Dark Souls II - Review @ GameBanshee
GameBanshee has a lengthy review of Dark Souls II, which notes shortcomings but can't stop the reviewer of recommending the game.
Given Dark Souls II dropped both the original's light/dark dichotomy and its interconnected world structure, it allowed itself to be far more varied in locations, and now ranges from Gothic castles sinking into the lava, to underground pirates' dens, to thick, overgrown forts. In other words, the game makes full use of classic fantasy iconography while also presenting its own twists. Unfortunately, the environmental art isn't always as consistent as it could be: when the game is at its best it looks far better than either of its predecessors, but spotting tiled textures, flat lighting or similar oversights is easier than it should be, and there's at least one location that looks like it never got a much-needed art pass before release. And yes, the elephant in the room here is that, even at its best, the game never looks like it did during its first pre-release outings. I don't know about the whys and hows, which might well be legitimate, but a bit more honesty in marketing and communication would have been appreciated on part of both Namco Bandai and From Software. Luckily, the armor sets and weapons present the same kind of consistency and variety we've grown to expect of the series, with most of them looking practical without being bogged by historical accuracy, and all of them sharing a certain design sensibility that allows even the most absurd ones (like, for example, a statue wielded like a sword thanks to a tacked-on hilt) to feel like they belong in the world. Equally deserving of praise are the enemy designs and models, as they stand up to the high standards the series has established.
Information aboutDark Souls II
SP/MP: Single + MP