In Dark Souls, you had a way to level up in every covenant without going online (you had a way to farm Sunlight Medals, Souvenirs of Reprisal, and so on).
Will this still be possible in Dark Souls 2 ?
Specifically, rumors say that an item given by the Rat Covenant will allow the respawning of depleted enemies. Will this item be obtainable offline ? Which would allow anyone to farm at their heart's content.
but at the same time from what I hear you do not need nearly as much of the covenent tokens like in dark souls
Not according to the wiki. Some covenants require that you kill up to 500 other players in order to reach the max rank and obtain the reward. If those rewards are unique then it's going to be one hell of a grind for the platinum.
Avoiding spoilers but did look at the covenant requirements to level up. Pretty brutal. You aren't going to max out all these covenants unless you put in A LOT of time into pvp. --- PSN: TMAN2626, Deprived and proud! "I mock your value system, and you look foolish in the eyes of others."
First of all, if you really have to kill that many people to get max rank, that's ridiculous. Secondly, I'm sure you'll be able to increase the rank offline somehow. They did in Dark Souls and I don't see why they wouldn't do it here. If they didn't, that would essentially be screwing over the people who can't/won't play online.
I got a Sunlight Medal and a token for the Blue Guardians as a random drop. There are no trophies for having unique equipment, but you'll have to play some Bell keepers among other things to get all the spells.