• Publisher: Atlus
  • Release Date: Oct 6, 2009
User Score

Generally favorable reviews- based on 1032 Ratings

User score distribution:

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  1. Mar 22, 2011
    Once upon a time, before most of you were born, games were tough. VERY TOUGH. No quicksaves, heck sometimes even no saves at all. Ah yes...those were the days. And it seems that the developers of Demon's Souls want to drag us all back to those days. But is this a good idea? Frankly...no.
    As an alleged RPG, Demon's Souls has litte story. Heck, even DOOM has more story. So if you want a
    narrative, please look elsewhere. So what does this game have? DEATH...YOURS...AND LOTS OF IT.
    Mostly, your death is caused by not knowing your enemy. So you must therefore retrace your steps and fight again. But when you die you lose souls (the games currency) and so you ideally want to get back to where you died and touch your own bloodstain. Naturally, whatever killed you is still there - so be prepared.
    That pretty much is all there is to this game. It's a rinse and repeat hack 'n' slash with no party members and no real idea of what you're doing.
    Oh but there is online isn't there? And here is another major problem. You are basically online all the time, along with everyone else. People can and will, invade YOUR game and they may help you, but more often than not, they will kill you. Charming. Back you go to the beginning of the level AGAIN.
    If you like the idea of all this repetition, then you will love this game.
    Controls feel a bit 'off' unless you use target lock-on, which works, but is a great way to end up dead as you can't move the camera around to see what's behind you.
    Having said all that, the graphics are nice, the sound is OK, and the music is appropriately melancholic.
    It's a tough game, but you are always battling it's design flaws, rather than anything else.
  2. Jan 19, 2011
    This game is frustrating on purpose. I love a good challenge and I will sit and play something over and over for hours just to beat it, but Demon's Souls is a whole other matter. I tried it for several hours, playing through section after section of the first level only to die multiple times because I love to explore. I read notes left by players, avoided sections meant for higher ups, and killed enemy after enemy on my journey to the boss. It never got fun. I waited and tried really hard to like this games as it was recommended to me by multiple friends, but its appeal just never shone through. I don't understand how this game got such a good review. Many elements of the game feel broken (targeting system is crap, difficulty increases with death, etc) and it tries to be difficult just to be difficult. How is that supposed to be fun? I don't play games to sit through such frustration, I want to have an enjoyable experience. I'm just so disappointed with this game overall, it had incredible potential, and I don't understand how so many others thought it was nearly flawless(10/10) . It's acceptable at best. Expand
  3. Jan 23, 2011
    Demon's Soul lacks any kind of story telling. It's simply dungeon after dungeon collecting souls... and that could be ok if the game in itself was good, but it isn't.

    The graphics are ok, nothing spectacular though. But that's the only good part.

    The interface is clumsy and illogical, as if nobody had spent a second thinking how the user would navigate the menus (which are ugly). It is
    really plagued with bad ideas... for example when you're playing and recover your blood an annoying text appears on top of the screen but the game still goes on and you can't see what's happening (and yeah you can get killed or fall into some hole and die).

    The gameplay is basically repeating the dungeons again and again without being able to save at any point, and loosing almost all your progress every time you die, which makes it boring and frustrating. And you die a lot of times...

    The combat system is also clumsy. Your character will start a combo, you will loose control of it, it will make make a few steps, and fall into a hole and die again.

    Also the game doesn't inform you of anything. You have to go to the internet to learn

    Oblivion, which is from 2006 is still a better RPG.

    This game is terribly bad, it's by far the worst game I've played on the PS3. I bought it because it had a high score on MC and I still can't understand why it has such a high score.
  4. Sep 19, 2010
    I've come here to WARN anyone considering this horribly made game. The difficulty of this game lies in the not-so polished game designs and has nothing to do with being genius or brilliant or bringing any sort of "old-school" nostalgia." First off the controls are terrible, not the button layout just the way that if you accidently push one extra attack swipe, you not only waste stamina but leave your guard open for an arrow/attack to get through. If you accidently swapped your secondary weapons, you leave yourself open for attack. You can't ever pause properly and the menus are not simple enough where easy swaps of items or equipment can be made on the fly. Enemies have no problem attacking and running through each other to mob you to death, as one breaks your shield another is landing a hit, but in instances where you have an allied NPC like the knight in the first level, you can't dare attack near him or it will cause friendly fire, huge double standard. Especially when volleys of arrows are going THROUGH the melee enemies you're trying to fight in some instances like the dragon bridge areas in the first level. (The only way enemies kill themselves is if they fall off a cliff or blow themselves up with fire). Targetting the correct opponent becomes near impossible when theres a mob of enemies. The only easy method early on is to just engage 1 or 2 enemies at a time by drawing their attention in the cheapest manner and running back as faster as you can in the most cowardly fashion, rinse and repeat and thats 99% of the gameplay. Using a bow is strictly prohibited unless you can make the kills from a VERY safe distance, since even swapping back to your shielf and sword will take a deadly amount of time. Even with a one handed cross bow (shield in other) your hero will think it is wise to ALWAYS immediately reload after the shot rather than shield and move into a safe corner first. The platforming is random or not implemented properly. Accidently falling off of cliffs will occur especially in the many tight stairwells when targetting and fighting enemies. Trying to climb knee-high platforms is needlessly glitched, where you find yourself tumbling forward into the small wall. The story is mediocre at best and when you are randomly dying every couple minutes you simply forget what is the point. The npc characters are boring to talk to and have very few lines and whenever finished shopping or speaking with them you are forced to listen through the same old goodbye message. Using souls as your only means of gaining levels and purchasing is ridiculous and makes no sense. Gaining levels one stat at a time is a very slow and painfully grinding process, especially if you're forced to kill the same basic enemies thousand times over just to feel confident enough to proceed to the next imbalanced and going-to-instant-kill-you foe. Once you've died the world tendency becomes darker, thus harder than before to the point where you can't even get to where you last died before since you've already run out of healing greens that rarely drop, but you have plenty of mana and poison replenishment potions that you don't need if you didn't become a mage early on or are encountering poison enemies. The game just becomes repetitive and the same boring level over and over, and they are mostly linear with the exception of some rooms but most of the side paths will just loop back to the main one. Do not waste your money and time and frustration. Expand
  5. Apr 16, 2011
    Archaic, dull, and frustrating. Those are the three adjectives that best sum up Demon's Souls, a game that seems to scoff at nearly every advancement made in gaming over the last decade. Instead of conforming to modern standards, Demon's Souls decides to drag players back to the days where many games were an excercise in frustration and patience rather than fun or satisfaction. I rarely do this, but I will preface this review with the statement that I never finished the game. In fact, I never made it past the first main level. If that turns you off to what I have to say, feel free to bail out now. If you would like to find out why a player who compulsively finishes nearly every game he plays couldn't be bothered to waste his time with this hunk of garbage, please read on. Technically, the game is average. The graphics are acceptable, although that's all I can say about them. The character models look decent for the most part, the lighting is passable but certainly not striking, and the texture work is on par with most RPGs. The animations are also relatively good; in fact I'd go as far as to say that some are genuinely interesting. Everything else, though, is par for the course and maybe even slightly below today's standards. The sound is also passable. The game sports a relatively enjoyable old-school style soundtrack that at times reminded me of the Diablo games at other times sounded pretty unique. Sound effects are also passable, though again you won't be finding anything to write home about here even with 5.1 headphones. Unfortunately for Demon's Souls, it needed a whole lot more than middle-of-the-road technical features to pull it out of the bog of awfulness. A long, long time ago in the far away lands of our childhoods, games were hard. Really hard. There were no saves, no checkpoints, and there was certainly no mercy. You had your reflexes, your knowledge of the level you were playing, and maybe a 1 up here and there. Those days died long ago, and they died for good reason. It's no secret that part of the problem games always had with becoming a mainstream, accepted form of entertainment was that they were just too damn inaccessible and frustrating for anyone other than the dedicated to succeed at. While this did help foster a sense of accomplishment among those who did invest the time and energy to succeed, it also had the effect of seriously hampering the fun factor, which, if we're honest, is really the whole reason most of us play games. Demon's Souls commits the same sins, but they are amplified by the fact that it has been released in an age of user-friendly games that can be challenging but not frustrating. Essentially Demon's Souls is a stage-based old-school RPG. You select your character and you are then dropped into the world. You get some weak semblance of a story opener that is basically just your standard RPG fare (evil threatens world, your character has to stop it, you know the drill). Your very first experience with the game involves you bein killed by a monster that is ludicrously above your level. Yes, that's right. Your experience with the game is prefaced with your death. Get used to it; you will be dying a lot. You then proceed to a hub area where you are able to chat with other spirits/NPCs and fill in the less-than-interesting parts of your story. Very boring, poorly written NPC conversations didn't do much to light my fire for the game, but I went ahead and hopped into the first area anyway. It sees your character running up a long flight of steps towards a castle, which you then proceed to scale with bad guys opposing you. Standard fare, but here's the trick: the castle is massive (45 min massive if you were to run the whole thing with a low level character), and it is packed with enemies you have no hope of defeating. If you die, and you WILL die, you will lose all of your experience, gold, and items and be reset to the very beginning of the level. It doesn't matter if you were five minutes in or thirty-five minutes in, you will be completely reset. Since you are now in spirit form again due to dying, your health bar will be made smaller and since all your experience and money are laying in a blood puddle where you died earlier (you can pick all of it up again IF you can make it back to the puddle), you will have no real way to upgrade your character or prepare for the challenges ahead. This was my resulting experience: fight through castle, die 20 min in. Respawn, fight through castle, die 20 min in, etc., etc, etc. After 3 hours of this I ripped the disc out and sent it back. Any game that frustrates me with a stupidly difficult set-up and then proceeds to punish me for falling victim to it does not deserve my time and certainly not my money. Those talking about the "accomplishment" and "hardcore" aspects of the game are elitists trying to justify poor game design as old-school. If you like fun, AVOID. Expand
  6. Dec 30, 2011
    I cant really explain this. I love Dark Souls, it has become my favourite game of all time, but still i hate, hate and hate Demon's Souls. Its easier then Dark Souls, but its maddeningly frustrating and cheap. Demon's Souls is one of the most over-rated games of all time. Skip this one and buy the sequel.
  7. Jan 14, 2014
    I think the only reason people like this game is because it's difficult, which to me seems like an arbitrary reason to like the game. It's unfair but there are so many other better games that are challenging. Demon's Souls looks terrible graphically and texture-wise, the gameplay is slow and very bland. The character creation system is the worst I've ever seen in a game. No matter what you do, your character looks hideous. The lack of save points is inexcusable and annoying. And the whole online player dynamic is virtually pointless because you never do anything with them! The only good thing i have to say about Demon's Souls is that some of the bosses look really cool but otherwise this is horrible game. Expand
  8. Apr 7, 2013
    I was pretty shocked when I looked at the reviews for this game, so many of them so high. First and foremost this game is utter garbage. The controls are terrible, the graphics for a 2009 PS3 game look horrendous, there are many PS2 games that look stunning in comparison, even attempting to compare it visually to any modern game and you will find yourself looking like a fool. I was fortunate enough to get this game for free from PS+ membership, if i had actually spent money on this I would be nearly as pissed as I was when I purchased BRINK, which is hands down the worst video game ever created. Expand
  9. Aug 30, 2013
    This game isn't the worst thing I've ever seen, but I find nothing great about it. It was made annoyingly hard, and this is not hard like to test your skills, it's like "you will die if you get hit once, and you'll have to restart the game". I also don't get the story. Honestly, I've seen better games.
  10. Jul 15, 2011
    Demon's Souls is sooooooooooooooo overrated. The gameplay consists entirely of repetitive button-mashing. Block, dodge, attack...dodge, attack block...attack, block, attack...attack, dodge, block...that is all there is to Demon's Souls...terrible, repetitive hack-and-slash. The gameplay includes no strategy and no depth. If you're going to make a game in which the gameplay only offers terrible, repetitive fighting, then at least make it in an open world or something where you can do something else that is fun. This gameplay offers nothing but sword fighting, and even that aspect of the game is repetitive, clunky, and not interesting or challenging in any way. This is the perfect example of a game only taking off because of a mob mentality. A couple of dumb people said it was good, then a bunch of even dumber people just went along with it and piled onto the bandwagon...People can't think for themselves, so an entire group of people were tricked into thinking this game was good. Just because a game is difficult, that does not make it good...I don't care how hard a game is, if the gameplay is shallow, repetitive, and boring, then what you have is a bad game. All these tards keep talking about the difficulty, like it's a badge of honor to play this game. But the game requires little skill or intelligence...all you do is repetitively blocking enemy attacks, and then slash at them mindlessly. Being proud of beating a game that requires no skill or strategy is just dumb. The popularity of this game smells very manufactured to me. People talk about how rewarding it is to "learn" the game...but there's nothing to learn....all you do is block and attack...block and attack...block and attack...whoop-tee-doo....congratulations, you can press the same buttons over and over for hours...NOT A GOOD GAME. It's ridiculous that this game should score even close to other top-rated games which offer so much more depth and variety to their gameplay. Now I love difficult games, but I want my difficult games to actually require skill, strategy, and thinking, and variety. Expand
  11. Nov 5, 2010
    In my opinion the game was to complicated..... every time you die you lose your souls and have to run around killing everything trying to level up....... maybe i missed a trick to getting through the game but i gave up and moved on after a fews hours of dying over and over and having to try to collect my lost souls again
  12. Mar 31, 2014
    Like dark souls and dark souls 2 this game is brilliant, beautiful, massive and about 8 kicks in the family jewels difficult. And it's the starting point of the flaw that makes all three utter trash, the multiplayer elements in what is largely a solo game. The PvP works exactly as intended and adds a ton to the game. My actions affect other's games and their actions affect mine, and that is absolutely inexcusable. Things becoming unavailable to me because some imbecile can't learn isn't something I should have to deal with. If a dev wants this in their game, make it opt in. A nag screen works for everybody. Too bad this is opt out-by disconnecting the console- because otherwise it's one of the best games I've ever played. Such a horrible choice, so easily avoided, so inexplicably repeated (twice!) In over 30 years of gaming and over 20 online, no one else has ever asked players to do something outside the game that has a huge bearing on the game. This game doesn't even deserve a zero. Horrible decision on the devs part. Expand
  13. Jun 19, 2011
    This game could easily have a subtitle of "The Punishment". I don't really have anything to add above what others have already written. The graphics are OK, the inventory system is average. I really like the combat system, though, especially because it has that tactical feel to it with stamina, one on one fights and other nice things. Unfortunately the checkpoints and foe respawn are a major flaw of this game. It is not a difficult game despite of what some people would claim, I'd say it's on par with other titles out there. Basically you're going to die multiple times and will have to retry, but where another game would let you to load a save game or restart from some not too distant checkpoint, Demon's Souls will require you to repeat the whole level (or a great portion of it), including all the fights (well, you can try to run, but it's not always feasible) and it will also make it harder than the first time by taking away half of your HP. This one single design decision made me abandon the game, despite that I found it interesting otherwise and really liked the combat, player notes & warnings, etc. But I'm not going to play the same level and fight the same enemies over and over again just to die somewhere further down the road and be warped to the very beginning. This not my idea of fun. I am OK to repeat the same thing 20 times if I have to and eventually I will pass, but starting over with additional hindrances is not fair. This game has a potential and it could have been a great title. Could have, but is not... Expand
  14. Sep 19, 2014
    Demon's Souls embodies a lot of what I dislike about games. I do not play to be frustrated, annoyed, or repeat the same sections over and over and over again, I play to have fun. I did not have fun playing Demon's Souls. It's twisted design philosophy is that dying constantly is part of the gameplay, in a masochistic manner reminiscent of older coin-chugging arcade machines that were (hint) difficult on purpose to make you keep throwing your money at the thing. At home with my console, it's a contrivance, and stupid. Demon's Souls is uncompromising, dull, ugly and cheap. Expand
  15. Aug 2, 2013
    Demons's Souls is one of the most frustrating games I have ever played. The mythos is kinda fascinating, the visuals are solid and some of the online community features are interesting but otherwise It's a piss poor execution of even worse gameplay Ideas that should have died back in the nineties. I don't want to ramble on about the awkward and unnatural control setup or the boring NPC's or the punishing initial difficulty and skip to the main thing that ruins the whole game. Every time time you die not only do you loose all you demon souls (effectively currency) which is pretty sadistic as it is, you go all the way back to the beginning of the stage and all enemies re-spawn. You can try to fight your way through to the end of the stage or at least until you unlock a shortcut to the warp point at the start or fight through some then run back to the warp point and upgrade your character, but this almost doesn't matter since will be playing the same stage fighting through the same waves of enemies over and over again. It's not exactly helped by the fact that there are pitfalls and sudden difficulty spikes all over the place. I toiled for hour's to find something plausible about this game with is unforgiving gameplay, lack of music, atmosphere, decent character creator or even a pause feature make this and incredibly frustrating experience for all but the extremely patient and tolerant. My final score is a 2 out of ten. Expand
  16. Aug 22, 2012
    Hard should be a difficulty setting in the game, not the only option of the game, from that to the repetitive base you imply, since, once you die, you will have to do it all again, its like playing an 8-bit console game with graphics.
  17. Jul 4, 2014
    Firstyl i would like to say good things about this game. 1 Really challenging it makes you stay attention all the time and gives you a intention. 2 People around the world leaves you a messages as advice during your adventure or you can leave to them. That's it, these are above only good things about this game and rest of it really really awful. This is the worst RPG game i have ever played.

    Can you believe you can not pause this game until end of it?.
    Can you believe there is no map in this game?
    Very bad inventory and status screen interface.
    Very limited equipment chooses.
    Do not crash the corpses that you killed they will be stucked to your feet.

    This is the first time i am saying this: '' This game is overoveroverrated''

    Play Dragon's Dogma instead. It is probably closer game of soul series and have open world that you can inspect and much more.

Generally favorable reviews - based on 81 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 79 out of 81
  2. Negative: 0 out of 81
  1. Demon's Souls: Unbelievably hard and unbelievably satisfying at the same time. If you accomplish to get through your initial rage attacks, you will experience an outstanding action-RPG with a tense and dark atmosphere.
  2. 100
    Beyond the initial threat of difficulty there waits a remarkable combination of accessibility and challenge, of risk and reward, punishment and empowerment.
  3. It's stoic, uncompromising, difficult to get to know, but also deep, intriguingly disturbed and perversely rewarding. You can learn to love Demon's Souls like few other games in the world. But only if you're prepared to give yourself over to it. [JPN Import]