So the guys from Namco Bandai dropped by to show off a bit of Dark Souls yesterday, and I'm not sure if the GB crew had any plans to do a Man, I Saw That with it (we couldn't get any direct feed, and the trailer they released wasn't super long). I sat in on the session, and got a good look at around half an hour of the game. This is...basically Demon's Souls II, for all intents and purposes. It looks the same and it acts pretty much exactly the same: the demo took place in a trap-filled tower that the Namco guy walked up, battling some crazy-looking reptilian enemies along the way. One of the new things that enemies can do is grapple you; there's a fun Mimic enemy that will pop out when you try to open it, and attempt to kick you and bite you. Occasionally it'll even grab you and throw you in its mouth; most of the enemies seemed to have these kind of grapple moves that you can't break out of, so you'll have to be extra careful this time around.
The major differences I saw:
- No more hub world. The entire world is apparently streaming this time around, with checkpoints/campfires scattered around that will let you heal up and save your game before wandering back out into the world. All enemies respawn when you hit a checkpoint, though, so you shouldn't expect to be able to cheese your way through the levels with them. NPCs are also apparently going to be scattered around the world, rather than in a central hub world. I asked about warping around between areas that you've visited, but I don't think the demoer knew the plan for that yet.
- Crafting is now apparently extended to armor this time around. I asked about crystal lizards (my absolute least favorite part of Demon's Souls), but I think the guy was non-commital about his answer. At any rate, look forward to collecting more stones and upgrading your weapons along the way.
- Your character is no longer a ghost, but instead a new kind of undead that can resurrect himself as many times as he likes. The drawback? Eventually he'll go insane and become a kind of demon (I think; this part was a bit fuzzy). Your goal in the game is to escape this fate. It wasn't clear how resurrections work; you do lose all your souls when you die, and have one chance to return to the spot of your death to retrieve them, but you don't resurrect with half a health bar anymore.
- The color scheme is apparently going to be slightly more colorful, perhaps because you're no longer in a ghost world. It's by no means bright and cheery, but the character's armor was noticeably more colorful than the stuff I wore in Demon's Souls. But then again, those were the Binded Cross armor items which were pretty dank.
It was difficult to get a gauge on the game's difficulty, since the demo character had 50 or 99 in all of the stat categories. The new grappling attacks look like they'll be rough for melee characters, but we'll have to wait and see how it all shakes out. If anyone has any questions,