T-minus 13 hours till I pick up my copy and I wanted to get a feedback thread started. I haven't been this excited for a game release since Ocarina of Time! So check out some of this info if you are still unaware of this masterpiece of dark fantasy action!
Early reviews (actually well written, even IGN I swear):
Eurogamer: 9/10 - http://www.eurogamer.net/articles/20...k-souls-review
IGN: 9/10 - http://ps3.ign.com/articles/119/1197278p1.html
Gamespot: 9.5/10 - http://www.gamespot.com/ps3/rpg/dark-souls/review.html
Great gameplay video preview (watch the series!) with commentary and minor spoilers:
Check out this great Giantbomb Quick Look which is geared towards people who haven't played Demon's Souls:
The game contains a faction system which provides you with benefits depending on how you wish to play. For example, there is a covenant that is analogous to a police force (Darkmoon Knights) which has a "Book of the Guilty" containing the PSN or XBox Live IDs of players who have broken their own covenants. You go out bounty hunting. The Gravelord Servants can summon deadly Black Phantom monsters into a number of players' worlds, but leave a mark that, if found, allows their victims to invade en masse and kill the summoner. The covenants can even alter the shape of your body, causing you to become a skeleton, a humanoid dragon, or even sprout a flytrap-like growth which replaces your head. Covenants, along with the new Humanity system (which I'm still not clear on), replace the World and Character Tendency system from Demon's Souls. I wasn't very fond of that system to begin with so this is a welcome change in my book.
The combat and multiplayer systems return in a refined format. I'll wait to comment on them until I get the game, but from what I've seen on streams it is going to be very fun.
If you have not played Demon's Souls and are intimidated by the supposed difficulty of these games, do not be! The difficulty lies mainly in being patient, observing your surroundings, and using your resources effectively. Many people approach these as if they are hack n' slash action games, which they are not. They are difficult but not unfair. If you die it is because you made a mistake which you can correct. Don't get me wrong, there's plenty of room for skill. Fights will require you to dodge and outmaneuver your enemies to kill them efficiently (I.E., without having to heal after each encounter) which requires precise timing and attentiveness. PvP combat can be even more demanding if your opponent is well equipped and has a deadly build.
The Playstation 3 version of the game is the primary development platform and the 360 version is a port with highly compressed graphics and sound. If you're on the fence between the two, I'd go with the PS3. The multiplayer matching is not region-bound so it is possible to play with players in Europe and Asia, at least on PSN.
I'll be sure to update the thread with initial impressions as I go. It is worth noting that the localization will be done by Namco-Bandai rather than Atlus this time around, so expect spelling errors and poor translation in the menus. The dialog, however, was recorded in English on the Japanese version so that will at least make sense.