It’s probably safe to say that the main emotion associated with Dark Souls is rage. Or maybe, frustration would be a better way to put it. Frustration, not only because of the countless times we were sent back to those damn bonfires, but also because of the way we were left constantly scratching our heads in a state of ambivalence: Why does that character go there? What’s that item doing here? Why does that big ass wolf have a sword in its mouth? These were among the many questions that used to be asked often. In more recent times, however, the community has excavated its way through the depth of dark secrets that this game hides, and we now have a pretty good idea of what the hell is going on. We may have shot ourselves in the foot.
The phrase ‘ignorance is bliss’ applies nicely to this game. Dialogue, cut-scenes, item description and item placement offer clues which have been scoured for answers – some of which pertain to some of the saddest stories of this genre. What Dark Souls does so well is craft these stories with a subtle elegance that allows the player to piece together the untold parts, until they eventually find a revelation. More often than not, this revelation emits tragedy. If you’ve put enough hours into the game you should be aware of this, and have perhaps lamented some of the despair as being product of your own un-witting instigation. In other words, this game makes you feel like an a**hole.
(Please note: I do not claim to be the sole discoverer of all this knowledge. This is a collective work of discovery and interpretation by the committed Dark Souls community, and whilst most of the info here is based on in-game given facts, some factors are down to personal opinion.)
Let’s take a look back at some of the moments in Dark Souls that are iconically heart-breaking, beginning with…
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