Forbes: "Is Dark Souls II The Worst Game Ever Made?"

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#151 Posted by Tennmuerti (8075 posts) -

A hyperbolic clickbait title and then a bunch of wankery in the text that has next to nothing actually to do with the game itself.

Pfffffffft.

#152 Posted by Cybertification (201 posts) -

Who the hell thinks Dark Souls is niche?

#153 Edited by EXTomar (4690 posts) -

@jeust said:

@extomar said:

...clearly? If he "doesn't play many games", why pick this one to harp on instead of much more visible games?

Meh, people need to stop worrying why someone else loves or hates things.

Still this is something that surpasses subjectivity. I, in good conscience, could never say that Big Rigs, or a lame atari 2600 game is better than Dark Souls 2. I'm not even a Dark Souls' fan.

He probably never heard of ET, Big Rigs, Superman 64, Bullet Witch, Naughty Bear or even Rogue Warrior.

I don't question his opinion (he can believe whatever) but I question (your?) the supposition that he doesn't play games. Someone who doesn't play games wouldn't have picked out this game and instead picked a much more visible, more well known game that is filled with just as much "nonsense" to point out to the masses.

On the other hand, I get the feeling he did play this and had a horrible experience which is a fine thing to write about.

#154 Edited by Video_Game_King (36272 posts) -
Really? This shit again?

@jeust said:

Still this is something that surpasses subjectivity. I, in good conscience, could never say that Big Rigs, or a lame atari 2600 game is better than Dark Souls 2. I'm not even a Dark Souls' fan.

He probably never heard of ET, Big Rigs, Superman 64, Bullet Witch, Naughty Bear or even Rogue Warrior.

#155 Posted by TheManWithNoPlan (5438 posts) -

This honestly comes across more like the ramblings of a madman than an actual critique on the game itself.

#156 Edited by Jeust (10560 posts) -

@extomar said:

@jeust said:

@extomar said:

...clearly? If he "doesn't play many games", why pick this one to harp on instead of much more visible games?

Meh, people need to stop worrying why someone else loves or hates things.

Still this is something that surpasses subjectivity. I, in good conscience, could never say that Big Rigs, or a lame atari 2600 game is better than Dark Souls 2. I'm not even a Dark Souls' fan.

He probably never heard of ET, Big Rigs, Superman 64, Bullet Witch, Naughty Bear or even Rogue Warrior.

I don't question his opinion (he can believe whatever) but I question (your?) the supposition that he doesn't play games. Someone who doesn't play games wouldn't have picked out this game and instead picked a much more visible, more well known game that is filled with just as much "nonsense" to point out to the masses.

On the other hand, I get the feeling he did play this and had a horrible experience which is a fine thing to write about.

I didn't say that he doesn't play games. I said that he didn't play the really bad ones. ahah

I mean he isn't such a big aficionado that strays from what he likes that much, to think DK2 is really that bad. He probably isn't someone who takes plunges regularly to games outside of his confort zone, to the place where it is likely to get burned one time or another. But I can be wrong.

Online
#157 Posted by Fenrisulfr (141 posts) -

Dark Souls II is by no means the "worst game ever." Sure there's a ton of hyperbole in the article about his extended stay in the Dark Souls universe, but he does make some good points. I'm 33 hours into Dark Souls II, and I have to say, it's a pretty shit sequel.

While the beginning is alright, I have run into this wall of nonsense that is Vendrick and the Ancient Dragon. Like the author, I have been grinding my way to that dragon in an attempt to take it down. While I've only got into the fight with Vendrick a couple of times and have figured him out as some kind of half-assed Artorias. Granted, I'm sure that I can kill Vendrick, I want to get the last soul from the dragon to make the fight faster since I'm doing effectively half, if not less, damage to him. I'm also a bit of a completionist when it comes to Dark Souls. The fight with the Ancient Dragon is where the game completely falls apart.

There is nothing to be learned from this fight. It's a repeat of the fight with the three Guardian Dragons I had on the way to the keep with the exception that this guy is huge. Not only is there nothing to be learned, but the randomness of how the dragon moves and, eventually, leaps into the air to spew fire into the arena in a wide swathe, is one of the few, if not the only, unavoidable death in the game. This is completely against everything that the Dark Souls series has been saying the whole time. "There's always a way out." Not in this fight. There is no way out, simply due to the size of the dragon and the blast radius of the attack. If the dragon decides to jump up and does a 180⁰ spin, you're done. I have yet to see a character move fast enough to evade an attack like that. And it has happened to me every fight. I then look at Youtube videos of people beating the dragon, and they only ever win when the dragon doesn't do the half circle spin in the air and shoot down. This is a problem because this fight boils down to be entirely luck based. And luck, as we all know, isn't a skill that can be learned or refined or adjusted. It's just luck.

And that's why Dark Souls II, while not the worst game ever, is a pretty shit sequel. It's breaking its own rules.

#158 Posted by Myrmicus (220 posts) -

Dark Souls II is by no means the "worst game ever." Sure there's a ton of hyperbole in the article about his extended stay in the Dark Souls universe, but he does make some good points. I'm 33 hours into Dark Souls II, and I have to say, it's a pretty shit sequel.

While the beginning is alright, I have run into this wall of nonsense that is Vendrick and the Ancient Dragon. Like the author, I have been grinding my way to that dragon in an attempt to take it down. While I've only got into the fight with Vendrick a couple of times and have figured him out as some kind of half-assed Artorias. Granted, I'm sure that I can kill Vendrick, I want to get the last soul from the dragon to make the fight faster since I'm doing effectively half, if not less, damage to him. I'm also a bit of a completionist when it comes to Dark Souls. The fight with the Ancient Dragon is where the game completely falls apart.

There is nothing to be learned from this fight. It's a repeat of the fight with the three Guardian Dragons I had on the way to the keep with the exception that this guy is huge. Not only is there nothing to be learned, but the randomness of how the dragon moves and, eventually, leaps into the air to spew fire into the arena in a wide swathe, is one of the few, if not the only, unavoidable death in the game. This is completely against everything that the Dark Souls series has been saying the whole time. "There's always a way out." Not in this fight. There is no way out, simply due to the size of the dragon and the blast radius of the attack. If the dragon decides to jump up and does a 180⁰ spin, you're done. I have yet to see a character move fast enough to evade an attack like that. And it has happened to me every fight. I then look at Youtube videos of people beating the dragon, and they only ever win when the dragon doesn't do the half circle spin in the air and shoot down. This is a problem because this fight boils down to be entirely luck based. And luck, as we all know, isn't a skill that can be learned or refined or adjusted. It's just luck.

And that's why Dark Souls II, while not the worst game ever, is a pretty shit sequel. It's breaking its own rules.

If the difficulty of the Ancient Dragon and Vendrick boss fights are your only reason to call it "shit sequel", I'll say it's really poor. Vendrick and the Ancient Dragon aren't that difficult to fight, you're just doing it wrong... And no, it's not based on luck. Not only all their attack are avoidable, but you can even influence how they act buy placing yourself in certain spots, for an even easier battle.

#159 Edited by JohnTunoku (115 posts) -

A rather well articulated psychotic rant, but it is still a psychotic rant. No sane person spends 300 to 400 hours playing a game they do not like.

#160 Edited by Yummylee (21547 posts) -

@fenrisulfr: You're going to lambaste an entire game because of two (which I agree aren't great) boss battles? Both of which are also optional? It's not like every boss battle in the original Dark Souls is flawless, and in fact I consider The Bed of Chaos to quite possibly be the worst boss in the series.

#161 Posted by Zevvion (1863 posts) -

@fenrisulfr: Well... no. You're just not capable of beating him (might I add a very crucial: yet) and you're looking for something other to blame than you. This sounds harsh, but I don't mean it that way. In Dark Souls, you suck at everything until you learn what to do. This is the only rule of Dark Souls. The game is staying true to its rule, you're just rejecting it.

#162 Posted by Fenrisulfr (141 posts) -

@myrmicus:

I didn't say Vendrick was hard. I only said he'll take a long time to defeat due to how his armor if figured out into the equation. Like I said before, I have him solved. Beating him will just take more time than skill. I also didn't say that the Ancient Dragon is hard. I said that having a random unavoidable that will one shot you destroys what the game had been teaching the player up to that point. I have been trying out different strategies to sue against said boss, but when it comes down to it, that flame blast has such a large area of effect that it becomes almost impossible to avoid unless a specific movement is followed. And even then, there may not be enough time to fully escape the range, even if the strategy has been followed to the T.

I also never said that it was those two reasons alone are what made me call this game a shit sequel. I withheld information that wasn't immediately pertinent to the conversation at hand, therefore didn't express them. My problems with this game go a bit farther than, "Hey, some of these bosses contain some bullshit," since that's already par for the course.

#163 Posted by Myrmicus (220 posts) -

@fenrisulfr: Except there is a way to reduce Vendrick defense and the Ancient Dragon has no "random unavoidable oneshot". His flying AoE sure is rough, but if you're careful enough, you can avoid it quite easily. And that's not even counting the fact that if you're acting the right way, he won't use it at all. If you find it too random or based on luck, then I insist : you're doing it wrong. Being greedy is a death sentance to any boss in the Soul Series... You want to hit them too much, they hit you.

#164 Posted by Fenrisulfr (141 posts) -

@yummylee:

No doubt, Bed of Chaos sucked, but once you know what to do, it's doable on the first go around. Knock out the right. Quit. Reload. Run left. Shoot the left. If you have no bow, just run and jump over the small gap. Quit. Reload. Hit the center. Make it fall. Move slightly right and drop down. Mind the beard. Move in for the kill. The thing is with of Bed of Chaos is that you can do it every time without fail. Even when that firestorm-like attack is used, once you evade (or survive) it, it won't use it again for a little while (at least in my experience).

But onto your main point: optional or not, the bosses need to follow the rules set forth by everything else in the game, and to a larger extent the series. While Vendrick isn't hard (note how I solved him after only my second run) I want to drain his defense so I'm not in some long ass fight doing half or quarter damage to him than I should be doing. So he's not the problem. He's a symptom. The Anceient Dragon's AI is the problem. In every match with him I've had, it's been lost by the same move. The dragon leaps up then shoots down. If I'm in front of him, i can't find a position to get away. If I'm behind him, then it's the tail. So if the creature decides to flip around, the fight is over and the move becomes unavoidable. After watching a few video of people tackling this boss, it looks as though it's random. That's a problem. That means that there's an unavoidable insta-kill attack in a game that is constantly beating you over the head while screaming, "LEARN ME!"

I also have far more grievances with the game that go beyond just these two bosses. The dragon was just at the forefront of the article and I figured I would stay at least on topic of relating to it rather than trying to turn this into a personal grievance where everyone gets to learn that, "Fenrisulfr hates Dark Souls." After all, I didn't drop 385 hours (according to Steam) into Dark Souls I because I hated it.

#165 Posted by Fenrisulfr (141 posts) -

@zevvion:

Yes, I'm quite aware of that rule. Thus my grievance with this boss. It ignores this rule for one of its attacks. A specific attack, but, nonetheless, it occurs. I have danced around this guy in an attempt to bait the basic flame attack, bites, stomps, you name it. It goes fine until the AI decides to end the fight. Then the dragon is up, he spins around and then lets loose. That's always the end of the fight. I can avoid the fire at 90⁰ turns, and even those approaching 135⁰ and beyond a few more degrees. But once it does that U-turn, fight's over. One shot kill. Always. I have yet to see a case of that move happening and someone evading it. Like I state previously: all of the videos I've seen people did not have that exact move done to them. The dragon would either leap to the side or would do a much more shallow turn.

@myrmicus:

I know how to reduce Vendrick's defenses. Thus why I've been trying to take down the dragon. Each of some special souls reduce his defense by half. I've also had zero luck with getting the dragon to not perform his aerial attack move. Every position I go to, he does it. In front, on the side, under, behind. Everywhere. He even performed it at the beginning of a round when I entered. He roared. I stood in front of him. Then he took off and blam. Done.

I also don't understand why you think I'm doing things I'm not. Like getting greedy. I'll hit him once, MAYBE twice, let off, wait for the stamina to come back, then attempt to evade the aerial attack with a full bar of stamina. I've even done it while my character only has a shield and weapon equipped in an attempt to increase my movement speed. Still doesn't work and I'm running out of things to try against this boss. It's that one attack. The rest I can avoid. It's just that one attack where it pulls that U-turn in the air and lets loose.

#166 Edited by Yummylee (21547 posts) -

@fenrisulfr: Like I said I don't think Ancient Dragon is exactly a highlight of Dark Souls 2, however I at least know that its overhead fire spray is avoidable -- I've done it, many, many times. The idea is to rush in, attack its toe, then run back. Repeat that until you've better learnt just how much space that overhead firebreath attack will cover and then run past the dragon--though not through its legs--once you feel your current surroundings are getting a little too close to comfort. It should then spin around towards you, though it may take a couple attempts, to which you should still be out of reach of any further overhead fire attacks; either way he should eventually find himself once again facing you, and you just then simply carry on as normal.

So long as you're naked, and have one of those stamina-buff shields equipped, you should be able to avoid it surprisingly easy in fact. While the attack does cover a fair bit of ground, the arena itself is actually surprisingly spacious; so long as you get ready to leg it as soon as he begins flapping those wings, you should be fine. It's certainly no more bullshit than potentially having to quit the game over and over again.

#167 Edited by Baillie (4086 posts) -

You could just use Gower's Ring of Protection. That thing kept me safe when I wasn't far enough away from the fire. Easy afterwards.

#168 Posted by crcruz3 (255 posts) -

@icemael said:

Is "Is Dark Souls II the worst game ever made?" the worst article ever made?

hahaha.

#169 Posted by jakob187 (21665 posts) -

I'll be honest: I find the article to be interesting. I don't immediately dismiss it solely because I like Dark Souls as a franchise and he doesn't. There are some things that I cannot agree with him on at all, but he does make a few points that also sort of bugged me about DS2.

For instance, he points out that DS2 is basically a non-seamless open world game, and he's pretty much right. I can't think of how many times I've gotten to a spot and said "really, this is the end?" The whole waypoint thing with bonfires bugs me quite a bit, specifically because it feels like fast travel. Also, I understand WHY they make enemies stop respawning after a while, but it DOES leave the world feeling rather void and empty, making continued exploration in those areas feel kind of worthless beyond hunting for secrets. Even then, there just isn't any danger. Sure, you can refill it with danger, but as it stands, I have yet to feel the need to actually use a Bonfire Aesthetic. That's pretty saddening, to feel this world as some empty space to hunt for secrets after you've done battle. The risk isn't there. Hell, I rarely ever get invaded! It's quite the contrast from the first game, and overall, it feels too safe.

Regardless, I love the shit out of the game. I LIKE having that strict set of rules to adhere to, then finding ways to break those rules to my advantage. The game is very much about risk and reward in its battles, learning the environment and its inhabitants, and using everything in your arsenal to take advantage of it all. Fuck, I never used a SINGLE FIREBOMB in Dark Souls, but they are CONSTANTLY STOCKED in my inventory when playing Dark Souls 2. The game has forced me to rethink my strategies. Moreover, the openness of your character build is LITERALLY UNLIKE ANYTHING ELSE ON THE MARKET! There's no skill tree. Your skill tree is your stat allocation, your gear, your thumb skills, and your mind. It forces you to realize that you are an underpowered weakling that is only as great as the sum of all your parts. Even then, stat allocation and gear play a small role when compared to your ACTUAL SKILLS!

The guy has his opinion, and that's fine. I can't say that I knock him on the opinion. I just think he's in that group of people that are fascinated by how people are obsessed with the game and just doesn't see any of it as being worthwhile in the long run. He also probably doesn't play PvP, so that would be a massive problem as well. That's where a LOT of the end-game value is within that game.

Now...if they would just make a Dark Souls MMO...

#170 Posted by Myrmicus (220 posts) -

@fenrisulfr: Here, some tip : Stay between his back legs, between the talons, to be more precise. By doing that, he will just try to stomp you most of the time. He could breath fire under him now and then, but it's easy to see this coming, as he slowly rises from before trying to fry you. He can fly to do the AoE fire breath attack, but it's really, really rare.

I assumed you were greedy because you said not having the time to run away from his AoE attack. I never bothered to strip my character naked before fighting him and I had no problem. That had to do with the fact that I always stay behind him, next to his back legs (even without the "stomp strategy") and thus, running to his tail was enough to avoid the flame breath... although, you must be careful, because the tail can crush you.

#171 Posted by Alphazero (1536 posts) -

I don't think it's Dark Souls he hates so much as it is all of videogames and the devotion they can create in players jumping through the arbitrary game hoops. He's saying there's no value in it.

The next stage is to realize the same thing can be said of all of life and you have to create your own value.

#172 Posted by crcruz3 (255 posts) -

This guy, Michael, loves the game. He's just trolling.

#173 Edited by TruthTellah (8850 posts) -

I checked out some of his other articles and Twitter, and... I think this is just a deeply troubled person.

That, or he has let his writing style get so out of control that he makes himself sound mad.

I did learn that he loves Demon's Souls though. So, that's something.

#174 Edited by HeyGuys (345 posts) -

@truthtellah: I haven't looked at anything beyond this article but I'm impressed by how oblivious someone has to be to write in the way that he does. I don't understand how someone could make it out of their teenage years, early twenties at the latest, and still not have matured beyond the way this man expresses himself.

#175 Posted by TruthTellah (8850 posts) -

@heyguys said:

@truthtellah: I haven't looked at anything beyond this article but I'm impressed by how oblivious someone has to be to write in the way that he does. I don't understand how someone could make it out of their teenage years, early twenties at the latest, and still not have matured beyond the way this man expresses himself.

If you read his tweets, they seem to fit with the article. Or look at excerpts of his book about sex.

#176 Edited by Slag (4269 posts) -

I checked out some of his other articles and Twitter, and... I think this is just a deeply troubled person.

That, or he has let his writing style get so out of control that he makes himself sound mad.

I did learn that he loves Demon's Souls though. So, that's something.

I definitely think so too. He seems tormented by his passion for games. As though blames them for whatever reason he feels deeply unfulfilled in life.

If this some elaborate act or satire he is super committed to it as he has been doing it for years from what I can tell. I've been trying to figure out what Demon Souls does "right" that Dark Souls 1&2 does "wrong" in his mind. So far I can't reconcile his opinions on that....

Honestly I feel pretty bad for him and am slightly worried about his well being.

#177 Edited by EXTomar (4690 posts) -

@jeust said:

@extomar said:

@jeust said:

@extomar said:

...clearly? If he "doesn't play many games", why pick this one to harp on instead of much more visible games?

Meh, people need to stop worrying why someone else loves or hates things.

Still this is something that surpasses subjectivity. I, in good conscience, could never say that Big Rigs, or a lame atari 2600 game is better than Dark Souls 2. I'm not even a Dark Souls' fan.

He probably never heard of ET, Big Rigs, Superman 64, Bullet Witch, Naughty Bear or even Rogue Warrior.

I don't question his opinion (he can believe whatever) but I question (your?) the supposition that he doesn't play games. Someone who doesn't play games wouldn't have picked out this game and instead picked a much more visible, more well known game that is filled with just as much "nonsense" to point out to the masses.

On the other hand, I get the feeling he did play this and had a horrible experience which is a fine thing to write about.

I didn't say that he doesn't play games. I said that he didn't play the really bad ones. ahah

I mean he isn't such a big aficionado that strays from what he likes that much, to think DK2 is really that bad. He probably isn't someone who takes plunges regularly to games outside of his confort zone, to the place where it is likely to get burned one time or another. But I can be wrong.

Jeff doesn't seem to like the game. Jeff is "a big aficionado". Jeff has his comfort zone and seems to stick to it. It seems that one of the differences between this guy and Jeff is that Jeff never bothered to write down "I don't like Dark Souls".

I'm not really harping on you specifically but the attitude and implication of threads like this is that it stems from the erroneous idea that "the reviewer is wrong". It has always bothered me that people get wrapped up in the opinion of someone grab for a fallacy to try and tear it down when it is not necessary or appropriate. For whatever ever reason people care enough to make 170~ posts about something that isn't interesting to argue.

#178 Posted by Pop (2626 posts) -

I think he broke up with his significant other because he was playing Dark Souls 2.

He also says a couple of times that you learn all this information that is pointless, like how mobs attack and boss tells and all that kind of stuff. What's the point of knowing all that stuff? Because it's like any other piece of entertainment that you like, I think it's cool that I know where all the monsters are in a certain zone, is this information useless in any other place than this game? Yes. Do I care? No, because I like it, and I want to know all it's dirty secrets.

He's like my non-gamer friends that say stuff like "Why do you fill your brain with all that useless information?" and my answer is always "Because I like it. What do you fill your brain with?" and they just shrug, and say something like "I don't know, important stuff"

#179 Posted by Hailinel (24427 posts) -

As Patrick said in Bombin' in the A.M., he has a point (whether it's one we agree with or not), but he sabotages it with his extreme hyperbole.

#180 Edited by Gatehouse (610 posts) -

It’s the worst and least ethical form of play, taking the naturally constrained single encounters of Chess or Go into the heart of an infinity spiral rotating out from the center of a box of microprocessors built out of a grand network of exploitive labor practices around the world, creating a transfixing hallucination sublimely disassociated from the networks of labor required to produce it.

The writer has clearly had a stroke. Or they desperately need to read The Elements of Style.

I was going to quote that here, but thank you for doing so before me. This might be one of the most mind-bogglingly silly sentences that I have ever read.

#181 Posted by callsignneptune (27 posts) -

Easily the most pretentious 'review' I have ever read.

#182 Posted by Fenrisulfr (141 posts) -

@myrmicus:

@yummylee:

I managed to beat the game between when you two made your posts and when I'm making this post. I only managed to beat the Ancient Dragon because it did not use the move I had mentioned earlier. He jumped and did the flame breathe attack, but not in the way that it had performed it before. Despite killing the Ancient Dragon through the use of a couple of different tactics, I will stand beside what I've claimed thus far concerning the boss (and the game in what I've spoken about).

#183 Edited by Bombanana (36 posts) -

The Souls games aren't as hard as people make them to be. If you try to understand and learning the formula and play them by their rules, they become challenging but always motivating, rewarding games. To me it seems like some are just refusing to accept these rules and therefore have a frustrating experience with it. I don't think that you can blame the game for that though and imo the Souls games are indeed among the best things that happened to gaming in the last couple of years.

Edit: This article really is a pain to read. "300-400 hours"? WTF. I needed 50 something for my first playthrough of Dark Souls 1 and i think even less for Demons. I just finished a DS1 replay on PC and then a NG+ playthrough and needed roughly 55 hours, not rushed, including Artorias DLC. The DS ll credits rolled after 55 hours too...The guy must love the game much more than me if he managed to put that much time into them - but he certainly did not pay attention to how these games work, if he still struggles to understand how you play them. I call this article a hoax.

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