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Is Dark Souls overrated?

Discussion in 'jRPG Weeaboo Discussion' started by MotherMachinae, Mar 28, 2016.

  1. MotherMachinae Arcane

    MotherMachinae
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    Because everyone compare Dork Sulz to everything.
    Action TPP? How does it compare to DS?
    Difficulty? Dork Sulz.

    It's like people don't know or ignore fact that there were difficulty games before Dork Sulz. Must be curse of "Press X to win" or somethin.
     
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  2. aleph Arcane

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    Though I'll take a Dark Souls wannabe over a "press x to win" game any day.
     
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  3. Lacrymas Arcane

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    Dark Souls wasn't difficult, it was just wasting your time with needless respawns you could actually run past. Dark Souls' only "virtue" is that it became popular for some reason. I could write a whole essay about why it's overrated to a parodical extreme. Two Worlds was always a pos which also became popular and has 2 sequels, go figure.
     
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  4. Volrath Arcane Patron

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    Please do, you utter fucking retard.
     
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  5. Lacrymas Arcane

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    I don't really have a desire to literally write an essay about why it's ...poorly designed are maybe the better words. Suffice it to say it's a J-action-RPG in sheep's clothing. The respawning mobs? They are literally a different version of random encounters in any JRPG. The difficulty? Amateurish understanding of it. You just have to memorize the A.I patterns (mostly bosses) while trying to not gnaw your wrist veins out of boredom from the constant respawns that I already covered. Let's get back to the respawns actually - there's a reason people stopped designing games with such frustrating respawns, it's because arcade games were made to gobble up your coins as much as possible. With the advent of the PC and save systems you simply don't need such a cheap way to lengthen playtime, and this is what it ultimately is, artificially lengthening playtime. When you've already conquered a challenge you don't learn anything from doing it again, it just wastes time you could spend mastering the next one. This is my main problem with the game, it's just an archaic JRPG-like arcade game that is masquerading as a serious attempt at game design. And people go into fervor-infused catatonic trance from proclaiming this outdated mechanic as intentional genius. It's a Skinner's Box in a different context. The combat is also simplistic to a fault and is the same from start to finish, you just need to memorize different patterns. I think that's just part of the genre as a whole and I don't know how much I can fault the developers for it. They should've chosen another genre maybe, but I digress.

    The good part of Dark Souls is the exploration and how well it gels with the narrative, it mirrors your character's knowledge about his/her surroundings and that's good. I do think that was an unintentional consequence from implementing the markers left by other players though, they just decided it could be left as vague as possible to accommodate this feature. I guess it turned out alright in the end for them, but that doesn't mean it was intentional. It's on a trial and error basis and not discovery through journey and this could use some improvement. The setting is some person's very loose understanding of medieval European society. It doesn't have anything going for it other than "everyone is dead/dying", OK, but so what? This is just the premise, where do we go from here? It's a "save the world" story and YOU are the ONLY ONE who can DO IT. It doesn't have any serious exploration of the questions the premise raises. Since the story doesn't go anywhere it's a more elaborate version of those pretentious hipster bullshit walking simulators, like Dear Esther and the like, in terms of the ongoing narrative. It's like a static painting that takes hours to observe. Not to mention that the respawning enemies are a ludo-narrative dissonance, because everything else is fading away but the enemies just keep coming back for an endless parade. It would be far more effective and in tune with the narrative if they stayed dead and your actions somehow contribute to the deserted and death-like state the world is in. The game just got popular because people confuse meaningful difficulty with repetition and archaic game design.
     
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  6. aleph Arcane

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    I just bolded the parts which show that you either have never played Dark Souls or have not understood a single thing while playing it.
     
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  7. Lacrymas Arcane

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    Unfortunately, I did play it, I didn't finish it of course, I got bored at the white wolf thing. I have no idea what you mean by the bolded parts though, I think you don't understand a single thing I wrote. I haven't played it since it came out, so I might be misremembering parts, especially connected to the narrative, but you saying nothing doesn't contribute anything. The narrative is not my main gripe anyway.

    I forgot to add that the things I didn't mention I think are good, like the interconnected map or level design. I never said DS is a bad game, I said it was overrated to a parodical extreme.
     
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  8. Somberlain Arcane Zionist Agent

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    Dark Souls fanbase is just like Undertail fanbase.
     
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  9. Lhynn Arcane

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    Dark souls 1 is good, dark souls 2 is complete shit and anyone that likes it, likes to eat shit for a living.
     
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  10. MotherMachinae Arcane

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    IMHO Dark Souls remind me old games, like the platformers on NES for example, where you die until you remember pattern. By "patterns" I mean - enemy animation (in DS-tactics and behavior) and their placements. Otherwise you will die a lot in hilarious ways, like being kick out the cliff or smashed by boulder <whistlin' Indiana Jones theme>
    I think that and being refreshing from button punchers that infested previous generation of consoles.

    Still prefer King's Field (old FROM series) due bigger immershun and other stuff.

    I agree with you but Two Worlds in not "press X to win" if you wander off the main path, thanks to lack of level scalling.
     
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  11. aleph Arcane

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    So I really have to explain it to you, I guess.

    Let's start with the combat then. How exactly can you call the combat in Dark Souls"simplistic to a fault", when the game features dozens of weapons with different move sets, the ability to wield every melee weapon single handed or two-handed, parrying, blocking, counter attacks and stamina management? Nothing to say about the importance of timing.

    Also, you apparently misunderstood the fundamental premise of the narrative/setting. It's not that everyone is dying, it is the entire opposite, no one is actually dying, but lingering in an undead state while slowly loosing the will to go on and descending into insanity. Of course, the game's narrative does not contain a deep and meaningful exploration of the questions this premises raises. It is first and foremost and action-rpg with a heavy focus on gameplay. It is obvious that narrative is only of secondary importance. Also, it is a game, not a paper on the philosophical ramifications of undeath.

    MotherMachinae: Let's hope Reality Pump remembers that Two Worlds was not about "press x to win" when they develop TW3
     
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  12. sullynathan Arcane

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    DS2 DLC is better than the majority of DS1.
     
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  13. Lhynn Arcane

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    Who cares, gameplay is shit in DS2. kills the entire game for me.
     
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  14. Lacrymas Arcane

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    Maybe "combat" wasn't the right word, though it's still just learning how and when to parry, block and dodge effectively and that can be figured out pretty fast. Most enemies telegraph their attacks really well, so by then the game is just testing whether you have eyeballs in your face. That's not bad per se, it would be worse if they didn't telegraph them. It's just a feature of this genre which I personally don't like, I admit. Gameplay is maybe the better word, you do the exact same thing, with the exact same tactic on every mob and every boss, with very little variation between the types of mobs. The gameplay gets repetitive very fast. It doesn't matter how many weapons there are when they are used in the same way, whether they can hit enemies further but are slower is incidental, I don't think there's even any point to changing your weapon type once you get used to one. Stamina management - that's actually a limitation only you have as far as I'm aware, the enemies don't suffer from it, so they are basically cheating the mechanics. I.e. artificial handicap. (If I'm wrong please correct me). What more can I say? The difficulty and combat variety are just illusions (and the difficulty is illusory) that cover up more unanswered design questions in this genre, like "how do we make combat not button-mashy and repetitive?", "how do we make the player want to get involved deeply in the game?", "how to do make the gameplay satisfactory and not cheap?", "how do we structure the combat in such a way as to promote actual challenge rather than relying on JRPG tropes of time-lengthening?" etc.

    The arrival of Dark Souls is just in a context of other games being too easy and not satisfying, especially for the more experienced gamer. All great art is great only when placed within context, that's true, but in this particular case it's more of a "we haven't seen such a thing in a while", which isn't a very meaningful context. You actually have to do something new, instead of just refining the gameplay of Blade of Darkness.

    About the narrative - there is no narrative. We have to be able to differentiate between lore (setting, history, context) and plot. Nothing actually happens in Dark Souls until the very end where you are given a choice which doesn't mean anything because of the aforementioned lack of plot. Sure, the characters move around and some of them have personal relationships with one another, a stand-out is when that knight dude kills one of the fire keepers, but that constitutes just a random example of a much larger picture that is largely static and doesn't behoove this medium. It also happens off-screen, which is a "tell, don't show" mentality, but it's done more gracefully so it isn't jarring or out-of-character. I don't see a difference between "everyone is dead/dying" and "everyone is undead", isn't that the point of undeath?

    The problem is that people have actually proclaimed Dark Souls as one of, if not THE, best games/RPGs ever made, which simply isn't true and that's where the parodical element comes in. Yes, it is one of the best games in this genre, but this genre is action which isn't known for outstanding feats of refined game design and sophisticated creativity. What Dark Souls does do, by logically leading this genre to an extreme, is that it raises questions about game design and how to go about answering them, in this sense it does manage to become more than it actually is, but this is a very subtle moment which has to be exploited to figure out where to go from here and actually create something new.

    Also, this isn't off-topic since the questions raised by Dark Souls also apply to Two Worlds 3.
     
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  15. Lhynn Arcane

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    So many words to say so little, im actually impressed.
     
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  16. Lacrymas Arcane

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    It may be little, but at least I say something. Something that isn't uncontrollable fan ejaculations or unthinking vitriolic hate. I don't have solutions to the problems Dark Souls poses for game design, because I'm not a game designer; what I can do though is spark a discussion (which is the point of a forum) that can lead to better understanding for everyone, including me. If it turns out I'm wrong, then that's great too, I can change my views and be more enlightened.
     
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  17. Lhynn Arcane

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    For starters we have retarded shit like this
    All games that are fair in any way are about learning when to do the shit the game requires you to do. Its such a retarded piece of shit commentary id be ashamed of writing it. Alas, now its in the internet forever.

    Ive played DS2 maybe 4 hours and i already know this isnt true. They are not used in the same way and every weapon demands that you alter your gameplay.

    No, its fucking not, it changes everything.

    Sure, how is this a bad thing?

    Completely right and the reason i believe DS2 is shit. Its not the only way the game cheats on you btw. It ranges from enemies swiching the direction of their attacks midblow if you try to flank them, and ive heard that more than a couple bosses are untouchable until you engage them in the way the devs intended. Its complete shit and goes against everything Dark Souls.

    What the fuck does this even mean?

    DS2 combat can be many things, but its neither button-mashy nor repetitive.

    Sure, but dark souls is hardly the first "hard" game to have arrived in this new generation. DS ownes its success to several elements working in harmony in a masterful way, how it punishes player mistakes is part of said formula.
    DS may be easy on an encounter per encounter basis, but the tension is always up because all it takes is a single fuck up.

    I cant think about any old western game comparable to dark souls. if anything both its mood and themes are japanesse to a fault. Gameplay itself supports the mood and the themes the game is trying to present to the player. Shit, even the aesthetics are japanese, you can see this in the monster design.

    There is, the narrative is whatever the player makes of it.

    Pretentious phrase if i ever read one.

    Its not about some cucks idea of a story, its the player telling his own story and how he reacts to whatever happens in the world.

    What the fuck are you even talking about, fuck this idealized medium you are refering to, fuck it in the ass with a pitchfork.

    Narrative that supports the gameplay mechanics, if you are already dead, you cant really die.

    i dont have a problem with this, if people took the best elements of dark souls, if they studied how those elements interacted with eachother and with the player, id be happy. No, its not the best game ever made, its not even close, but its something that stands above the sea of complete shit weve been swimming for over a decade.

    And rpgs are? :lol:

    It doesnt do this, its pretty by the numbers tbh.

    If you are implying that it sold a shitton and people want to know why? then sure i guess. So did half life 1&2. I fail to see how this is new, interesting, or even worth bringing up.

    Dark souls isnt something new or original. Its just something well done.

    I can only hope theyll try to learn a couple lessons from dark souls, but i believe reality pump should look at games like gothic 1&2 for inspiration instead.
     
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  18. Sordid MCA/Prosper Hybryd Arcane Patron

    Sordid MCA/Prosper Hybryd
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    Divinity: Original Sin Torment: Tides of Numenera Pathfinder: Kingmaker Pathfinder: Kingmaker
    :brodex:
     
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  19. Lacrymas Arcane

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    What I meant was that the combat can be picked up pretty fast and it doesn't change throughout the whole game and that's why it becomes repetitive very fast

    How? You are still doing the same tactic, i.e. defending yourself/waiting for an opening. When exactly you press your mouse button doesn't constitute the changing of everything. Think of AoD where many of your choices, particularly your point allocation at the start of the game, literally change everything. I know DS can't even be compared to AoD, but that's what I'd consider the changing of everything, not simply changing when you press your mouse button and how far away from the enemy you can afford to be. This is maybe a limitation of this genre so maybe very few things can be done about it.

    I actually don't know. It sure doesn't help the repetitiveness of a single playthrough.

    It means what I already tried to explain a few times, that the difficulty is cheap and the only thing required of you is to memorize patterns (both yours and A.I.'s). That's not difficult, just time consuming, depending on how fast you can memorize them.

    Already covered the repetitiveness. I know it's not button-mashy, I just listed some questions that this type of action genre poses for game designers, brought on by my thoughts on DS. It's mostly the repetitive part that is prevalent.

    I suppose the tension part is true, I just feel like there can be another solution for the tension to be continuous without respawning enemies.

    Blade of Darkness is similar, DS just refines it and tries to integrate gameplay into the atmosphere, which is good.

    That's just a cop-out, can you imagine a book which when opened hundreds of words on little pieces of paper fall off and the only thing it says is "here are some words, write your own book and make your own experience!" One of the hallmarks of every kind of art is to have some kind of structure, otherwise it's just improvisation or random ideas sewn together. Maybe I don't want to "create my own experience and narrative", maybe I want to read a book written by a great author or play an intelligently designed game.

    How is it pretentious? It's true. The plot (i.e. what happens in a story) is not the same as the lore (the context/background of it). DS simply doesn't have a plot, whether that's a bad thing or not depends (and this refers also to your next 2 points) on how you think this medium tells a story and whether it's suited for it. Since a game is something that takes place over time, it's appropriate that the narrative also goes somewhere. This shouldn't ALWAYS be the case, but when you actually need to make a choice, like DS does, then something of the plot actually moves, but it's in-itself and it doesn't mean anything since there is no build-up or climax, it's just there. It's jarring compared to the entire "style" of storytelling throughout the rest of the game.

    True.

    By the numbers compared to what? It does do something differently than other games of this genre, otherwise we wouldn't be talking about it 4 years after it came out.

    It's worth bringing up because Dark Souls does represent an extreme in this logic of game design and the form kind of starts falling apart. The overarching, and most important, question is "where do you go with this genre after DS?". You see for yourself that simply copying (badly) DS didn't work for DS2, even if there were no criticisms for it (subjunctive). It would simply be the same game with new wallpaper. If that is good or bad largely depends on what you personally want, I suppose. Though even Mario and Zelda games try to have something new in each installment, even if it's just sad at this point.

    You don't need to constantly innovate, that's just not possible. Most of the time the satisfaction just comes from a well-made thing you are experiencing, but that also doesn't mean you should lose sight of everything else any medium can offer and the critical points at which it can actually change. It's the best of both worlds.
     
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  20. sullynathan Arcane

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    The gameplay is better.
     
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  21. Immortal Arcane

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    There are some gimmicky things enemies do.. but at the end of the day they aren't usually humans (Enemies that are 'humans' do have stamina I believe, aka the red invaders).. so it sorta makes sense in some cases.
    TL;DR Most enemies cheat a little but I think it's okay as long as the game is fair / signals ahead of time in how they can cheat. It's not a game breaker.
    So the enemies don't run out of stamina.. they are still susceptible to poisons and other deliberating effects. Meh.

    Iron King I think is guilty of this.. but again.. it makes sense in the fight. He's a giant demon and you need to hit his head. I think you can shoot him anytime but not do mellee damage.

    I can't really think of another single boss that does this except maybe... Lost Sinner?
    But that darkness effect is part of the mechanic when she hops away.. it's not preventing you from hitting her.. and can be removed when you light the torch.
     
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  22. DeepOcean Arcane

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    Dark Souls is a good action game, nothing more, nothing less. People are excited for it for the same reason a man that didn't fuck for 10 years would be happy with the first decent girl he can get.
     
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  23. Makabb Arcane Shitposter Bethestard

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    What about a man who never fucked ?
     
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  24. CptMace Self-Ejected

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    FTFY
     
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  25. Lyric Suite Converting to Islam

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    That would probably be any gaymer that was raised entirely on the current generation of shit.

    I think DeepOcean is correct but i also think he is being too dismissive of the game. Dark Souls isn't good just because everything else is shit. The game is genuinely great and would have stood out even if the industry hadn't degenerated so much, but it now stands out all the more precisely because everything else is such shit.
     
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