I often think that the greatest interaction with a Souls game you can have is the moment in which, you personally, first experience this universe and realize you're hooked. I joined with Dark Souls in 2011 after picking up the game totally by chance, and the experience I was introduced to was truly unforgettable. You either love what From Software put you through, or you detest it. I assume you lot reading this are the former.
Dark Souls 3 will be the continuation of a series that has developed beautifully since the release date of Demon's Souls for the PS3 in 2009. There have been seemingly countless moments of greatness since then, but there are still certain things that stand out to me and the community in general. Can Dark Souls 3 rival these moments of remarkable gameplay?
Can Dark Souls 3 Create Gameplay Moments As Good As These?
Actually, I'd like to start with something that isn't actually gameplay related. When I first picked up Dark Souls I'd heard of its difficulty, however I'd also seen its impressive review scores. I was intrigued, and pretty terrified. But nothing could have prepared me for the cinematic that I was to be greeted with after creating my character.
This opening immerses you in a terrifying world, one fraught with danger, magic, and everlasting dragons. It envelops you in the atmosphere of the dark world of Dark Souls and I in no way diminish the important role it played in helping me fall in love with the Souls series. But there have been plenty of similar events since this beginning!
- Demon's Souls
After Dark Souls, I ventured back into this series' past to uncover what came before it. Demon's Souls is a masterful game, even though I think Dark Souls improved upon its design. But something that really demonstrates the creativity and genius of Hidetaka Miyazaki, is the Old Monk boss fight. At first, I couldn't really understand why this guy was handing me my ass every single time. I couldn't seem to predict a pattern like I could with everyone else!
This is what I love about the Souls series: the external help. These games have so many cryptic messages, items, and narrative beats. It's hard to understand everything on your own and the community are basically indispensable when it comes to fully engaging with the Souls series! After I'd learned that The Old Monk was actually other players I was literally stunned by such a remarkable design feat. Nice one, From Software!
- Dark Souls
There are countless moments in this game that I adore - it was my introduction after all. But dealing with the Asylum Demon is one of the most memorable moments in gaming history. Once you uncover that you don't have to fight him at the start, it's not only a sigh of relief, but it intrinsically teaches you how to play this game. Then minutes later you arrive on a perch above him and are told to drop down and stab him.
You're naturally terrified of the prospect and most of us take too long to react, prompting the Demon to jump upwards and send us crashing to the ground with a devastating blow! It subverts everything you knew about fighting a boss and I adore the many challenges Miyazaki throws your way in the opening moments of Dark Souls!
- Dark Souls 2
In terms of Dark Souls 2, there's actually one moment that I really loved - it has a similar nature to the sequence referenced above. In the area near the Cardinal Tower bonfire, you have a small ladder leading to an enemy who's chucking some explosives your way. You arrive on the platform only to see an enormous raven fly over your head. It flies off into the distance and then circles back. You see it's carrying something. Oh shit.
Once it arrives overhead, the raven releases The Pursuer boss from its talons and he waists no time in attacking you. It was an exhilarating moment. Naturally he destroyed me and I was terrified to return to the spot, only to realize he wouldn't be returning for a little while. Its the moments of surprise that always stay with me from the Souls series.
Which moment from the Souls series do you like the most? Do you think that Dark Souls 3 has what it takes to top these sequences on its release date? Let us know where you stand in the comments below!