This game is like Dark Souls, except it isn’t

May 16, 2017 no comments Posted in PC, Video Games

Dark souls: Prepare to Die image

 

 

You would think that Dark Souls would be just like Dark Souls, however contrary to popular belief and common sense, it is not.

“It’s like Dark Souls” is commonly said of many games with even a minor resemblance to dark souls. This twitter profile has a good account of the wild comparisons. A game qualifies to be “Like Dark Souls” mainly when it shares the property Dark Souls is most infamous for; its unconventional, unforgiving difficulty.
According to darksoulsdeaths.com, on my first playthrough I died over 700 times. It’s hard to say what is normal for a game but I would expect that in Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2 I died  ~120 times during the campaign on Veteran in comparison.

When you die in Dark Souls, it normally takes a few minutes to get back to where you were before dying and not far from where you will die again. So time spent progressing through the levels in Dark Souls is a significantly lower percentage than in other games, which is alright because you are still progressing in knowledge and skill.

Dying is an important part of Dark Souls, it’s a game of learning from previous lives and using that knowledge to go a bit further from your bonfire or checkpoint than the last time. Dying is not a setback in your progression because most of the game’s progression takes place in your head as you learn to take on enemies effectively. This is proven by how speed runners can complete the game in over 50 minutes,

The game’s lore almost revolves around death and deaths aren’t “cut out” of the game’s timeline as you revert back to an earlier save like in many other games, it is nice to be spared from the common disbelief of your character encountering something “for the first time” while you’re sitting behind the screen expressionless, following the drill you formed a while ago.

Games like dark souls

I couldn't stop thinking about Flappy Birds myself as I played Dark Souls. There were just too many striking simularities at every turn.

Dark Souls’ key attributes:

  • Level design
  • Combat
  • Lore which is massively rich in depth
  • Hard difficulty
  • Unique multiplayer
  • Induces rage

And here are some ways gamers associate with Dark Souls:

  • Third person RPG
  • Hard
  • Swords
  • Some people love it
  • Shields???
  • Is a game
  • Has an edgy title
  • Bad PC port

So, following these rules, let’s find some things like Dark Souls.

 

Title Simularties
The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild Swords Shields Walky Fight baddies No PC port Lore is ok??? Is a game
Dragon Quest Heroes: Rocket Slime Swords Shields …slidey? Fight baddies No PC port Lore is p good Is a game
Flappy Bird no
Coronation Street Has several characters Some people love it people go walky The Chosen Undead rises from an asylum to collect the lord’s souls per the instructions of a primordial serpent  Crows  Old people Entertainment
The Bee Movie Bzzzz An all round buzz bzzzzzzz (bee noises) According to all known laws of aviation…  ♫ Here comes the sun de-di-de-do ♫  ya like jazz?

But Dark Souls itself is not in that table???????????Wish I could credit the original artist but the only place I can find it is... funnyjunk *shivers*

Pointless tables aside, what I’m getting at is Dark Souls offers a lot more than it is famous for.
Yes, the game is difficult. I refer back to darksoulsdeaths.com, which shows only a bit over 60% of players who uploaded their save files had finished the game, and you’ve got to consider that people would have to be fairly into the game to find the site and the thoughts of “how did I do” tend to come after you’ve completed or stopped. Also the boss-duo Orstein & Smough’s top voted nickname behind “Pikachu and Snorlax” is “Fuck This I Quit”, followed by “Biggie Smalls”, “Timon & Pumba” and closely “Super Londo Bros”, but it should not just be known for its difficulty.

If Dark Souls were not so notoriously difficult, it would receive fame for its great Combat, Lore, Level Design, Multiplayer.

Multiplayer

Dark Souls’ multiplayer is very unique.

Players can invade other player’s worlds maliciously to fight them for their souls, or they can help them out in boss battles for Jolly Cooperation and receive souls the boss drops.

Because the flow of time is distorted in Lordran, players can also inscribe messages on the floor with the orange soap stone item that will show up for a group of other players. The messages consist of several preset words used to be helpful, be not helpful and make memes. For example, “Illusionary wall” in front of a hidden passage, or “Try jumping” in front of a well, sending players to their deaths. These messages can be up or downvoted, but their “rating” is displayed as just the amount of ratings it has received unless you cas

Just think about all one could do with those tentacles
Amazing trap ahead

t a spell.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Combat

Combat in Dark Souls has fairly complex base mechanics which are really well done, and from there not much extra is dumped on.

There are several classes of weapons, each with their own move set which includes: different attacks in chains, while running, after rolling, after dashing backward, while jumping, with primary attack, with secondary attack, and all of those change depending on whether or not you’re holding the weapon with one or two hands. Some weapons are quite heavy and need a high strength stat to wield without stumbling around, which can be made easier by holding said weapon with two hands (“Use both hands”, is a message left by players that however rarely refers to weapons formally used for combat). Some weapons are also quite tricky and require a high dexterity to use efficiently, which I am sure players have crafted innuendos from too.

Attacks can be blocked with shields, avoided naturally with dashes and rolls or phased through with “invincibility frames” that you are given during a roll, which is somewhat odd from a logistical standpoint but is very well integrated into Dark Souls and makes for some very fun fighting as you narrowly avoid many attacks that could end you.
The boss fight with Artorias is a good example and so is this battle with the Super Londo Bros

There are many stats that affect the player several ways each, affected attributes include health, stamina, equipped load before slowing down, resistance to certain types of attacks and more. These stats are levelled up at save points (bonfires) in exchange for Souls – the game’s currency. Souls are also spent on things like upgrading and repairing weapons, trading with merchants. When you die, all the souls that you currently possess are dropped on the ground. The souls from your most recent death can be retrieved by heading to where you died, but if you die trying to retrieve your souls then those souls are lost forever. Top kek.

Lore

The story in Dark Souls’ is very non-invasive and is not so much narrated while you take part in it or as you witness events happen but as it is revealed in many well-crafted subtleties and descriptions. Because of how not in-your-face the story is, from the outside Dark Souls appears to be missing any regular soul. In reality, the lore and story are so extensive, intricate, creative and just all around good that it would take pages to describe in detail…

…but pictures say a thousand words and pictures with words say a thousand words plus more. These comics from redditor /u/Deddan are very good

Part 1: http://i.imgur.com/HMwt5.jpg
Part 2: http://i.imgur.com/jgDtn.jpg
Part 3: http://i.imgur.com/vBqeZ.jpg
Part 4: http://i.imgur.com/1XtAn.jpg
Part 5: http://i.imgur.com/III6oLy.jpg

 

Level Design

Lordran consists of many large beautiful areas that can be seamlessly explored without any loading screens. The areas themselves have diverse enemies spread throughout them that match the theme of the area. Some areas feature gangs of skeletons trying their darndest to doot you into a rage, others pit you against 15-foot tall demons. Areas are designed to challenge the player with the skills and items they would be expected to have that far in the game and remain that static difficulty for the rest of the game. Other games make your enemies level up with you and re-use

Other games make your enemies level up with you and re-use areas, but I see that as kind of cheap as it effectively makes your character’s improvements useless by countering them to keep things challenging. Running through areas that are not at all a challenge is not great either, but Dark Souls fixes that by very cleverly connecting areas of the map together with unlockable doors, causing the long audible ”

Running through areas that are not at all a challenge is not great either, but Dark Souls fixes that by very cleverly connecting areas of the map together with unlockable doors, causing the long audible “ohhhhhhh” noises when you realise that area A connects to area B. I spent very little time not being challenged.

 

 

Ooooolicle
Pretty place
Map layout, with areas shaded. See that the areas are very tightly grouped and 3D, rather than just sprinkled onto an open terrain.
Anor londo, the fancy part of Lordran
Anor londo, the fancy part of Lordran

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

All in all

Dark Souls’ difficulty is the good type — you can and do learn to overcome it without having to kneel before the RNG gods (Sun praising, however is essential \[T]/ ) and because of this it is a very rewarding game. The adrenaline-fueled boss battles are unmatched in excitement and the game is just all-round fun to play throughout. As much of a PC guy I am, I would recommend getting this on a console or getting a console controller that works with a PC for the game because the PC port doesn’t work very well with keyboard and mouse.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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