Dark Souls II: Scholar of the First Sin Image
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79

Generally favorable reviews - based on 8 Critic Reviews What's this?

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7.5

Generally favorable reviews- based on 645 Ratings

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  • Summary: Dark Souls II: Scholar of the First Sin includes the 3 previously released DLC packs - Crown of the Sunken King, Crown of the Old Iron King, and Crown of the ivory King - along with additional features. All versions of the game include the following features (Existing Dark Souls II ownersDark Souls II: Scholar of the First Sin includes the 3 previously released DLC packs - Crown of the Sunken King, Crown of the Old Iron King, and Crown of the ivory King - along with additional features. All versions of the game include the following features (Existing Dark Souls II owners will receive a patch to implement these elements): Additional NPCs added for an enhanced story experience. Parameter adjustments for improved game balance. Augmented item descriptions. Improved online matchmaking functionality. [Bandai Namco] Expand

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Dark Souls II - The Lost Crowns Trilogy DLC
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 6 out of 8
  2. Negative: 0 out of 8
  1. CD-Action
    Jun 29, 2015
    95
    It’s a freaking masterpiece! Do yourself a favor and experience it if you haven’t done it yet. [06/2015, p.68]
  2. Apr 7, 2015
    90
    If you have yet to experience Dark Souls II, Scholar of the First Sin is the best way to do it.
  3. Apr 8, 2015
    90
    It's a hard-won love that Dark Souls II has you earn, a love that took a second, enhanced port to truly find. It is a demanding and seemingly interminable game that puts up its most beautiful and its most evil machinations right at the outset.
  4. Apr 6, 2015
    80
    Dark Souls II: Scholar of the First Sin targets two audiences: newcomers and veterans. In both cases it succeeds.
  5. May 4, 2015
    80
    A pleasant combination of revised version of Dark Souls II with excellent DLCs offers a brutal difficulty and a fantastic atmosphere - even more intense than ever. Although the Scholar of the First Sin is not a purchase for everyone, if you try you will not be disappointed.
  6. Feb 20, 2017
    72
    Dark Souls II: Scholar of the First Sin offers only minor tweaks to serious gameplay issues of the original game. Nonetheless, it still remains a wholly enjoyable online experience, just don't expect much from the singleplayer experience.
  7. Apr 14, 2015
    50
    Dark Souls II: Scholar of the First Sin is both a continuation of the series’ escalating skill thresholds and a sign that some limit has been reached. It’s a game in which the fantasy of self-improvement depends on a vast system of artificial trickery, and one that confuses simple variation for genuine discovery.

See all 8 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 66 out of 125
  2. Negative: 24 out of 125
  1. Apr 3, 2015
    10
    There are a few things that need to be cleared up.

    First, this game does not cost $50 to owners of Dark Souls 2, like some poorly informed
    There are a few things that need to be cleared up.

    First, this game does not cost $50 to owners of Dark Souls 2, like some poorly informed people say. If you already own Dark Souls II, you can upgrade for $30 and then you also get the DLC included in that price. If you already have Dark Souls 2 plus all the DLC, then you can upgrade for just $20. This DOES include all the DLC. This is actually a better deal than the console gamers are getting, oddly enough, probably because FromSoft knows how PC gamers tend to complain if they don't get special treatment. (Note: I'm a PC gamer and do not own a console)

    Second, the enemy placement is not random like some people say. The enemies are placed in lore-friendly locations, and the only time they're placed in new regions is when there's a sensible reason (like a couple Royal Swordsmen outside the Pursuer Arena, because the hawk carries people back and forth from the Lost Bastille.)

    Third, the game is not just brighter. It has more contrast than before. That means the dark areas are darker and the light areas are lighter. Additionally, the graphics improvement is very noticeable, and the only people dissatisfied with it seem to be complaining for the sake of complaining. No, it's not the best looking game in the world. However, it is one of the best optimized games in the world. It won't stress your GTX 970, but it will look beautiful and run great on your GTX 650 or equivalent, and it's not often that developers put in so much work to make their game run well on a variety of PCs, while still maintaining good graphics. For reference, this game runs flawlessly on ultra settings/1080p/45+ fps on my laptop with a GTX 860M. Yes, it's so well optimized that my mid-range laptop is matching Xbone/PS4 performance.

    Graphical changes I've noticed:
    -Improved sampling quality on ambient occlusion.
    -Light now acts upon textures based on the alpha channel (more realistic shading). This also means that the worst looking textures in normal Dark Souls II (the ones where the normal and diffuse are different) now react to lighting more realistically and look much better. This is probably how they intended the game to look to begin with.
    -More water reflections, including sky reflections.
    -More contrast (light areas can be truly white instead of light gray, and dark areas can be truly black instead of dark gray).
    -Certain areas of the game now have custom "pitch black" lighting templates, making torches actually necessary like the skull lantern from DKS1.
    -The antialiasing has been updated to FXAA3, so it now looks less blurry and does an even better job of reducing jaggies.
    -Object motion blur makes quick actions look more fluid, especially things like rolling.
    -Bokeh DoF is now used to make embers and other similar things look prettier.
    -Bloom has been increased around light sources like fires or the sun, adding that great "bright" look that light sources had in DKS1.
    -Large shadows have been added to the landscape, around things like pillars, mountains, etc. This gives the landscape more depth overall.
    -All spells now have light sources.
    -All light sources now actually cast light.
    -Texture filtering has been improved.

    General Gameplay Improvements that I've personally noticed.
    -A few hitboxes seem more precise, especially noticeable during dodges.
    -Enemies have been set up in places that complement their abilities (ie, turtle knights are now sometimes found in narrow spaces where their crushing attacks are most effective).
    -Skeletons like dark places.
    -Lore has been expanded in subtle ways, especially around boss fights which previously had little or no explanation.
    -Some sound effects that previously sounded muffled have been dramatically improved, making it easier to identify certain nearby objects and enemies, if you have decent ears and decent speakers/headphones.

    Overall, graphically and in terms of gameplay, this is a serious improvement over Dark Souls 2. I liked Dark Souls 2 at launch, but thought Dark Souls 1 was a little better. Scholar of the First Sin has made me decide that I like Dark Souls 2 more than Dark Souls 1.

    Many of the people criticizing it haven't even played the game, but rather are simply upset because of the rumors surrounding the launch (like the incorrect rumor that people would have to pay $50 to upgrade). It's like Dark Souls 1 all over again, where **** and random elitist forums rallied to rate this game a 0 just because they didn't play it and didn't even properly research it, but just wanted a scapegoat to hate.

    Keep in mind, however, this is a bigger upgrade for the PS4 owners and Xbone owners than PC owners. Mostly this upgrade was aimed at them, we simply get it because it'd be stupid if we didn't.
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  2. Jan 28, 2018
    10
    Better than DS1 for sure. Some people will think i'm crazy, but everyone likes to say ''artifical difficulty'', ''bland maps'' and bla blaBetter than DS1 for sure. Some people will think i'm crazy, but everyone likes to say ''artifical difficulty'', ''bland maps'' and bla bla bla, but DS1 had worse problems like:

    Terrible PvP - A bunch of people praises DS2 for it's PvP, even after that mess that people call PvP on DS3 has come. Because it's way better balanced, more dynamic, more build diversity. DS1 PvP was a stupid backstab fiesta with a **** ton of glitches (do you remember backstab chain? NO!!!?? never felt it on your skin right little kid!!???), not to mention the twinks. Everyone thinks Giant Dad is hilarious, but being invaded by dudes with fully upgraded items while you have a stupid +0 weapon isn't funny.

    Terrible second half - The second half of DS1 is the most cringey thing in the entire series, seriously? the same **** Asylum Demon with another skin? an entire field of Taurus Demons? Pinwheel being recycled, should i be impressed? Anor Londo...i don't even need to say anything, just remember those stupid archers, Anor Londo isn't even difficult if you don't count those archers, phantom gank fiesta on New Londo? YAYYYYYYYY

    Broken Poise System - I don't even need to explain. Just search for poise backstab on Youtube, or watch people facetanking Four Kings to death.

    Weapons Balance - Like, some weapons are so useless you shouldn't even bother with them even on PvE, like Stone Greataxe (from the DLC, like you even need to pay more to get that, and that's not the only useless weapon from the DLC).

    FPS - Blighttown maybe the worst place in the game when it comes to FPS, but it's not like the entire game wasn't a mess with it, even DS3 has FPS problems, something you won't suffer with DS2: SotFS (at least if you're on PS4/Xbox One, fixed 60 FPS)
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  3. Jul 19, 2020
    9
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. Первая соулс-игра, в которую мне довелось поиграть, фактически она открыла для меня мир игр от From Software. Поиграв впервые на втором курсе, не смог одолеть даже начало и забросил на несколько лет, пока не разобрался как она устроена и не посмотрел прохождение. Полноценно прошёл её лишь на шестом курсе. Expand
  4. May 1, 2017
    8
    + Longer
    + More bosses
    + Bigger variety in areas + Harder + You have to find Estus Shards to get Flasks - Still a bad port showing xbox
    + Longer
    + More bosses
    + Bigger variety in areas
    + Harder
    + You have to find Estus Shards to get Flasks

    - Still a bad port showing xbox buttons
    - The **** delay between pressing a button and blocking/attacking (this warrants at LEAST -2 points)
    - Similarily to DS1, target switch is horrible - there is none
    - Sometimes the difficulty is plain insane, definitely the hardest game I've played yet
    - gave up, way too difficult...

    This would have been a 10/10 game for me if it wasn't for the **** DELAY that makes some parts downright stupid, unfair, impossible and makes the game million times harder.
    Situations that XBOX players would be able to deal with without serious problems will murder you because you have to wait 2 seconds for your character to block or attack. You'll get
    used to the crappiness after some time, but that does not mean that you will not die because of it. You will die because of it, you will die lots.
    It's better than DS1 in practically everything, but the stupid delay makes this game fall to the same level as DS1. There is no official fix for that, unfortunately. 8/10
    A 10/10 game ruined by stupid delay and artificial difficulty in many places.
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  5. May 16, 2017
    7
    Продолжение серии соулс под порядковым номером 3

    Почитав многие обзоры, у меня складывается ощущение, что существует много людей, которым
    Продолжение серии соулс под порядковым номером 3

    Почитав многие обзоры, у меня складывается ощущение, что существует много людей, которым эта часть ДС нравится больше, чем первая. Нет, у этой игры большое количество минусов

    Техническая часть
    Лучше: в отличии от 1ой части можно запустить без бубна и плясок. Но у неё проблемы с разрешением.. при его номинальном Full HD система воспринимает его как HD, отсюда все иконки рабочего стола и окна разлетаются туда, где им не место. Также у неё проблемы с запоминанием графических настроек

    Графика
    Для ремастера в 2015 году средне. На дальних дистанциях от пейзажей могут вытечь глаза, но.. это рост относительно ДС 1
    UPD. DLC Ivory King делали другие люди и глаза не вытекают от фона

    Сюжет
    В первой части его нет, тут можно даже проследить, но нет

    Мультиплеер/Ко-оп
    Из-за "относительной старости" игры я не ощутил этот экспириенс в ДС 1, тут это было здорово, особенно когда оставил знак призыва и помогал человеку, общение через жесты забавно и очень атмосферно

    Главная проблема игры - это самокопирование

    Боссы
    Нужен больший уровень прокачки, отсюда рост сложности, но уникальности в боссфайте 0 - десяток одинаковых боссов - большое разочарование, но бо'льшая проблема - это 90% копирование боссов из ДС 1
    UPD. DLC делали другие люди (2), тут хоть сложный босс есть Сэр Алонн

    Локации
    Что-то новое в плане локаций игра не превнесла, и, опять же, самокопирование. НО.. локации имеют ещё большую проблему.. ДС 1 был почти цельным миром с парой ответвлений, здесь же это куча ответвлений, без цельности. За прохождение ни разу не было ВАУ эффекта от шортката, возвращение в некоторые места в ДС 1 просто разрывало шаблоны, а тут куча срезов, которыми вы даже не воспользуетесь.. Очередной перебор с анусами подземелий, но тут хоть с наличием света проще. Одно радует - перемещение между кострами есть изначально и вам не нужно бегать 30 часов для получения такой возможности.

    Персонажи
    Колоритные NPC и забавные враги - забудьте, я был влюблён в людей-грибочков, из-за которых я когда-то купил ДС 1. Колоритом ни от боссов, ни от NPC тут и не пахнет, запомнился только Вождь Венгарл, но остальные..

    Ачивменты
    Очень расстроило то, что я не знал, что нужно было обязательно призывать NPC фантомов на бои с боссами для получения пары ачивментов. Ну етить, серьёзно?
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  6. Apr 3, 2015
    5
    Ehh.... Scholar of the First Sin starts off strong with better performance and some enemy placement that seems to make a bit more sense.Ehh.... Scholar of the First Sin starts off strong with better performance and some enemy placement that seems to make a bit more sense. Veterans of the series will be happy to find out the Heide Knights have found their way home and even seem to have gained some missing AI. Also, torches are finally necessary in some spots. For a moment, you start to feel as if this is the product we should have received during the original release, and From has come back to right all their wrongs.

    Unfortunately this "refinish" fails to take fight after the first few hours of the game. Some of the new enemy placement compliments the game, but a lot of it seems completely arbitrary, it left me saying to myself "what is this guy doing here, he doesn't fit here..." That's not the worst of it though, someone decided they would add in several more petrified statues to block your path, this probably doesn't seem like a big deal at first, but you soon realize all this does is cut your exploration options in half and leave you with a very strict path to follow early in the game.

    Finally, From decided to actually give us the Pursuer they promised from early game development. He's the same old guy though, just decides to pop in at the worst of times. Good luck fighting him with archers bearing down on you, and packs of dogs at your heels. This screams cheese, I don't think it's what anyone wanted from the fight.

    Verdict: This is still the formula I as a fan do not want the series taking. I firmly believe you should not "spice up" old encounters by dropping in 4-6 lesser enemies to stunlock me to death. For that reason the new pursuer feels cheap, as does quite a bit of the arbitrary NPC shuffling you guys did. Possibly the biggest disgrace here is deciding all of this was worth $50, even as a standalone it should have taken place of the $40 product at the very least. Players with existing copies of the game should have gotten this content for free, they should not be punished over the limitations a strict publisher caused the original game to suffer. I assume bundling the DLCs with this refinish is From's way of strategically circumventing that though.

    The majority of what you get with this product can and should have been pushed through with content patches. Players have been complaining about the hitboxes on the last giant since week one, so it's nice to know that From has finally responded by adjusting them and charging for the bug fix. While we're talking about what players shouldn't be charged for, they should not be paying for the lighting that was intended to be featured with the original product. The only thing that From could justify charging for at this point is the graphical upgrade, but even that is debatable after the massive downgrade the game suffered during the original launch. What can you do though? The bad decisions of From Software do not even surprise me anymore.
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  7. Feb 18, 2022
    0
    feels like it came out like 10 years before dark souls 1 its uninspired and clunky as ****

See all 125 User Reviews