Sunday - February 07, 2016
Demon's Souls - VG24/7 Retrospective
Seven years later, Demon's Souls is still sticking with some people and affecting the way they play games. VG24/7 has a retrospective.
Demon’s Souls is seven years old today; it first launched on February 5 2009. A spiritual successor to the King’s Field series, the brutally punishing RPG spoke to a very specific kind of Japanese gamer: those who’d grown up playing baffling, badly-translated (or unlocalised!) western RPGs. It was the sort of situation that gave rise to the great Wizardry schism; the humour of the parody RPG was lost in translation, and the series has a long, po-faced legacy in Japan that seems bizarre to those involved with the original seed.
Nothing ever feels as awe-inspiring, as challenging, as enigmatic, as surprising, as different or as beautifully satisfying as that first run through the terrifying and beautiful Demon’s Souls. In the early days of RPGs traveling west to east, fans would gather on bulletin boards to share tips and advice on how to unpack pages of incomprehensible text and leverage unfamiliar, unexplained gameplay systems. To recreate this feeling, From Software implemented its now famous asynchronous notes system, emulating the collaborative problem solving and regular trolling of those early RPG fans.
The way Demon’s Souls, Dark Souls and Bloodborne refuse to explain themselves to you, peppered as they are with items of dubious use, mysterious references and esoteric synergies, gives you a shadow of the experience of what it was like for Japanese RPG fans before local developers took up the now ubiquitous systems of levelling, inventory, customisation – whatever it is that makes an RPG, as passed down to us by Gary Gygax.
Saturday - May 26, 2012
Demon's Souls - Staying Online
The Atlas Faithful e-mail sent out news yesterday that Demon's Souls with be staying online for the foreseeable future, and they also provide a link to GameInformer for the news.
"We're incredibly excited to be able to announce that the Demon's Souls online experience will persist for a while longer," stated Tim Pivnicny, Vice President of Marketing and Sales at ATLUS. "While it originally seemed as though it would be unfeasible for us to continue to sustain the servers, a number of developments have made it possible for us to continue to invest in and support our fans as they have continued to invest in and support us and Demon's Souls.
"For all the gamers who have yet to discover the game's amazing online experience, we're happy to say you can still log on and find out why Demon's Souls is still regarded by many as one of the finest games of all time."
Friday - July 02, 2010
Demon's Souls - Review @ Revolution Magazine
For many readers this will be ancient news but with Demon's Souls released just last week in Europe, I thought it time to add it to our database. If you're not aware of it, Demon's Souls is a PS3-only action/RPG made by From Software in Japan - but it most certainly is not a jRPG.
UK reviews are coming out with the recent Euro release and here's a snip from Resolution Magazine, who scored a 10/10:
IT’S EXCRUCIATING, it really is. The fog is suffocating and claustrophobic, filling every corner of my field of view. Eerie silence defines this landscape, the nearby stone gateway long since ruined – not so much crumbling as crumbled. I inch forward, straining to see anything less innocuous in the middle distance. Right on cue, I freeze in my tracks. A sinister looking silver skeleton wielding a preposterously large scimitar stands twenty feet past the remains of the arch, yellow glowing eyes piercing the mist. Should I try my bow? What about a fire spell? There’s no guarantee any tactic will work. And it’s too late anyway. My foe rolls towards me at a terrifying rate, displaying an athleticism I hadn’t expected. Instinctively blocking, I realise that in my left hand I hold not a shield, but a magical twig. Dead.
There are two important lessons here, upon which progress depends. The first: never judge a book by its cover, or, in this case, a giant living skeleton by its ostensibly encumbering size and shape. Traps, armed enemies and other nasties will spring from nowhere, necessitating an approach to unknown areas that’s cautious in the extreme and just as astute; face value means little in Boletaria, and overeager adventurers will find out all too quickly on the end of a spear. The second vital realisation is that to call the world of Demon’s Souls “harsh” or “uncompromising” is to make such an understatement as to sound disingenuous.