Dark Souls is probably one of the most infamous games that released in the last decade. This was not because of how bad it is though, but rather for the way it is completely misunderstood by those who have not given it a proper try. One can only hope that the Remastered version of the game on current consoles will be able to convince the masses of the absolute master piece that it is.
A fresh coat of paint
I’m not going to beat around the bush here. Dark Souls: Remastered is a damn fine experience, especially if you’re a fan of series, and have been hoping for the chance to play it again on your PS4 or Xbox One. The PC version is said to feel a bit of a rip-off, since most of the features and visual upgrades already exist thanks to wonderful community tweaks and mods for it. If you’re not into modding your games, then this might just be the version for you, but be aware of hacking and cheating doing the rounds, and no fix being available for it yet.
I, however, am not playing the game on PC, but rather on a console, which somehow feels like the intended market, and for the most part it is an excellent port. You basically get an up-scaled resolution, and a rock solid frame-rate of 60 fps. The textures have been updated a bit and it mostly holds up, but the game does show its age a bit in that regard. You do get some pretty nifty-looking improvements to particle effects, as well as the general lighting of the game, which does give it a bit more of a modern feel. Something else that is also a nice touch is the ability to scale your UI, which is pleasant for those sitting maybe closer or further away from the screen. It really is a solid upgrade from the older version of Dark Souls and gameplay wise, you’re still getting and playing the same game, just with a few nice tweaks here and there. The game is not out on the Nintendo Switch yet, since it got delayed by a bit, so we cannot comment on how it might play on that console at this time.
Let’s go to Blighttown
One of the most infamous and horrible areas of Dark Souls has to be Blighttown. The biggest reason was for the way the frame-rate just could not hold up rendering everything on the screen. For those who do not know, Blighttown is essentially a dark and danky place that is put together on the side of the moat of the city of Anor Londo. It is a very dangerous place with tight corridors, horrible status effect and relentless enemies. You can also so easily fall to your death, which means you have to start over, depending on if you made it to the bonfire or not. The performance of the game on the PS3 and Xbox 360 versions was notorious, with the frame rate dipping so low that you almost started counting seconds per frame.
Now though, it is solid as a rock, and although it still is a horrible place to navigate, it feels a lot less strenuous, and you almost get the sense that this is how From Software intended it to be. The only gripe I still have with it though was the awkward camera that often clips into walls, or goes a bit nuts if you move it a bit too much. The camera is probably one of the most awkward things of the game and I wish they could’ve at least improved that a bit, especially in big boss fights as you’re trying to lock on to them while fighting. It doesn’t bother too much, but it can get a bit confusing at times. Other than that, the performance of the game really does hold up pretty damn well. Also something to note is the incredibly fast loading times, which makes dying and starting over a lot more bearable than it used to be.
It is time for some jolly cooperation
Dark Souls might not look it, but it really is a multiplayer game, even if you are just adventuring alone. You have your messages of tips or trolling scattered around the world, and you have the opportunity to go and engage in some jolly cooperation, as Solaire would like to point out. The improvements to the multiplayer is noticeable, with connections being a lot more stable from what I can remember, whether you’re engaging in PvP or helping (or being helped) someone out in their adventure.
The multiplayer is also what makes this game so special. I was grinding some souls, helping some folks out at a specific boss, and ended up being summoned by someone who had armour I haven’t come across yet. I know exactly where it was, but I haven’t gone there yet in my personal adventure. It felt so surreal knowing that this random person went about his adventure in a totally different manner than I did, yet we were now here at the same point. It is what makes this game so unique and amazing, knowing that there’s so many different ways to play and experience it.
Classic done justice
It is hard to imagine a game that is only 7 years old being labeled as a classic, but Dark Souls truly is just that, a classic. I am really enjoying my time with the game, and would not even think twice in recommending it to friends. Yes, the game does have a steep learning curve and it does not hold your hand, but that is the old school way of doing things. Dark Souls: Remastered does do the game justice, at least on the consoles, and if you are just mildly curios, you really should consider it. Lordran is a dark and wonderful world you can get lost in and explore, and the more people experience it the better. Praise the Sun!