Backlog Number: 15
Game: Darksiders III
Number of Players: Single Player
Genre: Souls Like Action RPG
Developer: Gunfire Games
Time To Beat: 20+ hours
Rating: 5 out of 5 furbies
It’s been awhile since I last wrote one of these. The reason for that is I was having so much fun with Darksiders III I didn’t want it to end. By far, this is my favorite Darksiders in the series and I’ve played them all!
So I guess let’s do a quick recap of the story: In the first game War broke the seals too early and brought armaggeddon only it wasn’t really War it was uhhh? a coalition of angels and demons who were tired of waiting around? Or something? It’s been awhile. Darksiders 2 was Death goes to space and finds out that the four horsemen are actually a cross breed of angels and demons that betrayed their brethren. Genesys ....doesn’t really have a story. Strife questions the council and then Vulgrim is like I need trinkets and so you fetch him some trinkets. It’s a solid game but the story and writing are just bad unfortunately because I like the idea of one of the horsemen not being a pompous doofus. But this is a story about Fury, the high heel wearing angry little elf.
Someone released the seven deadly sins back into the world and the charred council tasks Fury with putting them all back. She does this by violently murdering them and then putting their essence in a gem. Sure. Whatever. The reason this game is so good is because it’s fun as hell to play.
So let’s get something out of the way. It’s not really all that much like Darksouls. They’ve taken a few mechanics such as the idea of a health potion that fills when you die, collectables that grant souls, losing souls on death(only here, not really), and well thought out boss battles, but otherwise this game is not really Dark Souls. It’s like calling Mario a Pong-Like because he shoots a fireball. In Darksiders 3 when you die your collected goodies are stored in a little container for you. If you die again, your same souls are still in that same little container for collection. Next up you can save your souls at Vulgrim. Stick those souls right up inside him, he’ll let you bank as many as you’d like. It’s less souls like and more just....manual RPG? Anyway there’s an incredibly satisfying dodge too. Did I mention that? Also lots of “metroidvania” type platforming. There’s no weird ring a bell and get a friend multiplayer either, which....let’s be honest, multiplayer in Darksouls sucks so hard. It’s weirdly difficult to do which I dunno if you wanna say that’s part of the charm or what, but it feels stupid in 2020. It feels like multiplayer designed by Nintendo.
But let’s get back to that dodge...so in this game when you time a dodge juuuuussstttt right (it’s not that difficult really) you can follow it up with an Arcane Counter which is just a giant burst of damage. I read a lot of reviews of this game that said the enemies were damage sponges and I’m guessing those people never used Arcane Counters because it’s basically how you A. melt people and B. feel like the world’s most fluid fancy assassin. Really I can’t describe how good it feels to get into a rhythm with the arcane counters. I spent so much time just backtracking and wandering around the world looking for humans and practicing arcane countering that by the time the end boss happened I was incredibly overleveled and it was kind of a cake walk.
So the game’s not perfect. There are only three attributes to level and none of them honestly seem to make any difference at all. Really this game all comes down to getting the hang of dodging at the right moment and then bursting in to erase health bars. Beyond that there’s no way to refill your health potion outside of committing suicide. There were a couple of times where there was an obvious boss fight ahead and I was like uhhhhh I only have two charges on this health potion plz mr. vulgrim, gif health. You can buy health shards, but they get progressively more expensive to the point where it’s incredibly prohibitive to do so. There’s one boss mid game, Lust (which btw, great design solely because it wasn’t a woman in a bikini) that was INCREDIBLY difficult because the game puts a second boss in the arena halfway through the fight and I don’t know if it was just me but it kind of felt like a “remember when we taught you to dodge because JK this fight is all about brute forcing Lust down before you take too much damage from this angel guy” kind of fight. One of the final levels was a bit of a bore to traverse. Some story threads are never resolved...WHO KILLED RAMPAGE? But overall I really fell in love with this game. Please go buy it so maybe they’ll make a real Darksiders iv and not whatever Genesys is (A buddy comedy featuring War and Strife which is pretty good but doesn’t actually seem canonical).