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Cblogs of 08/22/13 + Praise the sun!


If you havenít guessed from the title, something magical happened this week. Something that will go down as one of my biggest video game achievements. I beat Dark Souls! It took me about 52 hours total, which Iíd say is a pretty decent time for my first time around.

By the time I defeated the final boss, my character was at level 82. I had a nice DEX-based build going on, with plenty of HP and Stamina to keep me alive through the though battles. I chose DEX for my main stat because a Katana I found at one point (the Iaito) did extra damage based on DEX, as did my trusty bow. Between the two of them, nothing could stand in my way for long. Especially not with the bleed damage from my katana and the extended range of my bow. The downside of all this is that I was severely lacking in magic. I could only cast the most basic of spells, and even they werenít really worth it. Why cast Soul Spear at 14 INT when a couple of 35 DEX arrows do the job just as well? Another item that was instrumental in my victory was Havelís Ring. What this does is simply to increase your maximum equipment load. Which is MASSIVELY helpful, as your actual equipment weight compared to your maximum load determines how fast your character moves (among other things). In the end I was walking around with over 50 pounds (kilograms?) worth of equipment and I was still light enough to dash at a decent pace and do combat rolls.

Of course even with my build, weapons and ring, Dark Souls was far from a walk in the park. A lot of areas were pretty doable as long as you take it slow and steady, but it goes without saying that others were far less forgiving. I think the most trouble I had in the game was with a couple of specific bosses, and the Dukeís Archives. There are a lot of enemies in the latter, and they most certainly arenít above all ganging up on you. And they hit hard too!

As for the bosses, I definitely had the most trouble with the bosses you canít fight one-on-one. With the exception of Four Kings, that is. For all the horror stories that Iíve heard about them, they died on my first try. No, who I mean in particular are the Bell Gargoyles and Ornstein & Smough.

- These assholes right here

The Bell Gargoyles gave me a lot of trouble early on in the game. I hadnít upgraded any of my weapons, so my damage output against these things was pathetic. And while my shield could withstand one gargoyleís attacks perfectly fine, there was simply no keeping up with two of them. They are very clever about supporting eachother too, all of which made this fight a massive pain. In the end, I learned that you can hide from one if you keep him on the other side of the roof youíre fighting on, giving you just the slightest opening to attack the other. Besides that, I learned to upgrade the living bajeezus out of my sword, so that getting a rare attack in actually did something worthwhile. That was the key to success, and the gargoyles finally fell.

I didnít have that much trouble with a boss until Ornstein and Smough, pictured above. These guys will hunt you DOWN. They will hunt you down and kill you stone dead. The big guy is Smough; he hits incredibly hard and is faster than appearances would suggest. The smaller one is Ornstein; he is much faster, has nasty combos and has electric powers. Together, they are a pain. Good luck getting an attack in when you just know the other one is right behind you shoving a spear up your butt. Oh, and did you know they can combo you to death in like a second? They totally can if youíre not careful. But wait, it gets worse! When you finally kill one of them, guess what happens? The other one consumes the power of his fallen comrade and gets supercharged. He will then proceed to wreck your shit all on his own. If Smough dies first, Ornstein grows to twice his size, keeps his speed and elec damage and gains new even more insanely powerful attacks. If Ornstein dies first, Smough keeps all his power, but all of his attacks now gain Ornsteinís elec damage.

Ultimately, this battle was decided by my trusty bow. I managed to kill Ornstein first with my Katana, resulting in superpowered Smough out for blood. The thing is though, Smough doesnít actually get any faster in his super form. All of his attacks just hit even harder than they already did. In fact, he is slow enough that you can play keepaway if youíre careful. So thatís what I did! I kept backing off from him until I had the time to shoot an arrow right in his gut, and kept it up until he was dead. I had numerous VERY close calls doing this, but he finally fell and I could claim my prize. I was never so glad to have my bow with me. I donít know how I wouldíve done this fight without it.

After that, everything was relatively smooth sailing. I managed to get all of the Lord Souls pretty fast, and none of the bosses since Laurel & Hardy up there gave me that much trouble. Some of them Iíve even managed to tank, what with my +15 Katana and Havelís Ring-enhanced defense. The only ones that really gave me shit were the ones from the DLC, which is included in the PC Prepare to Die edition. Those guys are really aggressive, they never let up. But after some trying, I beat them too.

- Artorias, one of the DLC bosses, is probably my favorite boss in the game

So here we are, I beat Dark Souls completely solo (no NPC or co-op help whatsoever), with (fixed) keyboard and mouse controls, without magic but with some very significant DEX-based damage. Iím so proud of myself right now. † †

A -Perfidious Sinn's advice for new fans of fighting games is to NOT start with Marvel vs. Capcom 3. It definitely doesn't sound like it would be easy to get into.

A -Here's a pretty interesting life lesson from AboveUp, comparing human fatigue to Mega Man's health bar.

P -Wha-wha-WHAT?! GoForRainbow podcast has people on it! People we know! People like OpiumHerz and Manchild!

C -Laptops, amirite? Pixie's laptop is provoking her ire, but fortunately there is SMT and Persona to keep her sane. I hope.

D -Destructoid has been around for a while now, and we've seen some glorious stuff in our time. What's your favorite thing ever on Destructoid?

T -BoomingEchoes just wants to remind you that Dead Rising: Chop till you Drop was a thing that existed.

- ShadeOfLight
May you always find water and shade

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About CblogRecapsone of us since 11:27 PM on 07.02.2008

About Cblog Recaps

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Current "Bloggers Wanted" assignment
Fake it until you make it

This month's bloggers wanted prompt is something we stole. You see, by stealing this idea, you have no idea how truly inept I actually am. By pretending to know what I'm doing, I have clearly used my ill-gotten status to meet such big-time celebrities as Darlington Woolie "Pie Stealer" Madden or Sara from [insert pixel indie game studio here].

This month's bloggers wanted was inspired by the internal enjoyment we had at reading TheBlondeBass' promoted blog on faking conversational anime knowledge. And now it seems as good a time as ever to pretend to know what's going on since the new Fate/Grand Order game launched and qtoid is talking about it. I am a big fan of the character design of Artoria in the blue dress, or Artoria in the suit, or Artoria in the red dress. But seriously, we enjoyed the format so much that we want to ask the community for their own ideas at faking it at all sorts of things.

But this prompt is not just for anime, of course. The video game industry is fractured with all sorts of niche interests that only an insane rich person with no job could realistically know everything about. This month's bloggers wanted is about taking a subject you want to offer advice on faking knowledge about in order to help the greater community, for better or for worse. If this doesn't sound serious, don't worry, you're not supposed to take it seriously. You don't have to be an expert in whatever you talk about any more than Bass is an expert in anime.

I seriously don't know if that was a compliment or an insult.

Offer advice on anything you can expand your mind on. Want to help people get into character action games? The more Ss you put into its grading system, the cooler it is! Want to convince people to get into the Neptunia series? Just say "Nep-Nep!" and you're all set to convince people of your technical knowledge! Can you get someone into RTS game by just talking about your APM? Someone's bound to believe some random technical jargon you made up!

To get started, start a blog and title it "Faking it: [your blog title here]." Then you can be as serious or facetious as you want as you provide advice on any number of things: learning how to play fighting games, trying a long-running franchise you've probably neglected, or even explaining a game's timeline. Heck, you can probably seriously try on that last one and we still wouldn't believe you.

Good luck this month. Only true cowards rely on facts. Real heroes pretend to know what they're doing!

Current Community Contests
PREPARE TO CONTEST - The Master Gaming List Birthday Giveaway!

Good Morning/Evening/Yesterday, my Friends/Robots/INSERT WAIFU HERE,

More or less a week ago, the Master Gaming List turned one year old. I had a speech prepared, but the blog editor ate it four or five times over the last few days, so I'm kind of winging it now.

Despite all of the threatening and cajoling I initially made to get you all on the list, I never imagined I'd still be adding names a year later (and by "you all", I mostly mean GajKnight). It was kind of a ridiculous undertaking at first, trying to make a semi-permanent, easily-updatable list of everyone's contact info. I'm not even sure what everyone was being hyped over last year that got me to do this.

That said, I'm glad it came together, and this list has lead to many other things for me on Destructoid; whether it was me becoming our laziest, cuddliest Community Manager, or our laziest, cuddliest Reviews-type-person, I have always enjoyed the full love and support of this community.

In thanks, and with the assistance of quite a few others, I've gathered up a number of game keys to give away to you all.

The Contest

I've never run a contest before, so let's keep things simple. Write me a haiku about your favorite game.


1. The haiku must not include the title of the game.

2. I will accept any other form of structured poetry if you are unable to haiku but can iambic pantameter (you monster).

3. Please state what key you are going for, and a backup if that one is taken (admittedly, it's quantity over variety here)

4. The tentative end date of the contest will be August 13th, and will be bumped at least once during that time.

Available Keys

-Aporia: Beyond The Valley (Multiple Keys)
-The Witness
-Citadel: Forged With Fire (Multiple Keys)

Thank you to all 282 of you who have made the Master List a successful project over the past year! I will continue updating it into the forseeable future.

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