Review by Zura
"An extremely challenging (but also fun) game that you'll never grow bored of!"
Demon's Soul's (Or DS) is an incredibly fun RPG game developed by Atlus which are revered for developing extra hard games. Although it's hard, it just feels like you want to try again. At first, you may think it's pretty easy, but it starts to get a bit harder. Without the unique multiplayer feature where you can place messages on the ground to warn other players. You're going to be in big trouble!
When you first start off, you'll create a character of your choice, you can make it male/female and you can customize its facial features as well as hair. You have to choose one character class out of the 10. The class you choose will affect which starting gear you have and type of magic used. After you complete customizing your character, you'll see a cut scene explaining the story of Demon's souls and end up in a dungeon... What happens next, is totally unique and you have to see it for yourself.
The story of Demon's Souls is quite simple, but a game of high standards like this doesn't have to be that rich. The story is set in the fictional Kingdom of Boletaria. In medieval Europe which was ruled by King Allant XII. Who was so hungry for power, he searched for it by a dark ritual which over-time led to a deep, colourless fog that isolated Boletaria from neighboring Kingdoms. Other kingdoms set scouts to scout Boletaria but none returned. Vallarfax of the Twin Fangs managed to get inside and report to the rest of the world. Allant's foolishness awakened the Old One, because of this, the dark fog unleashed demons which feasted on souls of mankind, leaving the soul-less violent and insane.
DS has a very unique online play experience, as mentioned before, you can place messages on the ground to warn other players of a hazard. Also you can see a blood stain on the ground showing how a fellow player got killed. Once you progress a bit further in the game, you will be able to get an item which allows a player to summon you to their world, so you can aid them in their quest defeating demons. You will also be able to get an item which allows you to enter a players world as a 'Black Phantom'. As a Black Phantom, you are hostile to the player and must try to kill him, if you kill him and were in spirit form in your world, you will be resurrected and returned to your world with some souls from the player!
You have to be always wary on what's happening around you, and make sure not to get distracted. Once you are in a middle of a fight, you cannot pause the game, and if you get distracted in a dangerous area, you best hide and hope not to get killed. Not being able to pause the game makes the game much more challenging and unforgiving.
With souls, you will be able to upgrade the stats of your character or purchase new weapons, spells, upgrades and miracles which are special, non combat spells where you can heal yourself, or teleport yourself back to the Nexus without a soul fee. Be careful though, NPCs are attackable and if you kill them, they will not come back until your next playthrough, so be careful! The game saves automatically when you perform certain actions like pressing the start button, or killing enemies. Although there is a slight delay before it saves, if you do something you want to regret, quickly quit the game and hope you go back to the previous place. Be wary though, the game is not designed to be played this way!
Once you die, you will lose all your souls and you will have one chance to retrieve them. If you die on the way to your blood stain the one you are trying to go to will be gone... forever!
The bosses are extremely fun and challenging to kill, you may have to resort looking online for strategies, and if you still can't do it, you might have to find a way to exploit the boss you're fighting. There are almost 2-3 ways to exploit every boss in the game. For instance you can trap them behind Rubble and keep attacking them. Although, this should be used as a last resort. Once you (finally) defeat a boss, you will receive it's soul, called a 'Demon Soul'. The soul will have a specific name for each boss you kill and with these souls you can either choose to consume them (Bad choice, since you don't get a large number of souls) or you can trade them in for unique upgrades for your items or new miracles/spells.
You can make a number of choices in the game. You can choose to end the game in a good or bad way, or choose to whether kill certain NPCs for souls/items or not.
In the Nexus you can talk to NPCs to upgrade your weapons and upgrade your skills here. You can consider the Nexus as a 'safe house' where you can do a number of things, buy new items, upgrade items, purchase miracles and more.
You can store your items by talking to an NPC because there is a weight limit in game, you can increase your limit by increasing a particular stat.
There is some kind of morality system in the game called 'World Tendency, also referred to WT. WT can be Black, or white. Pure Black means bad, and pure white means good. With this you can be able to access new areas and get special items. If you have Black WT the game will be even harder and you will have a bigger challenge. Black WT is achievable by killing players by invading their world as a black phantom or dieing in body form 7 or so times in each world... The game gets harder by dieing? Ouch. Once you get either white or black WT, you can unlock new areas in certain levels that gives you access to new weapons and items, and 'mini bosses' that you can kill.
The combat system is really amazing. You have to be careful where you position yourself, when you attack, and when you block. If you make the wrong move, you are finished. Your attacks have to be placed very well and you need to concentrate. Although it's challenging, it kind of adds a realistic feel to the game, since you die in a few blows. It's amazing because this is the only game that makes me feel the game does not get boring or repetitive after a number of times. Each time you die, you'll have to adjust your strategy or use different weapons/magic on the particular enemy you can't beat.
Although Demon's Souls has some minor graphical flaws, the animation of the characters are superb and the voice acting is really good. In overall, Demon's Soul's is a fun, challenging game that should be played by players who are patient and are looking for a challenge, as well as some great fun!
Read enough? Want to get into the action? You really should get this game and you'll see how amazing Demon's Souls really is. Really!
Reviewer's Score: 9/10 | Originally Posted: 02/03/10
Game Release: Demon's Souls (US, 10/06/09)
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