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GameCritics.com Podcast Episode 61: Dark Souls, Gaming Confessions

Tim Spaeth's picture

Dark Souls. Need I type more? Plus: Our most embarrassing gaming confessions, and indie hits Wizorb and Robotriot. Featuring Chi Kong "Not Sure Where These Quotes Go" Lui, Brad Gallaway, Mike Bracken, Richard Naik, and Tim Spaeth.

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Category Tags
Platform(s): Xbox 360   PS3  
Developer(s): From Software  
Series: Demon's Souls   Dark Souls  
Genre(s): Role-Playing   Open World  
Articles: Reports   Podcasts  

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That was probably the best

That was probably the best podcast in GameCritics history. Tim could read a phonebook aloud and he'd still find a way to make it entertaining.

I stand by what I said about Dark Souls, it's a very good game flanked on all sides by downright horrible design decisions.

Totally agree with Eric's

Totally agree with Eric's comment, the gaming confessions segment is one of the topic that makes GC podcasts awesome.

Eric Bowman wrote: I stand

Eric Bowman wrote:

I stand by what I said about Dark Souls, it's a very good game flanked on all sides by downright horrible design decisions.

my humble self agrees. (based on what i experienced on DS1.0)

Carelessly button mashing is possible in many games? Really?
The difference between the "average game" and DS is not that DS forces the player to play more cautiously, it's DS only offers this single rigid way of playing, while many other games let inexperienced or laid back gamers, who don't want to be challenged at a freaking level continuously, enjoy it on a low difficulty, which often allows almost any approach, but at the same time those games offer also a harder difficulty that definitely not allows run and gun button mashing.
Currently playing Quantum of Solace. Run and Gun kills you on hard difficulty. Almost immediately. It's no RnG shooter like Serious Sam, even not like its engines blueprint; CoD4, so you better use cover.
DS has a clear vision of how they think every individual should enjoy their game, but all who can't or don't want are left out for no rational reason, while other games offer variety and offer the tense "play it properly" experience but also the "just push some buttons here and there" experience. That's a tremendously better game design if you ask me, offering a fun time to more than just the players who will play it "properly".

And the exploration of the non documentation is part of the game?
Whoa. I understand that point in Minecraft where the whole game is based around creating every quest and gameplay out of nothing, but in DS it's just one of the horrible design decisions to make it appear like a broken RPG within a brilliant hack&slay-action-adventure.

Excellent Work

Another highly enjoyable podcast - thanks all!

Eric - for the sake of argument, could you list the horrible design decisions? I can think of one supremely irritating situation I've got myself in so far that could have been designed better, maybe, but not so many overall.


I seriously think this may be your best podcast since that Chi3 episode that was full of Nintendo bashing :D


Dark Souls was fantastic overall however I feel that when the developers decided to remove the nexus hub they made an incredibly poor design decision. I ended up in the poison world got a little bit further in than I most likely should have and reached a bonfire in the middle of it. At this point I was stuck between a rock and a hard place since I couldn't progress forward (believe me I tried dozens of times) and the way back was so convoluted that I just gave up about 6 hours into the game. I absolutely loved demon's souls and made it to new game++ but if I was in over my head I could at least go back to the main world and go to an easier level to grind/get new gear/level up. The lack of a nexus that you can fast travel to honestly destroyed my experience with the game and I'm not the only one I have a couple of friends that also loved demon's souls and quit dark souls after a few hours for the exact same reason. I'm fine with the game being difficult but by not allowing me the opportunity to go back and divert my attention to other parts of the world the game put me in a place where going both forward and backwards were so unappealing I just put the game down and walked away.

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