Dark Souls 2


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FlexibleFeline
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No thread? For shame.

So how are you all getting along with it?

I've gone for swordsman, a new class, and haven't made it beyond three bonfires yet (about 2 hours play; my biggest achievement so far is finding the Fire longsword and levelling up my strength to be able to use it). I've been finding the shortened health bar a real challenge - two hits or so and you can easily end up dead. As usual with DS, most of the time, I feel it is my fault i.e. not being careful enough for combat, failing to roll or back-step or bide my time, watching attack patterns

Of course, the precariousness of it all is part of what makes DS so wonderful - I've been reading every message on the ground (even leaving some of my own), and checking every blood stain for clues.

When it comes to covenants (I think I'm too early in the game for this to be relevant), let us know what you opt for.
#1 at 10:21:33 - 15/03/2014
FlexibleFeline
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Oh, and is it just me or do weapons degrade much faster this time?
#2 at 10:22:26 - 15/03/2014
repairmanjack
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Loved Demons Souls and played it relentlessly (almost exclusively offline, as I was on a farm at the time). Never beat Flamelurker. Still ashamed of that.

I was slow to get on with Dark Souls (I'm still not entirely convinced the earlier title wasn't the better one). It disappointed me initially - and I didn't think it looked as good. I took a break, returned to it, and just found the sweet spot. I've been meaning to get back to it for months - but a lot of time board gaming has kept console time in check, of late.

I wasn't aware of the build up to this - nor the "bait and switch" scandal of patently showing a gorgeous game and then offering up a "PS2" version for us to play, a month later. From seem to have been given a free pass on it, although many fans are comparing it to Gearbox and Aliens. Your mileage may vary.

Having played for about five hours, I really like it. It feels more generous at the start, as I have real gear, not a chuffing branch and loincloth, to ease me in. It seems to be slightly more intuitive with the interface, but that might be me coming at it for the third time around.

I also went Swordsman for my build (snazzy outfit), as the prospect of being a duel-wielding badass sounded too good to pass up.

Yeah, mistake. No block ability. I'm now holding a shield, ninety percent of the time. I'd forgotten how nervous these titles made you, but even creeping around every corner, shield up, I'm still getting jumped on. Enemy placement is a little more devious. There's no easy grinding spot to start out. I'm taking on foes bigger than I would have previously liked out of necessity. Also, some of the early chum-bait has vanished, so you can't farm one spot indefinitely. Shit! That was my main strategy. Creeping through fog gates is terrifying, although not all announce a boss - which is something it took me a while to learn.

I've tooled up, built up the hub area and have a blacksmith on task already. It feels like this has happened more quickly, this time, but then I think the game is tougher - not easier - than suggested in previews.

Have actually managed to parry a bit, this time, never could before.

I love the creeping mysticism of the game, not knowing who is enemy or ally - Flex, the "sleeping" large white knight in the overgrown arena; enemy or not? Most enemies are bastards, and way more aggressive, so someone not immediately trying to murder me is, frankly, unusual.

Do I like it? Hell, yes. A new obsession has been born. I really want to soak this up, trying not to spoil anything but also following the fun others are having in forums. That's tricky. There are so many hidden things - locked door, try just breaking it down; not obvious, and gave up some more goodies. It's fun watching the ghosts of other sufferers - many of whom are rampantly committing suicide in bizarre ways, even in the hub.

Not tried magic yet, but I'm going for strength for a while. Need bigger sword.
#3 at 10:46:22 - 15/03/2014
FlexibleFeline
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I'm ignoring the sleeping knight for now! I don't feel like prodding him with my rapier in case I make a catastrophic mistake.

Yeah, I must admit I didn't realise swordsman was designed for duel wielding - but I can't play a Souls game without a shield. This is why I splurged (early game splurge, anyway) 1000 souls on a rapier. Shield up, jabbing. It's not the most flexible weapon, but it's so easy to switch between that and the Fire longsword in my right.

I'm working right now (obviously, as I'm on AATG), but looking forward to playing some more later.
#4 at 10:54:15 - 15/03/2014
repairmanjack
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Fire... longsword...?
#5 at 10:55:25 - 15/03/2014
repairmanjack
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Look everyone, Flex and I are commenting on a good game! :p
#6 at 10:56:31 - 15/03/2014
repairmanjack
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FlexibleFeline said:Oh, and is it just me or do weapons degrade much faster this time?


Yes, weapon degradation is bullshit now. But at least they automatically repair at bonfires. Bit of a strange one, that.
#7 at 10:58:32 - 15/03/2014
FlexibleFeline
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Not as good as Two Worlds, of course. Ahem!

Do you want to know where the fire sword is? It's early game, you must have gone past it. I was alerted to it by a message.
#8 at 11:00:02 - 15/03/2014
repairmanjack
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FlexibleFeline said:Not as good as Two Worlds, of course. Ahem!

Do you want to know where the fire sword is? It's early game, you must have gone past it. I was alerted to it by a message.


I think I can guess... fire-mottled tunnel with large lizard at the end? I chickened out of that fight. :D
#9 at 11:02:41 - 15/03/2014
FlexibleFeline
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Exactly - but I didn't fight it either....
#10 at 11:04:57 - 15/03/2014
repairmanjack
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Got it - by the skin of my teeth.

Oh, try wearing the Merchant's hat. It increases drop rate - and seems to give better loot. Just had an excellent piece of armour drop... which I expect I'll grow into.
#11 at 16:49:05 - 15/03/2014
FlexibleFeline
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Yep, been wearing that hat, though I just swapped it for a helmet, for my first boss fight: one of those fights where first time I almost beat him - a sliver of health left - and now he's beaten me five times in a row.
#12 at 08:09:25 - 16/03/2014
repairmanjack
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First boss, the giant? (I blundered into one before him - managed to peg it out when I realised I was in the wrong part of town.)

Beat the giant on my first go, but very close... after nine hours of play. Utterly hooked on this, but they've really taken the piss with the difficulty. I've spent forever clearing out the Tower of Heide area, so those gigantic bastards don't respawn... There's some very useful loot there. Too many groups of enemies, placed out of spite.

Oh, some very unorthodox shortcuts, too. Found one when an attacker took down a wall with an explosive intended for me. This thing is covered in secret details. Which makes it great.

Couple of bullshit instant deaths through traps. My wife dissolve into hysterics when I fought eight hollows back to back with a sliver of health... Survived, strutted towards my reward, only to be flattened by a chuffing boulder. I also hear some chests are booby-trapped.

This. Game.

Swordsman has improved the duel-wielding with a flame sword in one hand and buffed rapier in the other. Still turtlng against a lot of enemies though.

Seeing a lot of moans about patching it to make it easier. :D
#13 at 13:39:03 - 16/03/2014
HairyArse
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I am absolutely fucking rubbish at DS2.

One design choice I don't understand is that the more you die, the less health you get. How does that help?
#14 at 17:00:32 - 16/03/2014
FlexibleFeline
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I do think this is harder than Dark Souls and even Demon Souls - the diminishing health bar is a mechanic from the latter - but I think this is down to enemy placement and grouping as much as anything else. You still tend to die / lose huge chunks of health when you don't take on enemies carefully. I tend to end up rueing rush of blood to the head moments in combat.

#15 at 18:34:20 - 16/03/2014
FlexibleFeline
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repairmanjack said:First boss, the giant? (I blundered into one before him - managed to peg it out when I realised I was in the wrong part of town.)

Beat the giant on my first go, but very close... after nine hours of play. Utterly hooked on this, but they've really taken the piss with the difficulty. I've spent forever clearing out the Tower of Heide area, so those gigantic bastards don't respawn... There's some very useful loot there. Too many groups of enemies, placed out of spite.

Oh, some very unorthodox shortcuts, too. Found one when an attacker took down a wall with an explosive intended for me. This thing is covered in secret details. Which makes it great.

Couple of bullshit instant deaths through traps. My wife dissolve into hysterics when I fought eight hollows back to back with a sliver of health... Survived, strutted towards my reward, only to be flattened by a chuffing boulder. I also hear some chests are booby-trapped.

This. Game.

Swordsman has improved the duel-wielding with a flame sword in one hand and buffed rapier in the other. Still turtlng against a lot of enemies though.

Seeing a lot of moans about patching it to make it easier. :D


They should not make it easier - the difficulty is not unfair in any way.

I still don't have the balls to dual wield. I'm mostly using the flame sword, now upgraded to +3. I've also started to use a bow a lot (stating the obvious perhaps, but so handy for picking off enemies in situations where you would otherwise be overwhelmed).

I beat the last giant on my return to him, having taken an hour or two elsewhere to mop up. Not sure where to go now, though (I think he gave me a key?).
#16 at 18:38:14 - 16/03/2014
repairmanjack
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Dragon rider boss... Down in one. Rolling seems way more effective than blocking in this. Don't think he hit me once.
#17 at 00:09:58 - 17/03/2014
FlexibleFeline
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Yes, I beat him in one too, and I'm starting to enjoy having a light, rolly build - I've been experimenting with different types of armour and I definitely seem to benefit from light and mobile more.

I'm at Old Dragonslayer right now; I had him at about 25% first time but of course screwed up. I feel pretty confident I can finish him tomorrow.

#18 at 21:57:32 - 17/03/2014
HairyArse
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Took me three days and about 50 attempts to beat The Last Giant. In the end the only way I managed it was to get naked which made me quicker.
#19 at 16:08:44 - 18/03/2014
repairmanjack
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Those turtle-looking guards... Utter bastards.

Oh, found a bastard sword and some fancy duds.

What skills are people levelling? The one that improves poise has helped, and I'm pushing hard on strength right now. Still duel-wielding, but only on enemies my size. Off-hand rapier stuns them and flame sword puts them to bed.

I've sunk bloody hours into this already.
#20 at 20:15:31 - 18/03/2014
FlexibleFeline
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Endurance, dexterity and strength. I'm a bit worried about my low vitality, but then I'm using light armour and weapons - mobility is what I'm going for, and like HairyArse this is helping with the bosses. I'm also wondering if I should re-set and pump up my adaptability - not quite sure about that stat.

I've worked out an infallible move against the turtle style guards (what /are/ those things? What are they called?) - two-handed heavy attack with my sword, then swift roll backwards. Rinse, repeat about three times. This works perfectly with my current build.
#21 at 06:25:38 - 19/03/2014
HairyArse
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From what I've read elsewhere adaptability helps with your mobility and agility and also eventually lets you drink estus flasks very quickly while on the run instead of having to stop and chug, which would be very useful for me.

Currently getting destroyed by the Pursuer.
#22 at 18:57:11 - 19/03/2014
FlexibleFeline
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Thanks for the info on adaptability. It does sound useful. I'm wondering if I should not level up strength so much if I'm a dexterity build. Perhaps I should put some into that instead.

I believe the pursuer appears optionally earlier on (in the castle, up the stairs not far from the second bonfire in forest of the fallen giants), and then for real (as in compulsory boss fight) later.

I came across him at the castle and he handed my arse to me 5 times so I'm ignoring him for now...
#23 at 19:29:21 - 19/03/2014
repairmanjack
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Rat. Cunt. Fucking. Cunt. Vanguard. Bastard. Poison. Through. Fucking. Block. Cheap. Cunt. Fucking. Bastard.

Seriously? Twenty tries and fuck this random bullshit. When that cheap cunt finally turns up he one hit kills me, even if I have full health. Starting to think I'm not enjoying this, after a solid twenty five hours of play, there's nowhere I can advance to.
#24 at 01:31:56 - 23/03/2014
repairmanjack
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Huh. Cheesed it. No strategy, no learning; just a fluke.

And now... exploding running zombies.

Oh, do fuck off.
#25 at 02:47:32 - 23/03/2014
FlexibleFeline
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Haha! Sounds like you are having...what's the opposite of fun?

I guess you a fair bit ahead of me. I'm 20 hours in and I'm only at Flexile Sentry on the ship. How far ahead of that are you?

(I've pretty much clearered all enemies from all areas now, so not much more levelling to be had until i progress past this boss).
#26 at 11:37:13 - 23/03/2014
repairmanjack
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I've not beaten that boss; I decided to save for the reduced falling damage ring and drop down the well... Inching my way through that latest nonsense brought me out to the scariest place yet.
#27 at 17:45:31 - 23/03/2014
repairmanjack
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Oh, it's called The Gutter. Imagine the hardest bit of the game... in pitch blackness. Most deaths are people falling off the bloody path.
#28 at 17:55:01 - 23/03/2014
FlexibleFeline
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Doesn't sound like a lot of fun. I've now got a few areas open for exploration, and - hurrah - beat a boss on my first attempt for the first time. I'm not in a hurry to drop down that hole.

Also, weirdly, I've changed gender.../shrugs/
#29 at 18:55:49 - 23/03/2014
repairmanjack
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Progress! Decided to stop dying in the Gutter. Went back to the boat, killed the boss, and have sailed away to a new area. Also had a good soul help me waste the boss in Heide tower.

This new place looks like trouble.
#30 at 19:12:27 - 23/03/2014

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