Metascore
91

Universal acclaim - based on 69 Critics What's this?

User Score
8.3

Generally favorable reviews- based on 862 Ratings

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  • Summary: Prepare to die... Again. Dare yourself to engage against intense gameplay in a vast world powered by a new engine. Immerse yourself into mind-bending environments filled with new twisted monsters and deadly bosses. A vast array of threats will prey on human senses & phobias - auditory hallucinations, vertigo, acrophobia, etc. More intricate customization options provide weapons and armor tailoring to player style. [Namco Bandai Games] Expand
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 67 out of 69
  2. Negative: 0 out of 69
  1. 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.
  2. Mar 11, 2014
    100
    Dark Souls II is a true hardcore challenge, and the weak of will and spine have no place in its cruel and unusual world.
  3. Mar 11, 2014
    95
    Loyal to its roots and perfectly executed, Dark Souls II is not only a worthy sequel: it is the worthiest homage to the mettle and spirit of hardcore gamers.
  4. Mar 10, 2014
    90
    Everything that made Dark Souls into a cult success carries over: complex game mechanics, punishing but fair gameplay and a richly detailed setting if you dig a little deeper. To keep things fresh, this is peppered with a mix of new elements, from improved graphics and game engine to a better designed starting sequence and new mechanics. Dark Souls II is a perfect sequel to Dark Souls.
  5. Mar 13, 2014
    90
    The core gameplay and basic design sensibilities have been retained, and while there are some concessions to player ease, they don't interfere with the gameplay
  6. Mar 11, 2014
    90
    Otherwise, Dark Souls II is outstanding, still a world better than most games and a worthy successor to a game that was, essentially, impossible to follow.
  7. Mar 11, 2014
    70
    Dark Souls 2 won't change anything: if you liked the experience FromSoftware offered in the former episodes, then you will like it again. But if not, you won't start liking now. The great atmosphere, the feeling of loneliness, the intriguing soundtrack and the difficulty still make the quality of this game. But Dark Souls 2 begins to fall behind from the technical point of view, and it's far too demanding for such old-school gameplay.

See all 69 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Negative: 20 out of 183
  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 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
  3. 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
  4. Apr 29, 2014
    9
    From Software took all the good things about Demon's Souls and Dark Souls and combined them to make one of the best sequels they possibly could. This time around, instant fast travel and despawning enemies can allow the game to feel more approachable to play, while still maintaining the game on a fairly challenging level. Although this entry didn't feel nearly as hard as the first two, this has a steadier framerate, more fluent controls, more emotionally involved storyline, and a world that is roughly twice the size of Dark Souls 1. Although the main path of Dark Souls 2 felt around the same length, I think it just happened to have more optional areas and boss fights than that of 1.
    One thing that I really appreciated in this one was that New Game+ wasn't forced upon me immediately after the end credits were finished. It actually gives you the option to continue exploring the rest of the game and let's you decide whether or not you ever want to start New Game+ by visiting Majula's bonfire, I felt this game had way more freedom of choice because of this.
    But this game is still far from perfect. I've reported a few hit detection and auto-lock problems across my so-far 87 hours of total playtime. My biggest complaint was that there were a couple specific areas that forced me into PvP matchmaking, when all I want to do is explore the whole world in peace. I don't mind at all getting invaded at anytime, but when the game sets areas to automatically trigger invasions or send me to some other player's world the second I set foot in that particular area, I consider that a flawed design choice: forced multiplayer.
    Other than those issues, I think From Software hit all the right notes with this one. I know a lot of gamers complained about the graphics downgrade. First of all, this isn't next gen, and this still at least looks a little better than the last entry. And second of all, graphics alone have never been what made video games great. It's the gameplay. This is a fantastic game. It is head and shoulders above at least 90% of all the other games out on the market right now. It's a serious contender for a 2014 Game of the Year winner.

    9/10 - Amazing
    Expand
  5. 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.
    Expand
  6. Mar 23, 2014
    8
    I'm so glad I got this game. I never was able to get into the original Dark Souls, and I only played a little of Demon's Souls, but now, after I finish with this i actually want to go back and play those 2 more and really delve into them.

    It's what you would expect, slow, methodical, HARD AS HELL, but it's a great challenge especially once you start to understand the nuances.

    I still feel like I'm missing out on a few things, and at times it feels like my character is far weaker than he should be, even for this game, but I'm pretty sure it just has to do more with exploring and backtracking a bit in order to figure out.

    Only real issues I would have with the game, are a few minor glitches here and there, but the 2 big ones are the obvious graphical downgrade, which normally wouldn't be a big deal, but the game definitely looks muddy in some places.

    The other issue would be graphical slowdowns/lag at times, it hasn't really affected combat too much (I can't say it's ever killed me outright), but it's noticeable.
    Expand
  7. Sep 10, 2014
    0
    Terrible game, it's a downgrade from Dark Souls. The game feels empty and typical and getting the lordvessel first thing completely kills the experience. Melee is nice, Story is boring, every boss was unmemorable and they all attacked the same. All the 5 main bosses were garbage and a copy of previous bosses in the series, the scorpion boss made me realize this is such a **** game. The multiplayer is also still broken. The concept of an arena is nice but stupid when people can still hit you 5 metres away. This is the coding of the game's fault not a connection issue. Also invasions are dumb because you have 10 minutes to kill the player so everyone waits by the bonfire. In addition soul memory is also dumb but they've updated it so it's not so bad now. I have all souls game, and I got Dark Souls 2 the week it came out, black armour edition. I've put in around 400 hours into the game and it still makes me sad knowing I got hyped for this **** Waste of my 60 bucks, I should sell it now, screw it I will Expand

See all 183 User Reviews

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