Dark Souls: Artorias of the Abyss
|Dark Souls: Artorias of the Abyss|
|Publisher(s)||Namco Bandai Games|
|Platform(s)||PlayStation 3, Xbox 360|
|Release||October 23, 2012|
|Genre(s)||Action role-playing game|
Dark Souls: Artorias of the Abyss is a downloadable content pack for the 2011 action role-playing game Dark Souls. Developed by FromSoftware and published by Namco Bandai Games, it released on October 23, 2012 for the PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360. The pack was later integrated into the Prepare to Die Edition version of the game for Windows. The pack takes the player a hundred years into Dark Souls past, where they must save the land of Oolacile from destruction at the hands of Manus, Father of the Abyss. Artorias of the Abyss received positive reception from critics, who praised the boss battles and added story content, as well as the addition of multiplayer arenas to the game.
Dark Souls is an action role-playing game in which the player controls a customized character whose appearance and skills are determined by the player. The game requires the player to explore areas and progress through them by fighting bosses at certain points. Artorias of the Abyss adds a new area, Oolacile, that can be accessed after obtaining the "Broken Pendant" item.
The area includes four bosses and other optional miniboss fights. It also introduces many new weapon and armor items that can then be used in the main game, as well as new shopkeepers and additional upgrade material for the player's weapons. A multiplayer arena was included that allows for more structured PvP and includes online leaderboards.
Artorias of the Abyss is set a hundred years before the events of Dark Souls. The player is taken back into the past by a primeval human known as Manus, Father of the Abyss, who was resurrected and tortured by the sorcerers of Oolacile a century prior, hoping to unlock his dark power. Manus' power went wild and created the Abyss, a dark void that threatens to swallow the entirety of Oolacile. Anor Londo sent Knight Artorias to slay Manus, but he was unable to withstand the dark onslaught due to his lack of Humanity and became possessed himself, only able to save his wolf companion, Sif.
The player, due to their Humanity, is better able to fight off the darkness, and must defeat the possessed Artorias. They must then descend through Oolacile Township and into the Chasm of the Abyss, where they take on Manus and rescue the land's ruler, Princess Dusk. An additional, optional fight involves defeating the black dragon Kalameet that is menacing Oolacile, with the assistance of Hawkeye Gough, a giant archer who was one of the Four Knights of Gwyn.
According to director Hidetaka Miyazaki, Artorias of the Abyss was originally conceived during the development of Dark Souls, and was planned to be part of the main game but was scrapped early on, with the development team saying "there's no way we can do that!" The character of Dusk of Oolacile was left in the game as a merchant. The concept was revisited following the game's release, and when the DLC was released, rescuing Dusk was made a pre-requisite to unlock access to it.
Artorias of the Abyss received very positive reviews from critics. Eurogamer rated it 90/100, calling it a "tighly-wound adventure" in which boss fights were the high point, and saying the arena makes it easier to negotiate PvP, but criticizing the team and deathmatch multiplayer modes as hard to find enough players for. Official Xbox Magazine rated it the same, saying that it is for "hardcore players only" and a "fantastic addition to an already great game", calling buying it a "no-brainer" for fans.
Tom McShea of GameSpot stated that the DLC "respected the relationship between developers and players" by presenting a "bonus" that added to the game's depth rather than an "insidious strategy to pad the company's coffers".
- "Dark Souls: Artorias of the Abyss for Xbox 360 Reviews". Metacritic. CBS Interactive. Retrieved 2018-09-19.
- "Game No Shokutaku Interview - Souls Lore". soulslore.wikidot.com. Retrieved 2018-02-26.
- Morgan, Thomas (2012-10-29). "Dark Souls: Artorias of the Abyss review". Eurogamer. Retrieved 2018-02-23.
- "Official XBOX Magazine | Dark Souls: Artorias of the Abyss review". 2012-11-13. Retrieved 2018-02-23.
- Shea, Tom Mc (2012-11-21). "Dark Souls: Artorias of the Abyss Respects You". GameSpot. Retrieved 2018-02-23.