‘Dark Souls 3’ (Xbox One) Review

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Reported to be the last in the trilogy, Dark Souls 3 comes back to tear into your psyche and rain down the pain. Again and again.

As a story, it’s serviceable. You have to track down the lords of cinder across the land of Lothric. A dangerous, withered land.

There’s lore here, for sure. It takes the game to new dimensions and has roots in the first SOULS game – but the story is minimalistic, as it always has been.

How’s the gameplay? Terrific. It’s fast, fluid and completely engaging. The new weapon arts make exploring new items a ton of fun and the fluidity to the duels make for some incredible encounters.

The gameplay is also fantastic but as fans of the series know well, it’s pain. I swore a lot. I died a lot. I stayed up to the wee hours of the early morning trying to overcome a boss and when I finally did, I was sweaty and shaken. Such is the DARK SOULS way.

So as the third game in a trilogy, it offers a lot of fan service while improving over areas and elements from the past two games that were faulty.

It’s visually stunning to look at. So much so that I bugged the hell out of my community on Xbox with my constant screen shots and captures.

Upon launch, it is buggy. The frame rate dips, multiplayer sees ghosts gliding around like disco fans, but for the times you can connect, it provides a sense of accomplishment as you work together to fight bosses.

Ultimately, it’s stutters and frame rate dips did not hinder my time with the game.

Dark Souls is a complex beast of a series and Dark Souls 3 continues that tradition, offering plenty of challenges, secrets to find and new tough environments.

As a horror fan, I enjoyed the gothic environments. They crackle and come to life before my eyes. I will say that the game seems preoccupied with echoing environments from last games rather than exploring new territory but then the series has always been about cycles hasn’t it?

Ultimately, the game delivered on the goods. It’s gorgeous in its sound design, area design and voice work.

It does feel rushed by mid point and some bosses feel underwhelming but these moments are fleeting and in no way detract from the enjoyment of the experience of wandering through hell.

J’s Verdict: ☆ ☆ ☆ ☆

 

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