9 Things We can Learn about Game Design from Dark Souls

Gamasutra: From Software's Dark Souls has gotten a lot of attention for featuring an extremely high level of difficulty, however it would be unfair to dismiss it as just another masochistic game. In this article, I examine nine areas that Dark Souls excels in and discuss how we can apply those lessons towards improving game design.

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ArchangelMike2561d ago

The brilliance of the level design is that(after about 1000 deaths) you think you've reached a dead end area, only to discover that there is a staircase behind a wall leading underground to a whole new unexplored area...

...only to discover assassins who jump on you and cut your thoat in one swipe. Or the goat demon who slices you in half with one hit...


Hahaha....errr, oh wait, that happened to me as well...
Loving this game, even though its more punishing than being forced to listen to Justin Beiber while watching Keeping up with the Kardashians.

dc12561d ago

Loving Darks Souls just like I loved the first.

colonel1792561d ago

I want to learn how am I supposed to level up if I always die and never get my souls back? This game is sadistic. I was doing great, then I encountered a knight which killed me, and I couldn't get my souls back because he killed me again. That's my story in Dark Souls, I want to cry! I can't level up because of that, and I fee stuck among much powerful enemies turning me into omelet.

The worst part is that I used the few souls I had to level up something I didn't want! :(

limewax2561d ago

The answer to that is to go back to something you actually can kill, level up, then fight the stronger enemies. Some enemies in this game will be stupidly powerful, But you don't go for them until you are ready.

Also timing is key in the combat, Knowing when to block/roll and when to attack is the real key between victory and failure on almost any enemy

colonel1792561d ago

Noob question: Can you roll sideways to evade? I use block A LOT, and I am getting used to parry, but sometimes I wish I could roll sideways, but I don't know how, or if possible.

Captain Qwark 92561d ago

honestly the first few hours are the hardest then it gets easier then it gets stupidly hard, now im waiting for it to get easier???? :/ im 30hrs in level 51, just started anor londo.....

still its one of the best games i have played in a very long time and like the article says, level design is possibly the best i have ever seen, best for me since halo 2's mp maps. ( dont know who the hell did halo 3's :( ) and the enemy vareity is amazing that is always a huge complaint of mine and why i cant sit through cod or battlefield campaigns, or why i didnt finish deux ex, killing the same thing over and over again is lame.....

ThanatosDMC2561d ago

Dont bother leveling up past 28. If you're specializing your character with a certain build or weapon. You should have no problem beating all the enemies in the game including player phantoms. I'm doing 600+ dmg with my longsword with a backstab. I built a douchey character that kills newbies and their summons.

The only PvP players i've had trouble with are the Assassin build with their over powered one hit stab kill daggers.

limewax2561d ago

Yeah, just hit the roll button as you move the stick sideways. If it's not working it is likely due to being slightly off on your timing. Just practice it for a couple minutes then head in to use it in battle.

See the thing with this game is all your power is learned in your own skill to play, and levelling will only get you so far. Keep at it and in no time you will be tearing through enemies

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JsonHenry2561d ago

The only thing I wish would change about Dark Souls is making PvP or co-op easier. I hate the fact you gotta go farm humanity from rats and the like if you want help from other people who are waiting around to help you.

HINDERIZATION2561d ago (Edited 2561d ago )

I'm in the Darkroot Forest and I'm working on beating the Hydra. Kinda hard when there's nobody there to pick up your soul sign...
Do more people play Dark Souls on Xbox or PS3 because I'm playing it on my friend's 360 and I don't see too many people on. I see a few people on at noon and I'll get into a party or two but not really.
But nevertheless, The worlds are very beautiful in the game. So much more to explore.

geddesmond2561d ago

I agree with nearly everything in the article except for the conclusion. Dark Souls is a perfect game to me. I've no gripes with the game what so ever. I just went through the painting in Anor Landos and the scenery in this game just keeps changing everywhere you go.

I guess you need to play Demon Souls to really appreciate what From software did with this game. I never thought Dark Souls would be better than Demon Souls but it is. As for losing souls. It never pisses me off. Simply because I know Dark Souls is designed around completing the game over and over in new game plus. Yeah first playthrough you'll be around lvl 60 but on second Playthrough you get more souls per enemy defeated and it keeps everything fresh.

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