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Dark Souls - Prepare To Die... You Died.


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4 hours ago, Alan Stock said:

Stray demon is just about reading his animations, his magic blast has a big windup where you can see him raising his staff. As soon as you see that start, run the hell away as far as you can until the attack, then afterwards immediately charge him to get some hits in. Circling is indeed the best tactic otherwise, and irrc you can block his body slam stunwave with a shield.

Avoiding his magic is way easier if you stand directly behind him. 

 

Plus, our old mate in the Asylum drops a very good magic-resist shield which can help cushion any mistakes. 

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36 minutes ago, Alan Stock said:

I thought his blast was omni-directional? I must be remembering wrong then.

It is, but there's a weird spot where it doesn't hit, not sure if intended or not :D

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  • 2 months later...

When last we spoke, I was struggling with the Stray Demon. I switched to the Iaito+6 for the bleed damage, and Crest Shield for its magic protection, but it still took me a total of 18 deaths before I killed him. (Death count at this point = 212. Yes, I have been taking notes throughout this playthrough!)

 

SEN'S FORTRESS

Off to battle the Titanite Demons in the basement. I'd killed one of them during a previous visit to the Fortress (in fact I think I'd defeated that first one without the aid of the Rusted Iron Ring to speed up my movement), and this this time I killed the next one with a drop attack. But I *really* struggled to kill the the two in the long corridor; I reached death #223 there before I gave up and decided to come back later.

 

Off to Anor Londo to have a look at that painting again, now I have the Peculiar Doll. I wonder if the game will give me a choice about going into the Painted World or not...? How silly of me; of course it won't, this is Dark Souls, it's just going to suck me right in there!

 

A bonfire. Now before I rest there I'm going to see if I can Homeward Bone the hell out of here... nope, those cunning developers have thought of that! Right, looks like I'm stuck here in...

 

THE PAINTED WORLD

(48 hours, level 62)

 

Yikes, there were a lot of toxic-inflicting enemies around here! Sometimes if I dealt the killing blow with the very tip of my Balder Side Sword+10, it was just about far enough away to avoid getting splashed - but usually, it was safer to use Pyromancy or archery to take them out. I hoped my supply of moss clumps and arrows would last long enough to carry me out of here!

Kindled the bonfire... then got invaded and DIED. (#225)

 

Explored the area, some attics and rooftops and rats and then.... arrgh! A crow-person! Then... arrgh, a big diseased dragon! Up the spiral staircase - attacked by another bird, fell, DIED (#226). Fortunately I retrieved these souls and killed a couple more crow monsters. Then I got up the spiral staircase, got a Red Sign Soapstone... and fell off and DIED. (#229)

 

Into the courtyard with... WHAT THE HELL IS THAT WRITHING MASS OF SLIMEBLOBS/SHIELDS/SPEARS? I killed 'em all (turned out running out into the courtyard was much better than hiding in that initial doorway choke point), but by now I was out of Estus. So off to the bonfire to level up (I'd hit level 65 by then).

 

Explored the battlefield and found a new Pyromancy toy: ACID SURGE. Down the well, I DIED by being run over by a skeleton wheel! Through an illusory wall, ANNEX KEY, killed a Slimeblob and got another Pyromancy: FIRE SURGE. Up on a roof, three bird monsters killed me a few times, but I did get a new Miracle (which is not much use to my character), followed by Velka's set of equipment and a Dark Ember.

 

Off to fight the Bridge Dragon. He killed me once (DIED #234), but then I killed him second try. Then I went along the bridge - found a big thing blocking the way, I seemed to run/clip through part of it then I fell through and DIED (#235), which seemed to be a bug, but who knows with this game. Fortunately I got those souls, went down into the cellar and found the mechanism to unlock the gate along the lower bridge. Survived the ambushes along there (it was a very tight escape, as I recall), met the lady (but didn't initiate a fight), jumped off and it was back to Anor Londo and freedom!

 

ANOR LONDO (again)

Tried invading Lautrec. It didn't go well. (DIED #236)

 

Tried tackling Ornstein and Smough with... hmmm, according to my notes I had only 2x Estus here, I'm not sure how I lost them. Anyway I got Ornstein down to ~20% HP and then I DIED (#237)

 

(51 hours; level 68)

 

BACKTRACKING...

Off to Sen's to jump onto the roof to kill the Giant. Down through the Fortress - I noticed that the hole in the wall had been smashed but had not killed the leaning Lizardman, so he was now leaning on thin air! To Firelink, then to Valley of Drakes - used the Slumbering Dragoncrest Ring to try and retrieve the item from the Slumbering Dragon. Down through Blighttown towards Quelaag to upgrade my Pyromancy to +5.

 

DEMON RUINS

Explored a bit. Collected Gold Hemmed clothes from a corpse, then the Ceaseless Discharge killed me (#238), and then again when I went back to retrieve my souls (#239). Then when I went through Quelaag's tunnel I activated the maggots and they killed me (#240).

 

BLIGHTTOWN

I explored the swamp a bit and found a new Pyro: POISON MIST, and tattered clothes I'd missed before. I also unexpectedly met my friendly pal Mr Onion Knight again. Then to the Valley of Drakes to get the *other* item protected by the big dragon. I still didn't feel ready to go up against more than one of the smaller dragons in the Valley of Drakes.

 

FIRELINK

I told the Pyromancer about how I'd got my cool new skills from Quelaag's sister; I do hope telling him doesn't backfire on me. (Don't spoil this! I know far more than I'd like to about lots of things coming up in the game, but I don't know that bit!)

 

DARKROOT

Killed the bandits, past the cute mushroom family, fought a cat/bear thing - what, there's *three* of them now? DIED (#241)

Through Sen's, to Anor Londo bonfire to level up. Off to the cathedral to fight O&S... first I DIED at the knights (#242) and then by Ornstein's long-range lightning dash (DIED #243 and #244).

 

(Level 70, 54 hours)

 

CATACOMBS

I got surprised by some sort of force blast (by what I later found out was an exploding skull) and I fell off the first ledge and DIED (#245). I decided to come back later.

 

DARKROOT BASIN

Wore the Rusted Iron Ring to try and tackle the Hydra. Didn't work (DIED #246).

 

VALLEY OF DRAKES

Time to try tackling those dragons on the bridge. Killed two, DIED (#247) by getting pushed off by the third. Retrieved souls, but again I killed two and the third killed me (#248).

 

DARKROOT GARDEN

Narrowly killed those three cat-bear-wolves, ignored the mushrooms, over the bridge to meet... Sif!

 

 

 

Wasn't gonna face that fight yet; I Homeward Boned the heck out of there to level up (to lv 71; STR 25->26).

 

SEN'S FORTRESS

Right: it's about time I equipped some clothes with high lightning DEF and got rid of those last two Titanite Demons in Sen's basement!

 

[7 deaths later]

 

Arrgh! Why are these two so much more troublesome than the first two? What tends to happen is that after some time attacking the first one, I flee back to the tunnel to give the second Demon chance to retreat, so I don't have to fight two at once. But these moments of retreat are when I seem to get caught out and killed, either by the wide spear swipes or by one of his jumping impaling attacks.

 

But I remembered there was another Titanite Demon I still hadn't killed... 

 

ANOR LONDO

Off to the hallway bonfire. This Titanite Demon one only took death (#257) to defeat. I went to the Giant Blacksmith and I decided to make my Longsword+10 into a Lightning Longsword+1.

 

Invaded Lautrec. DIED (#258)

 

OK, I've put it off long enough. It's about time I tackled Ornstein and Smough in earnest!

 

Spoiler

 

DIED (#259)

Spoiler

DIED (#260)

Spoiler

DIED (#261)

Spoiler

Switched to Havel's Ring and armour set for the lolz - DIED (#262)

Spoiler

Switched to lighter clothes - DIED (#263)

Spoiler

DIED (#264)

 

 

 

 


 

 

I noted down my status at this point: 58 hours; level 71 (VIT=30; END=28; STR=25; DEX=28)
Gargoyle Helm, Crimson Robe, Shadow Gauntlets, Crimson Waistcloth, Havel's Ring (for quick roll during this boss fight), Ring of Steel Protection, Balder Side Sword+10, Crest Shield

 

Spoiler

DIED (#265)

Spoiler

Killed Ornstein (with 0 Estus left), got Smough down to ~70% HP... then DIED (#266)

 

Then on my next attempt...

 

ORNSTEIN AND SMOUGH ARE VANQUISHED! With 1 estus left! The real Dark Souls starts here, right? I didn't want to risk wasting these souls, so I ran back to my nice familiar bonfire! (Up to Level 73: END 28->29; DEX 28->29.) Also, due to an amusing bug one of the columns that was shattered in the battle had some remaining fragments hovering in midair.

 

Now I felt safe to progress past the boss room - oh look, a bonfire, and an Amazing Chest Ahead, as someone's guidance soapstone so classily puts it. And now I have two Achievements (Lordvessel and Princess's Guard Covenant), plus the ability to teleport!

 

My journey has progressed further since then, but I'll split that tale into a separate post to follow shortly...

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DARKROOT BASIN

I resolved to go to kill that Hydra. But even a mighty warrior who has vanquished Ornstein and Smough can still run out from the bonfire cave too quickly and, in a moment of hilarious slapstick, fall stright off the cliff edge (DIED #267). It also doesn't help if you run towards the Hydra after cutting off a couple of heads and fall off the underwater cliff (DIED #268). After a couple more deaths, he was down to one head - that last head always seemed to strike too far to my left side to run up to in time, while still safely avoiding the underwater cliff, so I had to take down the last head with arrows.

 

Hydra down!

 

Up a ladder, over a bridge, to the Darkroot bonfire, warp to FIRELINK... and then it was time for some Story Progression Cutscenes featuring the prettiest face in Lordran!

 

ANOR LONDO

Level up to 74 (STR 26->27).

 

Invaded Lautrec, but DIED (#272) But on my next attempt, I fled upstairs and killed him (but not his phantoms). Now I could relight the Firelink bonfire! I also took the opportunity to head to the merchant under the Firelink-Burg aquaduct and spend 4k Souls on a Crystal Straight Sword.

 

CATACOMBS

I didn't immediately rest at the first bonfire, but survived clearing out numerous skeletons (and one or two Necromancers), and was able to safely return to that bonfire when I was down to 0 Estus. Soon afterwards I spied a second bonfire through a narrow crack in the rocks, but didn't find the entrance to it until I later found someone's helpful soapstone message. I subsequently learned that a man called Patches was meant to be around here playing tricks on you, but I never encountered him - apparently because elsewhere, the Lady and her pilgrim allies(?) from Firelink have already progressed in their quest.

 

I had a lot of trouble with the four skeletons on the cliff edge section (with several exploding skulls floating around), because until I found their Necromancer I could only win by kicking them off the cliff.

 

Down through the tomb, saw a Titanite Demon in the distance, ignored him. Found more skeleton wheels in the open cavern: several of them rolled past me and uphill towards the caverns entrance, where they clipped through the floor! Heard what sounded like a blacksmith hammering through a wall; couldn't see how to get there yet. Found a Darkmoon Seance Ring. Several deaths, ran past the Titanite Demon, killed a Necromancer, and a Knight turned up in the skeleton wheels' wide open cavern.

 

Then I dropped into what I later realised was a giant coffin, and found... the terrifying P͓̩͎͙̬̟͌͌̑̋̌ͦ̾̀I͎̿͢Ń̈́W̸̻͈̟͇H̬̠̩͕̳ͥ̏Ȅ̶̜̝͂ͣ̇̈̚E͙̭̤̹͎̜̽̀̍ͮ͛L̢̰͊̏̔!

 

I'd heard that P͓̩͎͙̬̟͌͌̑̋̌ͦ̾̀I͎̿͢Ń̈́W̸̻͈̟͇H̬̠̩͕̳ͥ̏Ȅ̶̜̝͂ͣ̇̈̚E͙̭̤̹͎̜̽̀̍ͮ͛L̢̰͊̏̔ is one of the easiest bosses in the game, but I took that with a pinch of salt because everyone says that the Gaping Dragon is easy too, and look how much trouble *that* caused me. Still, I got the first hit in easily enough, so I looked down at the bottom of the screen to see how much damage I'd inflic-- 20% of his HP!? Wow, people weren't joking! This was possibly the first boss fight I actively tried to drag out in order to see what attack animations he did. Still, a few more hits and he was history. I got the Mask of the Father from him, a face which seems to be a bit of an online meme for some reason.

 

Total deaths in the Catacombs: 7

 

Blimey, the next area is dark isn't it? There are pretty coloured lights but are they marking a path, or tempting me to my doom? Oh no, I fell off the edge! As I fell, TOMB OF THE GIANTS flashed up on the screen, and then I hit the floor and DIED (#280).

 

I explored near the bonfire and found a Great Scythe. Then returned to the Tomb to retrieve my souls from defeating Pinwheel - but then instead of immediately Homeward Boning, I encountered a Giant Skeleton and DIED (#281). Then on my way to retrieve them I made a mistake taking the shortcut jump past the curving cliff with the skeletons and exploding skulls, and DIED (#282), losing 26k souls.

 

I don't want to put up with tackling the Tomb of the Giants in the dark, so I looked up this one on the wiki and found out that there's an item that Necromancers drop that can illuminate the Tomb - but unfortunately I hadn't picked up any on my quest through the Catacombs. At this point there was still one Necromancer I still hadn't killed (the skeletons by the breakable wall still regenerated).

Spent a few deaths unsuccessfully trying to safely get to the item I saw at the bottom of the Catacombs' deep circular shaft, and a couple more trips to the Tomb of Giants. Then I gave up and decided to warp elsewhere.

 

ANOR LONDO

Went up the mountain path to investigate the door that opened during the Lordvessel cutscene, finding a corridor with a silver boar. I didn't seem to be doing much damage to it so decided to leave it for later.

 

VALLEY OF DRAKES

Decided to light the Darkroot Basin cave bonfire and try tackling the dragons on the bridge. Didn't go well. (DIED #287, 288, 289.)

 

ANOR LONDO

Headed to the Giant Blacksmith; on my way I killed a demon who dropped a DEMON'S SPEAR - the first one I'd picked up in all my time in Anor Londo!

 

NEW LONDO

Wasn't intending to tackle the area right now, but I did find a new enemy right next to the bridge, who looked familiar. Was it an invasion? No - I later found out that it was my old pal from Firelink, whose kind words of praise and encouragement have reassured me many times on my quest. (Good riddance.)

Current status: level 74, 64 hours.

 

CATACOMBS

Killed the last Necromancer, the one past the breakable wall - alas, I did not get any illumination item. Got another Miracle (Tranquil Walk of Peace) which is useless to my character.

 

Spent a couple of deaths (#290, #291) trying to get safely down the circular shaft - then I rolled correctly and got a Green Titanite Shard and met the skeleton blacksmith. He converted my Shortsword+5 into a Fire Shortsword. Killed the Titanite Demon, and then it was off to Darkroot to go and kill the Good Dog Sif. :(

 

DARKROOT

Spotted a soapstone pointing to the Stone armour set near the Pernicious Caitiff Cat's bridge. Sif killed me three times, and the bandits in Darkroot killed me once, and then the Good Dog was dead. At least I got an Achievement and a Hornet Ring out of it.

 

SEN'S FORTRESS

I thought that I'd finally be ready to take out those last two Titanite Demons. Unfortunately I didn't do any better than last time, and DIED (#296-300). Also for some reason I decided to go up through the fortress to see what it was like now, many hours after I first did the full thing - but got knocked off by a swinging axe and DIED (#301).

 

QUELAAG'S DOMAIN

Levelled up myPyromancy to +7.

 

... and that's where I'm up to now! 67 hours, Level 76 (VIT=30, END=30, STR=28, DEX=29 - a real jack of all trades.)

 

So I'm wondering what to try next. I've been spoiled about lots of little bits about what's in the rest of the game, but there are still things that I know nothing about: for example I know there's a place called the Great Hollow but I have no idea where that is! (Don't tell me!)

  • I haven't yet bought the DLC, which is still £10 on Xbox 360 - about twice as much as I paid for the game in a sale back in 2013! I was thinking I'd save that for a second playthrough.
  • For equipment, I'm largely sticking to the Gargoyle Helm (haven't really found anything better that's worth the extra weight), Crimson Robe, Shadow Gauntlets, Crimson Waistcloth, Wolf Ring (occasionally swapping to the Covetous Gold Serpent Ring for farming, or the elemental defence rings for certain fights), Ring of Steel Protection, Balder Side Sword+10, Crest Shield. I should really start experimenting with more interesting weapons than plain old physical swords (I have long/shortswords I've imbued with fire and lighting, but I haven't levelled them up at all), but it's hard to let go of my trusty BSS+10; to make anything else worth using would require me to upgrade STR further than DEX. Lots of my most interesting equipment requires Twinkling Titanite to improve, which I'm reluctant to spend.
  • The Silver Boar in the corridor past the Anor Londo mountaintop seemed impervious to damage. But based on the one I fought in Undead Parish, maybe my new fire weapon would be worth trying?
  • I could try and tackle the Tomb of the Giants without a light source. I didn't get an illumination item from the Catacombs Necromancers, but I've read that there is at least one other way of getting light - but guessing from its name, I assume it involves getting infected by maggots?
  • I doubt I'm ready to fight Ceaseless Discharge yet.
  • New Londo Ruins seems like the next place I should investigate; I ventured beyond the bridge once, when I first played the game years ago, but haven't gone there on this playthrough. I remember reading that you're meant to use Transient Curses - that seems a more sensible plan than heading back to the Depths to get intentionally cursed for real!
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Great write up(s).

 

You have pretty good stats in dex and str to make a lot of weapons deal very decent damage but converting them into fire/lightning will nullify the effect of your stats. The shortsword/longsword and even BSS all cater to a similar play style. Really looking fwd to hear your impressions when you start using something which allows you to change that style. You can buy twinkly titanite from a certain vendor, maybe try some co-op to earn some extra souls and widen your options ?

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1 hour ago, Sun Tze said:

The shortsword/longsword and even BSS all cater to a similar play style.

 

Yeah, I think the main reason I've stuck with them is because of how safe and comfortable the R2 thrusting attack is: ever since the path under the Undead Burg bridge, under the Drake and towards the rats, it's felt like the safest way to fight on narrow ledges. For example, I don't know how I would have got through Blighttown or Sen's Fortress if I was using a weapon with a wide swing R2 attack that bounces off walls and alters my character's footing.

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25 minutes ago, Nick R said:

 

Yeah, I think the main reason I've stuck with them is because of how safe and comfortable the R2 thrusting attack is: ever since the path under the Undead Burg bridge, under the Drake and towards the rats, it's felt like the safest way to fight on narrow ledges. For example, I don't know how I would have got through Blighttown or Sen's Fortress if I was using a weapon with a wide swing R2 attack that bounces off walls and alters my character's footing.

All hail the poke, it generally is the safest option (apart from keeping your distance and pancaking everything with a Zweihander ;)). The R2 on the BSS in particular packs a nice little punch. In some cases those wide swinging weapons reveal a more vertical slashing arc when wielded with two hands though*. Added benefit is a quicker poise break/stagger on enemies/bosses. 

 

*Funnily enough the BSS R1 attack arc also changes from horizontal to vertical when two handed but doesn't add much (if any) damage over the one handed R2 poke attack. The light nature of the sword doesn't make it suitable to poise break anything either. 

 

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  • 3 months later...

Is this dead online (PS4)? I can neither summon nor get summoned. Level 111, have some fully upgraded weapons, I'm in Ng+2, haven't seen an summon sign and invasion sign or any signs at all in I don't know how long. Definitely human, definitely have network set to global with no password. 

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Unfortunately there's a level range for matchmaking. You're probably too high level to match up with many other players who are working their way through the game. For example players from level 20>40 might be able to match up but after level 40 you'll enter a 40>60 bracket (those numbers I've just pulled from thin air), and so on. There are guides online which tell you what the ranges are. The same thing happened to me, after I did the DLC and stuff I was too high level to get summoned anywhere other than the hardest bosses and DLC content. Of course there probably aren't many active players these days but as an experiment why not try starting up a new character? 

 

I'm pretty sure though that after a certain level all the levels beyond that are matchmade together, so it seems odd you've not seen anyone of your level out for PVP etc. Have you tried the popular ganking/PVP spots?

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  • 1 year later...

After my attempt last year to finally get through the first part of Bloodborne (spoiler, I did, but never completed the game) I have resolved this year to play Dark Souls. 
 

So this evening I have psyched myself up, installed it on my PC and got cracking. So far so good, managed to get through the first boss on my second go and now exploring Firelink Shrine area. Struggling a bit with muscle memory (too many Ubisoft games) but sticking with default setup. It’s not exactly a pretty game but very smooth so far. 
 

REALLY struggling with parry timing though. And fuck these firebomb throwing dudes. But yeah, enjoying it. 

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It was all about rolling for me. Parrying can be very useful, even against certain bosses, but it's tricky to get the hang of and can lead to you taking a lot of damage if you mess it up. Shields and rolling are definitely the most reliable forms of defence.

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