Deleting my save and starting over - questions

#1 Posted by theimmortalbum (488 posts) -

I never did play a lot of Dark Souls - the thought of dying and losing souls just always stressed me out. Watching LOLS has broken me of that, and last night I beat the Taurus Demon and got the Drake Sword.

Now, I think I'm going to delete that save and start over entirely. I'm going to start as a Pyromancer (current character was a Knight), and again go for the Drake Sword. However, I have some questions.

  1. How do I know when to move on from the DS?
  2. When I do move on from the DS, how do I know when to start upgrading my weapons via blacksmiths?
  3. Same for armor.
  4. Is there anything I can miss/move past that will completely ruin my game? I know the opening area sequence, since I'm there right now, but past that.. I have no idea where to go/what to do, which I understand is half the fun of the game and no one wants to give spoilers. I just want to make sure I'm not going to get into a situation where I've screwed myself over.
  5. There is no 5.
  6. Boss weapons - worth it? Or am I WAY, WAY too early to worry about that?

I think that's it. Thanks!

#2 Edited by SunBroZak (1082 posts) -

Are you sure you want to know? I could tell you specifically where you should stop using certain weapons, and items that you should look out for, but it might ruin the experience a little. You only get the joy of the first playthrough once.

I'd say that there's no way you can screw up so bad that you can't progress any further. Just play until you hit a wall, and from there decide if you really want to get help.

#3 Edited by Pr1mus (3872 posts) -
  1. When you find a better weapon. Or upgrade one to be better. Depending on the type of build you're going for there are plenty of weapons you could use, upgrade or no, that are better than the Drake Sword as soon as you reach the first blacksmith. Weaker weapons can be more powerful relatively quickly as you level up since the DS has no stats scaling. Keep that in mind.
  2. The above should cover 2 as well. Some suggestions. You can look into the Black Knight Sword, BK Halberd, Claymore, Zweihander, Uchigatana... all of which can be obtained before or around the time you get to the first blacksmith and are all terrific weapons in their own ways.
  3. I never bother to upgrade armor until i'm mostly done with my weapons first. Regardless, Darkroot Garden and Basin contain some pretty great armor and those 2 zones aren't particularly difficult and can be completed early. You can always save the Boss for later.
  4. You can miss some events and quest but nothing major that will lock you out of amazing gear or certainly not anything that can't be replaced by something else that is equally good. You can return to any area in the game.
  5. ok
  6. Some yes, some no. It's all very dependent on what you're looking for. Also you're too early to worry about that.
#4 Posted by Rhombus_Of_Terror (2094 posts) -

1. Drake Sword starts becoming useless when you beat Quelaag. Better still, don't use it at all.

2. Upgrading weapons is the primary thing to upgrade in this game. If you come across any titanite, use it for the weapon you are most comfortable with. Be mindful of scaling, if it says A or S, level those matching stats to reap the benefits. C, D, E scaling weapons don't need stat leveling. weapon descriptions also reveal more about what you can use a weapon for :)

3. Armour doesn't require much attention other than cosmetics. You want to use certain armour for bosses so you can tank them, otherwise keep that weight down so you have mobility. You wont really need to upgrade it.

4. There is one large area hidden behind a single magic wall, I wont say where. The DLC (if you have) requires a few steps which you may not know initially. Other than that, it is more rewarding to explore. I envy your position going into this relatively new. If you do screw up like accidentally kill an important npc, you'll have to wait until New Game + to meet them again.

6. Boss weapons shouldn't be of concern to you unless you are going for a specific build / aesthetics. Most of the standard weapons are good to carry you through the game. When I make a new character now, I have to be mindful of the weapon I am after for primary use and level up accordingly so I meet requirements.

Anyone else feel free to correct anything I have missed otherwise OP, enjoy Dark Souls!

#5 Edited by alternate (2696 posts) -

You don't really need to start over, just buy a pyro flame. The starting classes quickly become meaningless.

Drake sword should last you at least until the gargoyals.

#6 Posted by Kjebka (46 posts) -

1. When it stops working well. It will be pretty obvious.

2. Don't bother upgrading the Drake Sword, but whatever other weapon you decide to use should be upgraded as much as you can. Upgrading weapons is the fastest way to do more damage.

3. Mostly personal preference. If you think the extra protection is worth the souls then do it.

4. Take your finger off the attack button around NPCs and blacksmiths. If you kill them they're permanently dead. That's the only real way to screw yourself up. At one point a guy is in a barrel, break it by rolling into it. He's not a big fan of being hit with a sword, even with good intentions.

6. Boss weapons tend to be interesting even when they're bad, and boss souls don't give you much. They're worth making.

#7 Edited by SuperWristBands (2266 posts) -

You can and should upgrade weapons just after or before the gargoyle boss (gold pine resin is a must for this boss if your weapon is +0 and not a Drake Sword). There is a blacksmith near-ish the boss that will upgrade -at least- regular weapons to +5 (and later to +10 when given the large ember and +15 when given the very large ember). Almost any weapon will do in DkS. You can buy a Battle Axe from this blacksmith and -so long as you upgrade it- use it for the rest of the game.

Personally, I would say to not keep using the drake sword once you can get a weapon to +5. I can't remember the damage and I know the Drake Sword is powerful early game but it's best to not use it as a crutch.

Armour isn't nearly as important to upgrade but, of course it wouldn't hurt. Prioritize your weapon upgrades though (this includes shields).

My advice on boss weapons is to look into them. You may like them, I don't care to go through the hassle of making one and having the stats to use it.

There isn't really anything you can miss and nothing can ruin the game. You can get back to the opening area as well.

#8 Edited by Zeik (2364 posts) -

My general recommendation is to pick up a bunch of different weapons at the start of the game and play around with their movesets until you find one that you like and then immediately upgrade it to +5 once you have access to the blacksmith. (You can run around and kill the undead soldiers and Blader Knights for Titanite Shards and souls.) I actually just started replaying myself and I picked up the Halberd, never really using it before, and I've realized it's pretty awesome.

The Drake Sword is nice to have to ease you into the game, but it's a good idea to replace it as soon as you can. That being said, the first time I played I used it up through Sen's Fortress where I was able to replace it with a better weapon you find there. (I didn't end up beating the game with that character though.)

#9 Posted by kishinfoulux (2282 posts) -

You don't really need to start over, just buy a pyro flame. The starting classes quickly become meaningless.

Drake sword should last you at least until the gargoyals.

I used the Drake Sword all the way up to Sen's and the Lightning Spear replaced it.

I'm actually doing another replay also, using the full Artorias set. Pretty fun, though cheating obviously since I gave it to myself to start the game. ^_^

#10 Posted by theimmortalbum (488 posts) -

@alternate: I didn't realize you could buy that. I thought you could only get it at the start. Hmm.

#11 Edited by alternate (2696 posts) -

@theimmortalbum said:

@alternate: I didn't realize you could buy that. I thought you could only get it at the start. Hmm.

My mistake. You can't buy it but everyone who isn't a pyro gets one for free for rescuing an NPC in the Depths area. I knew I had one by the end but forgot where is came from.

#12 Edited by TobbRobb (4602 posts) -

That's most of what I have to say to new players. Also don't get the drake sword, it's one of very, very few weapons that can't be effectively used for the entirety of the game. And it might give you bad habits in combat during the early parts whom are supposed to teach you how to play.

#13 Posted by ViciousAnchovy (735 posts) -

Regarding concerns about being locked out of quests, such as by killing an npc, don't kill anything that doesn't attack you first. There are exceptions, but it's good to remember that some things may look like enemies and not actually attack you. But, as others have said, most equipment can either be acquired in more than one way or is paralleled by other equipment.

#14 Posted by Clonedzero (4200 posts) -

I would honestly recommend not using the drake sword at all. It's only really useful for the first chunk of the game, and its a crutch for new players so things just keep getting harder and harder as the drake sword loses its usefulness.

Instead of getting good at fighting dudes you just start one-two shotting them with the drake sword and then you're not great at the combat and when you fight harder enemies you'll be in a much worse position.

So yeah, i'd say don't use it.

#15 Posted by mosespippy (4116 posts) -

I would honestly recommend not using the drake sword at all. It's only really useful for the first chunk of the game, and its a crutch for new players so things just keep getting harder and harder as the drake sword loses its usefulness.

Instead of getting good at fighting dudes you just start one-two shotting them with the drake sword and then you're not great at the combat and when you fight harder enemies you'll be in a much worse position.

So yeah, i'd say don't use it.

There is nothing wrong with one shotting stuff. It's a viable option for a long time. I beat NG+ one/two shotting most things. It's just that the Drake Sword can't one shot stuff for very long. Upgrading anything else a little bit would be a viable weapon for longer.

#16 Posted by c_rakestraw (844 posts) -

Don't bother with the Drake Sword. It'll only make it harder to adjust to using other, better weapons once it loses its usefulness. For what weapon you should choose, it depends on what stats you're going to specialize in as their damage scales with your stats.

Straight swords are a good place to start -- the Longsword especially since it's so versatile -- but are only useful if you upgrade your strength and dexterity. Their move-sets are basically the same as the Drake Sword's, so if you do decide to grab the Drake Sword, that would make the transition far smoother.

I wouldn't worry about what armor to use. Every set is just as viable as the next, so just use whatever you think looks cool. Only thing I'd be wary of is the equip burden. I'd recommend staying below 50% to maintain some mobility, but you'd rather be a tank, then just make sure it doesn't surpass 100%.

Upgrade your equipment as soon as you reach the Undead Parish. The enemies there frequently drop Titanite Shards as does the blacksmith in the area. The souls gained from the enemies will allow you buy shards from him as well. Definitely recommend taking your weapon and shield up to +5 and your armor to +3 before finishing up there. Whether you decide to do it before or after you slay the Gargoyles is up to you. Do the same once you reach Blighttown or Sen's Fortress, as both areas carry the supplies for the second stage of equipment ascension in spades.

There's nothing crucial that you can miss. Side-quests and bosses, sure -- but nothing that's going to prevent progress. Just talk to everyone you meet and don't be afraid to explore. Should be able to see most of the secrets and stuff the game has to offer.

Boss weapons are worthless. There are exceptions -- Quelaag's Fury Sword, comes to mind -- but you're better off just sticking to taking weapons down the standard reinforcement route. They always come out way stronger than any of the boss weapons even at their peak. Only reason to forge those is if you're going for all the achievements or if you've got a very specific character build in mind.

#17 Posted by Sinusoidal (1417 posts) -

You don't need to worry about any of that crap. The only advice you need is to go slowly, explore thoroughly and find the combat style that suits you best. Just about any weapon/armor combination in the game is viable. People have beaten this game at level 1, and in something like 30 minutes.

#18 Edited by theimmortalbum (488 posts) -

Well thanks guys. My pyro is beast - fireball makes the Asylum Demon a cakewalk, not that he wasn't already. Just easier. Haha. I'm working on getting back to where my knight was, and I do think I'm going to ignore the Drake Sword. I did a bit of exploring and got some gear that I didn't have before that I think I like, so I might give it an upgrade or two, especially since I explored and found Ricter or whatever his name is.

#19 Edited by Zeik (2364 posts) -

@c_rakestraw said:

I wouldn't worry about what armor to use. Every set is just as viable as the next, so just use whatever you think looks cool. Only thing I'd be wary of is the equip burden. I'd recommend staying below 50% to maintain some mobility, but you'd rather be a tank, then just make sure it doesn't surpass 100%.

I'm going to have to disagree with this. Balancing defense, poise, and equip burden absolutely makes a difference. If you're a speedy character you'll probably want to keep your equip burden below 25% so you can fast roll. But if you're using slow heavy weapons you absolutely want some decent defense and poise, otherwise even the slightest attack will stun you. At least some poise is nice to have on any character though, as it sucks to get stun-locked by even the weakest of attacks. I wouldn't necessarily worry about mixing and matching the perfect set of gear, but you definitely should consider how your armor compliments your build.

#20 Edited by thebatmobile (980 posts) -

The drake sword is for scrubs. Don't use it

Online
#21 Edited by c_rakestraw (844 posts) -
@zeik said:

@c_rakestraw said:

I wouldn't worry about what armor to use. Every set is just as viable as the next, so just use whatever you think looks cool. Only thing I'd be wary of is the equip burden. I'd recommend staying below 50% to maintain some mobility, but you'd rather be a tank, then just make sure it doesn't surpass 100%.

I'm going to have to disagree with this. Balancing defense, poise, and equip burden absolutely makes a difference. If you're a speedy character you'll probably want to keep your equip burden below 25% so you can fast roll. But if you're using slow heavy weapons you absolutely want some decent defense and poise, otherwise even the slightest attack will stun you. At least some poise is nice to have on any character though, as it sucks to get stun-locked by even the weakest of attacks. I wouldn't necessarily worry about mixing and matching the perfect set of gear, but you definitely should consider how your armor compliments your build.

He can use rings to balance things out then. The Wolf Ring and Havel's Ring can cover poise and equip burden nicely. With either of those active he can just about use whatever without lacking much in either department. At the very least, they'll allow him to experiment more easily until he finds something to settle on.

#22 Posted by MormonWarrior (2571 posts) -

Hmm lots of good answers here...I recently finished getting all the achievements in this game so hit me up with a PM if you have any other questions.

Here's my two cents on your list:

  1. Honestly, with my second character, I never used the Drake Sword at all. It depends a little on your build and preferences, but I'd say a good rule of thumb would be to stop using the Drake Sword around the time you beat Quelaag. It just stops being as good as you think, and I'd argue it's not that great even to start with though it's a great novice weapon. I've heard of people using the regular long sword through the whole game.
  2. Start upgrading weapons IMMEDIATELY. After a certain point, the payoff is way better than leveling up, and it doesn't cost much at all to upgrade basic weapons. Feel free to experiment with what you like best (nobody can define what you'll enjoy most) but the Wikidot wiki is really good at laying out some good suggestions.
  3. Upgrading armor isn't quite as vital, but it's worth it in the long run if you find a set that you like (weight/poise are important to consider)
  4. You can't really ruin the experience by missing something...though you can screw yourself over if you indiscriminately murder NPCs. There's rare items or covenants that require very specific steps, but otherwise you can usually go back and get things you missed or you'll be fine without it.
  5. I like Dark Souls a lot.
  6. Boss weapons aren't necessary. I don't use any of them. I got them for the achievement...oh, and I guess my second character uses that tail sword from Seath the Scaleless but my main character uses the Black Knight Greataxe +5. It's great and unique, fast and powerful for how big it is. Some people enjoy some of the soul weapons, but unless you're achievement hunting you don't really need them.

It's fair to note, though, that I didn't think I'd care about the achievements my first time through, or my second, but when I was only six or seven away from it I just starting going for it. If you miss things your first couple times through, it's a little annoying to have to play through the entire game again for the sake of one soul weapon/shield that you missed.

#23 Posted by mlarrabee (2924 posts) -

Skip the Drake. I used it with my first character, and it just delays the lesson in weapon and crowd handling. Buy a Bastard sword as soon as possible (and it's available near the beginning) and upgrade it, again as soon as possible. It's a great, quick little blade that'll teach you how to work a pack.

And, I used a +5 Fire Bastard quite a bit during my NG+ playthrough and beyond; it'll never stop being useful.

(Spoiler-tagged, since these show up about halfway through.)

And a fully-upgraded set of Black Iron armor is unstoppable, if you've the strength for it (and I highly recommend getting the strength for it).

My highest character runs with the aforementioned armor, Mask of the Child, and a +15 Uchigatana. I love that guy.

#24 Posted by MormonWarrior (2571 posts) -

And a fully-upgraded set of Black Iron armor is unstoppable, if you've the strength for it (and I highly recommend getting the strength for it).

My highest character runs with the aforementioned armor, Mask of the Child, and a +15 Uchigatana. I love that guy.

As you can see from my picture in the previous post, I use that armor as well. It's freaking awesome once it's fully upgraded. It's not my favorite looking, but it's the strongest armor set that's not insanely heavy. I use a the greataxe though and never really liked the katanas much. The bastard sword is pretty good, as is the claymore. If you have the strength for them, the black knight weapons are generally pretty dang good too. I don't bother with those ugly masks because...well, I hate having to look at my character with them on.

#25 Posted by dudeglove (7758 posts) -

I never did play a lot of Dark Souls - the thought of dying and losing souls just always stressed me out. Watching LOLS has broken me of that, and last night I beat the Taurus Demon and got the Drake Sword.

Now, I think I'm going to delete that save and start over entirely. I'm going to start as a Pyromancer (current character was a Knight), and again go for the Drake Sword. However, I have some questions.

  1. How do I know when to move on from the DS?
  2. When I do move on from the DS, how do I know when to start upgrading my weapons via blacksmiths?
  3. Same for armor.
  4. Is there anything I can miss/move past that will completely ruin my game? I know the opening area sequence, since I'm there right now, but past that.. I have no idea where to go/what to do, which I understand is half the fun of the game and no one wants to give spoilers. I just want to make sure I'm not going to get into a situation where I've screwed myself over.
  5. There is no 5.
  6. Boss weapons - worth it? Or am I WAY, WAY too early to worry about that?

I think that's it. Thanks!

1. When you get sick of its shitty range. It literally has the worst reach of almost all the weapons bar maybe the painting guardian sword and, like, the broken sword hilt. If you're bored, you can attempt to farm dragon scales from the Valley of the Drakes early on to get it up to +5, but upgrading any dragon weapon is extremely costly (up to tens of thousands of souls). The Drake Sword's damage is also set in stone. No matter how many points you put into your character's strength or dex, that damage output will only change with upgrading the sword which, again, can only be done five times and is extremely expensive. Also, if you get invaded and the person sees you with the Drake Sword, you will likely be considered a filthy scrub and probably taunted. As alternatives, personal favorites are the Zweihander (found in the graveyard by Firelink) and the Claymore (found on top of the Drake bridge).

2. There are hardly any downsides to the standard upgrade path (by that I mean taking a weapon up to +15). How you build your character can depend on whether or not you want a weapon or shield that is affected by stat scaling, or if you're going for an item's properties e.g. Grass Crest Shield for stamina regen boost or a Lightning Spear for the elemental damage, as opposed to an Uchigatana. Bear in mind that pumping up your character's stats won't affect certain weapons at all, only upgrading the weapons will (e.g. a lightning spear to +5). The trade off is this: you can meet a weapon or shield's minimum stat requirements, then go down an elemental path and forget about STR/DEX scaling and instead focus on pumping points into Vitality or Endurance. Or you pump points into strength/dex and one-shot everything you see. Bear in mind also the 50% bonus to strength when dual wielding a weapon (e.g. if the stat requirement is 24 STR, but you only have 16, dual wielding - i.e. pressing triangle/Y will give you an extra +8 to STR and let you swing the weapon as normal). One of the major changes between Dark Souls and Demon's Souls was that the previous game didn't have different animations if you were technically unable to "use" a certain weapon (leading to people breaking the game in entertaining ways). In Dark Souls, you will flail about pathetically if you don't meet the stat requirements and do a fraction of the damage the weapon is meant to do.

3. Experiment with your playstyle. Mix and match armor sets. Generally, as others have said, you want to make sure you don't end up in a situation where you're stunlocked. For this you need poise, which means wearing heavier armors. Wearing heavy armors affects your speed, however. Upgrading armor is never a bad idea, really, and oftentimes upgrading your items is a better use of souls than leveling up. You'll learn that equipment is far more important than your character level is. Wandering around with 0 poise is why people fall off cliffs or end up surrounded by a group of hollows. Then again, wandering around in huge armor is also the reason why you get mobbed because, funnily enough, wearing big heavy clunky armor will actually aggro enemies from further afar because they hear you coming. Lighter armor lets you be more sneaky. You're not duty bound to any one set, really.

4. If you are playing the PC version (slight spoiler): killing the NPC on top of the ghost house roof of New Londo in order to get the key to the seal is bugged and unlike on console versions, he doesn't always drop it, meaning you will flat out hit a dead end and have to restart.

5. THAT'S NOT WHAT SOME DUDE ON ANOTHER FORUM TOLD ME. HE ALSO SAID YOU COULD SAVE SIF.

6. If you want the achievement, you'll need to play the game twice to get all the weapons. Using Quelaag's soul on a +10 curved sword is fun. The other weapons that can be made with boss souls are more of a novelty, like Smough's Hammer, or have some special abilities like Ornstein's Spear. Or they depend on build e.g. if you're a heavy magic user, consider the Moonlight Butterfly Horn (Butterfly soul with +10 spear), because it deals magic damage and is one of the few weapons that scales well with Intelligence. Upgrading the weapons that need demon titanite is a bit of a pain in the ass, however.

Also, crossbows are insanely useful.

This edit will also create new pages on Giant Bomb for:

Beware, you are proposing to add brand new pages to the wiki along with your edits. Make sure this is what you intended. This will likely increase the time it takes for your changes to go live.

Comment and Save

Until you earn 1000 points all your submissions need to be vetted by other Giant Bomb users. This process takes no more than a few hours and we'll send you an email once approved.