Written by LlamaLord on August 30, 2016 @ 3:08 am
Even though this title won RPG of the ear in 2009, I am shocked at how little of a commercial success it actually had. While not a failure, its sales number definitely did not reflect how progressive this title was at the time. Integrated multiplayer, challenging combat, and incredible replayability were all rare traits for console games in the early PS3 era. Its successor, Dark Souls, went on to achieve legendary status and it is unlikely that there will ever be a true sequel. However, that does not hinder the experience of trying out this game, even after seven years.
Gameplay: The first few hours will be tough for most new players. I found myself playing the first area for nearly three hours before getting through the first boss. The learning curve is unforgiving to those who have never played a Souls game before, but it is very rewarding. It is not uncommon to be stuck on a boss or level for upwards to five hours before breaking through. The combat has general issues with fluidity and can occasionally bug out in frustrating ways, but those moments are far and few between. The real beauty comes from the weapons themselves. Every weapon can be upgraded and enchanted, leaving a ton of room for a unique spin on every character you create. Overall, the more you get accustomed to the combat, the more fun there is to be had.
Story: I'll be honest, this part of the game is vague and not very important to the core experience. For lore fans, there is enough to encourage a deeper look at the plot of the game and what exactly you are fighting towards. However, the casual gamer like myself will just blast through the seldom texts and get the brutal combat as quickly as possible.
Graphics and Visuals: Demon's Souls absolutely blew me out of the water with its graceful attention to detail. Everything is unique to the franchise and still to this day is objectively beautiful. The unsettling enemies and hazy air all add up to an enriching environment that some would argue still has Dark Souls beat. World 3 is my personal favorite, as it leads you through a haunting tower that is full of disturbing prison wardens and epic battles. Every level has its own charms and nightmares to explore, conquer, and occasionally just run away from in fear.
Sound: Boss battles are a dramatic and almost cinematic experience thanks to From Software's sound budget. The orchestra performs wonderfully as the sounds of violins and horns instill a hopelessness inside of you. The basic gameplay has very little music, but instead concentrates on the delicate sounds of footsteps and the clinking of armor. Ever weapon has its own respective sound when it strikes and every fire spell roars like it could singe of your eyebrows if you got to close to the screen. I have played nearly every From Software game, and if there is one thing they are consistent about, it is the absoluteness of their sound design.
Overall: This game is not a casual experience or an engaging story, but it is one hell of a video game. Demon's Souls isn't going to be enjoyed by everyone, but to those who can find joy in a joyless world, Demon's Souls will leave you struggling to survive for 50 to 100 hours depending on your skill level.
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