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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars BUY NOW!
New to dark souls.. A little apprehensive with all the dying, thought it might be borderline frustrating. How wrong I was! Every inch gained in this is a small triumph, every fight (and I mean EVERY fight!) is a genuine ass-clencher! Plot is standard (am only half way way through so far) but it's the getting there that it all boils downs to. Cannot recommend this game...
Published 10 months ago by Ro

versus
45 of 53 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Good, but not as good as it's predecessors.
I am well aware that I am writing a review which is contrary to popular consensus. However, like Mugatu and his understanding that Zoolander's Blue Steel pose is the same expression as all his others, I appear to be highlighting something that other people can see, but seem resistant to acknowledge.

Dark Souls II is not as good as Dark Souls.

There I...
Published 15 months ago by Pandemonian


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5.0 out of 5 stars It's not a game; it's an experience., 13 Oct. 2014
By 
Caradoc Elmet (England) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
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This review is from: Dark Souls II (PS3) (Video Game)
Simply the greatest gaming experience I've ever had. The only bad thing about this is the poor English translation which was done by 3 different companies (I think) and often makes no sense or contradicts what you experience in the game or read in the description of an item. I had to find a Japanese playthrough online and read the Japanese wiki to figure out most of the Lore but I'd fallen in love with this game long before I did that so it's not a barrier to your enjoyment at all.

This is the ONLY game I would recommend to everyone. Some of you may not find it to your taste but all of you should at least try it.
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8 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Today is a good day to DIE!, 16 Mar. 2014
This review is from: Dark Souls II (PS3) (Video Game)
Well here we are again! Die another day? hehe. Dark Souls 2 is the sequel to the runaway open world hacknslash rpg hit on consoles a couple of years back. Though it takes a lot of influence from the original Demons Souls as well.

Let us Begin!

Graphics...I dont care what anyone says...on my PS3 it is glorious....the higher resolution, the cleaner and more detailed textures, the frankly astounding lighting which changes the way the whole game looks and plays a part in the gameplay as well!. All in all it is leaps and bounds ahead of both Demons Souls and Dark Souls. The world of Drangleic is a work of art...when i'm standing on the shore watching the Sunset with my cloak billowing in the wind PRAISE THE SUN indeed! You can immediately tell this game is on a much better and more complex engine.

Sound

Love the background soundtrack at Majula. Its awesome...starts quite peaceful and contemplative but then you get the dark tone threat overlaid upon this sound....how epic is this very sinister hehe. All may seem peaceful in Majula but the threat of DS2 lingers in the background. The various sound effects from things like fire, steel clashing, moans from enemies feels on a par with Dark Souls...so very good!

Gameplay

This game to me feels like the offspring of both Demons and Dark Souls. The open worldness of Dark Souls is there but certain elements of Demons Souls like a home staging area (the Nexus) and Majula here are the same. Leveling up by speak to the Maiden (hehe) at the bonfire, 2 covenants, 2 merchants, a blacksmith etc all in this area. I think it starts more linear than Dark Souls (from firelink you could go at least 5 or 6 paths to different levels) whereas here your options are basically 2 (forest of fallen giants and Tower of Flame) or 3 if you count Things Bewtixt. I'll edit this later if i'm mistaken.

So things feel pretty familiar if youve played Demons/Dark Souls. Now where there are differences is in things like..being able to warp instantly from any bonfire to any other bonfire you have lit. Not sure what to make of this yet. Now also..the cannon fodder enemies on each level do not respawn inifinitely (so limited farming here but more on this later) AND the merchants and blacksmith also have limited items so you have to be more careful in how you use certain items. The Bosses so far seem pretty good (you wont get the same feeling as meeting and fighting the Tower knight in Demons Souls for the first time.. but hey we were all Souls virgins then ;) )ive only killed 4 so far which included a nice nostalgic fisticuffs from an old friend from Dark Souls.

One thing that every review really should cover is COMBAT. A Souls game is about survival and overcoming DEATH. I have to be honest and say the combat mechanics do NOT feel as tight and as focused as both Demons and Dark Souls. Your character feels more sluggish..more lag..the lock on doesnt work as it should sometimes and often you have to fight multiple opponents at once.... you tend to get staggered a lot by even one hit from an enemy and you are furiously bashing dodge button button but your character is either too slow or input lag kills you.

However.... you might notice that they have actually configured combat and how you move and how fast you can evade and strike at enemies (**PLEASE NOTE i don't mean that as you increase DEX or AGILITY then your attack animation gets lots and lots quicker as i dont know and tbh i doubt it*** BUT your other movement factors do this is confirmed) as well as cast spells and drink healing potions into how good your stats are. This is imo a great leap forward. It means that no the combat isn't crap ;) you are slow because your Dex and agility and such is low. Your stats actually affect how well your character can attack and move. Now this was in Dark Souls to a limited effect (e.g. rolling and moving fast at super low encumbrance) BUT what they have done with Dark Souls 2 is an evolution to a deeper combat mechanics. Now if someone has 30 Dex, Agility, Adapt etc then you will SEE it in their movement and attacks. This is probably the best thing about Dark Souls 2 because it makes the game so much deeper.

I mentioned the limited farming before...now you might remember in Dark Souls there were lots of areas you could pretty much farm forever to get X type of upgrade stone or souls or humanity. This is GONE from Dark Souls 2 and its a good thing. I think it s good for Pvp and its good for making players move forward and not letting them rest too much on farming an area to level up to make the next area a lot easier. Now you can still farm but they have moved it to Online :) You can farm souls (and other items) as much as you like by helping (or invading) other people with their levels. So i reckon they changed this to get more people into the online aspect of the game. Yesterday i was at the Tower of Flame and i had to wait an average of 2 seconds before i was summoned every single time (lvl 30). I cant really talk a lot about the Pvp because ive mainly been helping folk...however i do know that in Dark Souls it was almost broken because you often were fighting either glitch players, players with massively overleveled weapons for the level they were at...and much exploiting of the backstab mechanic. Basically the best Farmer or glitcher won a lot of the time. I dont know yet how the ramifications of pvp are in Dark Souls 2 we shall just have to wait and see.

So is there anything i dont like? The less tight combat can be annoying just because you are used to it being exactly like Dark Souls when it is slightly different (getting staggered all the time aint fun haha). Maybe a bit more imagination in the level design would be good..Tower of Flame looks a lot like a mini Anor Londo. Trying to think of other things about this game which are bad and i cant...iif you go into this because you love Demons Souls and Dark Souls then you will love it totally. It has the same feel, mechanics and atmosphere. I think its a bit more forgiving and easier perhaps to ensure that the first death of the newbie is not their last. Death is not the end...its not even the beginning of the end..but it is the end of the beginning... the minute you see your first **YOU DIED** in bold red font...you've arrived ..welcome home my son!
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5.0 out of 5 stars Bring it on!, 2 Jun. 2015
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This review is from: Dark Souls II (PS3) (Video Game)
It goes without saying that if it is made by from software you are in for a hell of a hard task. The game is very hard but you learn from your mistakes and it trains you to be a better player. We need more games like this that refuse to hold your hand and are brutally tough to complete.
I would recommend this game to all serious game players, I love it.
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5.0 out of 5 stars this is an excellent game, an extended version of the original essentially, 31 Oct. 2014
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This review is from: Dark Souls II (PS3) (Video Game)
this is an excellent game, an extended version of the original essentially, though some of the atmosphere was lost!. if you enjoyed Dark souls you'll love this game though. the game starts off very open with different environments to explore at leasure, however it narrows towards the end, this is the opposite format of the first game.
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3.0 out of 5 stars worst of the series, but ok, 24 Aug. 2014
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This review is from: Dark Souls II (PS3) (Video Game)
No where near as good as demon souls or dark souls. Was really disappointed that most of the game time was spent running around in vast areas. The best thing about the predecessors is that not all enemies where of a grand scale and a lot of environments could feel big and claustrophobic. I don't get the same kick out of this game.
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Okay ... but not as good as Demons Souls or Dark Souls, 17 Mar. 2014
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This review is from: Dark Souls II (PS3) (Video Game)
Okay, my original review is below, now completed the game... took me ages basically because it did not gripeth me at all so I kept leaving it ... the story was vacant (at least DS had a basic history you could build and fathom), the NPC's have repetitive semi pointless dialogue and generally the game felt too long by the time I reached the memories section (I know that is near the end but by then I just didn't care).

I do stand by my comments that the importance of conserving consumables early game makes it more fun and generally the enemies are slicker (I just love the design of Demon of Song), and the game is still worth it for real DS fans, but don't expect a game like DS1.

So despite my original 5-star enthusiasm, I have now downgraded to 3 stars ... Sorry Namco

****** Original review

Firstly I have not yet fully completed DS2, (only got the game 3 days ago :-)

However having completed Demons Souls and Dark Souls many times over including several of the DS challenges (e.g. SL1, Pyro only) I am happy to say that DS2 seems to be the best of both worlds.

The rarity and importance of conserving consumables as found in Demons Souls back in DS2 and the general slickness and enemy AI of DS1 has been built on.

Can't comment on PVP - always got back-stabbed to death in DS1 :-) and so only play the game PVE at the moment.

Lighting is amazing!
Areas are amazing!
And yes bosses are hard but as all DS fans know ... that is the point and the enormous reward of DS games.

Still undecided on the Human Effigy effect to restore humanity - much rarer than the of Humanity Sprites in DS1 but I expect it all to work out. .... if I can just get passed the Old Dragonslayer solo :-)

DS Fans will love it
New DS player will love it if they understand that this is the game to make all other games look like hand holders.

I heard someone say that DS1 spoiled his enjoyment of other video games ... I agree, since playing DS games I have played no other.

Enjoy
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9 of 12 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Til Death do us part, 14 Mar. 2014
By 
S. Richards - See all my reviews
(TOP 1000 REVIEWER)   
= Fun:5.0 out of 5 stars 
This review is from: Dark Souls II (PS3) (Video Game)
I played Dark Souls, and it was torture. And now, here I am, back for more punishment in DSII. What does that say about me, and you? That we like to play hard, take brutal hits but still get back up again, ready for more. It's a brutal RPG world, and if not THE hardest game you have ever played, it certainly will rank as one of the hardest.

DSII is gorgeous, even epic, but deep down, it's sadistic and bloody, and I appreciate that about it. You play this kind of game for the challenge. Frustrating, challenging, punishing, but really, really satisfying, too. And that's what makes it fun, even when you see "You Died" time and time again.

The game itself has undergone a few changes. You can now warp to any bonfire. I have mixed feelings about this; I like the idea of being able to skip to any bonfire in an instant, but there is something about finding those shortcuts and wandering through the land to that hard-to-find bonfire. So I'll have to keep playing the game for a while longer before I come down on whether I think this is ultimately a good thing or not.

Items are far more important in DSII. You have access to far more healing items in this game; however, the downside is your estus flask does not hold the same starting charges. You only have 1 charge at the start of the game, instead of the 5 which you start with in Dark Souls. The human effigy is also an item that you will be on the lookout for as the sadistic designers of the game have decided to punish you just a little more for those little slices of death now. When you see the death screen, they take a sliver of your maximum HP, and the only way you get the maximum back is to burn a human effigy. So, search hard and always keep one in your back pocket.

As for online, that's a little different now as well. Gone are the days when the online player who takes pleasure from beating up underdeveloped players runs the game. Their time has come be afraid, as there is a group who will hunt you down, and in the words of Liam Neeson, "I will find you and then I will kill you." Sides will have to be chosen, and this makes being invaded even better.

Yes, DSII will drive you crazy. Yes, you will feel like throwing the controller at the TV in frustration, but there is still nothing like beating that boss who has been schooling you for the last hour and the sense of accomplishment that comes with that. Love and maybe hate it just a little, but the Dark Souls series continues to be the game to beat.
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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Good as ever, 6 May 2014
By 
A. Griffiths "Adrian" (London) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Dark Souls II (PS3) (Video Game)
I want to keep this simple - Dark Souls 2 is another great game, equally as impressive as it's predecessors. But I also want to tell you about what to to expect.

First of all you don't need to play the other two games before attempting this one - they are all separate stories and experiences. Dark Souls 2 is almost identical to Dark Souls though in a lot of the mechanics of the game. I really recommend picking up the other two first - they are bound to be available at lower prices now, so it would be ideal to start with those and then move onto this one...so I am going to review this assuming that readers have played both of the original games.

So yes players should feel immediately at home. There is a tutorial session to start you off, with some easy enemies and some very mild predicaments to get through - plus a few nasty surprises of course, to make sure you get used to dying! Once this is over you will reach the games central hub, which is the place you need to return to over and over again to level up. Branching from here are paths to other places to explore, and as usual, nothing is really spelled out for you, so off you roam, attempting to explore areas and discover new items, weapons and armour, open new doors and try to kill everything before it kills you.

As you'd expect, the environments are spectacular. Castles, ruins, lakes, forests, pits and dungeons, everything you would expect is here. Enemies are merciless, so you have to take every precaution to fight well and never be lazy or impatient. This makes for nail biting gameplay, and as before, huge relief when you reach a milestone or a bonfire.

Changes players may have heard about...fast travel between bonfires is now available from the start - this is a great idea. Most notably for soul gathering, because the reward for making it to a bonfire is that if you save/rest, and then walk back the other way that you originally came from, nearly all the enemies will now no longer be able to surprise you, in fact a lot of them have their backs to you. Sweet revenge! You'll need to make the most of advantages like this to gather more souls, as enemies do not respawn forever any more, so eventually you'll be playing a game with a lot of empty and lonely environments (if you replay each one to the point where the enemies don't come back any more). Good news for cowards (like me) in that you can now make clear runs to reach bosses, rather than arrive at a boss gate every time with half your healing supplies wasted on the route just to get there. Particularly kind at pathways like the one with the gang of corrosive mushroom beetles which was right by a bonfire - so there was no running by that impediment without all your weapons and armour falling apart. Those beetles had to DIE!

Apart from this almost everything else is the same. There are tons of weapons, armour, spells and items, and by the end my inventory was overflowing with stuff I never used. You can't try and use everything, but the game lets you choose your own style, so you can focus on what works for you. Bosses are of course as punishing as before, and very cruelly, some ( The Pursuer, the Smelter Demon) become available at a time when you have no chance of beating them, but of course when you take up certain challenges is up to you.

There are still things I don't like. I play for the in-game challenge only and I really resent the fact that other players can invade your game and kill you for fun, if you play online. I think this causes frustration, and there should have been a way to block invasions in the system options. I did resort to starting in offline mode a number of times just to stop this.

If anything though, I think Dark Souls 2 is actually kinder than the two first games. The fast travel between bonfires and the clearing out of enemies can be a real relief. Reports on the fact that each death lowers your maximum health bar is just scaremongering - in the previous games, being dead ("hollow") always made you play with a shorter health bar. Here it just gets gradually shorter starting from the full amount - and it stops once you reach halfway, so this is actually hardly different at all. Plus, not long into the game you get a ring that makes health loss stop at three-quarters full, which, once you find you will equip immediately and never remove again. Make sure you don't miss it! On that topic, it's hard to resist playing the game without constant reference to online forums and guides, as everything is so cryptic within the game itself. Some of it's secrets are so well hidden, chances are you'd never ever stumble on them without help. Using on line help is the cowards way out...it would taker stronger nerves than mine to play without assistance of any kind.

I still recommend Dark Souls 2 wholeheartedly. Be brave and dive in, as even the scarediest player will eventually learn how to progress, and the thrill of beating the bosses is unrivalled in my experience of gameplay, because you really earn it every time. My greatest admiration and respect go to the creator of this series for the hideous and cruel (yet still beautiful) worlds they have created.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars, 13 July 2014
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Amazing game!!!
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5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars, 13 July 2014
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Great game. Not good than the first chapter, but still one of the best games of the year.
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Dark Souls II (PS3)
Dark Souls II (PS3) by Namco (PlayStation 3)
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