Note: iOS 9 + Facebook users w/ trouble scrolling: #super sorry# we hope to fix it asap. In the meantime Chrome Mobile is a reach around
hot  /  reviews  /  videos  /  cblogs  /  qposts

Dark Souls II: The Crown of the Old Iron King
 BLOG ABOUT THIS

Review: Dark Souls II: The Crown of the Old Iron King

4:00 PM on 08.27.2014 // Chris Carter
  @DtoidChris

That white hot light

While Dark Souls II brought me back to that special place that I found with Demon's Souls in many ways, the first DLC pack, Crown of the Sunken King, didn't go far enough with its concepts.

It's really hard to give us a worthwhile add-on with Artorias of the Abyss looming over it, but the second pack, Crown of the Old Iron King, does a much better job of distilling the Souls experience.

Dark Souls II: The Crown of the Iron King (PC, PS3, Xbox 360 [reviewed])
Developer: From Software
Publisher: Bandai Namco
Released: August 26, 2014 (PC, PS3, Xbox 360)
MSRP: $9.99 ($24.99 Season Pass)

Iron King starts off exactly the same way as Sunken King. This time around you'll make your way through fire and brimstone to the Primal Bonfire of the Old Iron King, which will allow you to enter a door and enter the DLC. Almost immediately the zone draws you in, kicking off with a vast expanse of castles, clouds, and a giant imposing chain that leads to the core part of the add-on -- Brume Tower. From there you can touch the bonfire and teleport around to any area at will.

Unlike Sunken King where I had no real attachment to the zone, Old Iron King exhumes lore and nuance. Ghostly whispers in the dark, melted and ash-ridden corpses, and even the types of enemies you'll encounter all tell a story that's relevant to the area you rode in on. Don't expect anything new or mind-blowing -- it simply fits, is all. The imposing bronze-kitted skeletons feel like natural denizens, as do the hulking giants that spew lava from their arms.

One of my favorite new enemy types are the harmless barrel-holding imps, who you can "corral" into fires to blow them up and dish out damage to other baddies. In addition to a set of brand new foes you'll also find the Ashen Idols -- mysterious demons that are impervious to damage unless you strike them with special items called "smelter wedges." You'll get a handful of these items at the start of the DLC, then you're on your own after that.

If you're the type of person who rushes through zones in Souls games, you're going to be disappointed when you conquer the main path in just several hours. But fortunately as someone who loves the spirit of exploration, I found a number of sidepaths, including a giant optional zone that is one of the biggest tests of skill in the entire game. Everything in Iron King thankfully gels with rest of the game both aesthetically, and in terms of overall level design. While there were a few parts of Sunken where I became frustrated and didn't feel as compelled to go on, Iron King sucked me in.

Bosses however are still a problem, re-iterating the biggest issue from the first DLC. They simply either aren't memorable enough on their own, or they're complete re-skins of prior encounters from the core game. That's not to say that they aren't just as satisfying at times as their predecessors, but for a piece of $10 DLC it would be nice to have all-new content. 

Crown of the Iron King didn't blow me away, but it's a very nice zone that feels like a natural extension of Dark Souls II, and it's meaty enough to feel like a real DLC and not just a bonus area. Now that there are two DLCs down and one to go, it's hard to really recommend the Season Pass unless the third zone really knocks it out of the park. Stay tuned in September for our coverage of The Crown of the Ivory King.



THE VERDICT

7.5

Dark Souls II: The Crown of the Old Iron King - Reviewed by Chris Carter
Likable - That's a seven, which is actually a different number than five. It's more than ok. We like this game. I don't want to play it every day forever and ever, but it's definitely worth the time I invested in it, and I'll be picking it up again to relive the fun sometime down the line.

See more reviews or the Destructoid score guide.

Chris Carter, Reviews Director, Co-EIC
 Follow Blog + disclosure DtoidChris Tips
Chris (Magnalon) has been enjoying Destructoid avidly since 2008. He finally decided to take the next step, make an account, and start blogging in January of 2009. Now, he's staff! -----------... more   |   staff directory





 Setup email comments

Unsavory comments? Please report harassment, spam, and hate speech to our community fisters, and flag the user (we will ban users dishing bad karma). Can't see comments? Apps like Avast or browser extensions can cause it. You can fix it by adding *.disqus.com to your whitelists.

destructoid's previous coverage:
Dark Souls II: The Crown of the Old Iron King


View all:powered by:  MM.Elephant

Ads on destructoid may be purchased from:



Please contact Crave Online, thanks!


Emily Wants To Play has come to mobile (and I wish it would go away again)

Six Reasons Why YOU Should Buy Soul Sacrifice Delta For $8!

Mega Man X Drinking Game: The Super Smashed Bros

Video Gaming Bits -- Rampage: Total Destruction

Roses are black, PS4 lights are blue; This is a game, and it has valkyries too?

Cblogs of 02/10/16 and WONDER-isms

Modern face of survival horror

Discussion Discussion on Games

PStoid Episode 38: Doomed from the Box Art

Cblogs of 2/9/16 - Only Slightly Late Edition

 Add your impressions

 Quickposts
Status updates from C-bloggers

Alphadeus avatarAlphadeus
Love, Lost, Live, Lost (2014) - Yesterday was me and my girlfriend's 16th year anniversary together, so I decided to share this song. It deals with being in love, losing that person, moving on, and learning to love again. It's 9 minutes long, too :P
gajknight avatargajknight
I have done my part. Thank you Niero. Question: Does blocking someone also remove their front-page articles too?
iam16bit avatariam16bit
I've been on this site for sometime and for some reason I've never done a quickpost until now.
TheKodu avatarTheKodu
So I'm hearing the UN called Japan in to discus "Banning the sale of video games or cartoons involving sexual violence against women " Which by Anita's standards = any Violence able to be done. Japan sent a 40 page long NO back to the UN in reply.
Amna Umen avatarAmna Umen
Why did I have to read that Austin Grossman was going to be one of the writers on a cancelled Half-Life 2 episode?
Parismio avatarParismio
Dammit its 3 and i cant stop reading cute gay romance mangas.
Nekrosys avatarNekrosys
Going to be honest; I love out-of-context anime screenshots. They're... kind of incredible.
Jed Whitaker avatarJed Whitaker
Retweet of the year goes to President of Worldwide Studios, Sony Computer Entertainment, Inc., Shuhei Yoshida.
Voodoome avatarVoodoome
Just got home from Deadpool and ... it's not good. I liked the jabs at Green Lantern and the previous movie Deadpool, but that was about it. The rest was just painfully forced dick jokes. Wife fell asleep.
Nathan D avatarNathan D
Larxinostic rule34
CoilWhine avatarCoilWhine
Looks like I'm not gonna be able to 100% Tearaway Unfolded until Monday at the least. I'm definitely writing about it this weekend and am trying my hardest to get my screenshots off of my PS4 (especially hard as I don't do social media anymore)
Darth Wachen avatarDarth Wachen
I've never done a blog before, so I may as well try one with a review of Stranger of Sword City....well, when I get entered into that contest of course
ikiryou avatarikiryou
Shakedown Hawaii is giving me good GTA vibes. I missed the topdown GTA games when they were a thing. I have to decide what platform to get it for since it's coming to 3DS/Vita/PS4/PC (probably the Vita version for moi).
TheBlondeBass avatarTheBlondeBass
You think your art sucks? Here's the rule34 I made of Larx yesterday. Look at it and despair.
Nekrosys avatarNekrosys
Hey Dreamweaver? If you think your art sucks, you should have a look at my magnum opus. It's of Cloud from the popular game, Final Fantasy: All the Bravest.
Agent9 avatarAgent9
I never thought this would happen, but here I am. all of my 700+ pokemon gone in one day. My cart stopped working and there's nothing I can do. I quit, you can't just rebuild all that. Time to find something else.
taterchimp avatartaterchimp
Tom Collins is a pretty great drink, and well suited for poutine. consumption
Solar Pony Django avatarSolar Pony Django
It may be because I've been drinking but... We need some dung beetles from ark for the front page. Move that dung on out.
CoilWhine avatarCoilWhine
Does anyone know how to get PS4 screenshots onto a PC without needing a flash drive? I don't have a spare.
Dreamweaver avatarDreamweaver
This is an example of how bad my drawings are. I honestly think drawing stick figures would've been easier on the eyes. :( The worst thing about this image is that this was made after I got BETTER. Trust me, you don't want to see my earlier stuff. T^T
more quickposts


Contest!


Seriously

Invert site colors

  Dark Theme
  Light Theme


Destructoid means family.
Living the dream, since 2006

Pssst. konami code + enter

modernmethod logo



Back to Top


We follow moms on   Facebook  and   Twitter
  Light Theme      Dark Theme
Pssst. Konami Code + Enter!
You may remix stuff our site under creative commons w/@
- Destructoid means family. Living the dream, since 2006 -