Goddamn it, this game is hard. Now that I’ve got that out of the way, here’s a quick review of one of the most frustrating games I’ve ever played*
This hellish game is the work of Japanese game developers From Software (who made the fabulous game Enchanted Arms). If you’ve read any other reviews about this game, you will have no doubt heard the difficulty level that this game exposes most gamers to.
In a world where gamers have been pampered with tantalizing “Easy” difficulty settings, Demon’s Souls is, without a doubt, a sharp slap to the face of any gamer looking for an easy ride. This is the only game I have ever played in which you are expected..nay, forced to die against the first boss. In fact, the only way to successfully complete the game (indeed, even the first level)is to make strategic use of death. Yes, the game requires you to die countless times in order to progress. To get past traps and to get to the first actually defeat-able boss, you have to die. This introduces a whole new from of strategy to the game, and is an interesting change from the usual “Go forth, and don;t die” stratagem that is part of almost every other game these days.
The gameplay itself is quite decent, with an easy control system. The only concern I have (and it’s quite a small one) is that combat is primarily confined to the L and R shoulder buttons. This is quite a change from all other combat based games that I have played, and can be an annoyance at times, especially due to the fact that the square button (normally attacking in other games) uses items, and in the heat of battle, you can occasionally use a valuable item whilst attempting to attack.
The game has provided me with several hours of trial and error annoyances, where I repeatedly got stuck at the same area, due to either an annoying enemy placement, or sometimes (albeit rarely) an annoying piece of camera work. This game can theoretically last you for a looooong time, and will doubtlessly provide hours of nail biting and swear-filled entertainment.
*and I’ve played Hell Tetris.