Dark Souls Preview

This Dark Souls preview gives a quick look at what can be expected from From Software’s upcoming action, Role-playing title!

Previously developed under the codename “Project Dark”, Dark Souls is an upcoming video game being developed by From Software. It is the spiritual successor to the soul-crushingly challenging, sleeper-hit title, Demon’s Souls.

The original game’s appeal lay with its renowned difficulty and trial-and-error approach, one that Dark Souls promises to sustain. Dark Souls will revolve around the appearance of the Undead, that will gradually ruin the world.

The game is set to be released on the PS3 on September 22nd in Japan, and for Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3, on October 4th (US) and on October 7th (EU) in the same year.

This in-depth stage demo looks at every element of Dark Souls; lasting 13+ minutes, Brian Hong (senior Global Brand Manager) reveals some tantalizing info!

In this video you get to see all the classes for Dark Souls and the magic system.

Brian Hong returns in this interview to discuss the environments and overall design of Dark Souls.

Take a peek at a Dark Souls boss battle in-motion.

In part 1 of this new prologue, the verse and story of Dark Souls is formally introduced…

…And continued in part 2!

Key Features of Dark Souls

Here is a list of key elements that will be available in From Software’s Dark Souls, based on news and announcements made so far.

Many changes have been made to the core elements:

  • All defense has been lowered, and attack power has increased, hence the introduction of the iron form magic.
  • Grass has been removed and instead Est can be collected and carried in bottles; the amount of bottles a player can carry will be limited, a feature integrated to encourage the player to tread with caution.
  • The Soul Form from Demon Souls has been removed and World Tendency is not present as a server median, but a similar effect can be controlled by players online.
  • There will not be 5 differentiated worlds as presented in Demon’s Souls.
  • The weapon upgrade system will be easier to understand and armor upgrades will be available.

The game’s story will not impose itself upon the player, but it is present. The game world is fragmented, but opportunities for deeper story information are available to players who search.

The game will feature complex environments, with tricks, traps and significant height differences. Exploration of the world will be vital and, thanks to a seamless map, accessible by simply walking. No maps in hand, the player will have to rely on descriptions and observation.
The game world of medieval fantasy is represented in three main themes: “King & Knight”, “Death and the Abyss,” “Flame of Chaos”.

Bonfires will be scattered throughout the world and will serve as starting points/checkpoints and as oases for recovery. The also pose their own functions and challenges:

  • Players can rest by the bonfire to replenish Est and spells, but doing so will also respawn normal enemies throughout the world.
  • Extinguished bonfires must be lit (touched) to serve as a checkpoint.
  • Bonfires can be strengthened, by offering up some of the player’s humanity, which will increase the number of Esflasks and spells equipped.

The expected playtime is 1.5 or 2 times that of Demon’s Souls, with a significant increase in magic and items.

Spells & Summoning
One of the spells players will be able to cast will transform themselves into iron form which mitigates much more damage, with the drawback of decreased movement speed. The Iron Knight, a powerful NPC, can also be summoned at certain points by players.

Humanity is a new concept, and is represented by a small flame in the top left corner of the HUD. Though the specificities have not been discussed yet in detail, these points have been announced so far:

  • Humanity can be increased by killing Evil Spirits (invading players), or by invading and killing a player in another world.
  • Humanity is decreased upon death, with one chance to retrieve it, if the player can reach the bloodstain where death occurred.
  • Dying without possessing humanity will result in the message ‘You Hollowed’ being displayed, instead of the usual ‘You Died’.

Whilst Demon’s Souls had 40 types of enemies, Dark Souls will include close to 100 of them. Enemies will be able to chase players up stairs and ladders, but can be kicked down.

Weapons & Magic Items
The game will feature different motions and traits for weapons, as well as a great variety of magic and items, encouraging the player to find their own and unique play style:

  • The motion will affect the speed and rest of each blow, based on parameters such as the player’s strength and ability.
  • Tactics such as bypass armor should also be parameter-dependent.

No Downloadable Content
Both the developer and publisher have stated that there are no intentions to release a DLC.

Check out the awesome trailer!

Eagerly anticipating this challenge? Don’t forget to leave a comment and share your opinion.

Be sure to check out our Dark Souls Screenshots Gallery!

Information via Dark Souls Wiki