Metascore
82

Generally favorable reviews - based on 19 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 17 out of 19
  2. Negative: 0 out of 19
  1. Pelit (Finland)
    Oct 25, 2014
    90
    Satisfying add-on to a great game, with interesting bosses. [Oct 2014]
  2. Aug 3, 2014
    90
    Dark Souls II was easy; Crown of the Sunken King is the real challenge.
  3. Jul 25, 2014
    90
    From Software went above and beyond with their Crown of the Sunken King DLC: invest in its tiny asking price, and you may find yourself getting just as much time out of it as you would a $60 game.
  4. Jul 25, 2014
    90
    Suitably self-contained and demonstrating some of the best level design in Dark Souls 2, Crown of the Sunken King suggests that FromSoft’s DLC team may well be up to the daunting task of creating three essential add-ons.
  5. Jul 22, 2014
    90
    The content of The Crown of the Sunken King seems small in comparison to the Artorias expansion for the original game, but with two other pieces coming to expand upon things (and the promise of additional secrets when all three have been cleared), I can’t wait to die again.
  6. Satisfying content, harder enemies (you probably miss old enemies), Sunken City looks glorious... Crown of the Sunken King is the first step of a big DLC trilogy If you like Dark Souls series, you shouldn't miss this adventure.
  7. Jul 22, 2014
    88
    In a certain light The Crown of the Sunken King actually does it better, employing different constraints and driving new ways to explore and appreciate Dark Souls II's finer details.
  8. Jul 23, 2014
    85
    Crown of the Sunken King is new and challenging content created for hardcore Dark Souls 2 fans that has great bosses battles, full of traps and new puzzle mechanics.
  9. Jul 22, 2014
    85
    Sunken King won’t do anything to convince you to play Dark Souls 2 if you don’t already love it, but stays consistently challenging for even veteran players.
  10. Jul 22, 2014
    85
    Even when it's frustrating, Dark Souls 2: Crown of the Sunken King balances out its rough patches with a sense of unbridled satisfaction. It's a perfect example of the interplay between tension and relief that the Souls series has become famous for. Crown of the Sunken King may be an optional expansion, but it transcends its own status.
  11. Hyper Magazine
    Sep 14, 2014
    80
    Manages to capture the rewarding highs and terrifying lows that define the souls series. [Issue#253, p.68]
  12. Aug 13, 2014
    80
    While there were certain aspects of this DLC that felt rushed or outright lazy, the content addition for it felt just right.
  13. 80
    The puzzles are a fun twist on the pre-existing formula, the temple backdrop is an interesting setting and the new monsters are a welcome challenge.
  14. Jul 28, 2014
    80
    The hunt for the crown is a great addition with lots of secrets and puzzles to uncover.
  15. Jul 22, 2014
    80
    Don’t expect Dark Souls II: Crown of the Sunken King to match up to Artorias of the Abyss, but it still offers a surprisingly deep and gratifying experience.
  16. Jul 22, 2014
    80
    Dark Souls 2: Crown of the Sunken King is a brutal, but entertaining opening to a coming trilogy of DLC.
  17. Jul 22, 2014
    78
    A weaker effort than the excellent Artorias of the Abyss, Crown of the Sunken King raises the challenge of the main game but not much else.
  18. CD-Action
    Oct 22, 2014
    60
    It looks like Crown of the Sunken Kings was developed by interns, as it misses many elements that made Dark Souls II an exceptional game. [10/2014, p.66]
  19. Jul 22, 2014
    60
    A competent but unsurprising slice of downloadable content that features a solid challenge and plenty of content, but too little in the way of new ideas.

Awards & Rankings

User Score
7.4

Mixed or average reviews- based on 177 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Negative: 34 out of 177
  1. Jul 22, 2014
    4
    Conclusion first: would not recommend unless cheap or fan/supporter

    Finished DLC solo (no coop) in NG4+ in about 4 hours including dieing a
    Conclusion first: would not recommend unless cheap or fan/supporter

    Finished DLC solo (no coop) in NG4+ in about 4 hours including dieing a few times and finding secrets + killing all mobs on the way. (and admittedly wasting a few lifegems due to sparse and hidden bonfires) . I would say the length was okay if the whole thing was more memorable but it's simply not.

    Most of the enemies feel like you killed them before somewhere else in the game.

    Enemy type SPOILERS ahead:

    3 New Bosses:

    1 of which is a nashandra clone with a somewhat different moveset casting typical hexes which you have probably seen at this point

    another one being simply 3 "red phantom NPCs" at the same time (they arent red but have the same behavior)

    and the dragon which i guess is actually the only real new boss and who is a good challenge due to his lack of blind spots and his tendency to fly even when in melee (can you please stop running away dragon? just attack me its fine >_>)

    new weapons are mostly! not gamebreaking good (which is a PLUS!) in fact they are mostly! low average except for their movesets (and a shield which has some potential but there are other options for shield) There is also 1 weapon that stands out but to early to say. 2 new spells are mishmash copies of existing spells and the other one is kinda troll but not really useful outside of that.

    The areas look bland for the most part except for the initial overview (with the DS2 typical you can go everywhere u can see) and the graphics are underwhelming overall in the new areas (a LOT of cement hallways and repeating structures with nothing to them) Come on FROM you guys have shown you can do better! An "sunken" King and you interpret it as Bunker :(

    All of the new trash mobs are uninspired (a new number of dead NPC using various weapons like the undead at the start of the game... and a few guys who look like red phantoms and act like them with the only special thing about them being that they fat roll.. LOL NPCs using fat roll)

    The fight that stood out to me the most was a special red phantom with ridiculous amounts of hp and a never ending stamina bar of pure pyromancy spam.
    Full Review »
  2. Jul 23, 2014
    10
    4 hours atmosphere in Dark Souls is far more than 30 hours of kitsch in Divinity:Origin of Sin. 10/10 again. DLC is harder than the original4 hours atmosphere in Dark Souls is far more than 30 hours of kitsch in Divinity:Origin of Sin. 10/10 again. DLC is harder than the original game. Best DLC since Artorias of the Abyss. Full Review »
  3. Jul 23, 2014
    9
    This is how DLC should be done. In some ways its even beeter than the rest of the game! Unpredictable enemies with variety of tactics.This is how DLC should be done. In some ways its even beeter than the rest of the game! Unpredictable enemies with variety of tactics. Interactive environments and brilliant level design where everything is interconnected like the first Dark Souls and also, 4 to 10 hours of gameplay with 2 very challenging bosses. For 9€ it is well worth it and I bet you will be visiting the new areas quite often for farming, adding even further playtime. Full Review »