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Danno VS Dark Souls: Pain, Death and Perseverance

Darks Souls always seemed like a daunting challenge. After playing through Demon Souls, and by “playing through” I mean made it to the halfway point, said “screw it!” after one too many bosses pimped slapped me into submission, and then wait almost year before I gritted my teeth and finished. Finally relented last week and purchased a new copy of Dark Souls. Every review said that this is one of the hardest games of the generation. That death hounds your every step while playing, and I’m ready for the journey. I’m going to share my experiences, my impressions of the game, in what is one of the longest, oddest, and hopefully entertaining long form reviews out there. Also, if I start to say lean more towards the “Screw it!” side again, I hope you out there in internet land will rally, call me a wimp, and challenge my honor in order to get me to finish. Lets get started.

Little background for those that have no idea what Dark Souls is all about. Dark Souls is the spiritual sequel to the 2009 hit Demon Souls. The games follow very similar styles of gameplay and story telling devices. As a nameless protagonist, you venture forth into the world looking to take down demons that are generally much larger than you and have surly dispositions. There is an actual story but it rarely engages enough for you to pay attention for more than a couple seconds in order to figure out where the next demon for you to kill lies awaits.

To say that Dark Souls is a difficult game is akin to saying that Call of Duty has been the same game since 2007. Total understatement. You know that the game wants you to die often when the opening weapon given to you is a sword hilt. Yes folks, just the freakin’ hilt. Then the first creature you encounter is the boss that swings as a hammer the size of a house at you without even saying “Hello good sir!” What a jerk. Somehow find a sword, jump down on said behemoth’s head and hacked at his legs till he died. First boss CONQUERED! Currently feeling on top of the world, I’m only slightly taken by surprised when my character gets a piggyback ride from a giant raven to the main hub of the game.

So far my impressions of this game is that it’s fantastic. I loved Demon Souls for its unrelenting difficulty and the immense sense of pride that comes from overcoming the ridiculous challenges I faced. Dark Souls brings more of the same, just in a more polished and better looking package. I know that this experience will only get tougher, I will question whether or not I actually want to finish this beast of a game, and the answer will always remain the same. I will absolutely finish this game. Because I will not let this game break my spirit. Bets will be taken for how long it takes for Dark Souls to officially beat the optimism out of me.

I’ll end the chronicle here and pick it up next week where exploring the world backfires in hilarious ways, I get something resembling a distinct goal to work towards, and I face off against a Black Knight.

About Dan Matthews

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