hot  /  reviews  /  videos  /  cblogs  /  qposts

From Software

Miyazaki interview photo
Miyazaki interview

Ico showed Bloodborne's Hidetaka Miyazaki the 'possibilities of the medium'


Demon's Souls creator on his meteoric rise to From Software president
Apr 01
// Steven Hansen
Simon Parkin got a rare interview with From Software president, Demon's Souls and Bloodborne creator Hidetaka Miyazaki and it is fascinating stuff, charting Miyazaki's dramatic career change at age 29 (and equally dramatic 80...
Bloodborne speedrun photo
Bloodborne speedrun

Bloodborne beaten in under 40 minutes


6 hours in and I haven't beaten a boss
Apr 01
// Jed Whitaker
Oginam has beaten Bloodborne with an in-game time of 36 minutes and 59 seconds, currently the world record for an any percentage completion. As with most speedruns, multiple game-breaking glitches are used to achieve this sh...
Bloodborne patch photo
Bloodborne patch

Bloodborne's game-breaking glitch patched


Long load times remain untouched
Mar 31
// Jordan Devore
Last week, Chris told us about a game-breaking glitch in Bloodborne that made it so an item called the Lunarium Key, which is needed to reach a main-story boss, wouldn't appear. The issue has been fixed, so you can play co-op...
Bloodborne PvP photo
Bloodborne PvP

One simple trick to help you kill Bloodborne invaders


Gravity
Mar 30
// Kyle MacGregor
Getting invaded sucks. Chances are, you're going to die. There's a reason you're being invaded. The other player is confident in their ability to slaughter you. They are probably nigh impervious to damage and carrying some s...
Dark Souls II Upgrade photo
Dark Souls II Upgrade

Dark Souls II: Scholar of the First Sin upgrade and pricing systems detailed


While somewhat complicated, there's a good deal here for some
Mar 30
// Rob Morrow
Dark Souls II: Scholar of the First Sin is scheduled to launch on Steam this Wednesday, April 1 with current and last-gen counterparts becoming available the following Tuesday, April 7. From Software has described the reissue...
Bloodborne bundle photo
Bloodborne bundle

Amazon's giving away Bloodborne with new PS4s


Now that's a deal
Mar 30
// Brett Makedonski
It's not exactly a new concept for Amazon to bundle the hot game of the week with consoles. That's been happening for a while with the likes of Grand Theft Auto V and Dying Light being two of the more recent example...
Bloodborne co-op photo
Bloodborne co-op

Can't find anyone for co-op in Bloodborne? Try resetting the game


What a horrible night to have a curse
Mar 30
// Jordan Devore
After struggling to find a co-op partner for a deceptively tricky magic-slinging boss in Bloodborne last week, I started to browse for answers, and it seems like the PlayStation 4's rest mode -- the thing that lets you suspen...
From Software photo
From Software

From Software's Shadow Tower hits PSN next week


Bloodborne developer's vintage RPG joins the PSone Classics
Mar 27
// Kyle MacGregor
Before Bloodborne or even Demon's Souls, From Software created Shadow Tower, another dark action role-playing game, which released for the original PlayStation more than 15 years ago. According to the latest episode of the Pl...
Best Bloodborne room photo
Best Bloodborne room

Let's hope Bloodborne's best room is insured


'Whoops'
Mar 26
// Jordan Devore
From Software is onto us. There's a room in Bloodborne full of lots and lots of breakable pots. At the Cathedral Ward lamp, take a left down some stairs and then take a right at the well. Next, swing left past the Church Gia...

How to locate the final hidden boss in Bloodborne, and achieve the true ending

Mar 26 // Chris Carter
[Read this for basic tips, and this for an advanced walkthrough of all the other optional bosses in the game.] Spoilers below for the video and the text: [embed]289570:57927:0[/embed] You'll need three umbilical cord items to trigger the ending. To my knowledge, there are four in the game. The easiest one to get is from the Wet Nurse boss near the end of the main story. You'll encounter this boss as part of the normal progression loop. You can snag another one from the Old Workshop, by watching this video. A third can be obtained from the NPC in the clinic. The first three minutes of this video will show you the route. When you reach the end of the line the NPC should be lying on an operating table, talking about a great deal of pain. Kill the character and grab the cord. If the NPC is not lying on the table do not attack or kill them -- come back later after defeating more bosses until they are in the right location and not hostile. The last known cord that I can confirm is from another NPC. Find Arianna in the Cathedral Ward and tell her to return to the chapel. Later in the game she will give birth down the ladder behind the lamp -- you can get a cord here. Contrary to what I've seen online in the past few days, you do not need the Yharnam Stone from the Chalice Dungeons to trigger the true ending. You only need to consume three cords before you fight the boss in Hunter's Dream, after defeating the Wet Nurse. Make sure you refuse the final choice. Here's how to obtain the other two endings: All you have to do to initiate the other two endings is either accept the final choice (a cutscene plays) for the first ending, or deny it without consuming the umbilical cords and defeat the boss for the second. Note that with all three endings the game will automatically start a New Game+ -- you have been warned.
Bloodborne secret ending photo
Spoilers, obviously
It's been quite a week since I first obtained Bloodborne. I'm currently on my fourth playthrough and I'm finding out that I missed quite a bit on my first run. Specifically, there's multiple endings, one of which involves a c...

How to find all of Bloodborne's hidden optional bosses

Mar 25 // Chris Carter
Keep in mind there are obvious spoilers involved if you want to find the locations yourself. However, I did make a point to skip any cutscenes and all of the videos do not actually show the bosses themselves. The only boss that isn't covered here is the alleged secret final encounter, which I believe no one has found yet. [embed]289531:57909:0[/embed] [embed]289531:57910:0[/embed] [embed]289531:57911:0[/embed] [embed]289531:57912:0[/embed] [embed]289531:57913:0[/embed] Spoilers ahead for Cleric Beast's location: You can't miss this one but since it's optional, I'll provide directions anyway. Head out of the starting area and into the main road with the villagers. At the end of the line you'll find a bonfire and a bunch of enemies congregating in an open area. Hug the left wall, loop around to the right and head up the stairs near the wolves. Go straight down that path on the bridge and you'll find your first optional boss. You can't miss it, and will probably stumble across him in the first 15 minutes. Spoilers ahead for Darkbeast Paarl's location: This boss will either be found late-game when you stumble upon the area, or mid-game by randomly encountering an enemy in the Cathedral region. Said enemy will have a sack over their shoulder -- when you see one of them, get killed by it to revive in a new area and locate the Darkbeast on a straight-forward one-way path. Read here for a walkthrough of how to locate the final hidden boss and secret ending
Bloodborne advanced guide photo
Spoiler-free, other than location information
[Update: I've located the hidden boss, with instructions below.] Bloodborne is officially out, and I've already seen a lot of discussions brewing about the game. Some sentiments are positive, some are negative, but a gre...

Bloodborne loading times photo
Bloodborne loading times

Sony: Bloodborne team trying to improve load times


A new patch is on the way
Mar 24
// Kyle MacGregor
From Software's Bloodborne is by all accounts a superb experience, but it does come with tedious load times. Luckily, the development team is working to remedy the issue. "The development team is currently exploring another p...
Souls series photo
Souls series

Where's the best place to start if you've never played a Souls game?


The two recent entries
Mar 24
// Chris Carter
Here's a question that I've gotten a lot of in the past 24 hours -- "where do you recommend picking up the Souls series?" Due to quite a bit of buzz behind Bloodborne (which, thankfully, is actually good), people ha...

Very Quick Tips: Bloodborne

Mar 23 // Chris Carter
General tips: Once again starting classes ("backgrounds" here) do not matter outside of the obvious last handicap option. Pick whatever you want. Health and stamina will help your survivability, and the attack and arcane stats will help your damage and utility. Note there is a downplay on magic in Bloodborne -- there are only a few spells, though most of them are useful. Be cautious: look around for potential ambushes. They’re always the same if you die and repeat a level, with the exception of Insight changes in Bloodborne, which may slightly alter layouts as you progress with the game. Without a shield you'll have to be more vigilant, so always have your finger on the dodge button. Speaking of dodging, Bloodborne is an action-oriented game. Stamina is more plentiful, and there is no "weight" stat -- you'll always dodge at the same speed the entire quest no matter what items you have equipped. Get used to dodging often early, and make use of the slight invincibility frames it bestows. The shield has some uses, but it's mainly a joke item. Try to use a gun in your off-hand, as it essentially replaces riposte. You can fast-climb or descend down ladders by holding the Circle (run) button. Suicide loot runs are still a thing, and are more effective than ever. Since dying doesn't give you a "spirit or Hollow" form that reduces your health in Bloodborne, you can engage in suicide dashes to pick up as much loot as possible more often without reprisal. Likewise, you can often pick up items as you're dying, so if you've had a bad suicide run, mash that button and don't give up after death. The starting shop (the fountain near the spawn point) will sell you pretty much everything you could want, and more items will be stocked as you encounter them in the game world. It will scale with your level and become more expensive over time. "Regain" is a new mechanic that can work in your favor. After taking damage, you can heal a portion back by doing damage within a window of a few seconds. This applies even if you've taken damage from another source, like falling. Keep in mind that most enemies will actually have an "active" corpse even after death, so keep attacking to regain a few more slivers of health if you need it. This last bit is pretty crucial as you can use this tactic every 30 seconds or so. Pick a weapon and stick with it. Try not to upgrade anything above +5 until you find out your favorite loadout -- then get it to +10 as quickly as you can. There are far less weapons in general in Bloodborne so it pays to specialize. Always trigger shortcuts, including elevators, first. Bloodborne has a huge emphasis on shortcuts (more than any game before it), so prioritize opening them up before anything else. 90% of the time elevators go to past areas and are generally safe zones. Wondering what to spend your money on? Try to increase your level as much as possible, and use the rest of your cash on blood vials. In Bloodborne, any items you acquire past your maximum equipment limit (in the case of vials, 20 by default) will go to your storage, and upon death or re-entry to the hub, you'll automatically restock using said storage. It pays to overstock vials as you may be using 10-20 per boss fight -- if you have a ton of them saved up you won't need to farm for more and can keep progressing. Bloodborne tips (gameplay/progression spoilers): Farm enemies early on for vials, and try not to waste too many of them before the first boss fight. Learn a big fight and the mechanics of each attack before burning through your supply. Keep in mind that the Cleric Beast is the second big foe you should fight if you're having trouble with him. It seems like Cleric should be first since you encounter him first, but Priest Gascoigne is actually linked to progression. Lost? Here's what to do, eliminating any non-required bosses. Go to the chapel after defeating Gascoigne and defeat the boss there at the summit. You'll acquire a password that you can use in the main terrace (with all the giant enemies) right outside of the chapel checkpoint, near the large staircase that leads up to the main summit. For easy directions, just head down the large stairs, go through the gate, and turn right.Head down into the Forbidden Woods, defeat the trio boss, then further into the path you'll find the spider boss. From there, you can go back to the chapel checkpoint (inside, where you fought the boss), head down the stairs, go left, and into the door previously blocked by the big enemy. After the spider you'll be teleported there anyway. It's self-explanatory from there, as the last major hub is just ahead. The Forbidden Woods is a great place to farm for mid-to-endgame. Go to the Woods lamp, head across the bridge, down the hill, and kill 10 or more villagers. Repeat. You should earn enough money for a level-up per run depending on your level, or a large stock of vials to use on bosses. Chalices you place will carry over with New Game+, so don't be paranoid about restarting your progress. Also, keep in mind that when it feels like the game should end, saying "yes" to a question in an extra zone in the starting hub will end the game instantly and save a New Game+ clear. You have been warned.
Bloodborne tips photo
Spill the wine, not your blood
Bloodborne can get pretty rough at times. All Souls games can. To help you ease from the frustration to the fun zone, here are a few tips to help you on your way. General non-spoiler tips will be frontloaded at the top, but the progression-spoiler ones will be in the second section. Note that no bosses or story elements are spoiled, just navigational tidbits in case you get lost.

Review: Bloodborne

Mar 23 // Chris Carter
Bloodborne (PS4)Developer: From SoftwarePublisher: Sony Computer EntertainmentReleased: March 24, 2015MSRP: $59.99 Right from the get-go, Bloodborne feels right on the PlayStation 4. I'm glad that From Software decided to focus on just one lead platform, because not only does it look like a current-gen game, you don't have to worry about a community split for the multiplayer element. Everyone is under one roof. Aesthetic beauty aside, Bloodborne runs great from a practical standpoint as well. There was only one room where I felt a stark drop in terms of the frame rate, and it was only for a few seconds. There's pop-in abound and some very long load times (in a few instances I counted one minute), but this is the most stable Souls game to date. Character creation remains fairly unimpressive in terms of crafting a character model, and the starting class setup ("backgrounds" in Bloodborne) are still just guidelines. Once you get past the surface though you'll quickly learn how different this iteration really is. For starters, the "weight" stat is gone, adding much more freedom in terms of movement. Players are encouraged to constantly dodge and run with a more forgiving stamina bar, a concept epitomized by the fact that the game's only main shield is basically a joke item. The pistol off-hand and weapon main-hand are the new go-to loadout, and the pistol is less of a ranged powerhouse and more of a new way to riposte counter. Hand-to-hand combat is the core focus of Bloodborne -- heck, even magic is downplayed significantly, only offering a scant few (useful) spells. With this tradeoff comes a remarkable increase in melee superiority, with faster attacks and the power to transform weapons into a slower, more deliberate build with a quick tap of the L1 button, which can even be done mid-combo. You'll need these enhancements too, since Bloodborne is roughly as challenging as its predecessors. To mix it up even further, players can gain some lost health back by being aggressive with the new "Regain" system, mirroring a mechanic found in select fighting games. It truly represents the new combat flow, frequently forcing you into the fray with an intriguing risk-reward scenario. There's less equipment in general to keep track of, which will be a divisive issue among fans. While I'm always excited to acquire a massive collection of 50 or more rare weapons, I appreciate the downplay of gear in Bloodborne. It puts more emphasis on raw skill and less on item hunting, allowing players to spend more time specializing in what they like without worrying that their favorite weapon will be outclassed around the next corner. [embed]288934:57746:0[/embed] That's not to say there aren't secrets however, as there are plenty of hidden nooks that contain useful items. You'll need to do lots of searching since blood vials replace the regenerating "flasks" of the past two Dark titles. It's an old-school system that mirrors Demon's Souls' herbs in that you'll have to either farm for vials or purchase them to continue to heal. You'll keep seeing this concept repeatedly throughout the game -- Bloodborne really feels like a mix of everything From has learned thus far. Beyond these changes, it follows the same basic formula of gathering souls (now called Blood Echoes) from defeated enemies to spend on leveling up or items. You still can't pause the game, and bonfires return as lamp checkpoints. In other words, business as usual. There are a few subtle differences beyond the combat overhaul, though. Insight points are gained over the course of the quest and can slightly change environmental layouts and enemy placements, while some enemies can absorb your souls, forcing you to defeat them to reclaim the souls. Nifty tricks like this help cement Bloodborne as its own entity while managing to play it safe, utilizing the core foundation that put Souls on the map. The way the game is laid out is also a Souls hodgepodge of sorts. There is a sprawling interconnected world like Dark Souls, but it also has a separate hub world with teleporters much like Demon's, allowing you to level up, access storage, shop, and a weapon bench to socket stat-infused gems. There's a huge emphasis on shortcuts, as you'll come across one roughly every five minutes. Don't worry, Bloodborne also keeps the cryptic nature of the series intact. The story is vague but provides enough hints and linked tidbits to keep it coherent, hinting at a universe ready to be pieced together by fans. Yharnam is a sufficiently creepy town complete with derelict zones, lush forests, and awe-inspiring towers, though a few areas feel relatively indistinguishable from past games. With all of the unique settings in the past like endless lakes of fire and terrifying poisonous swamps, From Software was bound to start running low on ideas at some point. Still, the studio makes those areas sing, and nails the atmosphere throughout. Subtle effects like smoke pouring out from the ground go hand-in-hand with the glowing eye animations for some enemies, and the landscapes and denizen designs mesh perfectly. While I wouldn't say this cast of NPCs is at the top of my list, you'll meet a few interesting and terrifying faces. I was able to test out multiplayer in a live environment since Sony turned on the servers pre-launch, and I have to say, it's par for the course -- and I mean that as a compliment. Player-presented hints are still intact, as are phantom blood spots to show player deaths, and of course co-op and PVP are in. Multiplayer now inherently costs Insight points (you'll have ample supply as you continue through multiple playthroughs and acquire Insight items along the way), and to even play PVP you'll need an Insight rating of 30, which you likely won't earn until roughly 10 hours in. While co-op is upgraded with the ability to password protect and create private lobbies to play with friends in a non-frustrating manner, PVP feels a bit more limited this time around. It doesn't bother me as I was never particularly fond of the mechanic, but PVP fiends likely won't stick around as long as they have in the past. With less weapons and spells to learn or counter there's less meta on paper, though I'm sure that will continue to shift over time. Bloodborne is a fairly lengthy romp, as it took me about 32 hours to complete on my first playthrough. There's a decent chunk of sidequests and interactions, and of course, the call of New Game+ is inescapable. One thing that did disappoint me though is the general layout of the map after the curtain was closed -- it feels less replayable, less sprawling than past games due to the action-oriented focus. As of the time of this writing I'm working on my second playthrough, but I'm not finding a whole lot of new areas like I did in prior New Game+ runs in other games. There is one caveat regarding the aforementioned lack of replay value. Although there were a few extra paths in older Souls games, the problem is that eventually, you'd memorize the layout anyway, eliminating the element of surprise and awe. But with randomly generated Chalice Dungeons in Bloodborne, that all changes. After finding one of four chalices in-game (even the mechanic itself is shrouded in mystery, so I won't spoil it here), you can start running dungeons on your own, separate from the core game. Said areas have their own unique layouts, traps, and even a few new bosses, and you can search for new dungeons online or share your own. With co-op and PVP supported in addition to the persistence of layouts throughout New Game+ runs, Chalice Dungeons may have legs beyond what was possible in past titles. I can see a strong community rising up in the future involving shared creations curated by challenge. Bloodborne is an interesting mix of everything From Software has learned throughout its storied developmental career. Not everything will gel with fans old and new, but for the most part, the shift towards a combat-oriented game is a net positive. From Software is still one of the only developers left that makes you work for your satisfaction, and Bloodborne is damn satisfying. [This review is based on a digital copy of the game provided by the publisher.]
Bloodborne review photo
Simply red
Hidetaka Miyazaki created a legacy with Demon's Souls. With three Armored Core games under his belt at From Software, Miyazaki dared to capture the spirit of the King's Field series for a new era, and thus the Souls...

Blood-born Bloodborne photo
Blood-born Bloodborne

Donate blood in Denmark & your free copy of Bloodborne will be blood-born


Like, born of blood, as in that will be its origin
Mar 20
// Steven Hansen
As usual, Denmark gets the best promotions. PlayStation Denmark is partnering with GivBlod to give you Bloodborne if you give blood. It's part of an effort to increase the amount of male donors. Or you could get another, undi...
Dark Souls photo
Dark Souls

Prepare to scroll: This Dark Souls illustration captures the complexity of Lordran


It just keeps going
Mar 20
// Jordan Devore
Uncovering the mysterious, unforgiving, crazy-but-believably-crafted world of Lordran is one of the greatest pleasures experienced in not only Dark Souls, but in the last decade of videogames. I'm still wrapping my head aroun...
Bloodborne photo
Bloodborne

Still counting the days, extended Bloodborne TV spot and info released


OK fine, I guess I'll get hyped now
Mar 19
// Robert Summa
I've been stubbornly attempting to resist the Bloodborne hype train. Getting your hopes up, especially for modern AAA games, usually leads to nothing but pure uncut disappointment. As we near the actual launch of the game, h...
Bloodborne photo
Bloodborne

The Bloodborne launch trailer is so deliciously sinister


That closing shot
Mar 13
// Jordan Devore
If you're worried about seeing too much of the game, stay far away from this video. It goes places. That said, you know a trailer is good when, without hesitation, you go back and rewatch it several more times in a row. Admi...
Bloodborne online play photo
Bloodborne online play

Sony Japan details Bloodborne online play


It's a lot like Dark Souls
Mar 07
// Jason Faulkner
In an update to the official Bloodborne website, Sony Computer Entertainment Japan has detailed the various modes of online play that will be available.
Bloodborne boss photo
Bloodborne boss

Damn, shouldn't have spoiled this Bloodborne boss


Resist! Or don't!
Feb 27
// Jordan Devore
Attempting to go into Bloodborne blind? I feel you. It's not something I can pull off consistently given the nature of this job -- that's one of the big tradeoffs -- but I still try with select titles. The PlayStation Blog ha...
From Software photo
From Software

Dark Souls developer's PS1 classic Shadow Tower rated by ESRB


From Software's first-person roots
Feb 26
// Steven Hansen
From Software doesn't just make Demon's/Dark Souls and Bloodborne. The company created Armored Core, too. It also followed its King's Field games with another first-person, skeletal RPG, Shadow Tower. Shadow Tower has be...
Bloodborne photo
Bloodborne

Start prepping right now for Bloodborne's meanest bosses


Maybe fail slightly less than expected
Feb 20
// Brett Makedonski
The Boy Scouts are notoriously prepared, and for good reason. Rushing into a situation makes for plans going awry. When things go off the rails, failure's usually imminent. In a game like Bloodborne, failure's part of the fo...
Bloodborne photo
Bloodborne

Bloodborne's story trailer most certainly does not have a soothing presence


Something's up with that blood
Feb 19
// Brett Makedonski
The lady in Bloodborne's story trailer needs to learn what soothing means. A mug of warm cocoa on a cold winter night is soothing. The sound of the tide rolling in and out is soothing. A demon hunter doing his best to not get ripped limb from limb by ferocious, overly aggressive beasts is not soothing, lady.
Suspicious trademarks photo
Suspicious trademarks

A trademark has been filed for Soldiers' Soul


Is this our next Souls game?
Feb 13
// Brett Makedonski
This should be prefaced by saying that trademark news should always be taken with a grain of salt. With that out of the way, we might have a heads-up as to what the next game in the widely beloved Souls series is. In Europe, ...
Bloodborne shields photo
Bloodborne shields

Actually, there are shields in Bloodborne


But you'll still need to be aggressive
Feb 06
// Jordan Devore
There are shields in Bloodborne after all, SCE Japan Studio has confirmed to IGN. Well I'll be. Shields will seem like a comfort to Souls players who haven't yet experienced the faster, in-your-face action of Bloodborne, but ...

Dark Souls II: Scholar of the First Sin is more than just a remaster

Feb 05 // Alessandro Fillari
Dark Souls II: Scholar of the First Sin (PC, PS3, PS4 [previewed], Xbox 360, Xbox One)Developer: From SoftwarePublisher: Bandai Namco GamesRelease date: April 7, 2015MSRP: $59.99 "It's about the rediscovery of the Dark Souls II experience, from the director's perspective," said Yoshimura during his presentation on Dark Souls II: Scholar of the First Sin. "That was something that the team at From Software in Japan really wanted players to experience." The developers and publisher Bandai Namco have kept many details close to the vest, in part due to the studio working on another Souls-esque experience with Bloodborne, and wanting to keep fans in suspense. It's easy to think of this as nothing more than a remastered game-of-the-year edition, which is totally fair, but From Software wanted to set the record straight. In the cursed kingdom of Drangelic, you play as an afflicted traveler looking to find a cure to end their suffering. With the kingdom filled with monsters and other nefarious foes, you'll discover that the curse, and those crazy enough to remain in the defiled lands, are all linked in the fate of Drangelic. Granted, you know this if you played the original Dark Souls II. You might even be comfortable with what lurks in the cursed lands. But what if I were to tell you that things are a bit different with the coming of Scholar of the First Sin? With this release, From Software wanted to spice things up by adding characters as well as overhauling and retweaking gameplay. "If you played Dark Souls II on Xbox 360 or PS3 all the way through, then you would think of this game, Scholar of the First Sin, as roughly the same game with all of the DLCs," said marketing director Brian Hong. "But what we're really trying to get across with players is that with [current-generation systems], we have a completely different experience for Dark Souls II." A common criticism of the original release last year was that it was much easier than its predecessor. While there is an argument for that case, even though it was still an immensely challenging game, the folks at From Software want to address those concerns head-on. Scholar of the First Sin is to Dark Souls II what Master Quest is to The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time. It's not only for newcomers looking to see what the Souls experience is all about, it's also for those who may think they've mastered Dark Souls II. In my brief time with the game, it was apparent the game wanted me to feel very uncomfortable with what lied behind the corner even though I've already cleared the previous title. But of course, the feeling of discomfort is a normal part of the series' experience. One of Scholar of the First Sin's most apparent changes is that enemy and monster placements have been reworked. Foes you encountered at certain points in DSII will appear much earlier, and in greater numbers. During my session in the Forest of Fallen Giants, Ogres were wandering throughout, and Hollow Infantry are in larger groups. Surprisingly, the Heide Knights were nowhere to be seen, as they've been moved to other locations. With the increased number of foes, and different placement of them, I found myself having to effectively relearn aspects of areas I was quite familiar with. What's even more surprising was that the A.I. was not only improved, but the enemies of Dark Souls II had also lost their fear of Bonfire spots. They will have no qualms about chasing players down to their safe havens. To put it simply, you're more vulnerable in Scholar of the First Sin than in the original, which means you'll be using your hoards of lifegems far more often. As any fan of the Souls series will tell, mastering your environment and knowing the limits of your enemies is everything. So it was especially interesting to see that Scholar of the First Sin pulls the rug from under the players. From Software has especially had fun in placing monsters in areas that were not present in the original game. For instance, elevators that lead to bosses or shortcuts now house enemies that lay in wait for the player. With the technology that the current-gen has brought, the developers were very keen on getting the title out on the new hardware. With the increased horsepower, From Software was able to bring a visual boost to the Souls experience. In addition to the title running at 60 frames per second and at 1080p, the texture quality and lighting are improved to give the atmosphere an extra kick. Moreover, online multiplayer has also seen a boost with a maximum of six players during engagements. Much like another upcoming remaster, the developers were also inspired by much of what PC modders were able to accomplish, and wanted to offer the same level of content boosts (like textures and lighting) to the console releases. "Thanks to those players online, we were surprised by what they came up with," said Yoshimura. "Just one week after the release of [Dark Souls II], we saw all these mods being released, and the team at From Software were surprised and like 'This mod is awesome!'" Surprisingly, the producer was candid about the state of parity between each version. As there was some controversy over the differences in the original game to the one that was ultimately released, Bandai Namco was very adamant about what's in Scholar of the First Sin. "All [current-gen] versions will run at 1080p and 60 frames per second, including the Xbox One. So it is not 900p blah-blah-blah, it's 1080p and 60 FPS for all three platforms. Though some people said that it is worse to play the game on PC without DirectX 11, and the answer is yes. I'm really confident about clarifying this, because the improved lighting and shadows, clothing effects, and etc. -- this is only available on DirectX 11 technology, and not on DirectX 9." If you have the PS3, Xbox 360, or PC (DX9) versions of Scholar of the First Sin, then you might find yourself surprised to see that nothing has been altered visually or tech-wise, though you'll definitely experience the gameplay enhancements and new content. I dug what I played of the PlayStation 4 version. Though I was a little disappointed that no new areas were implemented, it's exciting to see that the developers sought to redefine what Dark Souls II was. The graphical boosts are very apparent -- quite stunning in person, even -- and the smooth 60 FPS combat is immediately noticeable. Though it's a bit disappointing that only those with new hardware will be able to experience it (without mods, of course). It's an interesting experience to re-learn Dark Souls II. Coming off of its predecessor, it seemed to have gotten flack for not quite living up to that standard while wanting to try something different. But with Scholar of the First Sin, which the folks at From Software consider the definitive edition, it feels like the game has gotten a much-needed invigoration -- especially with Bloodborne coming out the month before. It's not often you get to experience a game like this for the first time all over again, and that's something fans should love.
Dark Souls II photo
Prepare to die harder
I'll be the first to say it: it's going to be the year of Souls. With the release of Bloodborne only a month away, which looks to redefine the experience along with its wonderful change of setting, From Software has been...

Bloodborne photo
Bloodborne

Glasses, tattoos, origins: A taste of Bloodborne's character creator


The potential for creating hideous monster people is high
Feb 04
// Jordan Devore
In this short runthrough of Bloodborne's character editor, IGN was able to create a Harry Potter lookalike now that glasses are an option in the game. That's a worthwhile addition, but it's the "Origin" (i.e., class) option ...
Bloodborne gameplay photo
Bloodborne gameplay

These first 18 minutes of Bloodborne make me feel all tingly


Got me feeling pee shivers
Feb 02
// Jason Faulkner
From Software's latest action-RPG looks to replicate the butthole-puckering tense gameplay that originated with its predecessors in the Souls series. IGN posted the first 18 minutes of gameplay (minus character creation...
Bloodborne bundle photo
Bloodborne bundle

PS4 gets Bloodborne bundle in Europe, procedural Chalice Dungeons explained


North American bundle announcement incoming?
Jan 30
// Steven Hansen
Here's the lowdown on Bloodborne's procedurally generated Chalice Dungeons that are different depending on what item combination you use to summon them. It's different from Dark Souls' hand-crafted precision, but it could ke...

Auto-loading more stories ... un momento, corazón ...