Dark Souls II (Xbox 360) game review

A return to the Dark Souls roots

Xbox Dark Souls II
  • Xbox Dark Souls II
  • Xbox Dark Souls II
  • Xbox Dark Souls II
  • Expert Rating

    4.00 / 5

Pros

  • Retains the same challenging yet addictive gameplay
  • Hub layout helps to streamline the experience

Cons

  • Very difficult and frustrating at times
  • Solutions and directions are not always clear

Bottom Line

Dark Souls II does little to tone down the tough gameplay the earlier instalments were renowned for. Fans of the series won’t be disappointed, though newbies may also want to get in on the action.

Would you buy this?

The original Dark Souls quickly gained a reputation for being a punishing and yet a rewarding game experience. Its spiritual predecessor, Demon’s Souls, continued the tradition of combining medieval adventuring with a steep learning curve that often concludes with a crushing death.

The series now returns to its roots with Dark Souls II. Some games may become progressively approachable with each new instalment, though that rule does not apply to this gaming franchise.

Back in black

Like the earlier two titles, Dark Souls II is a third person role-playing game set in a fantasy themed world. You are cursed with the fate of losing your memories and becoming one of the many undead that populate the landscape and feed off the souls of the living.

Hope for you lies in a distant land, where there may or may not be a solution to your dilemma. It will not be an easy journey, and suffering defeat at any point means restarting your adventure over again.

Hub system

Dark Souls II makes the tough adventure more manageable with a hub area that allows you to keep track of the various zones and boss fights. Bonfires act as warp points, so you can return to completed zones and bosses for further levelling up if needed.

Past games tended to be a bit overwhelming due to enemies constantly respawning, though Dark Souls II provides you with a bit more breathing room. Defeating enemies a number of times temporarily stops them from reappearing; however, this can be circumvented by returning to the area if you intend to level up.

All alone

The game provides as little support as possible to strengthen the already prevalent feeling of isolation. The narrative itself is told through the various people you encounter throughout your journey and not through commonly used cut-scenes.

This minimalist approach lends to an atmospheric setting, though it can be a difficult at times to know what the next objective is, as well as where it is located. Some aspects of the game require you to interact with your surroundings in a certain way, which will likely push you to look at online message boards for troubleshooting.

Join the newsletter!

Or

Sign up to gain exclusive access to email subscriptions, event invitations, competitions, giveaways, and much more.

Membership is free, and your security and privacy remain protected. View our privacy policy before signing up.

Error: Please check your email address.
Read more on these topics: Microsoft, Xbox, Game, Dark Souls; Dark Souls II
Show Comments

Cool Tech

Toys for Boys

Family Friendly

Stocking Stuffer

SmartLens - Clip on Phone Camera Lens Set of 3

Learn more >

Christmas Gift Guide

Click for more ›

Brand Post

Most Popular Reviews

Latest News Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Aysha Strobbe

Microsoft Office 365/HP Spectre x360

Microsoft Office continues to make a student’s life that little bit easier by offering reliable, easy to use, time-saving functionality, while continuing to develop new features that further enhance what is already a formidable collection of applications

Michael Hargreaves

Microsoft Office 365/Dell XPS 15 2-in-1

I’d recommend a Dell XPS 15 2-in-1 and the new Windows 10 to anyone who needs to get serious work done (before you kick back on your couch with your favourite Netflix show.)

Maryellen Rose George

Brother PT-P750W

It’s useful for office tasks as well as pragmatic labelling of equipment and storage – just don’t get too excited and label everything in sight!

Cathy Giles

Brother MFC-L8900CDW

The Brother MFC-L8900CDW is an absolute stand out. I struggle to fault it.

Luke Hill

MSI GT75 TITAN

I need power and lots of it. As a Front End Web developer anything less just won’t cut it which is why the MSI GT75 is an outstanding laptop for me. It’s a sleek and futuristic looking, high quality, beast that has a touch of sci-fi flare about it.

Emily Tyson

MSI GE63 Raider

If you’re looking to invest in your next work horse laptop for work or home use, you can’t go wrong with the MSI GE63.

Featured Content

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?