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27 comments

  • joel-moreau - November 4, 2014 10:14 a.m.

    I had this same idea immediately after I started playing, probably right when I got to Majula. Ipersonally think LoZ already is hardcore series in itself. I mean the dungeons are long as hell with so many puzzles and no hints whatsoever usually, boss fights are pretty punishing and sometime death takes you back to the start. On top of that, it has some of the same game design I feel. Everyone says DS doesn't hold your hand; well neither does LoZ, especially Ocarina of Time/Majora's Mask. As far as game design/mechanics, everything listed was on point. But I'd like to add that as a result of those factors, you get the same feeling of reward and accomplishment in both games. For those that think there are other games with more similarities, that may be true, but not everyone has played every game obviously. Naturally, we're all comparing games that we know about and have experienced. I'm not disagreeing with the article by any means, just giving my additional thoughts. And I found it really cool that there are other people who think the way I do.
  • Clovin64 - March 15, 2014 6:14 p.m.

    This article reminds me why I get so annoyed when I hear people say "Dark Souls is really a WRPG that happens to be made in Japan." While the aesthetic looks quite Western, the gameplay and design of the Souls games are old-skool Japanese through and through, bearing far more similarities to old Zelda and Castlevania's than to any WRPG. I wouldn't really feel comfortable calling them JRPG's either, but WRPG? Nah.
  • Doctor_Pancakes - March 14, 2014 10:10 a.m.

    If only it had the wondrous sense of adventure and exploration that is made by Nintendo's imaginative way creating colorful breathing worlds full of rich characters and well hidden secrets. My experience with Dark and Demon Souls were both well... dark and depressing. I got about 10 hours into each and found it far to grueling to have any *fun* and that's why I NEVER want Nintendo's most beloved franchise to ever follow the Souls series foot steps. Stick to creating unique new worlds and more mind bending puzzles for the dungeons and if they want to try something new expand on the new ways of discovering weapons. I loved the store idea from A Link Between Worlds but there are other ways of doing it too! Keep creating Nintendo!
  • GOD - March 14, 2014 1:15 a.m.

    I've kind of always had this thought. It's LoZ if it were more hardcore and had a ton of RPG elements. Most of what you'll be doing is sword and shield combat, with some archery thrown in, and maybe magic if you're into that. You go into each temple like area knowing that you're doing everything for the sake of finding a boss to kill. DS is more open ended, but really it has the same spirit of LoZ where you jump around between these themed areas of the world progressing to a boss and then revisiting another area that you can now get further in. Enemies don't always die in three hits though until you're basically over levelled to fight them. Although less frequent in LoZ you get better swords and shields progressively through the game to help you fight, as well as special equipment items that give you desirable effects. The main character never speaks.
  • RayPaw - March 13, 2014 5:50 p.m.

    I heard the same point in a Game Theory video on YouTube — if you took the very first LoZ game and put it in front of a modern game designer who knew nothing about the direction the Zelda series went in after the original and asked for an updated version, you'd probably get something a lot like Dark Souls. A modern Zelda using Shadow of the Colossus as the overworld template and Dark Souls as the underworld template would be about the best thing ever.
  • Tony Wilson - March 13, 2014 4:59 p.m.

    I would even argue the "temples" aspect of Zelda games. Let's use Ocarina of Time, for example. You have the Forest, Fire, Water, Spirit, and Shadow Temples to conquer, and each one rewards you with a medallion. In Dark Souls, you have to navigate Lost Izalith (Fire), Tomb of Giants (Shadow), Duke's Archive's/Seath's Domain (Forest...sort of), and The Abyss (OK, so more than one Shadow); plus, Anor Londo is like reaching the Temple of Time...where your real journey begins (the article touches on this). With that all typed out, I must say it sounded better in my head... Oh well, Dark Souls 1/2 for life!
  • NelosAngelos - March 13, 2014 4:35 p.m.

    I often considered Dark and Demon's Souls to be somewhat akin to what a 3D 3rd person Diablo or how they should tackle a 3D Castlevania instead of a God of War clone. The areas are dark and constricting, you don't really know what you are getting into until you open the door or cross the plane, you have to use multiple tactics and consider your surroundings, very much horrifying and stress inducing, and very rewarding for your hardwork and persistence of skill.
  • R_U_Guys_From_British - March 13, 2014 4:15 p.m.

    Absolutely, I always got a hardcore Zelda vibe from Dark Souls. Surely it was inspired by it.
  • sleepyMexican45 - March 13, 2014 3:59 p.m.

    Dark Souls > Castlevania Dark Souls 2 > Zelda
  • garnsr - March 13, 2014 3:48 p.m.

    Why aren't Zelda games hard core? New ones actually hold your hand, but older ones make you figure things out because of limitations of the systems and creators. It sounds like Dark Souls could put more information into the game that wouldn't be hand holding, just concessions to modern systems' abilties, but they stick to old ways, because that seems to be the way Japanese devs still do things most of the time. Which is fine if you want to deal with things that could be handled a little better, sometimes it's cute, sometimes it seems stuck in the 80's.
  • BladedFalcon - March 13, 2014 5:39 p.m.

    Aside from maybe the two NES Zelda games, I don't really think any of the Zleda games are in any ward too "hard" or truly make you figure things out. And the combat and health system is pretty fucking lenient, what with giving you hearts everywhere and anywhere, and plus having items such as fairies that revive you on the spot with a ton of health scotch free. I'm not saying they can't be challenging games, but LoZ games have way too many safety nets that keep the player from ever being punished too hard.
  • Vonter - March 13, 2014 6:21 p.m.

    I'll argue that while ALttP is not brutal, the game isn't a cakewalk either. Still different strokes for different tastes. Dark Souls seem like a modern version of Zelda 2. Having to slowly but steadily grow strong both in experience and character progression to overcome harsh challenges. 3D Zelda was never meant to be hard. It was more about telling a fun story through gameplay. OoT for its time had a good use of cinematic angles to showcase gameplay elements.
  • garnsr - March 13, 2014 8:21 p.m.

    I played all the Zelda games as they came out, so we had to figure out what was going on, or hear from friends who heard from friends who learned things somehow, the way that people are doing with Dark Souls today, but not the way that people play old Zelda games today, since all the knowledge is already out there. I don't think that hardcore necessarily means too difficult, but the title of the article seems to me to be saying that Zelda isn't hardcore.
  • Vonter - March 13, 2014 11:43 p.m.

    Well, its a word that has taken many meanings, like serious, hard, commercial, action-packed (well that is more of the perception). In this case I suppose its the level of intensity, since Zelda is more about exploration and discovery, this one is more of how far can you go into the belly of the beast (I suppose). In that case it is right. However if its to say Zelda is an grade school Dark Souls, well no, it isn't. Since combat isn't the main focus in a Zelda game, puzzles are.
  • hester2 - March 13, 2014 6:52 p.m.

    I got the impression that he meant "hardcore Zelda" as old-school Zelda games, not "Zelda but hardcore." From reading the article, it definitely seems like he's saying that the old Zeldas were, in fact, hardcore.
  • GR_LorenzoVeloria - March 14, 2014 10:44 a.m.

    This
  • BladedFalcon - March 13, 2014 3:09 p.m.

    ...Actually, I'd consider Dark Souls to be a 3D hardcore version of a Metroidvania game like Symphony of the Night. A lot of the comparisons made here apply just as well, but then there's the fact that level progression and design of Dark Souls is way more similar to that of Symphony of the night, than it is a Zelda game. The main thing why I think Dark Souls and Zelda games aren't that good of a comparison, is the emphasis of puzzles in LoZ games. A cornerstone in all zelda games is that each dungeon is basically a series of puzzles that have an emphasis on a item you get there. Whereas Dark Souls isn't nearly as interested in puzzles or making entire levels or dungeons revolving around a new item or mechanic. There are some puzzles sure, but they are a small part of what the core of the gameplay in Dark Souls is: Exploration, which is the same emphasis that Symphony of the night and other Metroidvanias have.
  • universaltofu - March 13, 2014 2:46 p.m.

    It could fill in for Castlevania too, what with the whips.
  • BladedFalcon - March 13, 2014 3:12 p.m.

    Agreed, although for different reasons, lol. Really though, gameplay-wise, you could argue that Dark Souls is more of a Castlevania game than the Castlevania:Lords of Shadow games themselves.
  • universaltofu - March 13, 2014 4:45 p.m.

    just had a thought, top 7 games that would absolutely not work if given the 'souls' treatment. Play Mario, you die at the first goomba.

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