It’s been roughly 4 months since the big, bad, Dark Souls 3 was released. And I’m just a little over half way through the game. In fact I just arrived at Lothric Castle and I’ve slain two dragons on a bridge with my adorable bow before putting down the controller and opening my laptop to write this.
To be more precise, I’ve accumulated 80 hours now. I’ve dedicated most of those hours just going around the areas and farming what I can. Around only 20 hours must have been spent try harding bosses. And to be fair my days have been filled with work, events, and other preoccupying activities that really shrunk my usual playing time.
But a handful of must-have games were released within the four months that I’ve been controlling my urge to throw my controller, and even my friends have been asking why I haven’t finished the game, or at least tried something else to cleanse the palette.
It’s not that simple really.
It’s not that simple when the game has put me in a trance and has posed a question challenging my pride and my “gamer status.” And it’s odd that I’m even forcing myself through this needle’s eye, when I believe that gaming should be seen as a fun escape first and foremost, and an avenue for comparing dick sizes last. And for a long time, I’ve already accepted the fact that I’ll never be remarkably good at video games and I’ll only ever play a game non-stop when I get to enjoy it.
But Dark Souls 3, and perhaps the entire Dark Souls series (I’ve only watched playthroughs for the first two games), is a game that seduces you within its first few hours, and if you ever want that satisfying end you’re going to have to push and punish yourself until you really do beat it. It’s a game that knows it’s worth all the hard work and effort.
It’s a game that knows how to manipulate your emotions, varying its difficulty in certain stages making you think you can handle a specific area then punishing you hard in the next. And you can’t help but appreciate its novelty.
It greets you with its gorgeous, haunting scenery, draws you closer with its odd fantasy setting, and makes you curious with its way of telling the story. And when you’ve devoted a significant amount of time to it, when you’ve put part of your soul into it, it skewers you with a rusty spear.
It doesn’t care about whether or not you can beat its bosses. It’s not like Devil May Cry where it makes a boss fight easier if you’ve died several times to it. If you can’t beat it, you don’t deserve it. You don’t deserve that epic yet equally confusing ending. You don’t deserve that adrenaline rush and that feeling of achievement.
And I think that’s what’s making a noob like me stay with Dark Souls 3. I don’t like not being given a choice. I don’t like being forced to face the truth that I am a noob and noob’s don’t deserve the greatness of this game. I don’t like it when a game is telling me, through its headache inducing areas and colossal boss fights that I can’t do it.
It’s making me prove to myself that I can overcome a challenge. It’s making me push myself to do better in a video game. It teaches me to, actually time my dodges and rolls and not just mash buttons through a boss fight like it’s amateur hour in a fighting game.
So no, I will not give up on Dark Souls 3. And my soul won’t be silenced until I finish it through and through. It’s a game I will conquer sooner or later. I refuse to be beaten down by a video game as good as Dark Souls 3.
And now that I’m done reaffirming myself, it’s time to get back to where I left off and continue exploring Lothric Castle. If you’re like me, still stuck in this glorious game, I wish you the best.
Praise the sun, Ashen One.