|Platform PS3, 360, Win||Publisher Namco Bandai||Developer From Software||Release Date 2014-03-11|
By Philip Kollar on Mar 11, 2014 03.11.14
This may not come as a surprise to fans of the notoriously challenging Dark Souls or its spiritual predecessor, Demon's Souls. But it's not just the difficulty that had me wincing in fear during my playthrough. Dark Souls 2 is unflinchingly ambitious in a way that few games are. Yes, the world is massive; yes, there are far more bosses than the last game; yes, I've spent dozens of hours playing, and I'm sure I still haven't seen close to everything. But where other open-world RPGs use that overwhelming size as an invitation to lose yourself in their world, with Dark Souls 2 it's a threat. From Software has embraced the challenge they're known for while simultaneously cutting away a lot of the fat — bits of previous games that were more annoying than they were difficult. The...
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By Philip Kollar on Jul 15, 2014 07.15.14
The Lost Crowns episodic DLC is From Software's chance to address that criticism. And if my time with a preview build of the upcoming first chapter is any indication, boy, it sure seems like they will be addressing it pretty directly. Titled "Crown of the Sunken King," the first DLC pack for Dark Souls 2 begins in the depths of The Black Gulch, an underground area filled with poison-shooting statues and giant worm monsters. Though you technically warp to the new areas from The Black Gulch, you'll remain underground and a lot of the themes and threats carry over. "Crown of the Sunken King" consists of three main areas with a few smaller offshoot branches. The first zone — and the one I spent most of my time in — is called Shulva, Sanctum City. This area begins as a cramped cavern but...
By Chris Dahlen on Jun 19, 2014 06.19.14
From Software announced that Dark Souls 2 would be getting more levels this fall, but that announcement sank like a stone as people turned their attention to From’s next game, Bloodborne. We’re already on to the next thing. I didn’t pay much attention to the news either. I finished Dark Souls 2, and I more or less enjoyed it, but I’m not lining up for more content. Dark Souls 2 felt like it was long enough, and maybe even a little too long. I don’t really need any more. But let’s examine that for a second, because how do you know when a game is "long enough?" It’s not about the hours spent: the first Dark Souls took me around the same number of hours to finish, and I’m grateful for every one of them. It’s not about the story, either. Neither game has a story arc per se. They start,...
By Philip Kollar on Jun 11, 2014 06.11.14
There's a very simple explanation for why it's not titled "Dark Souls 3," of course. That franchise is most likely owned by publisher Namco Bandai. But Dark Souls was a spin-off of Demon's Souls, which was itself (like Bloodborne) a collaboration between From Software and Sony. So why not call it Demon's Souls 2? Or "Something Else" Souls? There's good reason actually: This is Miyazaki and From Software's chance to make some big changes and take bold risks with the proven formula they've mastered. I love all three Souls games for many reasons, but three is a perfect number to stop on — or at least take a break. With that in mind, I've put together a few thoughts on how I would like to see From Software set Bloodborne apart from what has come before. No more callbacks Even in the...
By Dave Tach on Jun 04, 2014 06.04.14
Dark Souls 2 is getting a trilogy of downloadable content beginning July 22, according to a video today from developer From Software and publisher Bandai Namco. The Lost Crowns DLC will arrive in three parts. Episode 1: Crown of the Sunken King is slated for a July 22 release, Episode 2: Crown of the Old Iron King will arrive on August 26 and Episode 3: Crown of the Ivory King is set for September 24. "The Crown of the Sunken King sends players on a quest to reclaim the Crown that King Vendrick once owned," the video's description reads. "With an entirely new areas to explore within the Dark Souls 2 universe, players will find pyramids, underground caverns, and unknown foes. It is said that the Ancient Crown is buried deep below the surface, but surely it cannot sit unguarded?" ...
By Colin Campbell on Jun 03, 2014 06.03.14
Sony has announced a sale of PlayStation 3 and PlayStation Vita role-playing games, for the week ahead. Among the offers are Ni no Kuni: Wrath of the White Witch, down from $19.99 to $4.99. Dragon's Dogma: Dark Arisen is down from $39.99 to $19.99. Ubisoft's recently released South Park: The Stick of Truth is now $41.99 instead of $59.99 while Dark Souls 2 is down from $59.99 to $38.99. Mass Effect, Final Fantasy and Tales games are also on offer. "We're putting some awesome games and add-ons on sale as part of our newest sale," stated a Sony post at PlayStation Blog, which is running a full list of deals. "Never played an RPG before? Now's the perfect time." The sale runs from now until Friday June 6 at 12:00PM Pacific.
By Emily Gera on Jun 03, 2014 06.03.14
YouTube user Distortion2 uploaded a new speed run video showing his completion of Dark Souls 2 in just over 20 minutes with the help of a few tricks and glitches. The video, which you can watch in full above, is part of a series of attempts from the Dark Souls player to finish the game at under the 20 minute point. Watch as Distortion2 runs through glitched out mountains and behind the scenes of the world to race to the end. Dark Souls 2 recieved a 9 out of 10 score from Polygon in a review that reads: "The Souls games have rarely been about fun, but Dark Souls 2's smart tweaks and concessions brought out positive emotions even amidst the pain and exhaustion. It's still a stressful experience, but it's easier than ever to recognize the brilliance in those moments of triumph that make...
By Owen S. Good on May 24, 2014 05.24.14
Freaking out other players in Dark Souls 2 doesn't take much effort. All you have to do is stand there. OK, OK, it's not exactly that simple. To pull off this prank, YouTube's GuardianHX dressed up as a Hollow Royal Soldier, went to the Forest of Fallen Giants, lured out the original foes, killed them and took their spot. Then he waited for other players to invade, recording their double-takes and other uncomprehending reactions in the video above. At 3:50, you can see a perfect execution of the joke, though the ensuing fight does end in the perpetrator's death. (In Dark Souls, everything does, usually.) This prank mimics one perfected in the original Dark Souls; this go-around is a little tougher because there the game applies more distinctive stances and animations to player...
By Emily Gera on May 21, 2014 05.21.14
Dark Souls creator Hidetaka Miyazaki is now company president for Souls series developer From Software, according to a statement released by the company today and translated by Gamasutra. Miyazaki first joined the Japan-based company in 2004 where he later created and directed by Demon's Souls and Dark Souls. He would go on to supervise the development of Dark Souls 2 while working on another project. His promotion comes following personnel changes in the company, including Demon's Souls producer Masanori Takeuchi being named senior managing director. From Software was recently acquired by Japanese media corporation and Killer is Dead publisher Kadokawa. The company first announced its plans to purchase majority stake in the developer in April, with a deal finalized one month later....
By Jenna Pitcher on May 08, 2014 05.08.14
Namco Bandai Holdings has announced the financial results for the end of its fiscal year, revealing that the company saw increases in net sales and gross profit and that Dark Souls 2 shipped 1.2 million units in Europe and the U.S. combined. Gross profit for the company increased by 16 percent year-on-year, rising from 164 billion yen ($1.61 billion) to 190 billion yen ($1.86 billion). Operating income reached 44.6 billion yen ($438 million) and net sales increased by 104.2 percent over the previous year to 507 billion yen ($5 billion). Namco Bandai's net income for the year ending March 31, 2014 saw a 23 percent decrease over last year, dropping from 32.4 billion yen to 25 billion yen ($245 million). The company's forecast expects 500 billion yen in net sales, 187 billion yen in...
By Jenna Pitcher on Apr 28, 2014 04.28.14
Kadokawa plans to purchase majority stake in Dark Souls and Armored Core series developer From Software, the Japanese corporation announced, where the developer will become a wholly owned subsidiary of the Kadokawa group. Kadokawa will purchase 80 percent of From Software stock and the deal is expected to be finalized on May 21, 2014. Once From Software becomes a Kadokawa subsidiary, it will work alongside Kadokawa Games to develop the company's games and create new IP. The companies will also focus on the growing markets offered by the new game platforms and western markets. Famitsu reports that the acquisition was initially revealed during Kadokawa's latest Board of Directors meeting held on April 28. According to the Famitsu report, translated by Siliconera, From Software CEO...