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I reviewed it; I created a guide for it; I lived and breathed it for over a month – Dark Souls is my game of the year.

As a follow up to the great Demon’s Souls (also my Game of the Year at the time), expectations couldn’t be higher. To my delight, it met pretty much all of them, and soared even higher than it’s predecessor in many respects.

So what’s the main draw of Dark Souls for me? After playing the King’s Field series for the first time, I developed a soft spot for free-roaming adventure games. Simply put, there’s nothing quite like roaming around a completely foreign countryside, not knowing what to expect at every turn – in short, the entire game is exciting – not just the few and far between “shock” moments that seems to be the industry norm.

Additionally, Dark Souls was the most enjoyable game of the year for me for another reason; difficulty. To be blunt, a lot of games these days don’t go out of the way to offer a challenge. For instance, the first 20 hours of Final Fantasy XIII is presented through a series of tunnels, and offers little exploration or challenge in terms of pathfinding. Most games these days also have an extensive tutorial – and by extensive, I mean that tooltips consistently pop up during the entire game and hold your hand (Fable).

The secret to Dark Souls is that it’s not just hard for the sake of being hard: if you die, it really feels like your fault. If a boulder rolls down a stairwell and kills you, it’s because you weren’t fast enough to dodge it. If an enemy jumps around a corner and slices your throat, it’s because you didn’t have your shield up, and were a little bit to cavalier with that shadowy corner.

Dark Souls also doesn’t give you a whole lot of help – it gives you the basics, immediately throws you into your first boss fight, then leaves you in a ditch for dead – after that, the real fun begins. A lot of the allure of Dark Souls is finding your own way – finding out what type of combat you excel in, and what your next move is. There are no “stages” – the world is yours for the taking, and there are a number of different ways you can approach it. For those reasons and more, Dark Souls is my Game of the Year.

  1. I picked up Demon’s Souls last year but I couldn’t get into it. I’m just a soft modern gamer I guess. I like the bleakness associated with the games, but the gameplay wasn’t for me.

    • avatar Patricia

      i like third posern games. why? because not just it has cools features, its also fun. i mean its like reality! you take cover and stuff

  2. Not surprised you picked this one Chris. It was a great game and I am even still in the middle of posting a let’s play for it on you tube. While I am not sure it is my game of the year it is easily in the top 3.

  3. avatar Arttemis

    It’s such a beautiful game, and with its amazing and rewarding design, I completely agree.

    • avatar Desi

      With every new appearance of Moussa Ibrahim Douch Bag, he seems to be given cart blnach to say what he wants, which isnt much actually apart making people’s blood boil. The bastards couldnt have chosen a better idiot to represent them. If thats all the regime can come up with to account for their crimes, then the end is near it seems. The thugs are preparing for an Iraq scenario rather than go peacefully. If a showdown with ground troops does take place I hope the people of Tripoli will come to the aid of NATO troops in sterilizing the country from this curse from Sirte. For sure a lot of Tripolitanians are waiting for that day. Another bad bit of news is that Tunis is saying they are preparing for a quarter million Libyans crossing the border.

  4. Great read. I am looking forward to implementing this concept of friend retrieval. Thanks

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