Dark Souls II has for years been criticized as the worst of the Souls games. It's been described by disappointed game critics (reliable ones at that) as the worst Souls game, but still better than most other games.. What does that mean?
For this reason, and after watching some of its gameplay, I refrained from buying it for years. Even after playing Demon Souls, Dark Souls and Dark Souls III, I still had reservations about it. I was aching for more Souls, but I couldn't get past all the bad reviews. What if it was so bad it just ruined my entire image of the Souls franchise?? Even after the PS4 remaster came out, I was still a bit weary.
That was until a few weeks ago. I was in a real game drought - Destiny was basically recycling its old content (again!), Overwatch had become a bit stale after the Year of the Rooster event, and I was just sitting around, meandering in the world of Lumo, mildly amused.
Then I saw that the remastered Dark Souls II version was on sale at the PlayStation Store for like $12 (don't quote me on that, I just know it was real cheap!). So I took a cautious plunge, and bought it.
I was instantly enchanted by it. It retains the soul (pun!) of a Souls game, while cultivating its own style, tone, and sense of humor. It doesn't take itself as seriously as other Souls games, which I really appreciated! I particularly liked the randomly hilarious NPCs you sometimes encounter, like the running guy in Huntsman's Copse (watch out for him! He'll just run in circles around the map for no reason), or the Undead that laugh at you, and continuously rub the ground as you walk by: