Bloodborne - Demon's Souls Spiritual Successor's Spiritual Successor

I’ve still never been to Ash Lake!

I am sure many people missed Archdragon Peak in DS3.

Ash Lake is a great mid-game farming place but damn, if you can’t warp it is a pain in the ass.

Now you’re making me wonder if I missed something in Dark Souls.

(If I missed anything in Dark Souls 2, I don’t care. That game can burn in hell).

have you been to the Painted World of Ariamis?

Yes, I thought that was obvious. It was really easy to fall into.

Of course, the second time I played through the game, I couldn’t get in. For some reason it wouldn’t let me in. And THAT’s when I learned that you needed an item in your inventory that I just happened to have on my first run.

Still, the item was back in the Undead Asylum where you first start. I think it’s natural to try to get back there when you are allowed to, to see if you missed anything.

I thought the DLC in Dark Souls was much, much harder to find than the painted world.

Well, the Painted World and Ash Lake. Also the DLC is pretty well hidden which I thought was an odd choice.

I was trying to think if anything was hidden in DS2, and I suppose at least 2 bosses might fit that in SOTFS. Aldia and Darklurker.

Ah, yeah, I never did get around to doing that covenant. I found it at the bottom of that crack in the ground area, but never pursued.

at the end of the game I start getting interested in the lore. But like with every Fromsoft game, I am so invested with the gameplay, fighting, surviving. That I don’t have the energy for investigating lore. You really need to work and dig to get some understanding of what happened.

So usually, I check youtube videos or in this case reading The Paleblood Hunt by Redgrave. I didn’t know there was so much stuff in it. You know, I just kill things. But take some time, try to understand, and then kill things, I guess.

I think the games are more replayable that way, the story never pushes into the foreground. It is a rich world, and you are the excavator. I finally bought the Old Hunters DLC …

I feel so disconnected from the lore that it doesn’t matter anyway. Both in this and in Dark Souls, the only lore is what happened in the past, which is less interesting because it’s not like these “characters” or beings have much of a future. Everyone is long dead, I think? Or possibly immortal, I’m not sure. Anyway, it’s not like there’s people actually living recognizable lives in these worlds, there’s no sense of story that I can actually relate to.

yeah, I just learned that there were a group of scholars in Byrgenwerth, that fell appart. The one part founded the Healing Church.

I wonder who the Celestial emissary was, and his pack of little dudes. I killed them, obviously, but felt a bit guilty.

That’s a bit of an issue, most of the time, the only way to interact with the world is by killing stuff. But I didn’t want it to be dialog-tree heavy … the NPC questlines in Bloodborne were even more obscure than in other souls games. I think I met a guy named Alfred, once. And then he was gone …

The most straight forward quest line was the little rat thief in Dark Souls 3 …

I remember thinking that the Paleblood Hunt got some things wrong, but no longer what those things were. It’s all been so long ago, now, or feels like it anyway, but I did a lot of BB-related reading once upon a time.

I don’t think the details of the lore are important anyway. It’s enough that they’re there. These games are not like a portrait or a scenery that’s painted onto canvas. It’s more abstract than that, it’s shapes and colors and emotions expressed through the created world and it evokes certain things in the viewer/player. That feeling is what sticks with you, not the particular colors (or lore) that’s used to paint the canvas.

Yes, I wrote in this thread getting on towards two(!) years ago now that BB is much more thematically organized than linear-plot organized, and I stand by that absolutely. It’s an obviously allegorical game, but it’s not very obvious what it’s an allegory for! I suspect it’s so easily interpretable and reinterpretable (I think my favorite is the immune response idea I linked way up above and ties in nicely with the idea that the game is about clearing some infection from the protagonist’s body) because they juggled a lot of their own ideas of what it was about while making it. There is not one single symbol path stretching through the game, but clearly multiple intersecting symbolisms are present, making the game a kind of tangled symbol nexus. There are guiding feelings, though. If I had to select a single feeling word for the souls games I think it would be “melancholy,” but for BB I think I would go with “fever.” Among video game companies, From has had spectacular success with creating ambiguous (and therefore useful) symbols. Did you know that Demon’s Souls is about climate change? I don’t, either, but it’s certainly an option!

Yea, I am not a lore hound. I have watched the videos and am amazed at what some people can dig out of the games but for me it is all about the PvE and PvP.

Probably right. I mean the whole Solaire story is almost impossible to do your first play thru without looking something up, and that is how probably 99% of the NPC stories are. In DS3 Sirrius has a long story but you need to visit two places kinda out of the blue to complete it.

It is strange that a genre sort of came out of nowhere and became my favorite type of game, and it doesn’t even have a strong narrative element, which I usually consider essential. But it’s also a case of the Souls genre utilizing the video game medium to its maximum strengths. Weaving a narrative (minimal as it may be) around dying over and over and trying again, concentrating on atmosphere and world building and emotions they evoke, and making gameplay that hinges on player skill as much as on stats and numbers and equipment. It’s such an intoxicating combination. I have trouble conceiving of a game that plays better to the strengths of the video game medium.

It is great in that it can appeal to the hardcore fighting player and the RPG guy who likes to read every description and get as much as he can out of the game. It also allows for co-op play and invading.

The game has been out a long time and yet Steam still averages something like 12-16k players a day, and people on youtube still crank out play thrus and lore videos.

The game also plays in almost a chapter format, not quest by quest but you enter a new area, work your way thru it and then fight a boss to progress beyond that area. The game is made to be played in sittings where you don’t need to know necessarily what you did last time, just where you need to go.

Souls games are the only games, where I play multiplayer.

The ability to ignore the stories and background info of the games while plowing through their challenges just reinforces their themes, as most of the time they appear to cast the player character as someone who is an at least partially ignorant pawn.

They do such a good job of building evocative settings that stick in your mind. Like a dragon burning up a bridge, and you as the player going underneath that bridge and precariously fighting on the edge as rats come out of a little hole to fight you. Or a village full of strung up bodies surrounded by fire around which people are praying before they spot you and come for you. Or a swamp area in a forest where archers shoot you from higher ground. Or a forest full of snakes. Or a cathedral where you fight in the rafters near the roof. Or a lecture hall where you fight puddles of water. Just one area after another of memorable set pieces that stick with you.

Ebrietas giving me grievance. I spent all my insight (10) to summon that old hunter, he died a lot. I always die when I try to evade the arcane/magic projectiles… Finally I learned how to dodge them. I hope to finish him today. I supported a couple of people and we could kill him, but nobody joined my summon call.

When Ebrietas is done, I want to start the Old Hunters DLC. I heard it is good.