User Score
8.3

Generally favorable reviews- based on 832 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Negative: 97 out of 832

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  1. Mar 11, 2014
    10
    Easily one of the greatest RPGs of this generation. If you are a gamer that wants to explore and figure things out by yourself you will love it, if you aren't then you won't like it. Like Dark Souls, this game does not hold you hand. It encourages to seek answers for yourself. But it has a more advanced tutorial section than Dark Souls. So it will be helpful to newcomers of the game.The difficulty level is even higher, and the penalty of death is even severe than its predecessor. But if you have the will, you will overcome it. The combat is excellent. It is more fluid and smooth than DaS. I have played almost 20 hours and haven't felt so excited and terrified at the same time playing a game ever before. The enemy design is quite intimidating. You won't just rush into enemies, like other games, before planning what are you going to do. I think this is the most unique game I have played in a LONG time. If you don't have the patience or just play games casually I won't recommend this game. This game needs your time. But if you overcome the challenges of it you will experience a sense of accomplishment like never before. I yelled when I beat the second boss, because he was tough and I died like 15 time trying to beat. But when I did I was overjoyed. So be prepared to die, again and again. Expand
  2. Mar 11, 2014
    10
    I would give this game a 9.8.....Well what can I say really...... This is Dark Souls with Demon Souls sprinkled on top....Controls take a bit of getting used to as they are not exactly the same as the other games..... It loses a couple points because to be honest I feel that the movements of the player do not feel quite right, hard to explain, best I can describe it would be ..light.....There is still no hand holding in this game (good thing) however the tutorial section is more in-depth than the other souls games...There are a lot of surprises in this game that I will not spoil but I'll just say that fans of the series will like it very much.....However the game is not for you if you enjoy hand holding, and arrows pointing you to your next objective.... If you are a gamer that likes challenge and learning from your mistakes, this is for you.......... Graphics are updated in this game as well.... There are even more bosses this time around, and there are more variety of enemies as well...... This is Dark Souls at it's finest....... I will say that the lore in this game is there.......but it is lacking compared to the original in my opinion...... I liked how in the first game you had to put the pieces together to figure out the lore behind the game....... In this game as you progress through new areas you find out more about the areas while you play it..... I liked Dark Souls 1 way of doing it better......The boss music in this game is well done as well......
    So if you are a fan of the other souls games, you will not be disappointed, if you are a newcomer, I will just tell you that, you will die a lot, and if you do not like games like that or if you like hand holding, this isn't for you....I think this game is the best so far in the soul series and hope that Dark Souls 3 keeps it up.......
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  3. Mar 11, 2014
    10
    All ready a few hours in; and I can tell you if you enjoyed Dark Souls or Demon Souls, you will most definitely enjoy this entry. Most of the features that make it so awesome and exciting remain; and ever so much the challenge is intact. Definitely the game that still gives life to the now "older" systems.
  4. Mar 11, 2014
    10
    What can i say...it was well worth the wait... graphics upgrade, technical combat system, a mysterious tale, very minimal guidance....and yes....a million deaths...a must buy for anyone who desires the sleepless nights that come along with it...10/10 i say.
  5. Mar 11, 2014
    10
    Dark souls 1 Kicked my butt so hard that i left it for almost a year, but then i played it again for the sake of just knowing how it ends, It was Amazing, i played it for 3 more new game+++, but it had it lacks, but this game, This game is PERFECT! You can Finally Use Dual Swords effectively, Range Weapons Actually works for both PVP and PVE! Bosses are great, But its no where being Easy, this game will not hold your hands, the moment you Create Your Character, you have your Freedom. Dark souls 1 was 3.9 GB, and this game is Almost 12 Gb on the PC, 12 GB of content that is! Expand
  6. Mar 11, 2014
    10
    I LOVE THIS GAME from the bottom of my ass. It's the best game i have ever played i just love it the engine just stuns me. I give it 10/10 of the story and the amazing graphic!

    My wore may game - Alidengote 2014
  7. Mar 11, 2014
    10
    Just made an account because I wanted to give a thumbs up to this game......Everything is better than it's predecessor, except a few changes that I didn't like personally but the changes do necessarily make it bad....just not what I like, so I don't deduct points for it... I don't like how the enemies de-spawn after 10 kills....but I can see why people like it.......I don't like how it lost the goth look of the previous game, but at the same time I welcome the change.... I guess it's a love/hate thing... I also do not like how you can't level up at a bonfire and have to return to majula every time you want to level up, others may like that because of Demon Souls, I thought it was a step backwards.The game runs a lot better than the first Dark Souls, feels a lot more smooth and the graphics have been improved as well.The map layout isn't as much of a masterpiece as it's predecessor but I can see why they went this route, I guess they didn't want it to become predictable, so they changed it up. However I do not like the layout as much as Dark Souls 1, the areas do look a lot better. There are more bosses in this game but some bosses are kind of the same. Dark Souls was similar with the Asylum,Firesage and Sage demons.....As for atmosphere, this game does a very good job....Not quite up to par with demon souls, but I would say it's a touch better than Dark Souls albeit losing it's gothic color......I feel some fans of the series will not welcome the changes, but I do, ven though some of the changes I do not like, I can not take any points off because of them, because it can be good thing for some and bad for others....If you are a person who wants the latest graphics and hand holding...... this game is not for you..... The graphics have never been the shining star in the soul series, that is not to say the graphics are terrible...they are decent and they get the job done...This is not the 2nd coming of Crisis when it comes to graphics..... The controls are very good this time around, at first I hated how the game locks on to targets, wasn't like Dark Souls, but after going through the options, you can change the lock on to how you want it, otherwise the game will only attack in the direction you are facing, where as in Dark Souls 1, it would follow the enemy...This game is harder than dark souls 1, some may find it easier at first, but I think it's for welcoming the newcomers, because it doesn't take too long before the game will chew you up and spit you out... There is one boss in this game( he is optional) but this boss is the hardest friggen boss in any of the souls game put together, you will have to use every skill you have to beat the boss.I might add too that it is my favorite boss out of all the souls games and it feels so rewarding to beat the boss, even though it is optional. Some hardcore fans of the series might be turned off at first ( like I was) but that soon changes once you get more into the game. That is all I can say right now without giving too much away. This is a experience you can not miss, and even if you do not like challenging games you should at least rent it, this is the type of game that can turn a casual gamer into a hardcore gamer. Once you play a game like this, it is hard to like anything else.. Happy gaming everyone Expand
  8. Mar 11, 2014
    10
    An all around superior version of Dark Souls, on a new engine with shiny new graphics, improved gameplay, improved animations, improved polish, more stuff to do... There's just nothing to complain about, it's all epic.
  9. Mar 11, 2014
    10
    This game nails everything dead on. Art design and atmosphere: perfect. Level of difficulty: perfect. Sound design: amazing. It's a quiet understated story, worth multiple playthroughs to piece together. This isn't only as good as Dark Souls, it's better in almost every conceivable way. You will die, you will curse, you will clench your controller in frustration, but you will never forget your experience with this game. This is easily the best RPG I've played since Xenoblade Chronicles. Buy this game. Now. Expand
  10. Mar 11, 2014
    10
    I never played something that had save points this difficult. Graphics are the best of this generation, gameplay and history are flawless. If you liked the first one this is a must buy!
  11. Mar 11, 2014
    10
    I like to play this game naked and I cut myself and put salt in my wounds... That is truly the way to play the souls series... I also hacked the game already so it would allow me to use my invention my shock therapy device, so every time I die in Dark souls I get an electric shock... It was the only way I learn...When I beat a boss I have been on for a long time, I celebrate by rubbing peanut butter on my nipples and then I punch myself in the face. So all you guys saying you are true dark souls players......ya right.... Play it with shock therapy while having your nutts in a vice... I think I'm the true fan here, I lost one of my nutts to Demon souls, don't worry I keep it in my tackle box... Rated T Expand
  12. Mar 11, 2014
    10
    Sensational. Just sensational. An enormous game of earned triumph. The lore is fantastic, the world is eery and terrifying, the enemies are repulsive and ingenious, the gameplay is crushing and rewarding. A grand mix of Demon's Souls and Dark Souls together in a game that is certainly the best in the series.
  13. Mar 12, 2014
    9
    Dark Souls II is a glorious lovechild of both Demon's Souls and Dark Souls. It provides the best of both worlds while remaining exceptionally challenging and rewarding. The world is dark, dangerous and full of atmosphere, carrying on Dark Souls' seamless areas. Every area is connected in some way and it gives incredible depth to the world. Funny enough, however, it is in this point exactly that we see one of Dark Souls II's small flaws.

    While the world is seamless and vast, you are allowed to 'quick travel' from bonfire to bonfire with no restrictions. This is a convenient service, and indeed might be considered necessary by many, but it detracts from the large world it helps you travel. One of the challenges of Dark Souls was trying to make your way out of a challenging area that you just conquered. In Dark Souls II this is not present, as you may simply use a bonfire to escape the area to safety.

    This removes some of the challenge from the game and can make the world seem smaller than it really is. While there is definitely a lot of exploration to be had in Dark Souls II, many players will probably not have a chance to see it all in favor of traveling from bonfire to bonfire to progress the game. With some restrictions set in place, such as requiring an item or souls to use the quick travel, there would be more incentive to travel large distances on foot and it is my hope that FromSoftware takes this to heart for the next installment.

    In true Demon's Souls style leveling your character has also changed. No longer do you level at any bonfire; you must now speak to a certain character every time you wish to level. While many will miss the ease of leveling at any bonfire, this system adds more to the world and makes you truly feel like you are getting stronger.

    The combat in Dark Souls II is an improvement over the first games and adds some much needed changes. Dual wielding in combat is viable in skilled hands, and archery finds itself more useful as well. Most of the controls have carried over, with some small variations (such as the 'dash jump'), making it easy to pick up and play the game if you have played any of the games before. However, combat is not without its annoyances.

    The addition of the 'Adaptability' statistic is an illustration of one of the new annoyances added in Dark Souls II. Raising your Adaptability stat increases some of your resistances but, more importantly, your Agility. Raising your Agility affects the 'speed' of your animations. What does this mean? If you have little Adaptability, and your agility is low, there will be a 'delay' between swinging an attack and your next action. This may not seem terribly bad at first, but if you are fighting more than one enemy and you attack one of them you may find yourself not having enough time to react to an attack from another. It makes fighting multiple enemies extremely frustrating as you have very little chances to attack with no fear of retaliation.

    Despite this small annoyance combat is fresh and fun and requires a great amount of skill to get the most out of. This is very noticeable in healing items, actually. The Estus Flask from Dark Souls has returned but a new addition is the Lifegem. Lifegems have much quicker animations than the Estus Flask but restore health over time, slowly, rather than all at once. This sounds simple at first, but requires a tactical mind to get the most out of. The difference between using an Estus Flask or a Lifegem is a matter of life and death.

    Lastly, Dark Souls II has an incredible sound track and sound effects. This is immediately noticeable on the Title Screen, boasting a very nice song. The ambient sounds as you travel as well really help set the mood and it is easy to get lost in the world. Each enemy is given life as they are all given sounds to completely fit their character.

    Overall, Dark Souls II is a worthy successor to the games before it. Indeed, its flaws are small enough that it might even trump them both.
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  14. Mar 12, 2014
    10
    Picture a perfect game in your head...oh wait you don't have to it's called Dark Souls II and you should get a copy for PS3, XBOX, or PC. ALL HAIL FROMSOFTWARE. PRAISE THE SUN.
  15. Mar 11, 2014
    10
    This is one of the best games I have played in a very long time. The pacing is great, environments gorgeous, the replayability is fantastic due to multiple play-styles being viable, the soundtrack fills your heart with dread as you stare at the next monstrosity in your way, the gameplay is solid, and most importantly the controls are superb. I don't want to spoil anything so I will stop here. To the new players, do yourself a favor and pick this game up. And if you are a fan of the Souls series, why are you even reading my review? Go play the game because you undoubtedly own it already! Expand
  16. Mar 11, 2014
    10
    One of the few games I'd call truly perfect.

    Incredible, beautiful dark atmosphere and visuals, haunting music, pitch-perfect voice acting, mysterious hints of a grand and terrible story given through small hints in everything from bodies on the ground to key descriptions.

    All of this is layered on top of the most polished, punishing, and ultimately rewarding combat system I've ever
    played on.

    This is a game of the year. A game of the decade. A fitting send-off to a generation of gaming.

    Prepare to die.
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  17. Mar 13, 2014
    10
    Dark Souls II is a fantastic sequel. Everything is more polished and refined. The wonderful art direction, incredible enemy design, challenge and the great atmosphere make this game a must buy. This is not for the faint of heart however. You will die and the game requires patience. This doesn't mean it's for only the ''hardcore gamers'', no. It's for everyone to try out. You'll still have a great experience, even if you somehow don't manage to finish the game up.

    Dark Souls II is visually stunning. The art style and varied environments keep the game feeling fresh. Even when you're ''stuck'' in a section of the game world for several hours even, you never feel like something is getting old. You constantly learn something new, whether it's a new attack pattern or a well hidden item.

    Just like it's predecessors, Dark Souls II is INCREDIBLY rewarding. Even for a Souls vet, like myself who's put around 2500 hours to both Demon's Souls and Dark Souls combined. You always feel like you're accomplishing something. No developer does it quite like From Software. Today's mainstream franchises feel like a waste of time compared to the Souls series. While, one might argue that the Souls games are mainstream now, with this being the third installment, it still haven't gotten old one bit. From always puts time, love and effort to their games to make sure they're polished and provide the best possible experience. Which probably is why the Souls series is my favorite of this past generation, and i'm sure other people think that as well.

    The gameplay is more or less the same. It's still the best combat system around only with some tweaks. Firstly, goodbye invincibility frames when rolling/dodging. This can make some of the first boss encounters feel a little odd, if you're coming from Dark Souls. You might say to yourselves ''THAT DIDN'T EVEN HIT ME!'' but trust me, it did hit you. The hit-boxes are really good in Dark Souls II. The parrying is a bit harder than in the first Dark Souls. It requires more timing and precision.

    The lore is still there to be find, even though the core story that you're playing through is explained to you by the various NPCs, the LORE is still there to be found and much speculation to be done.

    The boss fights are still incredible, although some of them feel a little too similar to each other, they're still very well designed and deliciously challenging. Here's a hoping for a Next Gen Souls release somewhere down the line. Just take your time From Software!

    9.5/10

    I rated it a 10 on the score because of the awfully stupid user score system. It's like you're allowing moronic troll children to determine what games people should play. The user score for the Xbox 360 version just keeps going down, it's like one person keeps making accounts to give Dark Souls II zeroes because they have nothing better to do with their life. If you want to see what people REALLY think about the game go see the Playstation 3 section. (unless you're already reading this there, then good for you.)
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  18. Mar 13, 2014
    8
    Fromsoft have done it again! Dark Souls 2 is the game we were all hoping for. Brilliant.

    One of the changes I did notice more so than others, was my character is a lot slower to start off with. Slow to react, slow to recover and just generally sluggish all round. Took me a while to get used to and twitch reactions weren't coming into play as much as planning out my movements in advance.


    Frame rate still drops on my old PS3 in certain areas, but I do plan on switching to PC once it's out.
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  19. Mar 11, 2014
    10
    O jogo é excelente, manteve muitas caraterísticas extremamente boas das versões anteriores e inseriram melhores texturas e itens novos. Quanto a dificuldade está bem balanceada, poderia até estar mais dificil, mas está ok.
  20. Mar 11, 2014
    10
    This is not the best RPG history, this is not the best action game history. This is the best game in the truest sense. Imagination, fantasy, exploration and investigation of detail and stacking your own story. These players Mass Effect or Skyrim could never understand. Dark Souls II is a continuation of refined work of art.
  21. Mar 11, 2014
    10
    This game is truly one of a kind. Everything from the gameplay to the atmosphere feels like a genuine RPG. Most of all this game makes you feel like a badass who has gone through a lot of s*** to earn his title.
  22. Mar 12, 2014
    10
    I'd give the game a 9.5 if possible, but it's not so we ended up at a 10. The graphics are quite dated. Great for a PS3, sure, but compared to today's titles, it can take quite a while to get used to. That being said, if you love Demon's Souls or Dark Souls, this game delivers in spades. If you can somehow find the strength of will to hold off until the PC release, I would highly suggest doing so. This game equiped with high-end graphics should be counted among one of the best gaming experiences available. Expand
  23. Mar 11, 2014
    10
    I am long timer Souls fan. I enjoyed the original Demon Souls and Dark Souls. I own a copy of Dark Souls on every platform and have logged over 100+ hours. Dark Souls 2 does not disappoint. Art direction is amazing (lots of light, lots of color, lots of variation), combat is fluid and executes quicker, enemies set traps for you (very creative From!), etc. I could go on but I won't. Most reviews cover the good stuff anyway. Most importantly though, you need to buy a copy of the game and immerse yourself fully. This is the game I have been waiting for. Expand
  24. Mar 11, 2014
    10
    Do I really need to say why this game is **** AWESOME?! Ok. Good graphics, great gameplay, great dialogues and, of course, hard as ****
    I think Dark Souls II is a great name for Best 2014 RPG or maybe even GOTY
  25. Mar 15, 2014
    7
    If it ain't broke don't fix it.

    That's the advice From Software ignored when making this game. Dark souls style may not appeal to a lot of people, but it was such a masterful game, damn near perfect. Dark souls 2 "refines" the experience with lots of changes to gameplay, balance issues, and lack of accessibility from the previous game.

    While playing DS2 it IS clear that From is on
    top of every little detail about their game. The issues I have with this game are nothing that was overlooked, but rather, deliberate changes to the formula that almost completely ruin my enjoyment of the game. While they admirably address things from the previous game that seemed redundant or flawed, the changes they made create new problems in themselves.

    By far, the biggest issue with the game is the finite enemies. This is no doubt a measure that was implimented to stop people from grinding to get souls. After you kill an enemy a certain amount of times, they stop respawning. It seems like a glitch at first, until you notice the pattern. It feels like a slap in the face and goes against what the game is all about, to a degree. I legitimately killed enemies, died, respawned, and repeated, without making my way to the next bonfire. However, since I had killed the enemies enough times, they began disappearing, which made getting further easier, since there was much less in my way. I didn't feel like I earned it. The other issue with them disappearing is that I ended up losing lots of souls in the process. With enemies being finite, I now have to play every second of the game stressed out. If I lose some souls, those are souls I can NEVER earn back. So essentially you could run the risk of digging yourself into a huge hole that you can't get out of, forcing you to start over. This is a long game, having to start over is not fun at all. With finite enemies, this also complicates loot drops, a staple in RPGs. Now the loot is also finite. Farming titanite is a thing of the past. Now the decisions you make on upgrading your weapons are more stressful than ever, since it's not so simple to just go get more. DS1 kept the stress where it was fun, in the combat. I didn't have to fear that I was playing the game wrong and making things harder for myself hours down the line.

    Item durability has been expanded and tweaked. Weapons, armor, and now rings have durability and will break from overuse or damage. In DS1, items breaking was sort of a non issue, as they took a long time to break and were simple enough to fix, since the souls to do it were always around. This time, they break REALLY fast, and cost you precious finite souls to fix. Plus you must progress a bit to unlock the blacksmith who can provide the service. In the early go of it, I nearly was left with no useable weapons, since I couldn't buy any yet and had broken some.

    Some features of the game that aren't meant to be hidden are needlessly obtuse. It took me a while to see how to activate torches, and I still choose not to use them because they don't last long and are hard to come by. I had to look online to find that I had the ability to post messages the WHOLE time, I just wasn't able to do it because I wasn't in living form. I don't play in living form because I will most certainly get killed, as that is the nature of dark souls, and the item needed to become living is hard to come by, once again. I also didn't know how to level up for a while, unfortunately. I didn't like how it has to happen through some weird lady.

    Now, when you die, you lose a portion of your max health, up to 50%, until you use a finite item to revert back to living form. It's stupid, stressful, and a$$ backwards. You die, and the game gets harder?

    Combat feels more cheap this time. So often you'll find battles where you're pitted against a group of enemies, which is always challenging, no matter how "weak" they are. DS1 rarely made you fight more than one or two at a time, if you were patient enough, allowing you to concentrate on the fundamentals. The very beginning woods section of this game was full of these encounters and was enfuriating. This, coming from a guy who beat dark souls. I know how to play.

    The game was made "more accessible" by including fast travel between bonfires and has a supposedly easier world structure to get started in. First, getting started was not easy at all. Like I said, the woods, which is first, were unbelievably aggravating, since you barely have any gear, and you get swarmed all over. I can't imagine that to be more accessible to a newcomer. Second, fast travel, it's does have its perks. It saves lots of time, but the gameworld is built so sprawling and disjointed. Nothing like the masterful interconnected puzzle that DS1 was. Plus having to go to the main hub area to level up and such is annoying.

    On a good note, the frame rate in this game is Super smooth compared to DS 1. At its best, this game IS great. But not DS1 great.

    I could say more, no more room.
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  26. May 6, 2014
    0
    Literally the most overrated game ever. The combat system is a clunky, simplistic throwback to the bad old days, and it controls like a sloth on quaaludes. The drab graphics look like they're from 1998. The idea that this game and Arkham City share the same score is a sick joke.
  27. Mar 11, 2014
    9
    Note: I have not finished this game, I have only played approximately 8 hours of it. I will do a brief list of pros and cons because it's really the easiest way to compare it to the first game. Pros: Combat is more interesting with more ways to counter attack and better magic systems, Enemy AI is improved (still not perfect, of course), immediately available fast travel, more encouragement for online play through the new humanity system, vastly improved covenants, better stats, more diverse and interesting environments (there are some seriously cool places). Cons: One single leveling location - such a time waster, sound design isn't as good... that's about it.

    So far it seems like a great game.
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  28. Mar 13, 2014
    10
    this game is awesome. the only reason i didnt give a 10 is, wheres the thief class??? WTF?
    bandit? adventurer? deprived?? come on now.............
  29. Apr 25, 2014
    7
    There is nothing memorable about this title. The worlds and characters that intrigued me in the first two games, Demon's and Dark Souls, are flat and uninteresting in Dark Souls 2. While some fans are still saying "Praise the sun!," a reference to Solaire of Astora from the previous Souls title, you probably won't hear anything being repeated for characters in this title. This game plays more like devolved fan fiction, rather than trying to stand on it's own as an interesting new world.

    There are plenty of other problems with this title: Lazy level design, illogical item progression, boring bosses (some that are nearly cut and paste from the previous Souls game), a story that really can't stand on it's own, and many other issues.

    The game is okay for a short while, but after three builds and one NG+, I called it quits with Dark Souls 2. I'm back to playing the first two games.
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  30. Mar 11, 2014
    10
    Absolutely incredible this game is simply one of the best games ever made IMO and sets the new bar for RPGs and games in generally the game took me about 35 hours to complete partly because of the amount of times you die but for me its what makes the game so good because when you finish the game there is no better feeling than knowing that you completed Dark Souls 2. You ask why I see well let me tell why. Its just that every conceivable area has been improved from the original Dark Souls from the gameplay, story, balance, and the overall experience has been improved and has resulted in a true masterpiece in gaming. But I will warn you that this game is only for HARDCORE GAMERS because you aren't then trust me will become a real dark soul but if you are then get out there and buy this masterpiece right now and you wont forget it.
    Thanks for reading my review
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  31. Mar 13, 2014
    10
    Dark Souls II might be my favorite of the 3 games. The UI is currently a little buggy, but it has seen some significant design improvements over the previous games.

    I feel like in many cases it tries and succeeds to mix the best of both worlds from Demon's Souls and Dark Souls. Death is more punishing than ever, there is a stronger incentive to co-op, there are many more PvP covenants,
    there is a sparring arena.

    On top of that the game has a ton of physics and graphics improvements over previous games. Some may not like the brighter, more pastel aesthetic, but it's a fact that the technical quality of the graphics has been bumped up a bit. The physics of the game have been improved by simplifying how smaller, more numerous objects interact and instead focusing on the physics of larger objects like barrels and characters. I like seeing my clothes react and pushing boxes/barrels around at 30fps a lot better than I like watching 4251098 pieces of wood and bodies spaz about at 10fps as sometimes happened in DS1.
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  32. Mar 12, 2014
    10
    This game is an absolute masterpiece; both the environments and enemies are beautifully designed, and when combined create a dark, immersive game world. Yes, it is challenging, but the euphoria that you experience when you defeat a tough group of enemies or a boss is second to none in my opinion.
  33. Mar 11, 2014
    10
    I picked it up on day one and I gotta say that in my whole life, I have never played anything better than this game! However, it needs one improvement: graphics and lighting, whereas the demo (not beta) build on PS3 looked better than the retail build, which is disappointing. But still, at least it's better than its predecessor.
  34. Apr 18, 2014
    0
    An unworthy successor. Following two of the best games I've ever played high standards need to be met, and ds2 doesn't come close. While a great deal of it's failing can be traced to the same deeply flawed decision by the devs to make multiplayer opt out rather than opt in (present in both demon's souls and dark souls) it's disastrous implementation in dark souls 2 pales when compared to its greatest shortcomings. In both predecessors the threat of having some random fool/player/griefer drop into your game to ruin your day was always a threat and made the lack of pausing, safe zones asinine (level 3 knights shouldn't have to face off against a jerk wearing allant' s armor and a scraping spear, and I shouldn't come back from the bathroom standing next to a bonfire on top of my bloodstain) but now they've raised the bar and guaranteed to over with multiplayer. It's brilliant that the game hangs for a moment to let you know you're being invaded. Not so great when it happens again. And again. And ag... well it was happening again only while you were standing still with all those pauses the first person who invaded ran in for a backstabbing, and you're dead. Not to worry, because things could be worse, at least there aren't places where other players can pull you into their game over and over and over until your equipment is breaking and you run out of supplies and have to quit the area. Well, not before invasionland there aren't.
    As lousy an implementation as is the poorly conceived multiplayer, it shines when compared to the awful camera. The camera was great in demon's souls, doing exactly what I wanted when I wanted. It was till pretty good in dark souls, somewhat twitchy but for the most part it didn't make things more difficult. This time around the camera might be the toughest obstacle in the game. Movements is quick and crisp when trying to make fine adjustments and painfully slow when it needs speed. The cameras behavior being the opposite of what is required at nearly every given moment isn't difficult, it's lazy and frustrating. If that isn't enough, the camera is stellar when compared to the controller. The slightest touch might launch you into a full Sprint, or moving further and further off center may do nothing more than keep you moving at a crawl--until you suddenly take off running. I've also gained no appreciation for the way buttons and triggers work to *maybe* cast spells, use weapons or a shield--or do multiple things all at once, back out of one menu, then the apparent menu, then hop backwards off a cliff, all with a single touch.
    All three souls titles have flaws at their core. This game has failings evwrywhere.
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  35. Mar 14, 2014
    10
    Praise the Soul games! The enigmatic ambience; the best sword and sorcery combat;
    the thrill of exploration and discovery; the INGENIOUS level design; the aid of companions
    when needed --- it's all back in this sublime, spellbinding sequel. Thanks, From Software.
  36. Mar 15, 2014
    10
    Dark Souls 2 has a strange vibe to it that you can only get while playing it yourself. It's world is so well designed. I love how the game doesn't drop you on a one way roller coaster with its ups and downs, you have all the theme park at your disposal, where you are even allowed to kill the ticket-seller dude (sorry, merchant NPCs:( ). Everybody say it is hard. But we should not just compare its difficulty level to most other games. Its difficulty is fair. It forces you to learn from your mistakes, tinker new plans. Bosses all feel unique. Some are really scary. AI is really cool and working as intended imo. FromSoftware brilliantly implemented new mechanics above DS1 that works really nice. I love the MAxHp loss on death and the durability system. Each weapon offers a different gameplay and the game pushes to player to use new alternatives. Bonfires (resting points) really makes you feel safe and calm. It has tons of fun and creative online features.
    Overall, this game is absolutely incredible! Has tons of replayability. I hope they keep supporting it with new content.
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  37. Mar 20, 2014
    10
    The game is hard, no lie. It's not the kind of game where you enter a room full of zombies and blast them away first try. Dark Souls 2 teaches critical thinking: When to attack, which weapon is most suited, how to use your stamina efficiently.

    There's plenty of roleplaying. As soon as you find a weapon or spell, you'll want to use it immediately. Go dual swords, become grim reaper like,
    whip people into submission, the choices are unlimited.

    This is one of those games that in order to enjoy fully, you have to walk in blindfolded with no guide or wiki. Every secret passage discovered and enemy you kill gives self-satisfying confidence and encourages you to believe "I carve my own destiny!"
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  38. Mar 13, 2014
    2
    This game does NOT look like the one that was advertised. Google-search 'Dark Souls 2 Graphics Downgrade' and you'll see that we've been totally mislead on what this was going to look like - through screenshots and videos. It's a good game otherwise, but this isn't the game I dropped a 60 dollar preorder for.
  39. Mar 20, 2014
    10
    The care that went into making this brilliant game is evident throughout your entire journey. You will find yourself in an atmospheric, open-world game with stories to tell, secrets to reveal, and a great challenge to offer. You create your character and then gradually shape him or her to your preferred play-style throughout your adventures. You can play alone, or summon other online players temporarily for help. There is also a substantial amount of player-vs-player content to be found in many places within the world. There is oh so much to say about this game, but it is best to experience it for yourself... If you have never played a Souls game before, Dark Souls 2 is a great place to begin. If you have played Dark Souls or Demon's Souls that came before it, you already have this game. Expand
  40. Mar 15, 2014
    8
    Sigh... Why do FROM need to ruin Dark Souls? They had something great going for them. All I can say is, what the heck did they do to the respawn system?! It goes against everything that an RPG and Dark Souls 1 stands for. It's called a ROLE PLAYING GAME for a reason. You cannot farm EQUIPMENT from monsters anymore (goodbye RPG!), you cannot farm SOULS from monsters anymore (goodbye RPG!), you cannot develop PLAYER SKILL by killing mobs a lot of times (goodbye RPG!).

    What this entails for the rest of us, FROM is basically forcing us to play ONLINE so we can get more souls from coop. (GOODBYE PLAYER FREEDOM). Those who play offline basically get the short end of the stick.

    Why FROM? Why!!
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  41. Mar 14, 2014
    7
    After I pushed past the fact that the game does not look as it was advertised and has many more unacceptable framerate drops than in the original Dark Souls, I was able to find a game worthy, in the most part, of being part of the Souls series. Despite the games recent boost in popularity, From keeps the games challenge intact, and delivers another experience that you won't find really anywhere else, poor graphics and all. Expand
  42. Mar 11, 2014
    10
    the legend never stop, i think souls series is the best series ever made(even more then ME series),be sure to buy it for PC, this time the consoles are the port
  43. Mar 11, 2014
    10
    best game in the history of mankind nothing else compares,buy this game don't watch any guides,play alone,no online and experience the brilliance that is Dark Souls II.GFX,Visuals,sound,mp everything is refined and improved
  44. Mar 12, 2014
    10
    Prettier, smoother, tougher, more complex than ever. Dark Souls 2 never holds your hand. Co-op is working great. Jaw dropping experience. I died at least 50 times the first day.
  45. Mar 12, 2014
    10
    There still isn't a single next gen game worth playing, and with games like Dark Souls II, last gen is far from dead. Dark Souls II is just as good as it's predecessors Demon's Souls and Dark Souls, combining various gameplay aspects of each. If you haven't played a Souls game, what are you doing with your life?
  46. Mar 13, 2014
    9
    There's really nothing more to say other than you MUST play this game, its perfection... the only reason why it didn't get a 10 from me is because of the half life depletion I don't like it even though it makes the game harder it really takes away from the exploration.
  47. Mar 25, 2014
    5
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. This is my first time writing a review for this site. Dark Souls 2 was one of the games I was most excited to play, as a fan of the series in general I looked forward to what the future would bring. In some respects, it delivered, the challenge was mostly intact, and the ability to customize, and gear out your character is better than ever.

    I initially held back on writing a review, however as I have now finished the game, I feel i can judge it more appropriately. It may sound bad, but it is more a symptom of being disappointed, and let down in critical areas.

    I suppose it feels somewhat devoid of the 'soul', which comes as little surprise to me, though I had hoped it would not be so despite the needless removal of Hidetaka Miyazaki, who directed both the previous Souls games. This manifests itself in a number of ways.

    The area design, both in aesthetics, and connectivity to one another feels disjointed and uninspired, like many areas would not really be able to connect to one another unlike in Dark Souls, where the connections were more or less reasonable and made sense. There is also a lack of awe, sorrow, fear, or desolation, and the locations feel more like video game levels, than places people may have once lived in, long ago. The washed out look created by having to axe the impressive lighting does not help. Whereas previously, many of the locales could somewhat tell you their story, as you traversed them. Discovering the bodies in New Londo, and seeing the sacrifice that was willingly made to keep the Darkwraiths entombed, that sort of thing.

    The bosses and npcs this time around, there certainly are a great deal of them, however it feels a lot as though the designers opted for quantity over individual quality. There is a depressing disposability to them, not one of them is seemingly as memorable as the characters met in either Dark Souls, or Demon's Souls.

    The bosses and enemies especially have disappointed me in many ways, the biggest disappointment being the apparent overuse of large, armored humans with polearms in place of more unique, grotesque/strange designs. Nashandra, Vendrick and the Ancient Dragon have the dubious honor of being possibly some of the worst bosses in the entire series, the Ancient Dragon especially being rather terrible and disappointing after Kalameet, who was a fantastic dragon boss from Dark Souls.

    The art design and style in general does not feel as inspired, or interesting either. I know, that with the previous games Miyazaki had quite a hand in the designs, he would speak with designers at length, and approve each design based on his ideas and sensibilities. The story itself also feels less developed, like it was made intentionally vague and obtuse in such a way to emulate Miyazaki's style without understanding it.

    On the more technical side, issues are prevalent as well. With the announcement of dedicated servers, many assumed it would alleviate previous problems with lag. Not so apparently. Lag and connection issues still rear their ugly heads, and the performance of the game on PS3 is especially heinous, with worse overall framerate and loading times than even the first game.

    I am perplexed as well by some other issues, some that were fixed in the first game and seemingly forgotten for the second. Namely:

    1. Non-respawning enemies such as the crystal lizards no longer give you their loot as soon as you kill them, if you die you can miss the loot forever.
    2. Lock on radius had to be patched to be greater.
    3. Scaling had to be patched to be stronger and not so inferior to elemental.
    4. Pyromancy, was too powerful and adjusted.
    5. Drop-rates in general of both armor and upgrade materials had to be patched so it was not abysmally low.

    There is also the scandalous issue with the graphics downgrade, while not a major problem to me, is clearly a form of false advertisement, and a more critical problem for others.

    In all, I won't say I didn't enjoy the game, or that I hate it. I'm just disappointed by many of the design choices and the state of the final product. In many ways, it feels not like a 'Souls' game, but a mod, or interpretation of what someone thinks a 'Souls' game should be, an interpretation given by someone who does not fully understand it but tries to emulate it anyways.

    People were right to doubt with the change in presentation seen in the very first reveal trailer, and the way the game has been marketed since.
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  48. May 17, 2014
    0
    The feeling when you waste 50 hard earned euros on a masochistic nightmare.
    If you're a hardcore gamer that plays games to escape reality, enjoy a good story and fun game play, don't get this ....abomination.
    story is lacking, game play is unrewarding and only meant for 14year olds that have time to spend 60h per fight and find that funny, graphics are 2006 (well not surprising when it's
    played on a console) Expand
  49. Mar 17, 2014
    5
    A poorly executed game overall that falls tragically short of what was shown off in playable builds before the game's release. The thrill of surviving against insane odds is still there, and really the only thing that isn't botched in this sad follow up to Dark Souls. The first thing that really baffled me about this game is how poor the framerate is. It constantly struggles, and often falls into single-digit territory. If you are fighting more than 2 enemies at once, it's worse than a stop-motion movie from the 30's. Combat as a result feels unresponsive and laggy. There is a perpetual sense of disconnection with the character, they do not move naturally, actions like attacks or evades do not always happen exactly when you expect them to leading to blamelessly getting hit or killed by enemies. The lock-on system is still terrible, even more problematic given the streamlined ranged combat new to this game. The level design is confusing, each area almost seems randomly connected to the next and none of them have anything to do with each other, thematically, narratively, or gameplay-wise, it's like a bunch of ideas were thrown on the cutting board and the designers just went with whatever looked best and strung them all together with ladders, a big door, or maybe a tunnel. The torch is unnecessary and essentially annoying because it takes your shield. I also had to look on the internet just to figure out how to even use it. The interface is still clumsy, and still uses those terrible lists assigned to the D-pad you have to scroll through (one-way only) while being attacked or chased or what-have-you just to perform an action as basic as drinking a potion or casting a specific spell. I just started reaching over with my right hand to switch items/spells so I could do it while moving. On top of all this, the game is more difficult than either predecessor and combines the death penalties of both previous games into a side show of arbitrary punishments: slashing your max life (which also lowers your humanity, since in this game you are a zombie...of course) for every death in addition to losing acquired souls (which are used for everything). Which wouldn't be such a nuisance if I didn't die so often from bad game design and troll-like sucker-punches (enemies who spawn right behind you at bad moments, and don't make much of a sound). At this point I think I would rather just play more Demon's or Dark souls, than spend anymore time with this technical mish-mash. I would say this game feels like a 4, but it gets a 5 for at least sticking to its guns of outrageous difficulty above all else. Too bad none of the ideas panned out, this could have actually been a masterpiece. Expand
  50. Apr 16, 2014
    8
    Dark Souls II improves on its predecessor by optimizing its mechanics and providing an even bigger world this time around. Tons more areas, enemies, npcs, and bosses. Dark Souls II like Dark Souls is a game you truly appreciate the more time you put into it. The longer you persevere in its world, the more rewards it will reveal. To truly understand its complexity and scale, you have to fully experience the game in its entirety. I look forward to where From Software takes this series next! If you enjoyed the previous games, you will enjoy Dark Souls II. The reason I didn't give it a perfect score was because it didn't feel as memorable as Demon Souls and Dark Souls. Although its nice to see a developer put some much work into the game, it felt bloated and the game became exhausting to complete. Also, the last few areas of the game felt very random and out of place. Still, considering how much content is in the game, its amazing how much work the developers put into the game. If you are a fan of the series or mature dark fantasy, you will enjoy this game! Expand
  51. Mar 19, 2014
    10
    This is one of those games that will go down in history as a legacy and never die. It will be something you can play years from now and enjoy, not just some once and done waste of time game. With Demon's Souls and Dark Souls, Dark Souls II is one of the greatest games ever created.
  52. Mar 16, 2014
    10
    It's good to see Dark Souls II return to it's roots and incorporate more of the atmosphere from Demon's Souls. Hands down the best in the series and the leveling system makes it so you can't just stack endurance to get the best melee build. A definite improvement, and less forgiving right at the start.
  53. May 24, 2014
    5
    The change of staff for Dark Souls II and the idea of allowing the series to become more "accessible" for a larger audience has caused Dark Souls II to be an absolute mess. The original Dark Souls was also a mess, though for subjective reasons, things which I didn't enjoy about the game. The mess that Dark Souls II happens to be, it's a mess caused by bad programming, contradicting story, and idiotic decisions for the online play. Dark Souls II does have something going for it, though...and that's the music. Everything was rushed and made horribly for an overall disappointing and unsatisfying experience. Expand
  54. Mar 19, 2014
    9
    Absolutely stunning game which is almost a continuation of the last game.

    I noticed a few people have mentioned the graphics, which do look a little worse than the previews. Possibly due to compression at the end of the development. That said if you are playing this game just for the graphics then you shouldn't bother as its all about the gameplay.
  55. Mar 19, 2014
    10
    Its just Dark Souls II. what do I need to say?. it brings everything NEW to the table. game is awesome. MP is better than last. less lag. but still some. I can't ask for more than this. this is the first time I've pre-ordered a game. and Its worth it. Praise the Sun! this is a review by someone who played the first Dark Souls 250 hours. and both of them are the closest RPG game to perfect.
  56. Apr 15, 2014
    6
    Dark Souls 2 was a disappointment, it's not a bad game; on the contrary it's quite good, even peaking greatness in some areas. Just comparing it to Dark Souls 1 it falls short; DS2 has more content but has tedious game mechanics, DS2 has a better engine but doesn't look any better, it adds new features (such as touches) but never really fully realizes them. DS2 has more bosses than its predecessor but the majority of them are either blatant rip offs (playing of nostalgia) or plain, old unoriginal. Even some of the level design are boring. You know the thing which made DS1 a house hold name; its level design. It's a fun game and if you want something for your Dark souls fix, pick this game up. But if you're a new comer, go for the first game. I wanna give this game a 6.9 but Metacritic won't let me. Expand
  57. Mar 17, 2014
    10
    Get It - if you liked the previous games you'll like this one - your life will soon be over. Not just your game life but your home life too. Demons souls franchise rules my living room.
  58. Mar 13, 2014
    9
    This game (just like the last two in the series) is either going to be loved dearly or hated passionately. Obviously, the people who lack ambition, determination, persistence, patience, and ingenuity are the ones who are most likely to hate it passionately. So, basically, most of the people who have played this game and then given it a low score are losers. While, the ones who love it dearly are winners. The game itself, really can't be faulted very much if you like RPGs. It's obviously wonderfully crafted and extremely well done. Expand
  59. Mar 19, 2014
    9
    Dark Souls 2 is the most rewarding and challenging game I have ever played in my life. It barely ever strays from greatness and for good reason. Prepare to die.... again.
  60. Mar 29, 2014
    6
    for the game that features single hit death combat as main aspect it has way too many bugs and glitches. While Dark Souls 2 is a good game it has fallen far from the original Dark Souls and Demon Souls that featured close to flawless execution of all game mechanics.
    I can attest that after playing Demon Souls and Dark Souls that all of the deaths I have experienced in those games were
    result of my bad input where as in Dark Souls 2 I constantly die due to some unknown practices that clearly should not be happening causing me much frustration.

    Here is a list of some bugs/glitches that I have encountered:
    1. dodging is not working properly when dodging just to get outside of hit range and successfully doing so hits still land while character is outside of hit range.
    2. enemy hit miss detection is very wonky. character gets hits while positioned directly behind enemy that is performing frontal attacks and gets still hit. like getting hit while trying to back stab spear man that is poking in the opposite direction.
    3. lock on. fighting multiple enemies and killing one and then getting killed because lock on would not auto target another enemy right in front of me on screen. (option is enabled)
    4. lock on. weapons swinging in the opposite direction or at angle instead of the target. causing miss. causing death. making some weapons unusable with lock on.
    5. enemies stuck in attack mode with infinite stamina and spam lock character in place till guard break and death.
    6. lingering damage after attack is over like steeping into clear air after dragon breath attack has ceased only to die.
    7. randomly respawning enemies without ever touching a bonfire.
    8. using ingame menu to quit the game and dying while that is happening result in character loss.

    Features that do not belong in souls series:
    1. areas featuring infinitely spawning enemies
    2. ledges with loot that cannot be exited without returning to bonfire by death or teleport
    3. jumping mechanics that constantly require to remove equipment to jump further
    4. dropping down makes character automatically roll resulting frequently in death
    5. low health characters build are punished by making some loot and some areas accessible only much later as fall damage is no longer percentage based and some puzzles require taking fire damage for extended periods of time.
    6. most of the boss battles are located in the rooms so small and bosses so large that it creates camera issues and leaves no space to strategically position causing death by constantly dodging into walls.
    7. a lot of boss battles now feature more than a single enemy that cheaply raises difficulty of the fight.
    8. boss rooms sometimes are riddled with edges that can be fallen to the death and other things that do not allow enough room for normal combat. half of the fight time is spent waiting for NPCs to reposition themselves so they can be safely engaged again. that completely destroys the flow of combat.
    9. some enemies/areas seem to require ranged combat only approach
    what I want to underline is that game features a lot of easy bosses made hard through cheap gimmicks

    Overall it would be a good game if it wasn't carrying on the legacy of previous two titles which featured close to perfect gameplay. Dark Souls 2 fails to achieve that perfection and thus disappoints me greatly.
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  61. Mar 31, 2014
    6
    Compared to prior work, Dark Souls II is pretty awful. I feel bad that I waited 2 years and invested as much into it. I feel worse that the savior of traditional video game design sold out.

    - There is no character build specialization (there is abundant "respec") -- in one swoop, this completely removes the primary strategic level of the game.
    - Enemies not respawning removes most of
    the difficulty from regular areas catching you off-guard.
    - While at the same time, NPCs *DO* respawn, so you don't have to be careful around them.
    - Free, unlimited warping anywhere, right from the start, removing the challenge of layout memorization.

    The sad thing is these are all *features* the development team spent resources *adding* to the game. This isn't failure due to a lack of resources. This is intentional failure injected into the game by decision makers (i.e., making it more "accessible" to the much larger playerbase weened on post-16-bit games wanting fast content consumption, always-increasing "progress" and no developed appreciation for RISK AND IMMERSION): In other words, SELLING OUT.

    If you have not played a From Software title, do yourself a favor and don't introduce yourself to their work with this train wreck. The features vainly attempting to appeal to "new" players ironically make it unworthy to be a player's first exposure.
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  62. crs
    Mar 20, 2014
    10
    I am so glad I didn't sell my PS3 upon getting a PS4 as its worth owning a PS3 just to play Dark Souls 2. If you didn't like Dark Souls it wont convert you but If you liked Dark Souls you will love it. Granted its a bit more accessible than the first game with finite re-spawns but you can use this to your advantage to build up your character very easily. When in Dark Souls I found my character needed to upgrade by 25 levels this took a month but in Dark Souls 2 I was able to get to the required level in a mere day by using finite re-spawns at a certain point.

    People complain about the graphics not being as good as they were shown, get over it the game-play is good and that's all that matters.

    Whats the point of having a game that looks beautiful and plays like a piece of rubbish.

    If you love Dark Souls buy it and Prepare to Die!!!
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  63. Mar 17, 2014
    9
    Visuals: 8
    First thing you will notice is that the visuals look great, and it now runs at a solid 30fps, and sometimes more in areas that don't have much going on (Caves for example). Models and animations got improved a lot, remember when you pressed random in Dark Souls and Demon Souls and your character looked like an alien? not anymore, although some faces may look a bit awkward, but
    it still looks great (I would've liked a bit more options on customization but that's just my opinion.)

    Sound: 9
    Some of the sounds from Dark Souls are still present (bonfire, entering a new area, etc.) and for me its great to hear those familiar sounds back. The soundtrack is what shines in DS2, great music and each soundtrack is unique (loved the one from the Flexile Sentry and the Old Dragonslayer).

    Gameplay: 8
    Having over 400 hours in DS1 and 200 on DS, the game feels completely fresh, but at the same time the formula stays the same. Combat in DS2 is now a bit slower, but more fluid and makes me want more and more! Controls stay the same, which is great, no big change there.The leveling system is now different and more balanced, want to max out endurance and carry Hovel's and roll around with infinite stamina? nope! It is now more complex than the last two games (Maiden in Black memories anyone?). The dying penalty is now painful, is a bit annoying and makes me yell at the screen every time I die, but reminds me how bad it is to die and play more carefully instead of just sprinting through the whole level. However I feel that magic is a bit more OP than in previous games, especially in PvP. Multiplayer seems a bit broken when it comes to matchmaking in PvP, but these don't kill the experience.

    Lore: 9
    Again, DS does not make its storyline very obvious, is mysterious, making me think what is happening, exploring, reading item descriptions and talking to the different characters is key to understand what's going on.
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  64. Mar 11, 2014
    9
    I was apprehensive, how come Namco pull it off 3 times in a row? They did.

    One or two areas look pretty poor and unimaginative, but the gameplay makes them interesting. The rest of the game looks amazing, and will look even better on PC.
  65. Mar 15, 2014
    9
    People complain too much yes you can make the enemies respawn after you kill them to much i want spoil it but you get the item 25-30% through the game.... Graphics are fine From soft doesn't have all the cash big devs do they cant create a new graphics engine or rent one and market the game with it. Your lucky you got a dark soul sequel. The game is fine with hit box errors (no worse then the beginning of dark souls 1) Lore is good and graphics are stunning in some areas. NPCS are cool,

    The bosses are tad forgettable but so were Dark souls and Demon souls.. I've beat demon souls over 9 times and do not remember 80% of the bosses.. Graphics do not make a game i can still pop the legend of zelda majoras mask in and have a really fun time.
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  66. Mar 14, 2014
    10
    If you're a fan of Demon Souls and Dark Souls you are going to love this game! Very frustrating at first but you'll learn to appreciate the difficulty and the huge environment. Best game on PS3, should have been out for PS4 too.
  67. Mar 17, 2014
    9
    First just want to say I gave the game a 9 out of 10 for the simple fact nothing should get a ten. Always something you can find wrong. This game i would say its the graphics are the only thing wrong with is game. The fighting system is not really better then the first Dark Souls but it is different in a way that makes if challenging for season vets to the game, but not to difficult for new comers. The game still has its hardcore stat management that I personalty love. The huge open world of the game also is fun to explore. You never know what or who you might find on the other side of a waterfall or cliff. Plus NBG added a fast travel right at the beginning of the game. The death counter in the early parts of this game was a great touch.This is quickly become my favorite game franchise to-date. I encourage you to attempted this game if you like great action rpg. You will not be disappointed, just don't give up and remember count on death. Expand
  68. Mar 20, 2014
    9
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. Great multiplayer, excellent challenge for the hardcore gamers, and more makes this a perfect sequel to the original. The only complaint I have with this game is a certain death penalty encountered in the game that decreases your max HP every time you die. Well this is avoidable, it is difficult to do so, and will get annoying. But it is a minor problem, and the good points of this game greatly makes up for the bad. A great game, and here's hoping for more! Expand
  69. Mar 23, 2014
    6
    Big expectations but the final PS3 version is a big disappointment. Not only has the console graphics received a massive downgrade but also the multiplayer gaming doesn't seem to work. I've so far never been invaded nor was I able to successfully invade or coop. The whole mp experience of its predecessor has degenerated to a single player grinding game.
  70. Mar 31, 2014
    6
    This game is a mixed bag for everyone. Some will say it's the swan song of the Xbox 360 and PS3 generation, and others will give up just a few hours in. I played the first Dark Souls and I'm not afraid to say that the original is the better choice of the two. It all comes down to a few changes they made to keep it fresh.

    The responsiveness in Dark Souls 2 is way beyond most gaming
    standards. Some of the tightest controls to come out with an RPG and the greatest feeling of achievement when finally taking down a boss. But I'm sorry to say that if you compare it to the original Dark Souls, you'll be quite surprised how it doesn't add up. The sequel should have the far superior combat, right? Sadly, this is not the case. Item usage is mostly sloppy, and hitboxes are mostly precise, but some bosses and enemies have absolutely awful hitboxes all around. I'm not sure if the enemies are meant to be fought that way, but in either cases is feels unfinished. Not to talk about the critically huge difficulty spikes that happens way to often. Especially the bosses are unforgiving and punishing, and most of them requires you to bring a partner to even have a chance. This is not how the series was meant to be played, and in my opinion is a flaw rather than a mechanic. Finally I would like to note that Dark Souls 2 takes the most annoying aspect of Dark Souls 1 and brings it to a whole new level... Ganging up enemies against you.

    So the combat is a step down. How about the rest of the game?

    The lore in Dark Souls 2 feels a tad bit incomplete. I never had a distinct feeling of the area's history whenever I'd discover it like I would in the original Dark Souls. And the world isn't as interconnected as it's older brother, and misses a feeling of mystery. Little to no characters has a story you feel a need to discover and some feels like they didn't even need to be in the game. Maybe if I felt like reading a lot i might get a slight idea of what their story is, but to be honest that feels out of place. To be honest, if they left most of the "lore" out, it wouldn't feel less incomplete. Missing information, boring and bland characters, and a world made of mediocrity. This game makes some MOBA lore feel like the greatest piece of art ever written. Someday i might just read all of the Dark Souls 2 lore on the internet and feel like it failed to deliver.

    hopefully the third installment of the series (Which I'm sure will happen at some point) will fix the mistakes and make a game that's just as good as the original. I can only hope.
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  71. Mar 23, 2014
    10
    Rarely does a game deliver on its every promise. Dark Souls II does that and more. From the outstanding melee combat, to the subtle character development, going through a battery of unique and vicious environments, Dark Souls II has everything one could ask for from one of the best RPGs ever made.
  72. Mar 14, 2014
    10
    Bought a PS3 for the 2nd or 3rd time just to play this game. Demon Souls and Dark Souls are probably my favorite games of all time and I've played games since 1989. Incredibly difficult, but extremely rewarding. Highly recommend to anyone that has half a brain.
  73. Mar 19, 2014
    8
    I love it,but can't help but feel that some things are a little off...The hit detection animations seem mildly out-of-time and there seems to be little farming opportunities.PvP has become suddenly annoying and the HP reduction system is baffling.The worst new thing is the finite enemies and the less than seamless world.It's still great,just not as excellent as the others.
  74. Jun 25, 2014
    7
    A good game, not the greatest, but good.
    The start is a little rocky, you quickly learn that Dark Souls 2 is entirely linear and some areas can't be accessed early in the game. That's fine and dandy though annoying when compared to Dark Souls and Demon Souls which allowed the player to choose the path they wanted to take.

    As you can tell by the rating though, it isn't all bad, or even
    close. The game maintains its difficulty from the previous two incarnations by FromSoft even though at times to a more casual gamer, some deaths seem cheap. The new menu layout is a huge upgrade from DS/DkS, however I personally find it a bit less twitchy.

    I don't really want to give much away, but I will say having friends for this game will make it a lot more enjoyable. If you can, do yourself a favor and get the limited edition of the game for some extra equipment that will save you a lot of frustration at the beginning of Dark Souls 2.

    Overall, my ratings are
    Gameplay: 7/10 I never had the issues most people seemed to, but it still felt a bit clunky on PS3
    Graphics: 9/10 The game looks really good compared to its predecessors
    Sound: 6/10
    Fun: 9/10 If you have friends, 6/10 if you don't
    Replayability: 2/10 I can't see playing this game again, beating it once alone is enough for me
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  75. Apr 4, 2014
    6
    I see a lot of tens across the board, but I don't really find that fair for a game with no story, battle animations that don't match up with enemies' hit range, and painfully long loading times (this is key due to the amount of times you will die). I'll grant that the landscapes are gorgeous, the weapon selection is vast, and leveling system is pretty gnarly, but that's not enough for anywhere near a perfect score.

    The fans of this game always try to make it out that if we don't like it, we just don't "get it" as if the fault lies with us, but if a game doesn't motivate me to keep pushing forward even though i just paid 60 dollars for it, some of the blame has to be with the game itself
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  76. Mar 19, 2014
    10
    The game lives up to hype of the first game and is truly a spectacular experience. It is more of a combination of its past games, Demon and Dark Souls. I have heard many reviewers say that the game is the most difficult of the souls game, but that is simply not true. As great as DkSII is, I thought it to be much easier than the other souls games.

    I went with a melee build, and after the
    first 7hrs, every bosses and enemies were falling like dominoes. I expect sorcery builds to have a much easier, albeit longer, time to finish the main story. I managed to even finish the game at 40hrs and I remember DkSI taking me at least 60hrs. The game, even with HP decreasing per death penalty, is far less punishing than the other souls games since there is a bonfire in every corner, and a certain ring offsets the HP decreasing penalty.

    I do like that the bosses are much more skill and precision based than in DkS1, where most of the time in the first one I either tanked the boss or the boss turned out to be gimmick based fight not relying on skill. The enemies are much more balanced and the hitboxes seems a little fixed.

    I think most people find DkSII harder because A) they haven't played a souls game in a long time B) this is their first souls game.
    I strongly recommend someone new to the series to play the first one, and after completing it, DkSII feels like a vacation.
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  77. May 25, 2014
    7
    Having now spent over 100 hours in Dark Souls 2 I can firmly say that it is inferior to it's two predecessors in most every way imaginable. The map is atrocious, the enemies attacks hit you when you aren't near them, the online is terrible with the addition of soul memory. Two notable features which are neat on the outside looking in being NG+ having new items and Soul Vessels (the ability to reset stats) actually kill any hopes for multiple PvP builds which you could easily do in the previous games. Some of the bosses are okay but some are just an enemy in a small church. In NG+ the bosses apparently get harder however it appears that instead of changing the boss From just added more enemies in the boss area and called it a day. The story and overall atmosphere, which made Demon's and Dark Souls unique, is all but missing in this. Dark Souls 2 isn't a bad game, don't get the wrong idea I have had some amount of fun playing this but also frustration when I die from the poor hitboxes as well. If you've played the other games I recommend giving this one a try otherwise you should play the others and ignore this one. Expand
  78. Mar 19, 2014
    8
    I'll be honest - it's not what I expected. The game itself is solid and brilliant, but for some reason it feels like something is missing. I'm about 20 hours in now with a sorceror but so far the scenery feels a bit repetive (fewer open areas, more corridors and traps). Also, the freedom to explore is limited more as early-game bosses are absolutely required rather than optional. Rather than going the brawn way, I decided to try my luck at a sorceror. How I wish I hadn't. the only way for a sorceror to progress is by finding trainers to learn them new spells (alongside with leveling stats). New staves are almost nonexistent in the early-game, forcing you to keep using the starter staff. It feels wrong, as the other classes get an abundance of weapons. When you finally get to a mage trainer, you purchase a few spells that bring you back on par. It feels bland and boring to have so little variety in weapons while others get plenty. I honestly don't know what FS was thinking, but it makes me feel more like I'm grinding towards the next trainer / boss soul rather than looking in every nook for that potentially awesome weapon. Expand
  79. Mar 25, 2014
    10
    This sequel, of Dark Souls & Demon Souls is many times better than it's predecessors. Not only is it larger and more immersive, than the two previous games; it's much more user friendly. This game introduces fast travel, despawning of enemies and much more weapons. I would recommend you play this game whether you're played the previous 2 games of not, this game is a masterpiece and really should be under your radar. Expand
  80. Apr 19, 2014
    8
    Let me open by saying that Dark Souls II is a plenty good game, so take what you hear here with a grain of salt. Firstly the game plays as you would expect having played the souls series before, and is a challenging game in many respects. However, there are problems I feel must be addressed. Starting with the campaign. The story in my opinion isn't nearly as strong as the original dark souls. It manages to be much more generic than the original, but if you're here for the gameplay this shouldn't be a problem. There are several bosses that rely on gimmicks to increase their difficulty instead of having actually challenging ai. In addition to this, several bosses are VERY similar to ones in the previous game. Not that that's a bad thing, but it does make you wish for some variation. The ideas on the whole feel less inspired, as we have more knight bosses than ever. Including one that appears twice, only this time with TWO of them instead of one. I feel like that's definitely a failing on the creativity front. But I'm going to address my biggest problem with the game now. It's multiplayer is heavily flawed. The new director seems to heavily dislike invasions, as invaders are punished harder than ever before. The host can heal, but you cannot stop them. They can usually roll out of the way, preventing any sort of reasonable punish. In addition, lloyd talismans are limited, and you cannot ever get an infinite invasion item of any kind. The PVP has several balance problems, including absurd levels of stunlocking, the inability to punish hosts from healing, and certain stats soft cap so early on everyone is going to have a very cookie cutter build. Weapons do not scale well at all, so you are essentially encourged to go to the soft caps for your stats, then enchant and buff your weapons with spells to get any sort of damage out of them. If you wanted to play a pure str/dex character, prepare to be disappointed. Not only are invaders punished, as the host will almost always have the advantage now, but they get nothing meaningful from actually invading. For the host, death is a slap on the wrist, as they can equip the ring of soul protection and lose nothing if they die. The invader however is doomed to an uphill battle, and faces constant invasions from this game's equivalent of the dark moon covenant, which becomes extremely tedious. If one of your main draws for the series is PVP and invasions, prepare to be extremely disappointed.

    As a singleplayer game however it is fine. Not as good as the original, but certainly a solid game in most respects. What I do not understand however, is the design decision to make certain item sets nearly unattainable without hours of farming. This is a determent to the series, and has no place in the game itself.

    on the whole we have:
    - A poorly balanced PVP system that punishes players for invading
    - A more generic storyline than the previous games
    - a poorly balanced stat system that encourages users to spread their stats everywhere instead of specializing
    - a ridiculous item farming mechanic.

    however, despite this games myriad of problems, it is still a solid title if you're looking for a single player experience. Just don't expect it to be nearly as good as the last game. between the pvp being broken and skewed against the invader, to death being a slap on the wrist. I can't honestly claim this to be as good as dark souls or demons souls. However if you just want more of the series itself, than look no further.
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  81. Mar 14, 2014
    10
    o Jogo ta muito bom e não tenho nada mais a falar , e tipo ele ta muito massa e cara lindo jogo muito bom parada anormal que e esse jogo ta ligado que esse jogo nossa e bolado de +
  82. Mar 17, 2014
    7
    I'm going to say that this is way over rated. Not hard at all, I just run passed goons to bosses. Goons take too many hits and give you barely anything, plus they can one hit you like any boss. I bought the game because of reviews say so good and hard, same old game little different graphics, unneeded annoyances that don't increase difficulty as much as the perception of difficulty. I die because ledges and bad camera angles. Expand
  83. Jun 3, 2014
    1
    This game is terrible. is even more bad than the first one, abysmal gameplay, i will not recommend this garbage, please stay away, the graphics look like a ps2 game, this game is a disaster, the combat is very REPETITIVE, the enemies attack and moves always in similar ways, people who like this game are 40 years old virgins who can't even beat it because it's extremely difficulty, this game is not even worth try it.
    One of the worst games of 2014.
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  84. Mar 18, 2014
    9
    The most balanced game yet, a blend of both demon and dark souls yet feels ever more refreshed. Levels show enough diversity and graphics are updated. Combat is fair and punishing at the same time, always leaving you the option to go elsewhere in case of the challenge proves too much, bosses are easier yet some feel re-skinned. No soul glitch in which level 700's invade you making it all about fairness. Expand
  85. Mar 14, 2014
    10
    aside from it being last gen, its game play and enemy ai is fantastic, i find the game awesome beyond my expectation , keep up the good work from, and as a suggestion you should remake the king field games with the dark souls engine that would be epic!!!
  86. Mar 23, 2014
    10
    This game is simply amazing, it is probably the best game I have played so far in 2014! I had so much fun playing it I even forgot from time to time I was even playing. You get so emerged into this world of epic monsters and big challenging bosses. If you liked the first Dark souls and demon souls you will definitely love this game. That being said if you did not enjoy the previous soul games you will not like this one either as the game-play is almost the same and the bosses can seem pretty similar and the difficulty level is definitely there. I really hope most of you guys out there pick this up, would be a shame to miss out on this game. Expand
  87. Apr 12, 2014
    6
    This game... man i had high hopes for it to be legendary in comparison to Dark Souls 1 but it fell short in a few ways for the PvE aspect of the game. Many boss fights just were too easy with a Dexterity character which is pretty sad because straight up Dex and Strength builds **** blow in this game. There was very little epic music in this game, i loved the hell out of the soundtrack for Dark Souls and especially Demon's Souls (with its amazing intro). I wont talk much about the PvE because it's not the real issue here, it's the PvP. The PvP only and when i say only i mean ONLY full of casters of all types that can all one-shot with the press of one button. I have not been parried once or guard-broke once because no one **** goes for them. With how one-sided the fights i get are i still manage to beat these buttholes using all these under-powered setups with my simple dual falchion, dual poison dagger, target shield, and shadow dagger build. I have 2500+ of play time on Dark Souls 1 and seeing how horrid the PvP is makes me want to vomit. This Dom **** created the "Mega mule" for Dark Souls 2 within 3 weeks after the game's release, completely ruining NG+ PvP. I invaded someone that used 10 divine blessings and any Dark Souls 1 veteran would know what is terrible about that, I was a dragon spirit that had the choice of healing but i didn't and only managed to kill him because i was an OP sorcerer build. Now for anyone who thinks magic is for **** or wimps i completely agree and i'm telling you that in Dark Souls 2 you will be killed 9/10 times with a Dex or Strength build, I have parried people **** loads of times in PvP but they go and chug their Sunny-D and then i get one-shotted by a spell, so GG From Software on ruining the PvP, I just hope someone out there still plays Dark Souls 1 because I can't stand this $60 turd. Expand
  88. Apr 19, 2014
    4
    Game not even as enjoyable as first two games. Do battle on small pathways and wrong step and fall die, fall die, fall die. Other games had some areas like that but not everywhere you turn. Graphics in parts of game are subpar compare to previous games. Do your self a favor and by Demon Souls. Greatly disappointed in this release of the series.
  89. Apr 21, 2014
    7
    I kept waiting for moments like: -the Asylum Demon dropping down minutes after starting the gane -the drake landing in front of you in the undead berg -the taurus demon running at you -barely making it to the first blacksmith -queelag appears -ringing both bells -iron golem -TARKUS TARKUS TARKUUUUUUUUUUUUUS -the rafters in anor londo -the archers -bulk and skull -Sif's intro
    -fighting artorious
    -kalameet
    -getting your souls back after being rused by Seath
    -gwyn's fight and the music

    I could go on, but nothing grabbed me in 2 like those moments, I kept waiting for something big to happen but it never did. For me, there was a lot more content in 2, but a lot less substance.
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  90. May 18, 2014
    5
    I've played and completed Demon's Souls three times and Dark Souls twice, so I was looking foward to Dark Souls 2 a lot. I have been very disappointed with what From Software have the nerve to call a sequel.
    It's clear that most of Froms' staff had been put onto working on the new PS4 ip and the unlucky few have been left to throw out this unimaginative, bland and lacklustre excuse. Where
    are the huge majestic monsters? Where are the haunting imaginative locales? Why am I bored? Yes BORED!
    The environments are plain. There is a massive over-use of the same scenery...another burning body boulder anyone? And the regular enemies are just humanoids in armour over and over again. Also, most of the scenery looks like a good effort on a PS2.
    Two words explain this pitiful mess. Rush Job.
    Pull your finger out From Software, this is too good a franchise to get lazy with. Other software houses will make their own versions and we'll all go elsewhere.
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  91. Apr 6, 2014
    10
    This epic sequel offers more content than ever before, and the unique multilayer mechanics are truly working for the first time in the series.

    Pros: Melee is balanced with hundreds of viable weapon choices, simplified upgrading and crisp mechanics. Magic has 4 different paths with more options than ever before. Endless hours of fun PvP. Awesome enemy/boss design. Easiest Co-Op in the
    series. Great incentives for assisting other players. Many options for making the game harder if you find it too easy. Built from the ground up for re-playability with new traps, gear and enemies exclusively to NG+.

    Cons: The graphics were downgraded (but are still beautiful - for old consoles), hard skill caps mean you'll be wasting your points if you don't know what you're doing. Some lag in PvP. Voice acting is hit or miss. The music took a turn from the first two which effects the "souls" feel. Nearly absent rumble controls. The "soul memory" system frustrates many friends trying to co-op.

    - Lore is even more hidden than DS1, but there DEFINITELY IS a lot there, and there will be deep lore conversations to come.

    - Nearly all of the information online and even in guides is false, misleading or inaccurate. You truly know nothing about anything until you do it yourself. If you hear an item or build is overpowered, broken or useless - your personal findings are likely to be much different and more complex than what you had read. Therese just too much going on, too many variables. Even gameplay videos are misleading.

    - While the complexity may turn some casual gamers away, complexity leads to longevity for those who can't get enough of this game.

    After two 100-hour play-throughs, I'm trying very hard not to play my third character in anticipation for the PC release.
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  92. Mar 23, 2014
    9
    i'm really impressed. have played the series from demons souls onward, basically bought a PS3 to mainly play demons souls. the idea of the game reminded me of some mechanics of early MMO pvp/pk like in ultima online, if you kill someone or die to a player or whatever you can suffer. i really like that challenge.

    the game is pretty much near perfect for what the ps3 is capable of. i'm
    primarily a pc gamer but couldn't wait the extra month to get it on that platform. plus i almost think it will have more hackers due to the HUGE russian community that will buy it super cheap.

    i've spent about 70 hours playing so far, two different characters. the game has a LOT of content, and more is added in new game+. the pvp and co op seems to work so much better than before. really impressed!
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  93. Jul 8, 2014
    4
    Not a Souls game, very easy, caters to watered down PVP. Magic is overpowered, shields are useless, melee weapons pointless, parries have no consistency. And, unlimited health potions (life gems). RIP souls. (and no it isn't a good game just for merit, that's like praising the Star Wars prequals).
  94. Mar 22, 2014
    10
    takes everything good from the past two games, polishes & expands them, & presents them perfectly with rich visuals, sounds & series best atmosphere.
    The world seems more sorted now, connected yet different, open & larger, & bonfire quick-travel ties it brilliantly.
    The types of enemies has increased, so has weapons-items & number of NPCs. Bosses are still unique & intimidating. From
    Software have maintained quality while increasing quantity!
    Apart from dual-wielding & sorcery getting boosts, combat's unchanged. Equally difficult, yet rewarding. Now smoother & somewhat accessible.
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  95. Mar 12, 2014
    7
    Dark Souls 2 is a return to form a la Demon's Souls. DS2 combines many aspects of both of the Souls games into one strangely unique experience. As for the pro, the typical list can be read off of the other Souls games but this one comes with it's fair share of faults. The grafics that were shown in the beta and demos are FAR from the finished product and the net code is degrading at an impressive pace. Given time, the later can be mended but the grafical decrease can not. Other than that, still a very fun ride. Expand
  96. Jul 13, 2014
    7
    Absolutely interesting, fun, worth the $60 (or $119 I paid for the statue edition). I've played this series to death, a huge fan of Demon and Dark Souls. Does it live up to it's predecessors? Unfortunately no. The story just isn't as intriguing, the changes are odd, and overall not as memorable. I don't have any interest in playing it over again, however, should it be ported to the PS4 I may give it another chance but it would need a graphics improvement (dark lighting - should have been in the PC version for bloody sake) and better gameplay mechanics/features. As a die hard fan of this series I can only grant it sadly a 7/10. However, it is still worth playing and experiencing for the exploration thrills and RPG challenges, despite the frustrating char/gear build and battle headaches. Expand
  97. Apr 14, 2014
    8
    the game is great! but if you're expecting dark souls "2" then this isnt it. it feels more of a hybrid of demon and the first dark souls thats a bit easier. its still fun though and it still plays like the others.
  98. Apr 30, 2014
    9
    While most games tend to hold your hand throughout the game, this game release its grip and leaves you to journey out the beautifully designed world. Most games wouldn't do it as it seems a risk, but this game delivers a once in a lifetime experience or true hardcore gaming.
  99. Mar 21, 2014
    10
    This is the first Dark Souls game I've played in this series and I'm now convinced I need to go buy the first one. I was a bit weary of paying $65.00 for a game I new nothing about so I did a lot of research and what I found was nothing like I had ever seen before. I found that tons of reviews of the previous versions is that they were extremely difficult, challenging and rewarding. I also found that this game isn't for everyone and it's mostly for hardcore gamers. I had to take this challenge and I'm so glad I did. I don't think I've ever had a game that challenges you on the level like Dark Souls 2 does on a consistent basis. From the very beginning, you are tested in your ability to properly block, evade, or roll while finding the right time to attack your opponents. There are countless situations where you need to stop and plan ahead of how you will proceed. You may have to pull one enemy with an arrow while jumping down to evade another and kill two demons below you all at the same time. You also must fight bosses that are extremely tough and it may take quite a few deaths to learn their patterns and figure out how to beat them.

    For all of the challenges you will face, this game is also incredibly rewarding! There are tons of gear, armor, and weapons for loot and upgrade. Do you risk a death to obtain an amazing ring? Or do you wait until your stronger and come back later? The beautiful thing is that it's all up to you! You have full customization options of your character and can choose from many different classes and play styles. I'm maybe halfway through and have found around 60 different weapons including: spears, swords, hammers, and bows/crossbows and around 10 different armor sets.

    As you make your way through certain areas, the fact that every single creature can literally kill you, this game has a way of instilling fear into you and I find that amazing! I find myself entering new areas with a certain hesitation and with my shield raised in case of an ambush, all the while my hands are literally trembling.

    I highly recommend Dark Souls 2 to any player who loves RPGs but wants to take it to the next level! You will experience fear, anger, excitement, despair, and then you will be rewarded, or die.
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  100. Apr 2, 2014
    4
    I wasted so many nights researching, waiting, praying this game was going to be good. I am a die hard fan of the first but I'll be damned if I let what was released slip by freely. part of the problem is that I was forced to buy this game on ps3. the ps3 is ancient enough. the game on it looks like the stone ages! I couldn't see half the crap in front of my face. all of the things they promised they didn't even bring to the table. just another gimmick to please shareholders!!!!!!!! the new system is broken, unfair. died too much? new game! got to the second bonfire and I already don't know where to go. when they promised twice the map size they really meant it! **** running simulator, run 30 miles just to immediately die. there is nothing I enjoy about this game. it goes to show that sometimes an artist can only get the job done one time. Expand
Metascore
91

Universal acclaim - based on 69 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 67 out of 69
  2. Negative: 0 out of 69
  1. May 11, 2014
    92
    Dark Souls 2 bears the torch of Dark Souls with honor. No mean feat! [Apr 2014]
  2. Apr 16, 2014
    96
    Even more amazing, and difficult, than Dark Souls.
  3. Apr 16, 2014
    100
    At the end of the day, Dark Souls II uses more subtle changes to find its own flavor and place in the series as a whole, rather than reinventing the wheel.