Dark Souls on PC is going to blow the story wide open.

#1 Posted by LordXavierBritish (6320 posts) -

So I hadn't actually dug that deeply into Prepare to Die Edition other than just reading the few articles announcing it and the initial trailer, and only now do I realize the true breadth of content they are going to be adding to the fiction.
 
If you go to the Dark Souls site and read about the areas and NPCs they are going to be adding to the game, and you know anything about the story of Dark Souls, then you should be as excited as I am because what From is adding has the potential to completely demolish our perceptions of the lore of Dark Souls.
 
I'm just going to lay this shit out so I can make it abundantly clear why this is going to be the best fucking shit ever.

Also I'm going to spoil shit, so go buy and beat Dark Souls.

Artorias the Abysswalker

Everyone knows about this by now. The dude is plastered over fucking everything.
 
For those who don't know, Artorias the Abysswalker is one of the four knights of Gwyn and had been tasked, either by Gwyn or perhaps of his own volition, with destroying the Darkwraiths who plagued New Londo. At some point he defected from his duty and made a covenant with Darkstalker Kaathe, the leader of the Darkwraiths, effectively abandoning his duty to become one of the very monsters he was hunting. It is his ring you take from Sif in order to traverse the Abyss and defeat the Four Kings of New Londo and he is tied deeply into the lore of Anor Londo, Darkroot Garden, and New Londo Ruins. In Prepare to Die he will be introduced as a new boss, and perhaps be one of the most important fights next to the battle with Gwyn himself. Through enemy descriptions we can see there will be a new enemy type known as Abyss Guards, so it could be that Artorias still resides somewhere within the Abyss itself.
 
Considering how big a player he seems to be in the events preceding Dark Souls, it was kind of weird how little we learned about him. He is the reason for the Forest Hunters existence and one of the few beings to ever survive the Abyss. Through Artorias we could potentially learn more about the stories of Great Gray Wolf Sif, Alvina, Lord's Blade Ciaran, the Darkwraiths, or perhaps even Gwyn and the other knights.
 
There is actually very little to say about the impact Artorias could have on the story because any revelation regarding him can't really be less than prolific. In many ways he was the last figure to have a major impact on the world before the arrival of the chosen undead and is in many ways as important to the lore as characters like Seath and the Witch of Izalith.
 

Oolacile Tomb

It's really weird how much focus seems to be on Darkroot in Prepare to Die, but fuck it I'm not complaining.
 
Oolacile was a peaceful neighboring kingdom of Lordran. They were incredibly advanced in terms of sorceries, having developed magics strange even to the eyes of the scholars of Vinheim. However, where as the scholars of the Dragon School focused on creating arcane tools of war, the mages of Oolacile practiced more docile magics used for hiding away rather than engaging their enemies. These include Hidden Body, Chameleon, and arguably Tranquil Walk of Peace. They seem to have been adept at the art of manipulating and controlling light as well as the magical manipulation of weaponry as is seen in the Enchanted Ember and spells like Repair. It seems sorcery may have had some religious aspect to it in Oolacile, the same way miracles do to the members of The Way of White and the clerics of Thorolund
 
The only reason we know jack shit about Oolacile is due to a single NPC, Dusk. Dusk is found in Darkroot Basin after defeating the Hydra. She is hidden away in the very back of the area, bound in the form of a Golden Crystal Golem. Once freed, she states that she is the last remaining denizen of Oolacile, a princess of the forgotten kingdom before it was razed to the ground in some unknown catastrophe. She was somehow removed from time, thrown into a distorted dimension by some force that is never really explained. The only way to contact her after freeing her from the golem is via summoning sign, a technique that raises more questions than it answers.
 
We know very little of Oolacile outside of speculations of what it was like and what calamity occurred there. The ruins seen around Darkroot are thought to be the ruins of Oolacile itself, this would include things like the tower containing the Moonlight Butterfly and the Stone Knights scattered around the forest.
 
Perhaps the most interesting detail though are the crystal golems themselves. Why are they in Darkroot, and why only around the Hydra where Dusk was sealed? The only other area of the game that contains these enemies is the Crystal Caves, the domain of Seath the Scaleless and the area in which the Primordial Crystal is housed. This item is the source of Seath's immortality, and the artifact he stole from the Everlasting Dragons during their war with the bearers of the Lord's Souls.
 
This, above all, raises some very big questions about Oolacile and its place in the lore. Could the dragons or Seath have been responsible for the destruction of Oolacile? Were the mages of Oolacile responsible for the creation of the Primordial Crystal? If not, are the golems there on Seath's behalf and if so what is their objective? Who sealed Dusk in the golem and why?
 
At the very least, I think there is a connection between Seath and Oolacile. Seath is said to be the grandfather of all sorcery, but I think this refers only to the sorceries of the Dragon School of Vinheim. Whether he was only digging through the ruins for research or was directly involved with the destruction of Oolacile, I think it impossible for Seath to not be involved with Oolacile in some way, and hopefully that connection will be explored in Prepare to Die.
 
It's also interesting to note that Seath's sworn enemy, Havel the Rock, was locked away in the tower right next to Darkroot Basin.
 
Just saying.
 

Hawkeye Gough

This is definitely the part I'm most excited about.
 
The official Dark Souls site states that Hawkeye Gough, another of the four knights of Gwyn, will be a new NPC included in Prepare to Die, not a boss.
 
That is a very very very big deal.
 
If Hawkeye Gough is a conversable NPC that would make him the only character in the game that can be spoken to, besides Gwyndolin, that was a resident of Anor Londo before the departure of Gwyn, and the only NPC in the game that knew Gwyn and does not attack you on sight.
 
That is huuuuuuuuuge.  

Depending on the role he plays in the game there is no telling how much information could be gained from this single character. Does he know why Gwynevere and the other gods left Anor Londo? Does he know the current Gwynevere is an illusion created by Gwyndolin? If so, does he know why his fellow knight Dragon Slayer Ornstein and Executioner Smough remained to guard the fake Gwynevere? Does he know of Gwyndolin's conspiracy with Kingseeker Frampt to locate a chosen undead to link the bonfires? Will he be tied into the story of Artorias, shedding light upon the Abysswalker's betrayal or his relationship with Lord's Blade Ciaran?
 
There are so many questions that this single character could answer that it would be nearly impossible to even write them all down. He is a relic of a Age of Fire, perhaps our only chance to truly learn about the retreat of the gods and the fall of eternal twilight upon the halls of Anor Londo.
 
Perhaps even more importantly, Hawkeye Gough knew Gwyn directly. We're talking about a character that has not only met Gwyn, but also worked under and fought besides the most important entity in all of Dark Souls. The insight this single character could bring to the story is fucking ridiculous, perhaps even more so than Arotrias depending on how much players will be able to interact with Hawkeye.
 
Whatever happens, Prepare to Die Edition is undoubtedly going to change how we perceive Lordran and the story of Lord Gwyn.
 
And this is just the tip of the iceberg, who knows what else could be announced.
 
I can't fucking wait for August.
#2 Posted by ImmortalSaiyan (4676 posts) -

I'm skeptical of that. I love the mystery of the world in Dark Souls hopefully they sustain that.

#3 Posted by Sterling (2162 posts) -

I am hoping this becomes DLC for the console version a few months later.

#4 Posted by MonetaryDread (2019 posts) -

I would be surprised if there is any real extra story in Prepare to Die. The lore might be there in the background, but you aren't going to see it.

#5 Posted by LordXavierBritish (6320 posts) -
@ImmortalSaiyan said:

I'm skeptical of that. I love the mystery of the world in Dark Souls hopefully they sustain that.

I don't think they will explain everything point by point, but it really seems like they are trying to flesh out some of the ideas that are only hinted out.
 
For instance, we actually don't know anything about Oolacile. The only facts about Oolacile we know for certain are it was destroyed and it had developed advanced, foreign magics. That's it.
 
Compared to what we know about countries like Thorolund and Carim, that is basically nothing.
 
I think Prepare to Die is going to flesh out the world by expanding it out, not digging deeper into it. At least not too much.
#6 Posted by alternate (2697 posts) -

1. it has a story?

2. Does anyone care about the story? (other than you of course).

3. Will not matter for shit unless they get the port right.

#7 Edited by Jrinswand (1705 posts) -

You really just made me want to start playing Dark Souls again. I stopped after like 8 or 9 hours because I felt like that game was bad for my heart. I'd really like to beat it at least once though. What are the chances of me being able to pick up where I left off and not completely start over from scratch?

#8 Posted by LordXavierBritish (6320 posts) -
@alternate said:

1. it has a story?

2. Does anyone care about the story? (other than you of course).

3. Will not matter for shit unless they get the port right.

Dark Souls has an incredibly complex story that has been a big topic of discussion for most fans of Dark Souls.
 
It's a legitimately interesting story, but a lot of the reason people are so into it is because it is told through item descriptions and vague hints rather than outright exposition. It's much more subtle than most other games today, but all the little details scattered throughout the world in the form of enemy placement and boss drops really help to flesh out the world into something special that you really don't see any other games doing.
#9 Posted by NathHaw (2760 posts) -

@Jrinswand said:

You really just made me want to start playing Dark Souls again. I stopped after like 8 or 9 hours because I felt like that game was bad for my heart. I'd really like to beat it at least once though. What are the chances of me being able to pick up where I left off and not completely start over from scratch?

It's funny that you say that, because I felt a couple times that I should stop playing due to chest pain. I kept playing though, and it's maybe my game of this generation.

#10 Posted by CornBREDX (5125 posts) -

Wow. You figured out a lot about the story. I never really dug that deep to figure that much out. It will be cool to play this on my PC, though.

I'd prefer it over playing on my console just as a matter of preference.

#11 Posted by LordXavierBritish (6320 posts) -
@Jrinswand said:
You really just made me want to start playing Dark Souls again. I stopped after like 8 or 9 hours because I felt like that game was bad for my heart. I'd really like to beat it at least once though. What are the chances of me being able to pick up where I left off and not completely start over from scratch?
Depending on where you are it should be relatively easy.
 
If you've gotten the Lordvessel then you've reached the point where the game is basically completely open and you can tackle the final areas in any order you choose.
 
If you still haven't reached Anor Londo it may be a bit difficult as you might not remember where exactly in the game you were. The game is a lot more linear leading up to your acquisition of the Lordvessel so you kind of need to do things in a specific order to get Sen's Fortress open and proceed to Anor Londo.
#12 Posted by Jrinswand (1705 posts) -
@LordXavierBritish said:
@Jrinswand said:
You really just made me want to start playing Dark Souls again. I stopped after like 8 or 9 hours because I felt like that game was bad for my heart. I'd really like to beat it at least once though. What are the chances of me being able to pick up where I left off and not completely start over from scratch?
Depending on where you are it should be relatively easy.  If you've gotten the Lordvessel then you've reached the point where the game is basically completely open and you can tackle the final areas in any order you choose.  If you still haven't reached Anor Londo it may be a bit difficult as you might not remember where exactly in the game you were. The game is a lot more linear leading up to your acquisition of the Lordvessel so you kind of need to do things in a specific order to get Sen's Fortress open and proceed to Anor Londo.
I quit playing shortly after I beat Queelag, but before going to Sen's Fortress. I was still rocking that dragon tail sword, or whatever it was called. I certainly hadn't fought Ornstein and Smough yet. I was (and still am) scared of them.
#13 Posted by LordXavierBritish (6320 posts) -
@Jrinswand said:
@LordXavierBritish said:
@Jrinswand said:
You really just made me want to start playing Dark Souls again. I stopped after like 8 or 9 hours because I felt like that game was bad for my heart. I'd really like to beat it at least once though. What are the chances of me being able to pick up where I left off and not completely start over from scratch?
Depending on where you are it should be relatively easy.  If you've gotten the Lordvessel then you've reached the point where the game is basically completely open and you can tackle the final areas in any order you choose.  If you still haven't reached Anor Londo it may be a bit difficult as you might not remember where exactly in the game you were. The game is a lot more linear leading up to your acquisition of the Lordvessel so you kind of need to do things in a specific order to get Sen's Fortress open and proceed to Anor Londo.
I quit playing shortly after I beat Queelag, but before going to Sen's Fortress. I was still rocking that dragon tail sword, or whatever it was called. I certainly hadn't fought Ornstein and Smough yet. I was (and still am) scared of them.
You're probably in the best spot possible for getting back in. Sen's sends you straight to Anor Londo and you'll get the Lordvessel after that which will let you warp between bonfires and open the final areas.
 
Drake Sword is still okay for that point in the game, but you'll feel a little underpowered in Sen's. That's okay though because you'll find the Lightning Spear in Sen's which will be an immediate upgrade from the Drake Sword, and then you'll meet the Giant blacksmith in Anor Londo who can upgrade and forge Lightning and Boss weapons.
 
So yeah, you're in a really good spot if you want to try picking it up again.
#14 Posted by Jrinswand (1705 posts) -
@LordXavierBritish said:
You're probably in the best spot possible for getting back in. Sen's sends you straight to Anor Londo and you'll get the Lordvessel after that which will let you warp between bonfires and open the final areas. Drake Sword is still okay for that point in the game, but you'll feel a little underpowered in Sen's. That's okay though because you'll find the Lightning Spear in Sen's which will be an immediate upgrade from the Drake Sword, and then you'll meet the Giant blacksmith in Anor Londo who can upgrade and forge Lightning and Boss weapons.  So yeah, you're in a really good spot if you want to try picking it up again.
Fantastic! That's really good news! Now I have yet another game that can get me through the summer. I'm just worried about my skills transferring over. I remember reading an article ( I don't remember, but it might be this one) about how the game doesn't have a difficulty curve, it just has a consistent level of difficulty that the player has to be able to overcome. I feel like I might've lost that skill. Actually, I would be surprised if I even remember what the buttons do. I guess I could just run around killing trash mobs until I start picking it back up, though.
#15 Posted by bybeach (4792 posts) -

Amazon doesn't want to give me too much for my unopened DS on the PS3, but I AM getting this game for the PC.....Fool that I may be!

#16 Posted by 71Ranchero (2739 posts) -

@alternate said:

1. it has a story?

2. Does anyone care about the story? (other than you of course).

3. Will not matter for shit unless they get the port right.

I hear this all the time and the only think that pops to mind is just how bad gamers today need everything handed to them. Dark Souls has a huge story if you can pay attention, many people care, and regardless of if the port is any good it will still mater.

Online
#17 Posted by drag (1223 posts) -

Great post, yeah I can't wait either. Dark Souls does game story just so, so well I love it - there if you want it, but not oppressive in the least. Tantalising and rich and intriguing.

#18 Posted by YI_Orange (1142 posts) -

If this doesn't come out as DLC for consoles I will be the saddest person in the world.

#19 Posted by alternate (2697 posts) -

@Atramentous said:

@alternate said:

1. it has a story?

2. Does anyone care about the story? (other than you of course).

3. Will not matter for shit unless they get the port right.

I hear this all the time and the only think that pops to mind is just how bad gamers today need everything handed to them. Dark Souls has a huge story if you can pay attention, many people care, and regardless of if the port is any good it will still mater.

It wasn't entirety rhetorical. I have only played an hour or two of the game, just never heard anyone talk up the story before.

#20 Posted by Karkarov (3079 posts) -

You are making a ton of assumptions and almost inventing information.

First off Artorias is unlikely to say a single word to you other than moaning about how Gwynn lied to his knights and made them do evil things to oppress the people. That is assuming he speaks at all. If he is still somehow in the Abyss or some offshoot of it that would be cool though. To say he is as central to the story as someone like Seath? That is just plain silly. He was one of Gwynn's top four knights and eventually betrayed him, that's it. We can even already make reasonable guesses as to why he betrayed him.

As for Oolacile we know just about nothing. We know it exists, we know they made special types of magic, we know it was destroyed. That is pretty much it. Dusk was the princess but she was lost in some dimensional vortex when it all went down. All she knows she has already told the player. Seath has existed since the age of Dragon's and has been studying immortality since before then probably. The idea that Oolacile had anything to do with the creation of his crystals is unlikely to say the least since for all we know he started his research before that country even existed. It is also pretty reasonable to assume he created the golems. Why are they at that spot in Darkroot? Who knows. Probably just to prevent a powerful spell caster from escaping the area. In other words Dusk. Or maybe they were just attracted to the area's magic. We don't know and anything we say is just a guess. Also Darkroot Garden is Darkroot Garden. Just like every place in Dark Souls you can actually visit it is part of Lordran. Why else would Sif Artorias's "companion" be hanging out there? He wasn't a knight of Oolacile, he was a knight of Lordran.

Gough will be interesting to be there but if you think he will give any real info or do more than confirm things we already suspected you will be disappointed. As for Gwyneviere you need to read item descriptions. There is a ring in the game that has an item description that straight out says she married the lord of fire/god of fire and moved to his realm to be with him. It wasn't even obscure or anything, said it in plain black and white. We already know why Gwendolyn was doing all he was doing as well. Maybe Gough will talk about his personal motivations at best. Likely he will relate to a new area which will deal with the only new edition worth getting excited over...

The fact that Guyra is now in the game. Considering how important he is in the King's Field series and his relationship with Seath, I would say the story around his area will give you the most bang for your new story/lore buck.

#21 Edited by LordXavierBritish (6320 posts) -
@Karkarov: Seath has not been around that long, he was around during the age of Dragons, yes, but so was every other major character in the lore.
 
He does not possess the Scales of Immortality which is why he betrayed his kin and devoted his life to sorcery. We know Seath did not know of the magics of Oolacile until fairly recently because they are completely foreign to the Dragon School, his school of sorcery. I don't think Oolacile was responsible for the creation of the Primordial Crystal, but I'm not willing to write it off as a possibility yet. The Dragons had no need to create a catalyst for eternal life if they already possessed, which raises the question of why they would possess such an artifact if not simply as a treasure or trophy.
 
We also don't know how long Oolacile has been around or when it was destroyed, it could have existed long before Lordran existed. Oolacile does show some affinity for fire, but we know that fire existed before the Lords Souls were discovered and there were other deities with affinity for the flame before Gwyn, Nito, the Witch of Izalith, and the Pygmy found the Lord Souls within the Kiln. Perhaps the denizens of Oolacile came forth from the light rather than the darkness which birthed man and the undead? That's just speculation, but the fact is that civilizations existed before Lordran and to assume Oolacile could not have fallen eons ago when we know almost nothing about its history or even the history of Lordran is more than a little foolish.
 
Also Gwynevere did not leave to marry Flann, she married Flann after she left but it was not her reason for leaving.
#22 Posted by Karkarov (3079 posts) -

@Karkarov said:

You are making a ton of assumptions and almost inventing information.

First off Artorias is unlikely to say a single word to you other than moaning about how Gwynn lied to his knights and made them do evil things to oppress the people. That is assuming he speaks at all. If he is still somehow in the Abyss or some offshoot of it that would be cool though. To say he is as central to the story as someone like Seath? That is just plain silly. He was one of Gwynn's top four knights and eventually betrayed him, that's it. We can even already make reasonable guesses as to why he betrayed him.

As for Oolacile we know just about nothing. We know it exists, we know they made special types of magic, we know it was destroyed. That is pretty much it. Dusk was the princess but she was lost in some dimensional vortex when it all went down. All she knows she has already told the player. Seath has existed since the age of Dragon's and has been studying immortality since before then probably. The idea that Oolacile had anything to do with the creation of his crystals is unlikely to say the least since for all we know he started his research before that country even existed. It is also pretty reasonable to assume he created the golems. Why are they at that spot in Darkroot? Who knows. Probably just to prevent a powerful spell caster from escaping the area. In other words Dusk. Or maybe they were just attracted to the area's magic. We don't know and anything we say is just a guess. Also Darkroot Garden is Darkroot Garden. Just like every place in Dark Souls you can actually visit it is part of Lordran. Why else would Sif Artorias's "companion" be hanging out there? He wasn't a knight of Oolacile, he was a knight of Lordran.

Gough will be interesting to be there but if you think he will give any real info or do more than confirm things we already suspected you will be disappointed. As for Gwyneviere you need to read item descriptions. There is a ring in the game that has an item description that straight out says she married the lord of fire/god of fire and moved to his realm to be with him. It wasn't even obscure or anything, said it in plain black and white. We already know why Gwendolyn was doing all he was doing as well. Maybe Gough will talk about his personal motivations at best. Likely he will relate to a new area which will deal with the only new edition worth getting excited over...

The fact that Guyra is now in the game. Considering how important he is in the King's Field series and his relationship with Seath, I would say the story around his area will give you the most bang for your new story/lore buck.

Whatever you say. I will stick with in game item descriptions, definitive npc speak, and so on. You can feel free to keep trading on wiki rumors, gossip, and idle speculation.

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