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 Sunken King
 BLOG ABOUT THIS

Review: Dark Souls II: The Crown of the Sunken King

8:00 AM on 07.22.2014 // Chris Carter
  @DtoidChris

It's no Artorias, but it'll do

2014 has been very good to me, but Dark Souls II is one of my favorite games of the year. Many debates have raged on as to whether or not it's as exceptional as its predecessor (Demon's Souls is better than both), but having played it prior to launch without any hints or guides, I heartily enjoyed getting lost in its labyrinthine tunnels and deadly arenas.

The Crown of the Sunken King DLC expands that goodness by about five to ten hours depending on your skill level, and even if it's one of the less remarkable levels in the game, it's still worth playing.

Dark Souls II: The Crown of the Sunken King (PC, PS3, Xbox 360 [reviewed])
Developer: From Software
Publisher: Bandai Namco
Released: July 22, 2014 (PC, PS3, Xbox 360)
MSRP: $9.99 ($24.99 Season Pass)

So here's what you're getting with Crown -- three new areas, new spells, more items, and extra enemies. Not all of them are created equal however, as some of the baddies feel like re-skins of prior models (one actually is a re-skin), and not all of the weapons and items are particularly useful for extended playthroughs. Still, the core areas are very well done and manage to differentiate themselves from the rest of the series.

Entering the DLC is dead simple, and will likely appease fans who found the process to access the Artorias content in the previous game frustrating. All you have to do is have the Black Gulch area cleared (up to and including The Rotten boss). In that area is a new snake-like statue -- just touch the statue and you're in.

There's a bonfire right near the start of the DLC, and with Dark Souls II's convenient travel system, you can head to and from the content anytime you please. This is a huge plus for me, since the DLC doesn't lock you out after completing it and feels like a genuine expanded portion of the game that you can return to and explore freely.



Crown of the Sunken King starts off in a giant open cavernous area, filled with ancient Aztec-like structures. It gives a real Indiana Jones vibe, which is accentuated by special obelisks that you can strike to raise or lower specific platforms. The Souls series has always had environmental manipulation in some form, but here it feels a lot more liquid than normal, and figuring out the puzzle of the ruins felt more taxing than most zones.

In fact, the DLC is actually one of the more difficult zones I encountered in general, as enemies do tons of damage, nearly everything poisons (even regular foes) and there are pits at every turn. Just when I thought I had mastered an enemy type a new concept sprung up in its place, and I can't count the amount of times I misjudged a jump only to fall into the abyss. If you're looking for more of a challenge, this will suit that need nicely.

As far as the enemies go, the base models feel like modified skeletons, but have an interesting "glass armor" feel with a unique green color scheme. The entire DLC has a cohesive green hue to it, without going overboard like Blood Gulch's shiny emerald lighting. One of the most devious adversaries though is the poison statue cluster -- which is basically just a bunch of poison statues cobbled together. It's a lazy design, but it's an effective enemy that will keep you on your toes.

Sadly, the boss fights aren't nearly as memorable as the bar that was set in Artorias. While those had completely original and terrifying models like Manus, Crown borrows some concepts from the original game -- and even if a few aren't directly taken, they still feel pretty static overall outside of the final boss. Having said that, I was still consistently entertained throughout the entire DLC, even if I wasn't blown away.

Dark Souls II: The Crown of the Sunken King is not a "must have" add-on, but it does its job of delivering more Dark Souls. As always, I advise you to skip out on the Season Pass until all three of its pieces are out so you can judge it by the strength of its parts. However, hardcore Souls fans will want to at least buy Crown simply to experience a challenging new area that's worth trekking through.



THE VERDICT

7

Dark Souls II: The Crown of the Sunken 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 Sunken King


View all:powered by:  MM.Elephant

Ads on destructoid may be purchased from:



Please contact Crave Online, thanks!


Comments of the Week - Love Love Love

Sonic Generations Mod Retrospective 2 - COLORS

Venture into the Borderlands - Epilogue

Pokémon X Review - Fairy Enough

Kitten Bowl x Puppy Bowl Stream Starts NOW!

Cool site never heard of before

Gravity Rush: The 6th generation game you didn't play

The Witness Review

Waifu Wars: Rei Ayanami (NGE)

Gaming's Beautiful People #3: Waifu Wars Edition (Bloggers Wanted)

 Add your impressions

 Quickposts
Status updates from C-bloggers

Kieronpowell14 avatarKieronpowell14
Just some Marvel stuff
EAPidgeon avatarEAPidgeon
Have a good one everyone. May you enjoy bountiful carbs and fats this Super Bowl Day.
Heat avatarHeat
someone asked me what i am going to do on my vacations... "playing like 6 hours of XCOM 2 daily, then some Diablo 3. Later, Darkest Dungeon and some beers, and to end the night, i'll watch some anime and eat instant noodles" "Perfect"
The Dyslexic Laywer avatarThe Dyslexic Laywer
I've beaten the Gaping Dragon and finally got the key to Blight town, whats the first thing I immediately did when I got there? Fall right into a endless pit and died.
Bardley avatarBardley
I scanned some pages from issues of Nintendo Power from the early 90's and saw this back cover ad. I thought it would be appropriate to post today. Who's everyone rooting for tonight?
Amna Umen avatarAmna Umen
Came home pissed off for some reason, hopped on Rocket League and played the best games of my life. New tactic!
ScionVyse avatarScionVyse
10 hours into the Witness, I've solved 350 puzzles, and activated 8 lasers. So, that's about 35 puzzles an hour, I think that's a pretty good pace. I have no idea how many more puzzles there are, but I think I'll be getting towards the first ending soon.
Dreamweaver avatarDreamweaver
Shoot, I have made the awful mistake of watching 50 First Dates while doing Comments of the Week. The comedy in the beginning gave me energy, but all of the sad drama is making me cry and it's hard to see through all the tears. WHY YOU DO THIS TO ME!? 8^8
Zatsune avatarZatsune
I'm eating EDO's rn. Leftovers. Yum. 🍱🍣🍜🍲
ikiryou avatarikiryou
Kotobukiya's making a Xenoblade Chronicles X Formula skell model that looks great but I'd rather have a Lailah model. And I would name it Tharja just like my Lailah in the game.
ChrisHannard avatarChrisHannard
Damn you, TV Tropes. As if I wasn't already dead set against doing an Undertale genocide run, this has killed the possibility for me.
TheDefenestrator avatarTheDefenestrator
About to start streaming some This War Of Mine: The Little Ones on Twitch. Say hi! http://www.twitch.tv/thedefenestrator
FakePlasticTree avatarFakePlasticTree
Majima karaoke & the man train--Makes Dead Souls worth it <3
Roxas1359 avatarRoxas1359
Yep, Spyro: Enter the Dragonfly is still as bad and unpolished as I remember it. Still manages to give me a headache too due to the choppy framerate.
absolutfreak avatarabsolutfreak
When aliens have taken over the world, there's only one man you can depend on: Macho Man Randy Savage.
ChillyBilly avatarChillyBilly
NBCSN has been killing it lately with their "Curling Night in America" coverage.
LaTerry avatarLaTerry
My favorite was already posted, so instead I'll share my second favorite, the greatest three headed Pokemon there is, Hydreigon.
Titannel avatarTitannel
I like Wingull! He's cute!
CoilWhine avatarCoilWhine
CAN'T STUMP THE TRUMP!
Alphadeus avatarAlphadeus
Eye of the Beholder (2014) - Possible boss battle theme for a video game. Love the action strings and bell instrument. I wrote this song for 2AD14 - II, which has many great tracks on it. This one is one of my favorites, which is why I'm sharing it.
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 -