keep playing DkS2, I'm really enjoying it. But DkS1 is comparatively impressive in terms of world design and attention to detail, and DkS2 has made me recognize that all the more. There are a couple areas in DkS1 that seem unfinished, but in DkS2, it's the game itself that seems unfinished.

Just for a funny illustration, compare the animation form DkS2 when you get knocked into the air to DkS1. DkS2's animation is straight out of Double Dragon for NES. http://cfile22.uf.tistory.com/original/ ... F29D310692 - compare that to this video at 2:06 http://www.neoseeker.com/forums/60715/t ... golfswing/

I really think From just released DkS2 as a stop gap for cash flow purposes. Honestly I'm glad they did, but still. DkS1, two years later, and it's still an amazing game.
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Re: Dark Souls, after 2 Years

Postby BobbyPhoenix » Sun May 11, 2014 1:06 pm

I played so much DkS that I didn't play anything else for months if not a full year. I still feel the urge to go back even though I'm still only on NG+ on DkS2. DeS is my fav of all time for the simple fact it was first with all its firsts. Learn how to play, learn what NPCs do, learn how armor/weapons work, learn how summoning works, learn how leveling works, etc. It is still the hardest for me since if you die you have to fight back to where you died to get your souls back. DkS carried on the tradition, but added some new things we had to learn all over again since the world opened up a bit, but also eased the difficulty with life rings, but it was still hard since there were a limited supply. It was also hard since you had to keep at a certain level to see a lot of signs, and most were low levels for the average to play at ease. DkS2 really made things so much easier. There is no worry at all of dying if you don't want it. You can stay human forever. The rings of protection are limited, but you can repair them, so there is no fear of running out. You don't have to worry about signs if you level up, and in fact it's so much easier to level up now. Since the game runs on Soul Memory, and not Soul Level the more souls you get the more signs you see, and since you have all those souls why stop at a low level. I like a challenge, but find myself always wearing a ring of protection, and leveling up as soon as I can. Like I said I'm in NG+, and at a mid 200 sl. Kind of over-leveled I think as I don't even think "Can I beat this area at this level?". The only real fun factor for me in DkS2 is once in NG+ the enemies are different. They're not just harder like in the previous games. Red phantoms everywhere. I like that a lot. Overall DeS is first, but DkS will always be my go to for amusement. DkS2 is for the heck of it.
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Re: Dark Souls, after 2 Years

Postby rhar323 » Thu Jun 12, 2014 4:32 am

TWO THINGS: 1) I haven't played Demon's Souls yet. I know I need to play it, but I haven't, which means Dark Souls was my first game of the series (a.k.a. my baby. Most hours played and it's never going to be close).Take that grain of salt throughout what I typed, and 2) If you want my short answer, just read the last line of my post.

I recently decided to go back to Dark Souls after beating Dark Souls II 6 times with 3 different characters. One toon is ready for her 5th playthrough when/if I go back, and I use her as a reference point with the first game. DkSII is tough, but not as difficult for me, and, SEMANTICS ASIDE on my previous clause, not as fun in lieu of this. The 2nd game feels like a Legend of Zelda game in that each area is separate->beat the area ->beat the boss-> new area. Very linear. What I'm remembering/enjoying about the Dark Souls world is how interconnected it is, and how many options this provides you right from the start in terms of direction of play. I can take the Master Key as my gift, fight Havel & go through the Darkroot Garden if I want to (this is what I do every playthrough, fyi). You have a back route into Blighttown because, let's be honest, you hate Blighttown, I hate Blighttown, Blighttown hates Blighttown. You have a back route into New Londo Ruins. The areas can be so large that there has to be a shortcut in the middle of the area that takes you..later in the area (looking at you, cage in Sen's Fortress). The most mind-boggling thing about the areas (for me), when comparing the two games, is how Dark Souls' areas truly intertwine. In the Darkroot Garden, you can fall in certain areas to lower parts of the level and live, and keep playing if you have your wits about you. Same in Sen's Fortress. There are usually multiple ways to get to the same area.
The only two areas I enjoy clearing in the 2nd game are the Shrine of Amana & Undead Crypt, which are back-to-back. I have had to come up with ways to increase the difficulty of the game (my 4th playthrough with my fav toon in DkSII was a "no bonfire" playthrough). Still, these two areas I can generally go through in my first playthrough of the area with a given character. If I die, I know exactly where it's going to happen in the level- it'll be the same place, every time. In the first game, I find myself dying to ANYONE. First time through Blighttown's Valley of Drakes shortcut I died on the second big guy, didn't even make it to the actual area. First time back in Sen's, got knocked off by the second set of swinging blades and destroyed by the Prowling Demons down there. Those little shits with torches and no armor can reek havoc on you if you're a light character or it's early in the game, or if you don't have your shield up sometimes it doesn't matter regardless.
The items are a big difference, as well. I LOVE the array of weapons offered in the second game, with varying hitboxes, anterior effects, powerstancing, buffing...the possibilities can be nigh-limitless. I have nothing to dislike about the actual weapons and armor available, excepting that it's almost too diverse, which at times gives a watered-down feel, but is probably just me being curmudgeonly. My biggest issue is the ease of acquiring upgrading materials in the second game. With the exception of Twinkling Titanite, everything seems to be easier to get in the newer game. Even still, 8000 per Twinkling in Dark Souls is no easy order to fill a large quantity of times. It's difficult to amass Twinkling Titanites either way. But when I can do a NG in DkSII and have all of my armor, weapons, back-up armor, and back-up weapons up to +10...well that's not my cup of tea. Finding 5 titanite slabs per playthrough without farming is not my idea of a Souls-type game. There's no GRIND there.
Someone mentioned in this thread that they felt the bosses in Dark Souls were just bigger, regular enemies with more hitpoints, gotta disagree with that one. Where do you see a large wolf with a greatsword elsewhere, hopping around and swinging said sword in massive arcs? Wherefore art thou, masses of flying butterflies shooting sorceries? Wherefore, masses of giant skeleton guys made up of other skeletons with a greatsword that can attack from underground while smaller (but still massive) skeletons and tiny (RE: normal-sized) skeletons constantly attack you? Find me an Ornstein & Smough-type moment from the regular gameplay, please. I had a moment yesterday, while trying to beat them, where the phantoms in my world and I had simultaneously depleted the hp of BOTH Ornstein & Smough, only for the game to decide that I definitely killed Ornstein first. I can't recall being so frustrated with any boss in the second game. I died of shock, probably, given Smough ground-pounded me with his Ornstein lightning-infused ground-pound. No, I thought the bosses in Dark Souls (of course everything I say is my opinion) were developed with a certain sense of ingenuity that the latter game lacks, with the exception of the Demon of Song. I feel that the developers ran out of great ideas and, as has been well-documented on this forum, recycled old bosses either exactly or in essence.
I have always loved how alone I feel playing Dark Souls, especially now with fewer people than every playing and many of those players sticking with invading (I lose a lot more in Dark Souls versus the second game). Maybe the first one got me so deliriously okay with dying that I'm too calloused to notice? But I never even considered a "no bonfire" or "no death" playthrough with the first game. Surviving and winning has always been enough.
I didn't beat Dark Souls for almost a year because I had to stop playing. I had to change my whole perspective on the gameplay and the style of play I was using in particular. I understand that, with my previous journeys in mind, I would always be better at Dark Souls II. I beat it within 3 days of buying it, though. My first playthrough was 30 hours. It took me ~75 hours to beat the first game the first time. My end-of-the-4th playthrough toon in DkSII has been running for 115 hours. My beginning-of-the-3rd playthrough toon in Dark Souls is at 175 hours. The patience has always paid off for me, with expanding returns, in these games. Maybe I am being snooty here, but Dark Souls II stinks too much of a mainstream, money-grabbing RPG aimed at getting Zelda-lovers into a more adult fantastical medieval world. I hold nothing against the developers for wanting theirs, it's unfortunately what drives this world nowadays.
All that said, I don't think DkSII holds a candle to the first game in general difficulty, I don't think the story of the game is nearly as coherent, or that the story of the game matters nearly as much in the second iteration at all (I'm big on games still telling a story).
I could easily talk about Dark Souls, even if only in comparison with Dark Souls II, all day. There is so much going on in Lordran, you guys :ugeek:
I like Dark Souls better than Dark Souls II.
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