Given that it will probably take me a while to get through Dark Souls, I decided to chronicle my experience with the game & record any interesting events or progress I make, or any observations about the game thus far.
So what happened on Day 2?
Well, first I started a second character. A blonde female knight named Seraph. The reason I created a second character was not to disregard my thief but to have a better character to slog through an area for the first time. Since knights do more & take more damage, I can go through a section with Seraph, learn the pitfalls & tricks, then go through it again later with Sibeal.
So I took Seraph through the asylum & got her to the same point as Sibeal, at the Firelink Shrine. From there, I headed down the elevator to do some grinding in the New Rondo Ruins. There are lots of undead at the start of the ruins that are easy to kill, as well as a few Lost Souls. It’s a simple matter to go down & kill them all, go back to the bonfire, & do it all again. There’s also a merchant there, but he has limited items. This is also a good place to practice combat, like backstabbing (which gives you a few extra souls, by the way).
Observation 1: there are no boundaries in the game. This means it is quite possible to slip & fall to your death. This happened twice, once for Seraph & Sibeal each, though in different places.
I didn’t proceed further than the first section of the ruins before heading back up. I checked north of the bonfire, but didn’t proceed very far, between the giant crow making me paranoid & the indestructible skeleton that chased me all the way back to the bonfire. So I headed northeast, up to the Undead Burg. As you would imagine, there are lots of undead & skeletons. But there were lots of Lost Souls. My second death for Seraph came when I tried to jump across what appeared to be a small gap but I ended up rolling instead & falling off the cliff.
Observation 2: jumping sucks. To jump, you have to sprint, which on the 360 requires you to hold down the B button. Then, while you’re still running, you have to hit the B button again to leap. It’s very tricky, & half the time you end up rolling.
I didn’t like fighting in the burg, because it’s very small & hard to manuever. That’s fine for Seraph, because she has a decent shield, but Sibeal has a metal dinner plate or something, so she still takes damage. It’s harder for my nimble thief to circle-strafe & backstab. But there were some fun moments. One is when the game mechanics work in my favor. This includes enemies falling off buildings to their death, which never ceases to be funny. One particular moment had me leaving a building onto a narrow walkway. The undead were obviously hanging over the sides of the railing, ready to ambush me. But I beat them to it. I managed to hit two of the undead & knock them off the building.
Observation 3: look out for barrels & crates. This has two applications. One is that enemies may be hiding behind these items waiting to ambush you. I died twice because undead knights burst through the door to the room I was in. But crates can also hide good things. This can include secret passages leading to souls, treasures or merchants.
Oh, & while I was playing as Seraph, my game was invaded. In addition to co-op play, players can invade other players’ game worlds & gain Humanity by slaying them. My game was invaded while I was trying to shop. When you fight another player, their character is obscured with a hazy red, so you can’t quite make them out. I think it was a Pyromancer. He kept throwing fireballs at me, which I easily circle-straffed around. It was tougher than fighting skeletons, but I’m happy to say I beat him & took his Humanity. That’ll teach you to interrupt a woman while she’s shopping.
Observation 4: if you’re being invaded, make sure there are no other enemies around. Nothing would suck more than having to fight another player & a horde of zombies.
Personally, I’m not crazy about the PvP aspect. I don’t plan to invade other games, so others should return the favor. I think there should be an option if you want to invade, which allows others to invade your game. It’s kind of unfair. I mean, think about it. Most people are only going to invade against players they think they can beat, i.e. lower level. Then again, I’m not sure what the guidelines are for invading. Can you only invade players who are in the same area (& therefore about the same level)? Is it only when they’re in a shop (I ask because that’s when the message popped up I was being invaded)? I certainly hope there are limits. Can you imagine being invaded during a boss fight?
While we’re on the subject of rants, whose idea was it to give skeletons firebombs? Annoying prats will throw them at you even at close range.
Observation 5: be careful when throwing bombs. They will bounce off walls & obstacles back at you. I know from experience.
At the end of the day, I managed to get both characters to the bonfire about half way through the burg. I don’t think I have far to go before the next boss. I also leveled up a bit. Tomorrow I plan to do some more grinding. The area I’m at is a good place for it. But do I have any more observations?
Observation 6: the camera is your friend. More than once an enemy was hiding just next to the door I had to go through. Always use your camera to check your surroundings.
Observation 7: save some Humanity to Kindle the bonfire. Sacrificing Humanity to Kindle the bonfire will allow it to restore more estus vials.
- Observation 8: try to lure enemies out. Avoid fighting more than one enemy at a time if you can. Often enemies have a sight range, & won’t attack if you stay outside that range. They also seem to have a movement range, after which they won’t chase you. I can’t say that this is true for all enemies, but I did come across some that wouldn’t advance any further even when they were in attack mode. Use this to lure enemies to you one at a time, & take the battle to an area to your advantage.