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From Software First Person Retrospective [Part 10: Shadow Tower Abyss 1/2]



What an evocative word. Mysterious, alluring and the perfect name for a level. One of my favorite words, for sure. I always enjoy whenever I run into it in a game and get to see the developer's interpretation of it.

But what if you offered the name to a whole game?

[Part 6, 7, 8 and 9 are here for all to read.]

Shadow Tower: Abyss is the the sequel to the first Shadow Tower and serves as the missing link between all the other games in the retrospective and Demon's Souls. It was released on the 23rd of October 2003 in Japan and would have remained as such had it not recieved a fantranslation. I am very thankful for this occurrence. Very thankful.

Before I start showering the game in praise, there are a few things I want you to know.

Compared to the first game, Abyss is shorter, easier and somehow even more confusing. These are major detriments, but ones I can live with. Abyss seems like a game that had a vision that could not be made reality back when it was created. It's why I'm still hoping for a third game to be made. From Soft are big enough now that they could make an amazing dungeon crawler with the right people at the helm.

Naotoshi Zin is the man who has served as the producer of these games through the years and Hidetaka Miyazaki has said that he doesn't want to make any more dungeon crawlers without him at the helm, they're his games. But there is one man who could be up to the task.

Yui Tanimura, the good director of Dark Souls 2, did actually work on this game, according to this interview. Probably not as a director, but I can't confirm what he actually did, Kanji is a bitch. There are a few things in Abyss that made their way into DS1 & DS2, but the majority of it is comprised of ideas that haven't been seen since.

Since this game doesn't have much of a fanbase, I don't have access to any story material outside of the game itself. It probably wouldn't help me understand the story much better, but the name of our protagonist would have been nice to know. As such, I'll name him after my main Dark Souls character, Pardough the Holy Man.

And just to give him a reason to seek the Shadow Tower, let's just say that he has heard rumours of an almighty lightning-infused ultra greatsword being sealed within its walls. Which one, I hear you ask? The one whose name is engraved in a legend that never dies.

Lastly, as penance for being a lazy bastard last time, I'm recording a complete walkthrough of the game, sans commentary of course. For that is what a walkthrough is, despite what modern video makers will try to convince you of. I'm doing it as a sort of substitute for all of you that can't play this awesome game yourself. That's one purpose of the retrospective as a whole, but Abyss deserves a bit extra.

But enough talk, let's do some darkdiving. Onwards, into the abyss!


The Sunken Forest

As fate would have it, there are some very useful maps curtesy of this fansite. And going by our track-record, you'll have to use the Wayback Machine to access it before long. Sadly, there are a few maps missing, but it's no problem. The confusing levels have maps and that's all that matters. I'm also naming the areas as I see fit, since they are all rather poorly named. They are mostly just plain and descriptive with no flavour. Stuff like Blue Light area or Cliff area.

We actually have two intros this time. One telling us about the might of the Spear King and the other depicting Pardough's descent into the tower. It's a very similar setup to the first game. The biggest difference is that we begin at the base and go upwards. I have no idea if this is supposed to be the exact same tower as the first game, as there aren't any direct links between the two games.

The Spear King is of course the king character of the game, our last in fact. Much like the DLC kings of DS2, his name has been lost to time. But the legend of the spear lives on and it has an eye that looks very similar to the eye on the crown of the first game. I think it's fair to assume that Ruus is the Spear King, but there's nothing explicit beyond the eye.

In either case, it's an item of (probably cursed) power that many men have sought across the ages. And now it's Pardough's turn. The game begins as he drops down into the base of the tower and we get a great little moment. His torch lies on the ground and fizzles out. That leaves us in complete darkness until his eyes adjust.

It's a nice and subtle way to represent the game as a whole. It's scary at first and then nothing unusual when you get used to it. On the wall there is an inscription that acts as our setup.

The strength of a lord is something that's relevent both to the older games and the newer ones, DS2 in particular. Since only the wielder of the spear can escape the abyss, we have no choice but to claim it. It reminds me of the ”without really knowing why” thing from DS2 as well. It feels like something invited us here.

Walking downstairs, we get our last start-of-game-fuck-you. There is probably a creature behind a pillar that makes it fall down. This more or less the only instakill in the game, which is nice. What wasn't nice was that the sound of it falling used to cause my emulator to implode. Thankfully, it was made more stable recently., so I don't have to use shitty audio in order to get by.

One cute little callback is that we can find lizards with glowing eyes who look very much like the ones from the intro of the first game here.

”Are we mascots? Do we get royalties?”

At the end of the staircase we find a guy near death. I can't help but liken him to Oscar from DS1, except he just tells us to kill everything and gives us a dagger. Had this been ST, this would be our first weapon. But this is Shadow Tower Abyss, the newer and shinier game. So we don't need no stinkin' dagger, we have guns!

It should come as no surprise that people have compared this game to Bloodborne. If we are continuing my little comparison of retrospective games with the Souls-games, then this would be like a theoretical Bloodborne 2. Abyss is well deserving of such a comparison, as it does something Bloodborne never could acomplish. You might need to sit down for this.

Guns actually do damage.

You may now collect your popped monocle and take a deep breath.

Not only do they do damage, they break the game something fierce. Similarily to how DS1 is broken thanks to backstabs, Abyss remains really fun in spite of how easy it is.

They are all pretty similar, but there's still some nice variety to be had. There are multiple versions of the same kind of gun with different stats and there is a multitude of different ammo types as well. The only downside is that there is no way to aim them with sights. The sniper rifle might be able to do that, but I never tried it. You need to keep tabs on both ammo and durability in order to use them properly. They really bring System Shock 2 to mind, which is funny, since KF1 and SS1 are so similar.

But that's not all that has happened between games, oh no. It may have take the better part of a decade, but we finally have good controls. With analog support! Good analog support!

You can use a few control schemes, but for me it's not even a question. Having the four types of melée attacks on the shoulder buttons while being able to aim and look with the right stick is a godsend. Long gone are the days of me getting hurt in my thumb due to the d-pad controls of the previous games.

The other thing that makes me think that this game has the greatest first person melée system ever (obligatory ”Suck it Bethesda!”.) is how the four attack types interact with enemies. For you see, From Soft implemented a a limb cutting system (obligatory ”Suck it Dead Space!”.). And chock of chocks, it does wonders for the kinesthetics.


Unlike the limbs in BB, here they stay broken, changing the possible movesets of enemies permanently. This is one of the major factors why the game is so easy. And even if you don't break a limb, you'll often stun an enemy no matter what you strike them with. This makes sense, as there aren't any defensive options like the shield from the first game. So the game is balanced towards you getting first blood.

And once you do, you can take advantage of yet another addition, the new stamina system. Up to this point, we have been limited to charging up one attack at a time. But not anymore, as you can store a few depending on the weapon. It's not exactly the same as the stamina in Demon's Souls, but it puts more focus on R1 spam and less on circle-strafing. It makes it faster, but something was lost in the transition. I'm curious if a dodge system would work in first person.

Another change is how burden is handled, which is a bit unique. There isn't any equip load, only item burden. So you can equip whatever you want, but only carry so much. This presents some hardship for a hoarder such as I, but there are ways to deal with it.

Let's move on and stab some more Galps.

”Henry? Speak to me buddy!”

One thing that's quite apparent is that the Sunken Forest looks very much like Thing's Betwixt in DS2. It's not surprising, as they serve similar purposes. They're tutorial levels that act as a connection between the outside world and the main game.

As a reward for not dying like a bitch to the easiest enemies in the game, we get an amazing reward.

Oh yeah, time to go Sega Bass Fishing up in this house!

If the guns weren't enough of a hint, Abyss takes place in modern times. That's not to say that there aren't any medieval things. It seems like many people across the ages have tried to conquer the tower. This leaves us with a crazy amount of weird weapons to use. They aren't super different, but the amount of detail is staggering. If anything, you'll at least find something that looks cool. And at the end of the day, isn't that all that matters?

The abyss isn't a good place for a working class skeleton.

This place works rather well as a first level overall. It gives you a chance to play around with the new controls, waste some ammo and then die to the giant Galp who can smash you into paste without a head.

I even disarmed him, but he just wouldn't surrender.

It's kind of funny that they subvert the usefulness of decapitations, just to let it become useful so quickly after this point. There are a few enemies that can survive without a head, but it's generally a good idea to aim for the noggin.

There isn't much more of interest here, besides an ambush.

”Then we can finally clear those 4-player areas in Little Big Planet.”

They fall rather easily if you sneak up on them. There is also a Soul Pot somewhere in this level and they work just like before. You pop it and you get to increase your stats.

Four of these stats are not like the others. Four of these stats do not belong.

I did find an explanation of the stats once, but I lost it. It matters little anyway, as you don't get many Soul Pots in this game. I just dump the points into physical stats and it works rather well. Stamina and Vitality seem to be the best ones, but I haven't done much research on the matter.

You also get stats from enemies, which I didn't realise until this playthrough. I blame the first game for telling the player what stats enemies give you, something Abyss doesn't do. They also removed the damage numbers on enemies, which sucks. But hey, at least they kept the numbers on the player's HUD.

After pulling a sword from a stone, making it explode for some reason, we drop down and meet a boatsman.

Sweet, free boatride!

The ride is short and atmospheric. We pass by the symbol of the Shadow Tower on the way, but I have no clue if it's meant to symbolise something special.

When we get to the other side, we can open the way to our hub. The translation calls it the Blue Light area and that name sucks. I want to call it the Nexus, but that doesn't quite fit either. Let's just go with the Hub for now. It's also really hard to get a good picture of the whole thing, so I implore you to check out the video.

There are more of these alien people who offer a single line of flavour text each.

A Zweihander, a PC port of God Hand and pizza. In that order.

Brah, I have insight out the butt. No thing is beyond me.

But what would one need to do to earn the title of Redeemer as well?

As you can probably surmise, the seven lords are our bosses in this game. They aren't exactly what you'd call normal when compared to the ones in the first game. Hell, some barely register as bosses. The setup reminds me a bit of the Old Ones in DS2. But with the way the game is structured, I don't think you need to fight all of them. I doubt it'd lead to another ending if you skipped some, but it's worth to keep in mind. I might check it out later.

With this being our hub, we find the four types of usable crystals that are strewn about the game. The first is just a blue save crystal that works like you'd expect. They're much kinder with placement this time but you can't warp to them anymore.

The red one is the healing crystal. In exchange for any item with durability left, you get a full heal. This isn't as useful as potion trading was in the last game. They changed it so you can buy many more potions than before. Unless you burn through a crazy amount of potions, you can get away with only using the healing crystal once or twice. And once you progress a bit, items can be sold for more Cune than what a potion is worth, so I'd really only recommend using the crystal at the start of the game.

The green shop crystal serves many purposes. Unlike in the first game, its stock updates as you get further in the game. You can buy just about anything from it, with ammo and health potions being the most important. You can also sell stuff, and trust me, you will. With item burden being such a...burden, I often set out to use an item down to one point of durability and then sell it. That keeps the Cune flowing and limits how much you have to put in storage. Being able to store items was really nice of them. I usually set out with no more than three of every item in an equip slot and a few weapons. That way I won't get loot anxiety when I try to clean out a level.

The purple crystal repairs items and is a bit different from the smith in ST. First of all, the health cost of repairs is static, no matter how much durability is left. This is to encourage you to push items to their limits and risk breaking them. It's a pretty decent risk versus reward system. But it can't be overstated just how much kinder Abyss is with durability. The max values are generally higher and I feel like it takes more use before a point drops. Also, no acid levels!

This kind of makes the fundamental gameplay loop of Abyss a bit shaky. I feel like there is a happy medium between the two games where smith placement isn't assholish, but you still appreciate finding new weapons and try to conserve durability. No one really has made a game like this and I'd love it if someone continued to develop these ideas.

We also find...her.

Bighorned girls, you make the world go around.

Honestly just hungry. Got any pizza?

You're an unique NPC in a From Soft game. You're either gonna help me or betray me.

Rurufon is almost a complete copy of Auriel from the first game. Her design is quite similar while her story is a bit different. She sort of acts as our guide throughout the game, replacing the mole from the first game.

I don't think she's a fully realised character, but I like her well enough. In this first encounter she questions our strength and leaves us a key to the lift room. So we have only to go there and pick a level to explore.


The Queen's Domain

The levels in Abyss are structured differently when compared to ST. They are much larger than individual domains, but smaller than whole worlds. This leaves us with enough gamespace for the design idea of the area to gain enough traction to feel properly explored. But it also leaves us with less design ideas overall, which kills the diversity the first game had. But it's not much of a loss, since some of the domains in ST were kind of half-assed. It's an interesting tradeoff that makes it more fun for me to compare the two.

The Sunken Forest was obviously a tutorial and serves to introduce just about everything the game has to offer. I like it more than the Human World in ST, as it's more cohesive and doesn't hide as much behind hidden walls.

The Queen's Domain is much more cramped and confusing, putting your navigational skills to the test. It's an insect nest full of nearly identical tunnels and littered with enemies. The gimmick is that you need to find insect parts in order to open certain doors. It's not a complex mechanic, but it encourages looking everywhere, which will lead you to loot and enemies.

We're gonna need bigger jumping beans.

When choosing what weapons to save, I almost always look at durability. Since progression is a bit weirdly balanced and you get stats from enemies, it doesn't really matter what you bring, unless it's a dagger. They are pretty sub-par weapons, mostly due to the range and the multiple strikes needed to kill an enemy. Damage types don't really matter either, which is a shame. If enemies had proper strengths and weaknesses, then it would be much more interesting to choose a loadout.

Though honestly, I rarely find elemental systems to worth caring about in RPGs. Just packing healing and stabbing implements is usually the best strategy, by a mile. Unless it's SMT of course, then you'll die a thousand deaths with that strategy. Good times.

Up the path, beyond the first locked door, we find a warrior who served the Spear King. Going by his dialogue, he is very old. He seeks the spear so he can rebuild his kingdom, which sounds like a fool's errand. But the king found it here to begin with, so maybe he isn't Ruus. Unless there have been multiple spear kings.

Does it know what pizza is? Asking for a friend.

You can kill him now, which doesn't really do anything. Stabbing Rurufon earlier will break some quests, so that's a bad plan. Going a bit forward, we run into the queen during her dinner.

Ok, now you're just asking me to punt you off a cliff.

She is true to her word, as a magic crystal above her grants her immortality. Would you look at that, something else they recycled for DS1. Man, that whole series is looking less and less original by the paragraph!

The level begins proper at this point, as we can just run by her (and not have to die, shame on you DS1) in order to progress.

I'll take this oppurtunity to say just how fun it is to explore in this game. Around every corner there is bound to be something cool to find. Sadly, the enemy variety has taken a hit. Usually there is a basic enemy and loads of variants of that same enemy. It beats not having any variety at all, but I certainly miss the absurd amount of enemies in the first game. Something tells me the rising cost of making assets is to blame. Stupid reality of game creation getting in the way of good games *grumble* *grumble*.

Something tells me the Valley of Defilement would be much more fun if the Slayer of Demons had a gun. Just a hunch.

One cool thing about these insects is that they can semi-commonly survive without a head and startle you something fierce. They also inhabit slimy areas that slow you down and smash through walls to ambush you. It's a nice step up from the forest, but not something the game continues to do. There isn't a noticable increase in difficulty, it's more like you get put in different situations. Some of which are hard and some of which aren't hard at all.

It's interesting, but a nice difficulty curve would be better. Even with how many enemies there are here, I don't feel like the game has a real ”meaty” level where your combat skills get put to the test. Something akin to the final floor of KF1 would probably be horrible in Abyss, but the idea of having your skills and loot put to the test appeals to me. But if you go too far, you'll end up with the fire cave in KF4 where there's an army of tanky enemies that aren't worth fighting.

After getting the second insect part and witnessing some insects drag a dead wasp across the floor, we get to the last part of the level, which is a series of roomy caves full of cliffs. You can actually drop down and get to the key earlier, but it's worth it to go through the whole thing for loot. Unless you have a problem with assholish wasps.

I know I do.

They aren't that bad, unless you get the brilliant idea of trying to rush past them in order to save on resources. That didn't pan out well, trust me. You're better off just burning some ammo on them and be on your way. The two species actually fight eachother, which is fun. Mook chivalry is always entertaining.

With the last key, a blue gem, we can open the door to the queen's crystal room.

To smash with mace or to shoot with gun, that is the question.

She isn't all that happy with this and dies in a single hit. She is somehow even more of a bitch than Seath!

Well duh, you're the first boss.

She is ”kind” enough to drop us a fire ring. We're finally here, this is the game with the worst magic system in the whole retrospective. It's very easy to understand why, it's simple guns but worse in every way. The rings are very brittle and awkward to use. The only use I've found for them is that you can use them with a twohanded weapon, which might be useful to some people. I am no such person. As such, they'll all be sold so that I can buy something useful.


The Purification Sanctum

On the way to the sanctum, we can pick up a Purification Crystal. If we go through the other area first instead, we can find it there instead. As the name implies, we can use them to purify the sanctum, which is really helpful, considering that it's drenched in poison.

It's so wet with poison you guys. Moist even.

And for an early poison level, it's not that bad. That's because you can't avoid the poison, so they were nice enough to make it weak. The idea of the level is to run around a few interconnecting corridors and look for more crystals to place in pedestals.

Quite obvious in retrospect. I mean, what purification facility doesn't have giant worms haunting its halls?

When you place enough of them, the water clears and the poor worms become sick and unable to move.

Kind of like a Sharktigator from Ratchet & Clank. Except nowhere near as horrific.

They can actually split in a similar fashion to the man-centipedes in DeS. Not that it'll keep you from just stunlocking them like every other enemy. But hey, they try their best.

It's a bit annoying to navigate through this place, since you need to backtrack in order to cleanse the areas no matter what you do. In many places we can finds some poor sods who've been been plastered to the ceiling.

Don't worry, I'm a master at shooting from the hip without a reticule!

They hold a bunch of decent loot, so it's worth the ammo. We also get introduced to hidden walls you need to hump in this level. The game has a rather even mix of both smashable walls and humpable ones, so you need to be perceptive. Or just use the map.

There is also some repair powder down here, which has been buffed greatly from the last game. It gives you a whole 50 (!) durability on all your equipped items, so it's worth saving for the better items later on.

After going up and down a few times in order to place crystals, the whole place gets much lighter and almost pleasant. This let's us go into the middle part that used to be covered in death water. Inside, a black worm monster awaits. He is probably the boss of the area, but he just has a bit more health than the others. About half of the bosses are trivial like this.

Getting a good picture of it however, is not trivial.

After it falls, we get access to a small treasure room where the warrior from before can be found.

Thanks game, I wasn't really sure.

And strangely enough, you can't knick his axe. Which is weird, because you can always claim weapons in these games unless they're broken. Maybe it's actually a rubber axe used for stuntwork.

Nevertheless, we came here for a key in the shape of a crystal. We'll need this in the next level.


The Cavern of the Champion

As stated before, you can go here first if you want, but there is little point in doing so. You need the key from the sanctum and you might as well clear the Queen's Domain for loot too. I'm thinking that you can just skip that level, but I haven't tried it. It didn't seem like the final area had a locked door similar to the one in the first game, so a few areas should be optional. That's cool.

This level is about as close as we come to a battle level that I talked about before. It's inhabited by a bunch of one-eyed monsters who love to scream and inflict you with gravity. I never thought I'd run into creatures blessed by gravity herself, but here we are. What a horrific happenstance.

You can also talk to a few.


They are nice enough to hand out a few items for listening.

If you inscribe these words on your heart, god is never far away.

They are pretty fun to slap around as they can be knocked back sometimes. I think this is the only enemy type that allows you to do that. There is a big group of them further ahead that you can skip by taking an upper path. Also, next to the other entrance there is a magic rock that we'll need later.

After that encounter, we get to the part of the level where the key stone is required. You get to choose on which of three doors to use it on, but you can access the whole level no matter which one you pick.

I took the left door and pilfered the hidden treasure by using the crystal to drop a bridge before going through to the next area. There are actually two battle arenas in this level. You need to beat one in order for the boss to recognize your strength and open the door to its residence. It's not hard, but the enemies take a while to spawn, which always leaves me feeling like the game has glitched.

In the name of ammo conservation, I tried to use the Derringer gun a bit before selling it. Which wasn't any fun, since the damn thing only holds two shots. But I can't help but feel that the game would be more interesting if the guns had low capacity or took longer to reload. As it stands, you can kill many enemies before you need to think about reloading. Now that I think about it, reloading speed isn't ever an issue for me in games, even in Survival Horror.


Great, another porno shoot.

The three paths converge here, letting you loot them from behind. The middle path looks like a crude prison and actually has a stunrod for you to find. It's not that good. But this sword sure is!


”Kindred, this blade and I.”

It was at this point that my planning got the better of me and I had to backtrack and dump some items. That's why it's so important to enter a level with a light bag. Let's go fight a proper boss!



Instead of being an even bigger eye-monster like you'd expect, the boss is a lion. And a tough one at that!


Who might have gotten stuck in a bush. No one's perfect.

The fight is really frantic, as he is a good match for the increased pace of the game. He's surprisingly tanky as well, so you better come prepared. Guns are almost required for this fight, since he is so good at dodging. Once enough damage has been dealt, his bushy mane falls.


Who said that you can't be efficient with your screenshots?

In this phase, he becomes almost impossible to strike with a melée weapon and starts shooting ice magic across the ground. It's honestly the hardest boss in the game, since you can't curbstomp the difficulty curve yet. There are later bosses that are technically harder, but you can just stunlock them with guns. This guy makes an effort to keep moving out of your field of view and ammo is somewhat limited, so that's much harder here.


G'night kitty cat.

Our price is an elavator key and a useless frost ring. Had this been the first game, I'd be very happy to have it. But alas, handguns beats icicles.

With this key in hand, we can ascend a floor. After dumping a bunch of stuff, of course.


The Stained Spiral



After a quick and spinny elavator ride, we run into Rurufon again, who is impressed with our survival and needs some help.


Babe, I'm the hippest wingman this side of Anor Londo. We'll have a handsome fellow hangin' off your horns in no time.

As fun as that would be, she's actually looking for a man who stole something from her. She wants us to kill him for it and this will get us a Soul Pod. This brings to mind the assassination quests in the Souls-games.

In the level proper, we get a music sting to set the mood as we enter. All the levels do this, which is an interesting compromise between ST's non-existant music and the constant music in the King's Field games.

This level is the most confusing one in the game. That's because it doubles down on verticality, something the Souls-games would explore further. Levels in these games are usually have two layers, so one having more than that makes navigation a pain. Especially thanks to the order you need to progress.

I would be fine with it if there were any landmarks, but it's really samey unless you really pay attention. As we enter, we can shop for some new duds. Like the best armor in the game.


Ok, how can it have so little durability? Is it made of enchanted tissue paper?

That's numerically the best one, but this one is much more practical.


I suppose 48 durability is decent enough. 52 would have been better tho.

Seeing as this is a Japanese game, of course the samurai armor is the best in the game by a landslide. Every time you see a piece for sale, you should buy it as soon as possible and dump all the other armor you have in that slot. It's that sturdy and good.

The gimmicks of the Spiral are centered around enemies with special properties. There are loads of grubs hanging about the place. Killing them gets rid of tentacles that block progress. This is what makes it confusing, since it's not clear which grubs remove tentacles and how far the tentacles reach. Some even go to other floors.

The other gimmick is related to our old friends, the laser plants!


”All the bacon in the world, all the bacon in the world...”

They can't laugh to weigh you down in this game, but they have a secret that I only discovered this playthrough. There are usually corrupted versions of enemies from other levels to be found here. They are a bit tanky and can regrow limbs. But if you kill the plants in the room, they stop moving. This is a bit of cool enviromental storytelling, even if it doesn't mean much.


I mean, I could probably crank out a Prepare to Cry video on this with some effort, but that would take effort.

From Soft are not without kindness and were kind enough to provide a map of their own.


Thanks, now I am twice as confused as before.

There are a few of these strewn about levels, but I find them useless. It looks like there is some Kanji on them, so a Japanese player might make better use of them.

After some tenacious dungeon crawling, we finally find another person.


Tell me about it.

He is down on his luck and will trade a key for 5 Cune. Seeing as keys trump money in Souls-games and I have a surplus of Cune, I see no reason not to indulge him. He also tells us that the deeper part of this level connects to two others. The key takes us to a room full of dead people and treasure chests, most of which are empty.


”Ooh, that'll leave a nice scar!”

One of the men in here left a message. IN BLUD!


To be fair, 95% of the things here want you dead.

When we return, the man has moved on. From this point in the level, you can make your way to the other levels. But if my memory of my first playthrough is correct, you can accidentally force yourself to complete one of them. Hopefully, I'm wrong. But you might as well clear the Spiral first to cut back on backtracking. And to get an awesome gun.


Ye boi, we Call of Duty now. Man, even writing that in jest felt horrible.

The AR-15 is my preferred weapon in almost every situation going forward. It has high damage and a gigantic cli... magazine size. As far as I'm concerned, it has no weakness. Ammo isn't absurdly plentiful, but you get what you need. What little difficulty the game had is now gone. Consider it fair due for the Water world in the first game.


Jesus? Satan? Macho Man Randy Savage?

After going through multiple hidden walls and a few teleporters, we find ourselves face to eye with the big bad master grub. And chock of chocks, it can barely attack. I would feel sorry for the thing if it didn't obstruct progress like a bastard.

Pictured: A pain in the eye.

After it dies and leaves us a vendor trash ring, we're free to get a bit lost again trying to find the entrance to the next level and get loot to the shop. It's impressive design, but I prefer the higher detail of the Souls-games that makes it easier to navigate and get just a tiny bit lost.


The Azurian Depths

At the entrance, we find the man from before who is rather talkative.

No biggie, my pockets overfloweth with dosh. Good thing it doesn't have any weight.

I mean...

Sure. In game maps are much more useful if you can take them with you.


Wait, wait, wait, wait. Hold up!

He stole Rurufon's thingie. He tricked me out of my money. He killed those men. He left a bomb in a chest to punish the greedy. He ran away.

And he dropped a bridge under me with a switch, promising a reward...






- Welcome to my world, Enjoy your stay, But always remember, There is no return.

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About Kerrik52one of us since 3:12 AM on 02.28.2016

Greetings, one and all. I'm known as Kerrik52 around these parts and I think I'm pretty swell, for a Swedish dude.

I love all games, except the bad ones. I play games when possible, thinking I'll eventually break into heaven. I'm currently studying computer science.

I have written some blogs here exploring old games by From Software with more to come later. Not to mention my "salty bitching" series on the Souls-games.

I also have a little Youtube channel bearing my name that mostly contains videos related to my blogs.

At present, I am writing weekly reviews, which is a fun exercise.

I some games/series I love are:

Dark Souls
God Hand
Resident Evil 4
Tales of Eternia
Kingdom Hearts
Jak & Daxter
King's Field
Devil May Cry
Legacy of Kain
Shadow Hearts
Shin Megami Tensei
Legend of Heroes
Ape Escape

I have a very low standard for movies, but I have some favorites. These include:

The Secret Life of Walter Witty
Pooh's Grand Adventure
Scott Pilgrim VS the World

The last TV shows I watched were House, Mythbusters and Fringe.

Anime on the other hand, is something I watch often. I like:

Gonna Be the Twintail
Black Rock Shooter
Fist of the Northstar

I don't read very much anymore, but I like Asimov and Lovecraft.

Music-wise I'm an apostle of Dio and the German power metal scene. Other favorites include:

Gamma Ray
Iron Savior
Freedom Call
Axel Rudi Pell

Go ahead and share a piece of your world with me and I'll pay back in kind. Don't be deterred if I answer you in a wall of text though. I despise unfulfilling writing and will do all it takes to make my points.