If you have heard of Dark Souls, then you probably know it is a game people consider very hard. Well, time to debunk that statement. It is only hard on your first time through. Once you know where things are and what to do and where to go, the difficulty eases away and it goes from a ball crushingly difficult game to a slightly above average difficult game.
But, who gives a fuck about that. Let us get onto the real criticisms of this piece of shit. Things that made my blood boil and made me want to slap each and every single member of From Software's development team.
But from the minute you start making your way towards the Undead Burg, you will face your greatest enemy in the game, the cliffs.
Now, some people may say that this adds another layer of difficulty. I call bullshit. You know, Demon's Souls was supposedly a hard game, some say harder infact. Why then does it not littered with fall offs to the core of the earth?
These cliffs are just artificial difficulty. I am not suggesting removing all of them, but there are alot of unessential ones that really detract from the game. It seems that they excused themselves on adding actually challenging things by adding frustrating things.
One shot kill bosses. Well, they aren't always one shot kill, there is some wiggle room, but these bosses are fucking boring. They consist of avoiding their attacks, then stabbing them in the ass for a long period of time. Bosses like the Gaping Demon, Ceaseless Discharge (ughh) and the Stray Demon.
Nope, that is not the Stray or Gaping demon...A
See, these bosses are either very hard, or so easy it makes me wet my pants with some false sense of accomplishment. The Stray Demon for me was the hardest boss in the game. And yes, I soloed Smog and Horny... The Stray Demon would sometimes discharge his fire farts on me as soon as I dropped in, which resulted in my demise. It took me so many damn tries to kill this bastard, but finally I was done. So, I made a new account after I had completed the game and decided to take him on again, since I had breezed past the game up until this point with no deaths. Drop down, and get instantly fire farted to death. "Fuck you", he seemed to say, "that's what you get for stabbing my asshole a thousand times in a previous life".
What players enjoy is seeing the skills they learnt fighting shitkickers and rats blossom. We enjoy meaty fights against real opponents and not things that can instantly destroy the universe, but somehow die after having a tentacle stabbed several times. The best fight I had in all of Dark Souls, was in the same area of the Stray Demon. What I assume to be the knight who dropped the key for me in the beginning of the game had hollowed, and was now waiting upstairs, where the guy who gave use Estus flasks had died (or were they the same person?) That was a great fight.
I don't hate the idea of giant, huge monsters to fight, but alot of the ones in Dark Souls became tedious and were among the least memorable of the boss fights. It is like Call of Duty, where your character dies every 5 minutes. It is not surprising and not fun.
The balancing. Wow, who the fuck balanced this game? There are just too many things wrong with the balance to write it all out. The stupid stats, the overpowered elemental weapons, the poor scaling, the god damn fucking flip ring, etc. For the sake of time and sanity, just know that no one thought the balancing through and it's nonsensicle approach rears its ugly head in PVP.
Bah! Let it be said that Skin finishes what he starts, but let it also be said that critiquing Dark Souls PVP is the equivalent of a food critic critically analyzing all the textural flaws of a big, steaming turd. Basically, Demon's Souls did it better. There is nothing more that really needs to be said apart from that - Dark Souls just did everything wrong that Demon's Souls did right, add in the problems of the "Single Player" aspect of the game (retarded stats, retarded weapons, retarded poise) and you take that proverbial steaming turd, and urinate on it. The most glaring flaw is the lack of dedicated servers and I will say no more on that. No doubt anyone who has played Dark Souls has been lagstabbed even though their back is to the wall, because somehow the game takes an action that happened 10 seconds ago as what is currently happening and somehow breaks the space/time continuum...
PvP is a really good idea for a game like this, but when you shit on balance and don't even bother with dedicated servers, you should go fuck yourself.
Take note that Dark Souls is my GOTY for 2011, despite it being the piece of shit it is. I feel the combat is unrivaled and it was a challenging experience that not many other games can hope to match. It has basically been the only game I played after it's release (except for a few games that I will rip on later). Despite this, I am going to call a spade a spade. Dark Souls made many mistakes that I fear will only be compounded upon in the future. Might as well call them out, and wait for the inevitable failure that will be Dragon's Souls.
So here ends thy first critique. Dark Souls is an outstanding game, with glaring flaws that only dare be uttered from the lips of someone who hath braved the god damn Tomb of Giants, and still has their controller intact. I have heard many critiques about this game, but they are usually from shitbrained monkeys who have got mad because the story wasn't beating them over the head. Speaking of the story, this is something that the game does right - the actual setting of the world is incredibly, incredibly deep, but it is presented in a minimalist fashion and truly does end up being "less is more". There are lots of YouTube videos that explain the story and the setting if you aren't interested in looking at item descriptions, but it does exist and is actually quite good (though not terribly original in any sense).