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Dark Souls II Hands-on Preview

by on 07/30/2013

We recently went to an event to check out Namco Bandai’s latest titles. At the event we obviously made sure we checked out one of the most mutually loved/hated titles in the world, Dark Souls II.

During this demo I decided to pick the warrior. I started off in a dungeon where I headed down a ladder only to be greeted by a few undead soldiers. After fighting these opponents I found myself at a doorway leading to a lower level. As I entered the stairway it was pitch-black. Unable to see in front of me, I decided to run back to light a torch.


As I walked down I saw an enemy, called a turtle knight, with a massive hammer running towards me. Unable to block because of the torch in one hand and my sword in the other… once again I ran back upstairs. Waiting for the enemy to enter the top of the stairway now able to block his attacks, I saw him enter the room into the light. Ready to swing I dove to the right, hitting him one time before he landed a killing blow to my head.

Unfortunately, I wasn’t able to get past this part of the demo… seriously.

Releasing next March, Dark Souls 2 will remain as tough as its predecessors with a few tweaks and changes. Disregard any mention of this game being too easy for mainstream consumers.

The AI is now more immersed into the way you fight, for example — when attacking a monster with a certain strategy, as its health depletes, the enemy will change tactics, often killing you without warning, as you try to adjust to his new attacks.

At the start of Dark Souls 2 you begin as a simple warrior working your way through the organic storyline. As you play, you then get to choose whether or not to specialize as a warrior, sorcerer, temple knight, or dual swordsman.

A few more interesting changes/improvements/additions include:

  • Bonfires have been improved, and you’re now able to warp anytime you want in the menu screen.
  • Deeper weapon customization. You’re now able to combine poison and fire together on your sword as well as many different types of combinations.
  • Online multiplayer. It was mentioned, but Namco Bandai was very brief on the subject. More news is expected to come within the next 60 days.


If you want to play it sooner than March 2014, it will be on the show floor of NYCC October 10th to the 13th. I hope you can get farther than me. Dark Souls 2 looks very promising and the developers are determined to keep its difficulty level at a high.

I wish they would allow me to just play it fully cooperative. I don’t care if they call me a wimp the entire time, I just think it would be a lot of fun.

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  • 07/30/2013 at 6:29 pm

    My relationship with Dark Souls can be summed up by that scene at the end of Anchorman, where Vince Vaughn clutches the ladder that Will Ferrell is using to climb out of the bear pit.

    “I pure straight hate you” — *shakes ladder* — “but god dammit, do I respect you.”

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