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Dark Souls 2 North and South American network test invites coming this week

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PlayStation 3 users will have the chance to be a part of the first Dark Souls 2 network test for North and South America when invites roll out to select players this week, according to the game's website.

There is no registration process and select gamers will receive codes from Sony which will redeem the client. The two upcoming tests will serve as network stress tests for server load, multiplayer and game balance optimization.

For the network test beginning Oct. 12, selected users will receive a message Oct. 8 at 11:00 a.m. PDT. More than 5,000 invitations will be issued, with the first 5,000 users to redeem the code eligible to download the client.

For the second network test beginning Oct. 26, invites will be sent on Oct. 22 at 11:00 a.m. PDT. Everyone will be issued the same code, which will also be posted on the official Dark Souls 2 Facebook page. Although the second network test will allow a larger number of testers, numbers will be limited.

A closed beta began on Oct. 5 in North America and Europe where players tested "one of the most treacherous areas" of the game. Dark Souls 2 is set to launch on PlayStation 3, Xbox 360 and Windows PC on March 11 2014.