Dark Souls 2: SotFS (or therefore, "Baa-baa Black Sheep" and other musings thread)

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It's good to hear you got enjoyment out of it, DS2 just couldn't hold my attention when I played it. There were a few things I liked, the Shard system is roughly a thousand million times better than Kindling...actually that's about it.

I had problems everywhere else though. The level design..ugh, I'm not a fan. It feels a bit too open; less like you're walking through an intricately designed world, more like a bunch of random loosely connected areas. I hate, hate the Torch system (especially after that fucking windmill).

I also found the boss fights...just meh. Some of them have unique design (see: The Executioner's Chariot) but most of them are either gankfests or just too easy. The only two execeptions I found were the Smelter Demon (which was pretty fun) and The Pursuer (whoever decided that should be the second boss deserves to be shot at dawn for their mistake). There was nothing like the first game's boss fights.

What really killed it for me was the atmosphere. Dark Souls had this grim, depressing atmosphere hanging over the whole game. The world's fucked and all you can really do is prolong everything for a hundred years or so. Either that or just give in and let the Age of Dark begin. DS2 just doesn't evoke the same feeling. In fact, it didn't really evoke any feelings. I stopped playing about 30 hours in to go play DS3 (which I found to be more enjoyable, but not that much better honestly). Maybe I'll go back someday, but for now I just can't be arsed.

I adore DS2. For me the order of the sould games would be DS2>DS1>Bloodborne (not played Demons or DS3 yet)

I personally thrive on DS2's more linear approach to the world layout; it's combat was the most enjoyable for me; I loved the fact that enemies disappeared after killing them a certain amount of times - this made even failed attempts to progress feel rewarding, as you took a step closer to it being easier and thus progressing; and the overall aesthetics/bosses/NPCs/vibe/etc. won me over too. The grim vibe of the first games was superb, but the lighter vibe of this one kept it fresh & sharp.

It's the most "arcade" like of the Souls games IMO, and that's no bad thing at all. The others in the series are OK, but I found them far more repetitive and thus became bored far sooner.

hanselthecaretaker:

-Got to Duke's Dear Freja but was not prepared after going so far since the last bonfire visit. Have to figure out how to get to that one where it says the door only opens from the other side.

Hm...I think I know which door you're talking about, but just to be sure: is it outside, like just before you cross that bridge across all the spikes in Brightstone Cove? Because if that's the door you mean, I'll spoil it for you now: just smack it until it breaks. If you mean another door, let me know where, because there are a few places to backtrack to in Brightstone.

Don't forget about the man scorpion back in Shaded Woods, especially if you're going after all the trophies.

Once you take down Freja, you're good to go into the second half of the game, so good luck. That's where the story starts to come together, because I'm pretty sure you don't really gets what going on just yet, do you?

Sniper Team 4:

hanselthecaretaker:

-Got to Duke's Dear Freja but was not prepared after going so far since the last bonfire visit. Have to figure out how to get to that one where it says the door only opens from the other side.

Hm...I think I know which door you're talking about, but just to be sure: is it outside, like just before you cross that bridge across all the spikes in Brightstone Cove? Because if that's the door you mean, I'll spoil it for you now: just smack it until it breaks. If you mean another door, let me know where, because there are a few places to backtrack to in Brightstone.

Don't forget about the man scorpion back in Shaded Woods, especially if you're going after all the trophies.

Once you take down Freja, you're good to go into the second half of the game, so good luck. That's where the story starts to come together, because I'm pretty sure you don't really gets what going on just yet, do you?

The door is to the left of where you can see the bonfire through the barred window. It's outside where one of those whirling sandpits is and the dudes shooting spells at you. They are easy enough to take out though since I got a good stock of arrow from Gavlan. He's one of the cooler NPC's I've met so far. Kinda reminds me of the Giant Blacksmith from DS1.

I will certainly return to the man scorpion as well. I'm not overly concerned with getting all the trophies in this one; if it happens cool but if not no biggie. I've read about the Lucatiel one where you need her summoned for three boss fights before speaking to her at some point, I think Aldia's Keep. I figure since I need ascetics for 2 of those fights, I'll just keep leveling up a bit and avoid talking to her any further until they're completed.

I've also been warned about some Navlaan dude who's kinda like the guy from Demon's that will start killing important NPC's off if freed. So yeah, he can stay put for a while at least.

Ah yes, that door. To get to it...well, let's just say there are a few paths to go down to the bottom of Brightstone Cove. Keep exploring and you'll find it, I'm sure.

I see you've already heard about Navlaan. Yes, he's one to watch out for--if you can find him, that is. His entire character is rather interesting, but I'm sure there will be messages all over the floor near him telling you what to do and what not to do.

And Gavlan is boss for one simple reason: poison arrows. Poison in this game is so overpowered, and makes a lot of fights easier.

So yeah, I got into that room with the bonfire, which was incredibly simple once I realized I completely missed the door above that was hiding in plain sight.

Also got the last Great Soul (Freja was an interesting boss, but none too challenging with a torch in one hand and bolt gun + fire bolts in another) and lit the first bonfire in Drangleic Castle. Can't imagine I'd need to save the Great Souls to open anything later since making weapons of them would be game-breaking.

Also, much kudos to the man scorpion for handing over one of the best rings I could think the game will have.

hanselthecaretaker:
So yeah, I got into that room with the bonfire, which was incredibly simple once I realized I completely missed the door above that was hiding in plain sight.

Also got the last Great Soul (Freja was an interesting boss, but none too challenging with a torch in one hand and bolt gun + fire bolts in another) and lit the first bonfire in Drangleic Castle. Can't imagine I'd need to save the Great Souls to open anything later since making weapons of them would be game-breaking.

Also, much kudos to the man scorpion for handing over one of the best rings I could think the game will have.

Yeah, you don't need to keep the great souls for anything other then making weapons/spells, preferably from the crow lady("Right down the road"). If you don't know who I'm talking about, it's okay. She's tricky to find and her house is even more tricky to find.

Just a heads up, when and if you start finding Giants Souls, DO NOT USE THEM! Keep them in your inventory because you pretty much need them if you want to fight a certain optional boss further on.

I had a mixed reaction to DS2, having finished it a few months ago. On one hand, I was dreading it due for numerous reasons(health bar degrades to 50%, limited consumables to revert to human, weapon degradation), and turned out to be a lot better then I expected. However, it also had the problem of feeling like "Now with 20% more dark souls". Sure, there was a lot more content but a fair bit felt like it was either filler-ish or hard for the sake of being hard. A lot of the bosses felt gimmicky, cheap or recycled(but at least a lot of them were optional), some areas just felt badly designed(Looking at you, iron keep) and as mentioned, the world feels disjointed and messy. It's pretty and individual areas are good but the world as a whole feels disjointed and messy.

Basically, a lot of the game felt like it was trying to copy the first one but didn't know why the first game worked. I appreciate it that they tried something different in some ways but it wasn't quite enough.

Also, I rather disliked the fact you could be invaded pretty much anywhere in DS2, and was numerous times, often by the same people. I spent a lot of time playing the game offline because of this fact. I much prefered DS1's invasion is only possible while human mechanic(Bloodborne I've played enitrely offline because I don't feel like paying Sony's paywall so I can get the same service all the other games offer standard with the price of the game).

However, the DLC areas are heads above the rest of the game in terms of level design. Especially brume tower.

^Oh I stumbled into her crib fairly easily and half unintentionally; it was the bonfire room next to her that threw me for a loop.

I have a couple giant souls - one normal looking and one that kinda looks like a delicious donut. Don't consume it, you say? Ok, I'll box it up. I vaguely recall reading somewhere that there are four of those to collect as well that will yield a nice reward of some kind.

hanselthecaretaker:
^Oh I stumbled into her crib fairly easily and half unintentionally; it was the bonfire room next to her that threw me for a loop.

I have a couple giant souls - one normal looking and one that kinda looks like a delicious donut. Don't consume it, you say? Ok, I'll box it up. I vaguely recall reading somewhere that there are four of those to collect as well that will yield a nice reward of some kind.

Technically 5, though one requires beating an even harder optional boss to get(Who can one shot you from the air, has a huge health pool and the nearest bonfire is at the beginning of the zone...with no shortcuts). You can get by with 4, one of which you get as part of required gameplay.

The reward is that beating a certain optional boss opens up another another boss and another ending. The giant souls are not actually required, but the fight will be extremely long and drawn out without at least a few of them(and this is a boss who can two shot you easily, unless your stats are stupidly high).

Strangely, for whatever reason, I actually thought for most of the time I was required to obtain all 4 crowns(thus completing the 3 DLC) in order to actually obtain the alternate ending. Which was one of the reasons I did all 3 DLC before doing the final boss fights.

The other reason was that, despite the high quality of the DLC, by that point I'd pretty much decided I was probably never going to replay(or NG+) Dark Souls 2, due to my aforementioned criticisms. That and the 4 other games in the series I either enjoy more(DS, BB) or suspect I'd enjoy more(DeS, DS3). DS2 isn't terrible, but if I have 4 other games I enjoy more in the same series, and all of them require quite a bit of time to go through, DS2 gets sorted to the bottom of the list.

You figured out how to talk to Tark, huh? Very good. Figured you'd like the rewards he gives you. Fun fact though, there's actually an even BETTER ring in the game further down the line. Keep an eye out for it.

You don't need to save the boss souls at all, although I would suggest checking in with Straid in The Lost Bastille to get the spells from boss souls BEFORE you go for weapons--but again, this only comes down to if you're going for the spell trophies. If not, you can even consume them if you wish, although that wouldn't be very smart.

As you've already been told, don't consume the Giant Souls. And by Giant Souls, I mean "Soul of a Giant". The Forest Giant and the Giant Lord (which you don't have yet) can be consumed/used for weapons, but the Giant Souls are needed for something else.

Now that you're at Drangleic, and assuming you found him the other two times, you can finally find out what that wheelchair guy was going on about, because his final place is located in that castle somewhere. Just be prepared for when you go in, because damn.

^ I took your advice and got Straid's spells before venturing back to the castle. It was intimidating at first but so far pretty manageable. Ran into the queen, took out the Dragonrider duo in four tries. The tough part was finding a combination of range and defense when the more agressive one closes the gap. Fire seemed to work well.

After more exploring I took a nice long elevator ride up to another intimidating area with a bunch of cool statues. To my surprise, it was the Looking Glass Knight! I've heard things about him, but didn't expect victory on the first try. He was basically slow with some damaging elementals and a helper that didn't help much, but still an interesting tactic. Although my Zweihander was at risk towards the end I still had ample time to switch to my trusty Royal Greatsword for the finale. The shrine of Amana area looks...almost too peaceful. I think I'm going to make another round to Shaded Woods to check on that big door again, and finish my tour of the castle to see what else I missed.

You're rolling a high strength character then, huh? Cool. I always go with dex and a little magic myself, but it is nice to just go in and pound enemies into the ground with some weapons.

The Shrine of Amana is my favorite area in the game, mainly because of the music, but it's also really beautiful. But this is Dark Souls, after all, so stay on your guard at all times.

Allow me to save you some time: Don't bother going back to check on that big door--I'm guessing you mean the one that says you need the Symbol of the King, right--because you can't access that yet. You'll know when you get the item you need for that door, trust me.

And yeah, head back to the castle, because it sounds like you missed at least one major thing there. It has to do with falling through the floor.

I've always defaulted to strength in Souls, mainly because I'm a big fan of sword and shield melee. It's also been the only real constant in the series, whereas magic and miracles have always been up or down. I do like to supplement with some spells occasionally, although pyromancy would be my preferred standby. In DS1 for example I mostly used just Fall Control and Homeward, but more often peppered my offense as well as some defense with several different pyro spells. I haven't really leveled enough yet to dabble with Hexes here.

I also like how there are four rings in this one. I think being limited to 2 before was another reason I used Fall Control. Now I can put the Silvercat ring on.

hanselthecaretaker:
I've always defaulted to strength in Souls, mainly because I'm a big fan of sword and shield melee. It's also been the only real constant in the series, whereas magic and miracles have always been up or down. I do like to supplement with some spells occasionally, although pyromancy would be my preferred standby. In DS1 for example I mostly used just Fall Control and Homeward, but more often peppered my offense as well as some defense with several different pyro spells. I haven't really leveled enough yet to dabble with Hexes here.

I also like how there are four rings in this one. I think being limited to 2 before was another reason I used Fall Control. Now I can put the Silvercat ring on.

I know how you feel. Strength is the easiest to start out with and build into if you're new to the particular game. Yes, Magic can become ridiculously OP but unless you know the game, it's hard while you're getting started(and these games are already difficult starting out). Strength also generally works for every boss, whereas a mage build could mean that some bosses are super easy while others can be incredibly difficult if they have high magic defense.

BB in particular takes a really long time to get an arcane/bloodtinge build to the point it's worth it.

Hexes are pretty much junk, so I wouldn't even bother with them. The only thing they have going for them is how 'heavy' they are--in that, when you hit enemies with Dark Orb or such, they stagger a lot easier than with miracles or spells.

And you're right about the rings. My friend just got Dark Souls, so we're going through it together, and being limited to two rings after having so many in the other games is kind of driving me nuts.

Dalisclock:

hanselthecaretaker:
I've always defaulted to strength in Souls, mainly because I'm a big fan of sword and shield melee. It's also been the only real constant in the series, whereas magic and miracles have always been up or down. I do like to supplement with some spells occasionally, although pyromancy would be my preferred standby. In DS1 for example I mostly used just Fall Control and Homeward, but more often peppered my offense as well as some defense with several different pyro spells. I haven't really leveled enough yet to dabble with Hexes here.

I also like how there are four rings in this one. I think being limited to 2 before was another reason I used Fall Control. Now I can put the Silvercat ring on.

I know how you feel. Strength is the easiest to start out with and build into if you're new to the particular game. Yes, Magic can become ridiculously OP but unless you know the game, it's hard while you're getting started(and these games are already difficult starting out). Strength also generally works for every boss, whereas a mage build could mean that some bosses are super easy while others can be incredibly difficult if they have high magic defense.

BB in particular takes a really long time to get an arcane/bloodtinge build to the point it's worth it.

The other reason I never mentioned is that spell builds (magic or miracle) seem very limited in terms of range, which makes aiming very tricky outside of lock-on. This has improved in DS2 but I'd rather just level Dex enough to put a bow to good use.

Having said that I still have a lingering curiosity over how a magic/miracle build would be early game though. Maybe I'll try one if I ever get around to another DS1 playthrough; start out building magic and segue into miracles mid-game. I still want to finish BB after this though, and I haven't even touched 3 yet.

Sniper Team 4:
Hexes are pretty much junk, so I wouldn't even bother with them. The only thing they have going for them is how 'heavy' they are--in that, when you hit enemies with Dark Orb or such, they stagger a lot easier than with miracles or spells.

And you're right about the rings. My friend just got Dark Souls, so we're going through it together, and being limited to two rings after having so many in the other games is kind of driving me nuts.

It's funny how plentiful rings are in general in 2. I think I have two of nearly half that I've collected so far, and in some cases three. With how many different ones there are, they might as well give the player at least four slots. I like the added strategy that rings bring. They are probably my favorite thing in the series to collect because most of them are so distinct and stylish. Form and function, I say.

Ahh hell...those ascetics boss fights are rough. I only used one for The Rotten to summon Lucatiel and have burned through about 10 effigies so far. I'm not touching this fight again until I absolutely have to.

One ascetic literally makes the fight twice as long. I was within one hit of beating him twice, only to be backed into lava or he'll do that explosion thing that's basically a one-shot if I don't have full health. Another couple times I would've beaten him but not before Lucatiel perished. Times like this would be nice if effigies were more plentiful. I don't know how people can be on level 10+ bonfires and not spend an hour on a boss if these things scale that much after just 2.

I suppose this is the first boss encounter that's given me trouble though, so can't complain too much.

You're forgetting that ascetics up everything in the area to New Game +. Thus, in a normal run on your second playthrough, your character should be evenly matched for the up-scaled bosses. You're going in without haven't played even half of the game (yes, you have that much left, especially with DLC), so you're character is going to get stomped. And on NG+, all the NPC summons suck. They just suck, period. Thus, the burden falls even harder on you to beat the boss before Luca gets stomped into paste.

My advice: come back to this fight later. Do as the Queen says. Go meet King Vendrick, and after you do that, go do all three DLCs to completion. Once you've done all of that, then go give The Rotten another shot, because your character will be more powerful by then

But whatever you do, if you are bent on getting this fight done, DO NOT GO TO ALDIA'S KEEP before you kill The Rotten (that's that big door in The Shaded Woods you keep trying to go back to). Luca's quest ends there, regardless if you've completed it.
Oh, and I forgot. You can summon Luca for one of the boss fights in The Shrine of Winter's DLC, and I believe that one counts, so if you want, you can go do that area and summon her there for the third time.

Sniper Team 4:
You're forgetting that ascetics up everything in the area to New Game +. Thus, in a normal run on your second playthrough, your character should be evenly matched for the up-scaled bosses. You're going in without haven't played even half of the game (yes, you have that much left, especially with DLC), so you're character is going to get stomped. And on NG+, all the NPC summons suck. They just suck, period. Thus, the burden falls even harder on you to beat the boss before Luca gets stomped into paste.

My advice: come back to this fight later. Do as the Queen says. Go meet King Vendrick, and after you do that, go do all three DLCs to completion. Once you've done all of that, then go give The Rotten another shot, because your character will be more powerful by then

But whatever you do, if you are bent on getting this fight done, DO NOT GO TO ALDIA'S KEEP before you kill The Rotten (that's that big door in The Shaded Woods you keep trying to go back to). Luca's quest ends there, regardless if you've completed it.
Oh, and I forgot. You can summon Luca for one of the boss fights in The Shrine of Winter's DLC, and I believe that one counts, so if you want, you can go do that area and summon her there for the third time.

Does it matter if I go into Aldia's at all or just not activate conversation with her? I suppose if it's possible to save that place for very last I'll do that.

I'll probably do the same for Benhart too if I decide on getting those trophies out of the way.

I am not sure, but she is literally on the other side of that door, only a few steps away, so I would suggest staying away from that door until you have either given up, or beaten The Rotten a second time.

Benhart's trophy goes a bit longer, requiring the first boss in Brightstone Cove, The Looking Glass Knight, a memory boss fight (that will make sense later, trust me), the final boss fight area, are The Sunken City DLC. I don't think his has a time limit/can be failed, unless you fight all those bosses without calling him.

It's always interesting to see what bosses different people have trouble with. My first time through I barely took any hits from The Rotten. He caught me with the explosion attack and I walked into fire a few times but otherwise he was a breeze for me. I tend to do Dex builds so it was easy to hit and run. Meanwhile the old iron king kicked the crap out of me because all my rolling meant I kept falling into that stupid lava patch in the middle of the platform. That's the real boss of the area.

Sniper Team 4:
I am not sure, but she is literally on the other side of that door, only a few steps away, so I would suggest staying away from that door until you have either given up, or beaten The Rotten a second time.

Benhart's trophy goes a bit longer, requiring the first boss in Brightstone Cove, The Looking Glass Knight, a memory boss fight (that will make sense later, trust me), the final boss fight area, are The Sunken City DLC. I don't think his has a time limit/can be failed, unless you fight all those bosses without calling him.

Actually it's pretty easy to fail Benhart's, unless my memory is failing me. You have to exhaust all dialogue with him, including talking to him after thawing the pyromancer at Majula. If you don't, you might not trigger his appearance in Drangleic Castle. It's easier to do than Lucatiel since her dialogue in Black Gulch is stupid hard to find, though.

Anyhoo as far as Lucatiel goes, you need to summon her for the Flexile Sentry, Smelter Demon, and Rotten fights, and also talk to her at Lost Bastille, No Man's Wharf, Earthen Peak, Black Gulch, and finally in front of Aldia's Keep, aka where that big door is by Shaded Woods. As has been said, if you wanna complete her quest, which gives you all her gear, don't go through that door until you have fulfilled these requirements.

For Benhart you need to summon him for the congregation fight in Tseldora, the Looking Glass Knight, and for a certain "big" fight in a "memorable" spot. You need to talk with him at the Shaded Woods entrance both before and after thawing the pyromancer, in Drangleic Castle, in Forest of Fallen Giants (after a certain story point, if you did the prior ones you can't miss him), and inside a "memorable" location I won't spoil. Like Lucatiel that gets you his gear.

Out of curiosity did you do the stuff with Pate and Creighton?

No I don't think I've met them yet. I've gotten all Lucatiel's dialog, and I did see Benhart in Drangleic by the bonfire already too, exhausting his dialog. I'm more curious about builds at this point than anything. Considering I want to horde effigies til the end, I've been contemplating dumping a bunch of souls into Int/Faith now as I'm drawn to this brand new Forlorn sword. I've heard its scaling kinda sucks unless fully hollowed, so a Bleed infuse coupled with the afformentioned stat boosts and a Binding ring might be interesting.

If you return to the Firekeepers in the beginning of the game, one of them should give you 5 human effigies at this point. Also, if you have a soul vessel (which I'm sure you do at this point), you can reallocate your points with those Firekeepers as well, so if you want to try a new build you don't have to start leveling up like crazy.

I'm fairly certain that nearly all the item vendors sell human effigies as well. There's one--whom you haven't met yet--that has ten for sale, assuming you listen to him when he warns you not to do something. You can also farm them from those water creature lizardmen in Shrine of Amana.
Finally, if you completely run out of effigies, there's a special shrine in Amana that you can return to and pray at to be human again. It's a long walk for every time, but at least there's that.

You must have met Pate. He's in the Forest of Giants. He's the guy that's sitting on a bench with the spear, and warns you about a trap ahead. He also gives you the white soapstone. Creighton though, is a bit harder to find, as he's locked in a cell in The Huntman's Copse.

I'll have to look for Pate & Creight soon then. I don't remember if I already got the 5 from the sisters, but thanks for the other tips. I would've still had quite a few left if I didn't burn through them on the ascetic fights.

This is where it gets interesting. I like strength builds, but not all-out tank stuff where you sacrifice so much mobility, and I'm not a fan of two-handing as a main strategy. I definitely like keeping <70% burden, currently at about 60 or so but with the best strength scaling swords right now I'd be approaching something like 80 at my current level. I'm not playing during the days and don't have my stats on hand, but I'm basically at a crossroads of continuing on strength or branching out.

If the Greatsword of the Forlorn can scale well enough with high Int/Fth at max hollow+Bleed then that would be great for me saving up effigies. I can rock the Binding ring and walk around draining fools lol. Plus what I really like about this sword (aside from looking so badass) is that you can still apply resins even though it doesn't use normal titanite. But then again that would be nullified if I infused Bleed. Decisions.

Yeah I'm going to back up my save and see how this goes. If not the next option would be Drangleic sword.

I was about to reallocate my stats in favor of Int/Fth but decided to stick with what I currently have. The Greatsword of the Forlorn will have to wait, with its wicked negative scaling unless fully hollowed. I have other fish to fry. The Drangleic Sword is a viable switch for me at this juncture in the game, becoming my new mainstay offensive over the Royal Knight Sword.

Picked up the Key of the Embedded thing and opened that cage...not sure what to think of the reward just yet though, or the firey prayer alter . I suppose they'll both come in handy for something later on. From here it seems that another elevator ride is in order...for another day.

If I remember right, your reward for freeing the kidnapped Melfanito is that Hollow ring, right? The one that lets you appear human regardless? That's really just for players that are sick of looking like a zombie all the time because they keep dying. Cosmetic stuff only. But if you go back and talk to her sisters, they will both give you a reward for freeing her.

You are now on your way to meet the King. Beware the light.

Sniper Team 4:
If I remember right, your reward for freeing the kidnapped Melfanito is that Hollow ring, right? The one that lets you appear human regardless? That's really just for players that are sick of looking like a zombie all the time because they keep dying. Cosmetic stuff only. But if you go back and talk to her sisters, they will both give you a reward for freeing her.

You are now on your way to meet the King. Beware the light.

Hmm this sounds dangerous, but highly intriguing. As long as it doesn't screw up my Lucatiel/Benhart questlines I'd still like to complete before NG+ (but I think I'm moving on to finish Bloodborne and maybe even start DS3 before starting the next round here).

I got the Ring of the Dead after mercy killing the embedded dude on the cage in the Drangleic tower. I don't know who Melfanito is...maybe she's the chic praying at that big fire alter? I tried kneeling there but nothing happened. Guessing the ring activates something since you mentioned being able to turn human there.

Also, I like the Drangleic sword. Can't wait to upgrade it some more with the A Dex rating it has.

The fire you can pray at by the Milfanito is a failsafe in case you run out of human effigies. If you're hollow and have no effigies in your inventory you can pray here and become human.

As for where you are and quest saving, soon you will have the symbol of the king that will open the big doors you've been seeing. You need to progress further to continue with Benhart but going through the big door by Shaded Woods is where Lucatiel's quest ends so make sure you're ready. I'm not sure what the trigger is honestly so if you haven't already it might be too late. But that's what replays are for

The Melfanito are the girls that you hear singing in Shrine of Amana. Go into all the huts in that area and you'll find them. You can only talk to two of them though, as the third one disappears/dies when you find her. And yes, one of them is the girl praying at the shrine fire, which Comic Sans just explained.

You'll figure out what it means about the light when you get to the next area.

The latest developments in the land of Drangleic:

*Velstadt defeated!

*Lucatiel's quest completed!!

I should be in more favorable position to get Benhart's next, since he still has three fights I haven't ascetic'd. Then if I want to go for trophies I'd think the blasted covenant leveling ones would be the most challening remaining. In any case, it's still a fun playthrough. All the comments I remember reading about bosses being underwhelming and too often "armored soldier" based are so far largely unfounded to me. The game seems to have above average boss variety consistent with the previous games.

Should you choose to go for the trophies, the only covenant one to worry about is The Bell Keeper one. You must get to level 2 in that one in order to get the spell. The other ones--Blue Sentinels and Brotherhood of Blood--can be bought from the ghost chancellor on your THIRD playthrough. Because getting five hundred consecutive wins for BOTH of those covenants can suck and die.
Also, are you playing online? If you are, the Sunlight Bros should be no problem to get. If you're not, you might be in for some rough farming.

Sniper Team 4:
Should you choose to go for the trophies, the only covenant one to worry about is The Bell Keeper one. You must get to level 2 in that one in order to get the spell. The other ones--Blue Sentinels and Brotherhood of Blood--can be bought from the ghost chancellor on your THIRD playthrough. Because getting five hundred consecutive wins for BOTH of those covenants can suck and die.
Also, are you playing online? If you are, the Sunlight Bros should be no problem to get. If you're not, you might be in for some rough farming.

Was there really a requirement of 500 consecutive wins for those? All to get spells or something? Kinda Absolutely ridiculous.

Yup, playing online for this one. In Demon's it screwed up world tendency and in DS1 there were too many glitchers and spammers by the time I played it to bother with online. Haven't had any real problems in this regard here though.

Indeed there is. In order to get Bountiful Sunlight--a spell I REALLY wanted because I like playing the helpful support character--and Chaos Fireball, you need to reach rank three in Blue and Brotherhood.
In order to get to rank three, you must win 500 matches--be they invasions, or duels. This is insane enough, but the extra kicker is that every time you LOSE, you lose a point. So let's say you win ten duels, and then lose nine more. You now only have one point toward the next rank.

Needless to say, I have only ever heard of one person getting those two spells the real way, and I'm not entirely sure they were telling the truth. As such, I'm sure the developers realized how stupid that is and that's why you can buy those spells on your third playthrough. Sadly the same is not true for Hidden Weapon or Sunlight Spear, but at least those can be managed.

My friend is going through Dark Souls for the first time, and my other friend and I are playing with him. And you're not wrong about glitchers and spammers. We've been invaded in areas by people wearing armor and moving way too fast for how early in the game we are, but we just roll with it and shrug it off. It helps that we can chat over the PS4 while playing the PS3. I think the reason you're not having nearly as much trouble with II is because the game is pretty much a ghost town in comparison, and since it was never as loved to begin with, most people don't bother.

Sniper Team 4:
In order to get to rank three, you must win 500 matches--be they invasions, or duels. This is insane enough, but the extra kicker is that every time you LOSE, you lose a point. So let's say you win ten duels, and then lose nine more. You now only have one point toward the next rank.

That sounds like them just *begging* for people to try to hack for it, given how unfeasible the requirements are to get it legitimately...

Sniper Team 4:
Indeed there is. In order to get Bountiful Sunlight--a spell I REALLY wanted because I like playing the helpful support character--and Chaos Fireball, you need to reach rank three in Blue and Brotherhood.
In order to get to rank three, you must win 500 matches--be they invasions, or duels. This is insane enough, but the extra kicker is that every time you LOSE, you lose a point. So let's say you win ten duels, and then lose nine more. You now only have one point toward the next rank.

Needless to say, I have only ever heard of one person getting those two spells the real way, and I'm not entirely sure they were telling the truth. As such, I'm sure the developers realized how stupid that is and that's why you can buy those spells on your third playthrough. Sadly the same is not true for Hidden Weapon or Sunlight Spear, but at least those can be managed.

My friend is going through Dark Souls for the first time, and my other friend and I are playing with him. And you're not wrong about glitchers and spammers. We've been invaded in areas by people wearing armor and moving way too fast for how early in the game we are, but we just roll with it and shrug it off. It helps that we can chat over the PS4 while playing the PS3. I think the reason you're not having nearly as much trouble with II is because the game is pretty much a ghost town in comparison, and since it was never as loved to begin with, most people don't bother.

lol yeah I think I'm cool with just beating the game/dlc for now at least. Same with 3, but I'd still like to 100% Bloodborne after this so I'd have a Platinum in at least one of each of the SoulsBorne entries. I'd just consider 2/3 redundancies.

Has your friend tried Demon's Souls yet? Amazingly enough I never had a problem with glitchers/spammers there. It was only the world tendency thing that made it more of a hassle than any pvp stuff. When I played it was probably the most well-mannered online experience I've had in a game.

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