External Sourcing

If the game script itself is the lore hunter’s Bible, then external sources can be considered the Apocrypha. While they can never trump what is provided in the actual game, such outside resources can inject additional insight into analysis, sometimes even creating a shortcut for more oblique inferences. Characters don’t exist in a vacuum, and […]

Tseldora

Preface I have no fond memories of Tseldora, but I could say that for the entirety of Dark Souls II. What surprises me is that I found a lot more to like when finally committing to this analysis. Part of this is thanks to my love for Seath as a character, but he is just […]

Cainhurst

Preface Although Castle Cainhurst isn’t as expansive as I would have liked, the story behind it is still probably my favorite in Bloodborne. Gothic, medieval, evil, aristocracy, vampires; what is there not to love? It is one of the few areas which stays true to the horror inspiration the game initially presents while also seamlessly […]

Byrgenwerth

Preface My general impression has been that encountering Willem ranges from confusion to disappointment. Here we get to meet a character so integral to the game’s events, yet the moment of truth proves anticlimactic. It doesn’t help that our time in Byrgenwerth is equally short and uneventful. In that respect, I consider myself in harmony […]

Fishing Hamlet

With not even a known name to add nuance, the Fishing Hamlet seems to have been exactly that: your typical “fishing village”. (漁村) Shipwrecks at sea, a lighthouse on the tallest peak to lead those ships back home, shallow waters to dock dingies in town, nets to haul in catches; everything revolves around eating the […]

Darkwraiths

The Darkwraiths have not had it easy. After the unexpected destruction of New Londo, the knights still out pillaging the world of man suddenly found themselves without a home to bring their spoils back to. Worse yet, they were now being hunted by a certain wolf knight of Anor Londo. It is perhaps only by […]

Lloyd

Even so many years after the events of the original Dark Souls, (DS1) Allfather Lloyd will be forever known for his obstinace as the Way of White’s leader. The old man’s Sword and Shield Rings represent the law and social status his high priests preserved in the church capital of Thorolund in DS1, boosting attack […]

Harvest Valley

The further eastward we journey in Drangleic, the more mountainous it becomes. And with every peak, there is a valley; the Harvest Valley is no exception. The rocky terrain is surrounded by much taller crags and cliffs. It has well earned its name as the “Valley of Pooling” (溜りの谷) in reference to the poison pools […]

The Old Ones

In conversing with Shalquoir, the cat will eventually make mention of the Old Ones. Her Japanese dialogue doesn’t use that exact term, her and Saulden both preferring to call them merely “the four”. (4つのもの) But Straid and item descriptions do speak of these “Old Ones”, (古きもの or 古き者) with Shanalotte employing something similar in meaning. […]

Character Psychology

I have already discussed two of what I consider to be core pillars to my analysis, the philology and archaeology. As Game Director Hidetaka Miyazaki himself admits in an Edge interview, he uses both elements to “tell more with less” — to show, not tell. This minimalist approach to storytelling perversely shifts some importance from […]