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i played a game once
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Final Fantasy X
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May 01

Yakuza 3 Remastered
Yakuza 3 Remastered

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Control

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In a world where big publishers are currently competing to make the biggest disappointment in the gaming industry, Activision/Blizzard are far and beyond the winners of this race. What could have been a jewel of competitive gaming history, became the catalyst for the shitshow that is any single multiplayer game out there. The legacy this series has left us has poisoned the well for most likely all eternity. We gotta owe it to Overwatch for ruining not only competitive video games, but how multiplayer video games are designed.

When we say a game is an "X killer", like world of warcraft and all that, Overwatch became the Team Fortress 2 killer, but not for the right reasons. That's right, I'm blaming this game/series for enticing TF2 to make that god forsaken lobby update. It's that bad.

I'm sorry, Jeff. This probably wasn't your fault, but god damn.

I've had a dream recently. I was driving around my neighborhood, but it was different. Vastly different. I wasn't looking at houses, I was looking at abandoned buildings. The more I explored the neighborhood, the more decrepit it became: Houses became remains of a destroyed, rotting victorian era building; establishments that were nothing but wood and the occasional gothic imagery; memories that never were, would manifest in the form of ones you would never know its full history.

Dark Souls II is exactly that dream.

Drangleic is a world that once was. You just happen to explore its end. People fight for scraps of its memories, as if there's something to salvage from what calamity has already claimed. A demented kingdom is all you will find. I fear the concept of dementia, but I'm also morbidly curious by it, much so the concept of death itself. Exploring it for the first time, I've never really realized how much these morbid curiosities are why I've enjoyed Drangleic as much as I have. I just thought it was a cool world. It's crazy how stories can be told mainly through visuals and you could totally ignore the meat of it and still get the message.

Dark Souls, as a series, explores death in different ways. Where the first one's thematic is death and how we cling on to life (perhaps a bit too much), Dark Souls 2 gives us death, and how it will eventually make us all forgotten. To me, death only comes once you're no longer remembered. In other words, you cling on to those memories, no matter how much they're degrading.

Oh, right, this is a video game. Oops.

Dark Souls 2 is also my first souls-like game. It's a game that formed me as a souls-like enjoyer. I'll always tell people to start with 2 with a win-win situation of "If you liked the others better, then at least you started with the worst and built it up. If you loved this game from the get-go, then you got a new favorite in your hands". Balance is weird in this game: it throws many bones at the player. It's much easier to get a hang of the game and breeze through it, unlike 1 and 3, and Elden Ring. But that's why it's so much fun. I get to play without stressing too much, I allow myself to get hit more often due to the existence of lifegems, and so on. It feels so much more dynamic and I got to play this game multiple times, with different play styles each time.

I've never played the Scholar of the First Sin edition, and from what I've heard, it's even more of a "gank squad central" game than before. I never had an issue with enemy placement in the original, but if it's accentuated in the new version, then I'd hate to try it out, lest it ruins my perception of this game being the best one of the series.

I'm not here to start wars about which Dark Souls is better, but I will say this: Don't trust a person who will go out of their way to tell you unprompted that Dark Souls 1 is the best one. They probably only play it for the PvP.