Posts Tagged ‘Dark Souls’

Labyrinths: Deep In The Dungeons Of Daggerfall

By Adam Smith on October 10th, 2014.

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An exploration of the uncanny architecture of Daggerfall’s dungeons and the interconnected worlds of Dark Souls.

Dungeons, as a concept in games, are one of the great pillars from which disbelief is suspended like a ragged banner. They are functional objects, from the perspective of designer and player alike, but their function as part of a world is unclear. Occasionally, they are prisons of a sort, as their name suggests, but they are more likely to be ruins of uncertain utility. As to the question ‘why are ruins so often underground?’, we can perhaps answer by recognising that no visible architecture is required on the surface if such complex spaces are buried. The conjuring of the momumental without the pesky need to build the monument.

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Keep On Livin’: Dark Souls Not Going Anywhere

By Alice O'Connor on May 21st, 2014.

But you're dead or have been all along or would have been or became or

Life and death are complicated in Dark Souls. You kill someone, then you go have a sit-down and they’re alive again. Or undead again, whatever. Or you rob someone’s grave, then discover you’re the one who offed them in a time travel lark. Accordingly, the life of the game is a bit messy too. With Games for Windows – Live possibly maybe shutting down (I’ll explain–it’s daft), publishers Bandai Namco (they switched the name around in April) have reassured it’ll still be up and running “for the foreseeable future.” As I imagine I’ll like to occasionally revisit Dark Souls for years to come, I’m pretty glad.

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Perish The Thought Of Ignoring Gorgeous Roguelike Perish

By Nathan Grayson on May 15th, 2014.

To begin, I will admit that Perish is not in any way an unheard of quantity in the world of PC games. It’s a roguelike-like with random generation and permadeath. Once upon a time nobody did that for 20 years, but now it’s every videogame. Perish does, however, sweeten the pot with Dark-Souls-inspired biff-thud-whump-*sounds of your own pitiful whimper*-ing and a gorgeously gloomy aesthetic. Basically, it’s Dark Souls meets Spelunky. It’s still pretty early, but there’s an alluringly melancholic trailer below.

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Wot I Think: Dark Souls II

By Adam Smith on April 30th, 2014.

Dark Souls is a tough act to follow. While it was the second game in the dark fantasy Souls series, it had a wider audience and fell under closer scrutiny. As well as solidifying the mechanics that Demon’s Souls had laid out it made some major changes and built a more cohesive world. Dark Souls II tweaks the formula again and the results aren’t entirely satisfying. Here’s wot I think.

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Down And Out In Drangleic: Dark Souls II Impressions

By Adam Smith on April 25th, 2014.

Dark Souls II unlocked at midnight and I haven’t stopped playing since then. The hour between 4 and 5 am was distressing, as I found myself caught in a bleary-eyed Groundhog Day loop of blood-seeking and blood-letting. That central rhythm, of loss and learning as each death becomes a lesson for the next life, is intact and as compelling as ever in the first terrible and glorious hours of this third Souls title. Here are my early impressions and a couple of niggling doubts.

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Dead Crusade Is Medieval Co-op Meets The Black Death

By Nathan Grayson on April 10th, 2014.

Wait! I have suddenly decided I abhor violence and would rather talk this over

Dead Crusade is a game that aims to make two great tastes go great together. I mean, crusades have historically ended well, and who could forget all the wonderful times that were had in spite of the Black Death ravaging the European countryside and taking an estimated 75-200 million people? Now, while Dead Crusade uses that insidious murder plague as a backdrop for co-op first-or-third-person hack ‘n’ slashing, I actually think the Black Death would make for a perfect videogame main character. Finally, a story-justified reason for taking more lives than there are grains of sand in the sky or stars on a beach. Trailer for not that (but still an interesting-ish looking game) below.

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The Serafinowiczer: Dark Souls II Adds Brit Actor

By Adam Smith on January 31st, 2014.

There’s a video containing nine minutes of Dark Souls II action just below the break, but if you’re anything like me you’ll be waiting to play the blasted thing rather than watching every piece of footage that emerges. I skimmed through and can confidently state that ragged cloaks are this season’s must have accessory, whether you’re beast or barbarian. If you skip to the end of the video, or stick with it for the duration, you’ll be able to hear the thoughtful tones of Peter Serafinowicz, a surprise addition to the cast. Surprising to me, at least, since I’ll always think of him as plum-gobbed Duane Benzie, who you can also see below.

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From Curse To Hearse: Dark Souls II

By Adam Smith on January 15th, 2014.

After 45 seconds of slow build, the new Dark Souls II trailer delivers exactly what I’d hoped for. Vaguely poetic death threats and glimpses of the hideous creatures that will be performing the executions. There’s a particularly unpleasant fellow who seems to have the screaming, writhing corpses of the damned instead of a waist. It looks good on him, I have to say, and I fully expect the look to feature on the catwalk this summer. Whether or not you consider the Souls games to be horror-RPGs, it’s hard to argue that the creature designs in this trailer aren’t more horrific and imaginative than anything we’ve seen of The Evil Within so far.

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Hands On With Dark Souls II

By Rich Stanton on October 4th, 2013.


In my opinion – and let’s leave all those arguments about the poor PC port out of this – Dark Souls is the greatest game ever made. Precise and deep combat systems, an astounding lore woven throughout its tonally perfect dark fantasy world, and a sense of 3D architecture nothing else even comes close to. With all of that said, I wasn’t whooping at the announcement of Dark Souls II. Call it what you will – a Gollum-like protectionism over My Precious, a sense that nothing could ever quite match up to that original, or something worse – but the truth is I was anxious at the idea of a sequel. Nevertheless, when the opportunity arose to get hands-on, I braved the bleak halls find out for myself. And, for my sins, I found out.

You’ll want to read on for that stuff, terrible soul-searching, and to find out how many times I died.

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Prepare To Die Harder: Dark Souls II

By Adam Smith on April 11th, 2013.

When a franchise is resurrected years after its previous instalment, it’s only natural to worry that there may be unnecessary changes to a once successful formula. Changes often make me sad, staring at the flickering screen like a melancholy ghost who realises that he no longer belongs in the world. The very term ‘reboot’ sometimes makes me head for the nearest tunnel of light, my only ‘goodbye’ a sigh and a shrug. Dark Souls 2 isn’t a reboot though and not enough time has lapsed for a paradigm shift to have taken place that means there must be regenerating health and Facebook integration. The new trailer shows some environments and they look suitably dingy and suited to vertical exploration.

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Prepare To Die Again: Dark Souls II Announced

By Nathan Grayson on December 8th, 2012.

It's gonna be super easy and dumbed-down, obviously.

The incredibly unfortunate heir to E3′s Mountain-Dew-and-Dorito-stained throne just happened, so onward to the inevitable barrage of substance-free announcements. First up, Dark Souls II is a thing. It’s official, it’s real, etc. Presumably, it’s also a videogame, but Namco and From didn’t even go that far. So, is it coming to PC? I haven’t the foggiest. But given Dark Souls: Prepare to Die Edition‘s strong reception ’round these parts, it seems likely [Update: And also confirmed. Hooray!]. Until we know, well, anything, though, here’s an appropriately death-ridden CG trailer. If you pay close attention, you might also notice DRAGONS EVERYWHERE.

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Wot I Think: Dark Souls – Prepare To Die Edition

By Adam Smith on August 30th, 2012.

This is the closest Dark Souls will ever come to hugging you

Demanded and then reprimanded, Dark Souls: Prepare To Die Edition is the most basic port of one of the most peculiar and powerful games of recent times. It’s unforgiving, mysterious, bizarre and thoroughly rewarding, but are there enough graphics to let the brilliance shine through and does the game deserve its reputation? Here’s wot I think.

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Prepare To Sigh (In Relief): Dark Souls’ High-Res Mod

By Nathan Grayson on August 25th, 2012.

My kingdom for better resolutions. That's it right there: my kingdom. Do we have a deal?

I suppose, on some level, beggars can’t be choosers. We got our much-requested Dark Souls port, and early reports make it out to be quite the functional purveyor untimely, needlessly brutal death. So basically, exactly what we were all begging for. But – and I must briefly make sure there’s not a copy of the game in earshot; otherwise, it’ll totally kill me (no, really) for saying this – it’s not much of a looker. OK, scratch that: it’s a blurry, washed out mess. But wait, what’s that in the sky? Is it a bird? A plane? A… oh, wait, it was a bird. Anyway, here’s a mod for Dark Souls.

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