My gaming is at a stall. While I continually want to find the hot new thing (for me), I keep going back to games I already enjoyed. Ian asked me on Twitter (a thread thing) for my four favorite games. I was going to cheat and count each Dark Souls as a separate game, but I didn’t. I said Dark Souls (series), Night in the Woods, Cook, Serve, Delicious (series), and Torchlight for nostalgia reasons. I didn’t include Binding of Isaac: Rebirth because it’s not exactly a favorite, though I’ve played it more than all the Souls games put together. Probably all the FromSoft games. But it’s not a favorite in the sense of I really enjoy playing it. It’s a habit more than anything. I’m not saying it’s not a good game–it’s a very good game. It’s just not a favorite.
I’ve been playing Dark Souls II. I installed the original thinking it was SotFS, and then I decided to try the original because I haven’t played it. I also installed SotFS because SSD with 2 Terrabytes, bitches! I can install ALL. THE. GAMES. *evil laugh* Anyhow, I have seen a Let’s Play of the original game, and I knew that it was somewhat different, but not that much different. Oh wait. I started SotFS first as a Cleric. I forgot how much I hated not having a ranged option. Especially in this game where there are so many mobs. It’s one of my gripes that they come in groups, and being able to spell them from a distance makes a difference.
I fired up Dark Souls II, vanilla addition, and went back to my roots–I started as a Sorcerer. For whatever reason, you cannot start as a Pyromancer, which still makes me very bitter. In addition, it’s hard to get the Pyro shit, and it confirms my belief that casters get shit on in the games. Anyway, my sorcerer cruised through the first bit, and I did not die until after fighting the first boss, and it was a stupid death. Then again, my first death in SotFS was also dumb because it was in the tutorial at the point where they teach jumping, and it’s a tricky over a gap jump. I’ve died there several times, much to my annoyance.
One of the problems with playing the original DS II is that there aren’t many people playing. I did find one summons, but that’s not much. In SotFS, on the other hand, there are plenty of people playing. Both as a plus and a minus. I was in Heide’s Tower of Flame, and I was able to summon two people to run through it with me. Unfortunately, I got invaded, and he vanquished both my summons. So, I jumped into the ocean in order to avoid being killed.
I have said it before, and I’ll say it again. I hate the invasion system in the games. Especially now because anyone who is still invading at this point is pretty much just doing that. Which means they have builds that are meant to be fucking annoying in PvP. Plus, lag issues and the fact that I’m usually a squishy caster, and it’s not a good time for me. I went through the area as a Hollow so I would have less of a chance to be invaded–another thing I hate about this game in particular is that you can be invaded when you’re Hollow–and used a Human Effigy for each of the bosses in the area. The first, the Old Dragonslayer–and I always do him first because if I do the Dragonrider first, then the Heide Knights go nuts–was easy with with aid of Masterless Glencour, the NPC, which is another reason I do OD first. MG is in front of the Dragonrider’s boss room, and I presume he disappears once you beat the Dragonrider.
Before I went to fight the Dragonrider, I got fucking invaded again. So I hooned it towards the boss arena, picked up Masterless Glencour along the way, and pushed my way in with less than half health. It was dicey for the first few seconds, but once MG was in, it was cake. Stupid invader had a bow or something and was shooting me in the back as I went in, but I made it. Also, weirdly, he was on the bridge to the arena with the three Old Knights and the one lever, and I had to run by him to get where I was going. I thought for sure he would hit me off the bridge, but he did not. Maybe he was being honorable or maybe he was afraid of falling. I don’t know, and I didn’t care.
Then, when I was in No Man’s Wharf, I got invaded as a Human when I was more than halfway through the area, but before the shortcut. I swanned dove into the lake/ocean/pond/whatever and continued along the way. When I had to fight the boss, I held my breath as I used a Human Effigy. No invasion, and I was able to beat the boss with the two NPCs of the area. I was taken to the Lost Bastille and went to light the bonfire, and I could not. Why? You guessed it. I was being invaded yet again by the same guy from No Man’s Wharf. I jumped off a cliff because I wasn’t having any of it, but I was especially salty about this one because I hadn’t even lit the bonfire of the area yet.
I hate to think I have to go back to my time-approved method of playing offline until the boss–but that wouldn’t have helped with the second invasion because I would have done the exact same thing. I hate wasting Human Effigies, though, Even though I end up with eighty or ninety by the end of the game. It’s the hoarder in me, and it happens every game. I hoard all the consumables and then end up not using any of them during the game. Honestly, that’s what a lot of people do because they seem too precious to waste. I’ve gotten into a comfortable groove with only using the Human Effigy right before a boss, but the thing is because I don’t die as often, it often carries over into the next area and beyond.
I was whizzing through Dark Souls II, vanilla, and it was pretty easygoing at first. It’s definitely more up and down than SotFS, and it’s rougher by far. When I reached No Man’s Wharf, I made my way to the shortcut and stopped in confusion. There wasn’t a shortcut, and when I looked it up, I realized that the shortcut was only in SotFS. I mean, I knew that, but I just assumed there was some kind of shortcut. Well, there was, but it was a worthless one that is also in SotFS. In addition, this area is so tedious and the durability bug* means you have to have two weapons or repair powder to get through it. I mean, you still have to do in SotFS, but once you open the shortcut, you’re good to go.
I stopped after that with the original because the differences weren’t enough to make it worth my while to continue, and I preferred SotFS, though it has its own issues. I’m well on my way to becoming a strengthcaster, and it’s comfort gaming at its finest.
The other game I’ve been playing is Cook, Serve, Delicious! 3?! It’s in Early Access, which means that there is new content coming out at all times. Well, at some times. I finished what was available, and then started grinding for levels. There was an update with more content, and I’ve blasted through that as well. It’s much harder content, and I’m worried about the ramping up of difficulty. There are ways to cheese it a bit, but I can’t get four of the achievements, and it’s bugging the shit out of me. I’m not a completionist in general, but there’s something about CSD games that makes me want to do ALL THE THINGS.
I’ve gone back to the beginning and am doing all the days over again to see how quickly I can breeze through them and get gold days. It’s fun to try a three-point menu as a twenty-point day and with all the bells and whistles I already have. I’m enjoying it, but I will admit it’s a bit tedious to get the last few level ups. I’m still waiting for the trinkets and for the other areas to unlock. I’m chill about it, however, because it’s one man, and there is so much content already.
Still. I want a new game. One that I can sink my teeth into and happily wander around in for weeks. I don’t know what that game is, but I’m ready for it. Bring it.
*It was a legit bug, but it’s also that they made durability an actual thing in this game.