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Default First Dark Souls II review

February 20th, 2014, 15:03
Dark Souls 2 reviews are in with 90% score:

http://www.vg247.com/2014/02/20/dark…-in-the-world/
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February 20th, 2014, 15:34
Yeah, I saw that. I thought, "only 90%? Must be fake."

Whats the deal, though? Have review copies even been sent out yet?

Here's a scan of the first page, anyway:
http://www.maniac.de/sites/default/f…?itok=zJ8ax-4i

Translated:
Prepare to die: when the video game brags of this in the official advertising slogan, then drives you from one killscreen to another, it is quite a bold marketing strategy. And if the players actually have to deal with an exceptionally high frequency of the demise of their virtual alter egos, and still can not keep their hands from the joypad, the game has done something right. [Dark Souls II is] a game in From Software's "Souls" saga — these games are exemplary masters at the balancing act of creating challenging fun since the excellent début "Demon's Souls", balancing between furious frustration and driven motivation.

[Snip more bullshit intro text]

Foreign world; familiar task

One thing first : Story fans with a penchant for detailed storytelling and sprawling cutscenes will be disappointed with this game. Although the lavish introduction render featuring the arrival of our nameless hero in the mysterious kingdom Drangleic is staged, it is still impressive. After that, the story/action is only told in fragments. Usually in the form of monologues given by vendors and other NPCs, accompanied by itself (?), that don't bring too much light into the darkness of the mysterious world. So basically everything as it was in the "Souls" world. This also applies to your task : On your Hero is the curse of the undead and the associated capacity of an irrepressible hunger for monster souls.

The central point (hub) of the demon-hunting is the peaceful settlement Majula. Here there are no dangerous monsters lurking, but it gradually features just about everything, becoming a nest of the services that a fantasy hero needs to make life easier. Different stores offer: weapons, armor and items to assist; a magician and Pyromancer teach you spells; a blacksmith for equipment upgrades; and the so-called Emerald herald allows you to level up.
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February 20th, 2014, 15:47
Thanks SirJames for the scan and translation.

That translation indicates that DS 2 seems to follow the same foot steps as its predecessor - which is excellent.

However, I don't get the part about the shops and traders being co-located in a hub area - maybe its the translation!.
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February 20th, 2014, 20:26
Hmmm? I don't understand? What don't you get?

Majula is like your Firelink Shrine kinda area and it starts with NPCs who sell you stuff. You level up at an NPC called Emerald Herald rather than a campfire.
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February 20th, 2014, 21:21
Does that mean traders and blacksmiths are no longer scattered around the game world, and are all now located in a single hub?
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February 21st, 2014, 06:48
Well, you know, I'm not 100% sure, but it seems highly unlikely that you can only buy from town NPCS.

With Firelink Shrine a lot of NPCS would relocate there after you found them elsewhere in the world so it might be a bit like that.

Also, there was some old dude with a big stack of junk on their back in the network test "hunters copse" area who would sell things? (I don't have a PS3 so I wasn't in the test.)

I think its part of the new more accessible start. I read a preview from someone who didn't like Dark Souls who said,

"I then I moved on to the next area, which contained something the first Dark Souls lacked – a recognisable tutorial."

around this point in the game he,

"In fact I was starting to feel good about things. Of course that feeling didn't last long, but it was an important feeling to have and one which was absent from the first game. "

…Felt optimistic! He thought he could handle it! See, if you think about the Asylum Demon in Dark Souls that could really put some people off the game cos while its there to teach you an important lesson - to run past things too hard for you and come back later - But your modern gamer, as another preview recently said "doesn't beat games, he finishes them", so that first hurdle has to be beaten!

So, anyway, he gets to Majula and….

"The orange sunlight lit a small village that serves as a sort of hub for the opening few hours, which contains tradesmen to buy armour from and three potential roads to take.

This is where Dark Souls lost me all over again.

I ventured down each path but was met every time with failure. I tried and tried, but couldn't get very far at all."

The real game starts. So if nothing else he can make a goal to buy a new item from the starting shops.
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February 21st, 2014, 12:30
Many thanks for your detailed reply SirJames.

So it seems that DS 2 is more welcoming this time - at least the first few hours.

I also get your point about players perception on difficulty, especially at the beginning with the Asylum Demon in DS 1. This is because almost all hack and slash games now follow the following pattern:
see big monster (that must be a boss), invisible barrier appear, must kill boss for invisible barriers to dissapear to continue, must beat boss.

Not many action/adventure games give player the freedom and choice to tackle the game world and creatures like in the Dark Souls game since it is not easy to do.
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February 21st, 2014, 13:14
Originally Posted by SpoonFULL View Post
Many thanks for your detailed reply SirJames.
My pleasure!

I'm so excited for this game that talking about it is the next best thing to playing it!

Here's a full translation of that review on another forum:
http://www.neogaf.com/forum/showpost…&postcount=312

And this video was quite enjoyable too. I watched it twice!
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=H4N1pIs2GIc
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February 23rd, 2014, 09:38
Since when do mainstream reviews mean squat anyways?

The game is good apparently (and is very much Dark souls if the fanboy youtubers are to be believed) that is enough for me at this point.

I am sure I'll be able to come to a conclusion of my own at about 30-40 hours in. Comparing how it stacks up to the original may take a finished run or two, for a game like this

P.S. The only thing of note I found in the review translation (i.e. we weren't sure about although I expected it) is that some places/locations were visually sacrificed a bit too much to preserve playable framerates. I just hope we are spared that in the PC version but I simply cannot consider it a given with these guys. Hope the difference is not too distracting at least
Last edited by JonNik; February 23rd, 2014 at 10:00.
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February 23rd, 2014, 16:30
I wouldn't take this too seriously either. It's a print mag, so they must have played the game some time ago. Maybe two weeks before publication.
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