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Have you ever repeatedly slammed your head against a wall until either the wall collapsed or you collapsed, writhing in a pool of your own blood and shame, only to come back and try again the moment the hospital releases you? Did you enjoy your experience? Then you’ll LOVE Dark Souls!
If you answered yes to all of the above, or just enjoy ridiculously unforgiving, dark and twisted Japanese RPGs, then here’s some great E3 news – Dark Souls 3 is on the way and it looks menacing as ever.
For the uninitiated among you, a quick history lesson – Dark Souls, which technically started as Demon’s Souls but was too difficult to pronounce, is a series of dark fantasy action RPGs by From Software (the team that brought us the bizarre and colourful Enchanted Arms as an early Xbox 360 timed exclusive, in stark contrast).
The series is a severe risk to your sanity. Now, games in the past have played with sanity; Capcom’s Clock Tower 3 and Haunting Ground used fear and sanity as game mechanics, Eternal Darkness messed with your mind by acknowledging you were a player and had a specific set of tech related fears.
No, Dark Souls knows what really drives players insane – a difficulty curve akin to a brick wall (with a steel vault door behind it) and ridiculously unforgiving death penalties. And in a game where you’re going to be dying a lot and starting from checkpoints again and again … You get the picture.
Yet despite its steep difficulty curve and prohibitive nature, Dark Souls has a cult following that’s slowly becoming a little more mainstream. And in the age old tradition of ‘if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it’, each Dark Souls game follows a very similar game play structure with a different story.
Oh, did I mention that if you play the game online (which until Bloodborne, a similar game by From Software, could only be turned off by disconnecting your console from the internet), you can be invaded at any time by another player provided you’re doing well? Yes, From Software encourages their players to troll each other by killing each other when they’re succeeding. Granted, you can help each other too, but again you have to be doing well…
Dark Souls 3 looks like it may actually be a closer sequel to the first game, with references to embers and flames reminiscent of the Dark Soul’s plot. This should come as great news to many that felt Dark Souls 2 was more spin-off than sequel, with a more character than world-driven narrative.
Expect the unexpected with Dark Souls 3, From Software has proven to us time and time again that they know what we want, but they know how to put an unexpected twist on it.
There’s still time for you to catch up on the Dark Souls series – Dark Souls is available for Playstation 3 and PC, Dark Souls 2 is available on Playstation 3 and PC, with a superior version available for Playstation 4 and also on PC. Be sure to give Demon’s Souls for Playstation 3 a chance, the slightly more linear adventure that started it all, and don’t forget about the recently released Bloodborne for Playstation 4 for a much faster paced and more modern take on the gameplay formula.
Check out the E3 reveal below: