Demon's Souls Articles RSS Feed | GameSkinny.com Demon's Souls RSS Feed on GameSkinny.com https://www.gameskinny.com/ en Launch Media Network Essential PlayStation 5, PlayStation 4 Games for the 2020 Holiday Season https://www.gameskinny.com/l3xox/essential-playstation-5-playstation-4-games-for-the-2020-holiday-season https://www.gameskinny.com/l3xox/essential-playstation-5-playstation-4-games-for-the-2020-holiday-season Fri, 04 Dec 2020 11:56:29 -0500 GS_Staff

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The Walking Dead: Saints & Sinners

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ESRB: M
Price: $39.99
Platforms: PS5 (backwards compat), PS4
Get it on

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The Walking Dead: Saints & Sinners brings surviving the zombie apocalypse to PSVR, letting you chop, bash, and shoot your way through the backdrop of the familiar universe of The Walking Dead like nothing else.

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This one's a bit of a bonus, as it does require PSVR to play on either the PS4 or PS5 (where the PS5 even requires an extra PSVR adapter to get up and running). But the hoops you may have to jump through are worth it. Saints and Sinners is flexible, fast-paced, and packed with content. You can read more about Saints & Sinners in our review, where we said, "The Walking Dead: Saints & Sinners is a can't-miss addition to the wild west of VR."

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GameSkinny is a part of the Amazon Affiliate program and may make some commissions from qualifying purchases.

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*Jonathan Moore and Ashley Shankle contributed to this list. 

"},{"image":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_360,w_640/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/p/e/r/persona-royal-bddb4.png","thumb":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_85,w_97/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/p/e/r/persona-royal-bddb4.png","type":"slide","id":"216684","description":"

Persona 5 Royal*

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ESRB: M
Price: $29.99
Platforms: PS5 (backwards compat), PS4
Get it on

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Many once claimed that Persona 5 was the best JRPG offering on the PlayStation 4, then Persona 5 Royal came by and blew the original version out of the water with loads of new content.

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Persona 5 Royal improves on the original game in almost every way, with new characters and locations, an entirely new grappling hook ability, and an extended story. This is the perfect addition to any JRPG fan's collection, on PS5 or otherwise.

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Our review of the game lathered it in praise, saying "even if you've played Persona 5 countless times already, there's still enough difference in how things play out and how you can control your experience that it's definitely worth playing at least once."

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*Note that Persona 5 is one of the complimentary games in the PS Plus Collection on PlayStation 5, meaning you can give the original a go before making an investment here. 

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13 Sentinels: Aegis Rim

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ESRB: T
Price: $59.99
Platforms: PS5 (backwards compat), PS4
Get it on

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A tactical RPG with its roots in classic Japanese sci-fi, mech, and kaiju tropes, there's not much else like 13 Sentinels: Aegis Rim. It's in part because of the game's adventure-game-style storytelling, but mostly pushed along by its gorgeous visuals that are a signature of developer Vanillaware.

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This is a great buy for mech and kaiju fans, in particular, or fans of Vanillaware's Odin Sphere or Dragon's Crown. Our review said 13 Sentinels: Aegis Rim "mixes smart design with superb storytelling, then slathers the whole package in gorgeous style."

"},{"image":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_360,w_640/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/y/a/k/yakuza-like-dragon-2c08f.png","thumb":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_85,w_97/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/y/a/k/yakuza-like-dragon-2c08f.png","type":"slide","id":"216682","description":"

Yakuza: Like a Dragon*

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ESRB: M
Price: $59.99
Platforms: PS5 (backwards compat; *PS5 version releases 3/2/2021), PS4
Get it on

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A new Yakuza title leading into the new generation of consoles, Yakuza: Like a Dragon finally shelves the series' main character Kazuma Kiryu for some new blood and a much-bigger setting  there's more to do in this game than you might expect.

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Though the PlayStation 5 version of this game doesn't launch until March of next year, those who have the PlayStation 4 version of the game and Sony's new console will be able to upgrade to the PS5 version for free, whether they have the physical or digital version of the game. However, PS4 saves will not transfer over to the PS5. 

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Our 10/10 review of Yakuza: Like a Dragon praised the game for its "new turn-based combat system," job system, and world. In short, Yakuza: Like a Dragon is "legitimately one of the best modern role-playing games there is."

"},{"image":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_360,w_640/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/f/f/7/ff7-remake-64baa.png","thumb":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_85,w_97/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/f/f/7/ff7-remake-64baa.png","type":"slide","id":"216681","description":"

Final Fantasy 7 Remake

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ESRB: T
Price: $59.99
Platforms: PS5 (backwards compat), PS4
Get it on

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Final Fantasy 7 has held a place in the heart of the industry at large since its release in the late '90s, and no one knew how 2020's remake of the classic would turn out. Luckily, Final Fantasy 7 Remake turned out pretty darn good, though it's only one part of a multi-chapter release.

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Whether you played the original PlayStation version or are totally new to it and its story, FF7 Remake is a worthwhile play. Our review rated it a full 10 out of 10, saying it "faithfully updates Midgar and the original’s enigmatic cast of antiheroes for a new generation, masterfully weaving its own grand tale in the process."

"},{"image":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_360,w_640/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/d/e/v/devil-may-cry-special-edition-c1d28.png","thumb":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_85,w_97/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/d/e/v/devil-may-cry-special-edition-c1d28.png","type":"slide","id":"216680","description":"

Devil May Cry 5 Special Edition

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ESRB: M
Price: $39.99
Platforms: PS5
Get it on

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The Devil May Cry series came into its own on the PlayStation 2 and thrived with Devil May Cry 4 on the PS4 and Xbox 360, but its return with Devil May Cry 5 ended up producing perhaps the best game in the series despite the gap between it and its predecessor.

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More stylish and faster-paced than ever, DMC5:SE is nothing but an improvement over the regular ol' PS4 version. Making use of the now-current-gen tech, the game can be cranked up to 120fps on the PS5, and it features a new Turbo Mode, which increases the overall game speed by 20%.

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That's not to mention fan-favorite Vergil is now playable in this version. DMC5:SE isn't just style, it's a whole lot of substance, too.

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Our review said that "Devil May Cry 5: Special Edition makes a great game even better with a new character, new modes, and overhauled visuals for next-gen consoles."

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Team Sonic Racing

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ESRB: E
Price: $29.99
Platforms: PS5 (backwards compat), PS4
Get it on

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There aren't a ton of kart racing titles available these days, but Team Sonic Racing does more than enough to scratch the itch on PS4 and PS5. Plus, you know: Gotta go fast!

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This racer features a wealth of tracks on top of a vehicle customization system and a heavy emphasis on teamplay, something the genre needs more of. It's the perfect game for those looking for some fun co op play, especially if they can't get their hands on Mario Kart. 

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Our review said that Team Sonic Racing "is different from its predecessors, but this is a fresh evolution of the series that surprises and exhilarates in a brand new way."

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Resident Evil 3

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ESRB: M
Price: $39.99
Platforms: PS5 (backwards compat), PS4
Get it on

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One of the more notable PS4 games on this list, Resident Evil 3 remake is a well-crafted reimagining of the original PlayStation game of the same name. And of course, it's backwards compatible with the PS5, making it a must-play for those that haven't already taken the plunge into this version of Raccoon City.

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Resident Evil 3 is fast-paced, albeit a little short, and developed with multiple runs in mind, which is perfect for the horror fan with an optimization itch to scratch.

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Our Resident Evil 3 review granted this remake a well-deserved 8, saying that while it "falls short of the Resident Evil 2 standard," it makes "shooting and dodging both feel good," and it has "some truly memorable and scary scenes." 

"},{"image":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_360,w_640/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/d/o/o/doom-eternal-aa05b.png","thumb":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_85,w_97/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/d/o/o/doom-eternal-aa05b.png","type":"slide","id":"216677","description":"

Doom Eternal

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ESRB: M
Price: $59.99
Platforms: PS5 (backwards compat), PS4
Get it on

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The Doom series has been around the block a few times, but much like Devil May Cry 5: Special Edition, Doom Eternal may very well be the best recent entry in the classic and beloved series. 

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Doom Eternal is a smooth, ultra-violent romp through Hell on Earth, taking some of the best parts of 2016's Doom and making them better. The Ancient Gods single-player expansion adds even more locales and demons to shoot your way through while thickening the game's narrative in substantial ways.

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Our 9/10 review of Doom Eternal praised the game for its "gory and satisfying guns, fantastic progression systems, well-designed battle scenarios, amazing visuals, and satisfying world-building." 

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The PlayStation 4 version of the first-person shooter will receive a free upgrade to a more graphically-intense iteration early next year, meaning there's no reason not to pick up the last-gen version now for your PS4 (or PS5) on the cheap. 

"},{"image":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_360,w_640/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/c/r/a/crash-bandicoot-93560-3e052.jpg","thumb":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_85,w_97/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/c/r/a/crash-bandicoot-93560-3e052.jpg","type":"slide","id":"216676","description":"

Crash Bandicoot 4: It's About Time

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ESRB: E
Price: $59.99
Platforms: PS5 (backwards compat), PS4
Get it on:

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While 2017's very good Crash Bandicoot N. Sane Trilogy brought the first three adventures of Sony's mascot to the PlayStation 4, fans understandably wanted more. Enter 2020's Crash Bandicoot 4: It's About Time, the first mainline title in the storied series since 2008's Mind Over Mutant

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In a nutshell, Crash 4 is mostly more Crash. The platformer stays mostly true to its roots, featuring well-designed levels and challenging but fun platforming. The game's graphical improvements and world deserve special attention, as do the additions on different "playstyles" and a time trial mode, among other things. 

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There's lots to do in Crash Bandicoot 4, and it marks a triumphant return to form for the legendary marsupial. Our review said that it can be "frustrating" at times, but overall, it "is a big step in the right direction" for the series. 

"},{"image":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_360,w_640/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/a/s/s/assassins-creed-ps5-9fa0f-74aa9.png","thumb":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_85,w_97/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/a/s/s/assassins-creed-ps5-9fa0f-74aa9.png","type":"slide","id":"216675","description":"

Assassin's Creed Valhalla

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ESRB: M
Price: $59.99 (PS5), $49.99 (PS4)
Platforms: PS5, PS4
Get it on: Amazon (physical), PS Store (digital)

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Assassin's Creed Valhalla is the 12th mainline entry in Ubisoft's long-running action-adventure series.

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After 2017's Origins took players to ancient Egypt and 2018's Odessey visited ancient Greece, Valhalla puts players closer to the medieval time period of the very first game — about 300 years before the Third Crusade — setting the narrative during the Viking expansion into Anglo-Saxon England.

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Valhalla is may be the most varied of the titles in the series yet, offering loads of content, including flyts (what amount to Viking rap battles), as well as the return of systems such as settlements. And the writing is the best it's ever been. 

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We gave Assassin's Creed Valhalla an 8 in our review, saying, "Assassin's Creed Valhalla builds its world around a familiar formula, but with a compelling story and plenty of things to do, it's a game series fans will find inviting."

"},{"image":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_360,w_640/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/d/r/e/dreams-1cacb-13f14.png","thumb":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_85,w_97/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/d/r/e/dreams-1cacb-13f14.png","type":"slide","id":"216674","description":"

Dreams

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ESRB: E
Price: $39.99
Platforms: PS5 (backwards compat), PS4
Get it on:

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Dreams takes the creative nature of LittleBigPlanet and amplifies it to extreme levels. Essentially a video game/experience creation app, Dreams allows players to make nearly anything they could imagine, from full racing games to short films. 

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By now, there are thousands of different dreams to check out in the game (and we've collected a few of the best early ones here). Half of the fun is seeing what others in the community have created, experiencing their creations, and sharing those creations with other players. The other half is crafting experiences yourself, which Dreams makes a breeze. 

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For those looking to learn how to make video games or animated shorts, there's no substitute for Dreams, at least on the PlayStation platform.

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We called Dreams a "Pandora's toybox" in our review, praising it for understanding its strengths and playing directly into them: "Dreams knows exactly where its sweet spot is. It's a place where creators and users can explore and experience one another's unbridled creativity. It's where ideas can be quickly and intuitively drafted and communicated in real-time, and where unfinished creations can live on and continue to grow as others come along and 'remix' them."

"},{"image":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_360,w_640/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/g/h/o/ghost-tsushima-6b0c1-4183e.jpg","thumb":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_85,w_97/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/g/h/o/ghost-tsushima-6b0c1-4183e.jpg","type":"slide","id":"216673","description":"

Ghost of Tsushima

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ESRB: M
Price: $59.99
Platforms: PS5 (backwards compat), PS4
Get it on:

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Developed by Sucker Punch Productions, the same studio behind the Infamous and Sly Cooper franchises, Ghost of Tsushima is a third-person action-adventure game set during the 1274 Mongol invasion of Tsushima Island. 

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Playing as Jin Sakai, players work to repel the invaders across dozens of missions and a 20-hour campaign. Combat varies between patient stealth and ranged attacks as the Ghost or methodical yet powerful swordfights as the Samurai. 

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Ghost's realized world deserves special mention, showcasing the power still left in the PlayStation 4. On PS5, the game can take advantage of boost mode, running at a steady 4K 60fps. 

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In our review of Ghost of Tsushima, we said, "does a lot of things right. Its got fun combat, a wonderfully designed world, and top-notch sound design. Neither the story nor the characters moved me in any real way, even though I could tell both were trying."

"},{"image":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_360,w_640/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/l/a/s/last-2d3f1-13eeb.jpg","thumb":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_85,w_97/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/l/a/s/last-2d3f1-13eeb.jpg","type":"slide","id":"216671","description":"

The Last of Us 2

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ESRB: M
Price: $59.99
Platforms: PS5 (backwards compat), PS4
Get it on:

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Aside from CD Projekt Red's Cyberpunk 2077 and, perhaps, Sucker Punch's Ghost of Tsushima, Naughty Dog's The Last of Us 2 was undeniably 2020's most anticipated game. As the follow up to one of Sony's most successful and enduring titles, TLoU2 had a lot to live up to. 

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Coming in at around 30 hours, TLoU2's campaign is as much a tour de force as it is divisive. Talking about any portion of it here could likely spoil the whole experience for those that have yet to play it, but it's a story that sticks with players whether they like it or not. 

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Combat is improved and more creative than the original, and aside from Ghost of Tsushima and Demon's Souls, it's the best looking game on either the PS4 or PS5. 

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It's not perfect, as we said in our review: "The Last of Us 2 does so many things right, from its engaging story beats to its eye-catching level design. But at the same time, there are more than a few things that Naughty Dog could've, and possibly should've, handled differently." 

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But it's an essential experience that no Sony fan should miss. 

"},{"image":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_360,w_640/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/s/a/c/sackboy-big-adventure-db6e9-6f214.jpg","thumb":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_85,w_97/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/s/a/c/sackboy-big-adventure-db6e9-6f214.jpg","type":"slide","id":"216670","description":"

Sackboy: A Big Adventure

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ESRB: E
Price: $59.99
Platforms: PS5, PS4
Get it on

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Sackboy: A Big Adventure marks the return of one of Sony's most adorable mascots, this time in an incredibly fun and essential 3D platforming game (LittleBigPlanet is technically 2.5D). 

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The charming narrative of SABA takes Sackboy to five worlds and a multitude of unique and varied stages full of secrets. A time-trial mode extends playtime, and all of Sackboy: A Big Adventure can be played in local co op (online co op is coming later in 2020, but was not available at launch). 

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Our praise-filled review said that, "with an A-list cast, superb visuals, and some strong co-op gameplay, Sackboy: A Big Adventure successfully proves that Sackboy can thrive without LittleBigPlanet’s creation mechanics, all while still paying homage to his roots. It’s genuinely wonderful to see this PS3 icon return once more, and I hope this isn’t the last we’ve seen of him."

"},{"image":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_360,w_640/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/d/e/m/demons-souls-99410.png","thumb":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_85,w_97/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/d/e/m/demons-souls-99410.png","type":"slide","id":"216669","description":"

Demon's Souls

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ESRB: M
Price: $69.99
Platforms: PS5
Get it on

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The game that essentially started the Soulsborne RPG subgenre, Demon's Souls is a remaster (almost remake) of the first Souls title from the PlayStation 3.

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It stays as true to the original as it can, making dramatic improvements to the game's visuals (as expected) and sound design. It also makes understanding some of the game's muddier elements — such as World and Character Tendency — a bit easier. 

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Still, the Souls games aren't for the faint of heart, and Demon's Souls is no different, challenging players every step of the way in a fashion similar to its spiritual successors: Dark Souls, Bloodborne, and Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice.

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Despite being a faithful remaster of a 2009 title, Demon's Souls continues to stand tall. Our 9/10 review has this soul-crushing masterpiece regaining its rightful position in the Soulseborne pantheon, saying, "Demon's Souls is an instant classic, one of those rare retellings that stands triumphantly alongside the original as an essential experience."

"},{"image":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_360,w_640/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/p/s/5/ps5-ps4-games-2020-1bb42-0ca3e.png","thumb":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_85,w_97/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/p/s/5/ps5-ps4-games-2020-1bb42-0ca3e.png","type":"slide","id":"216668","description":"

Marvel's Spider-Man: Miles Morales

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ESRB: T
Price: $49.99
Platforms: PS5, PS4
Get it on:

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Following in the footsteps of 2018's Marvel's Spider-Man on the PS4, Spider-Man: Miles Morales lets a fantastic new Spidey take the spotlight as New York's primary webslinger. Though the main campaign only comes in at around seven hours — a runtime similar to that of Uncharted: Lost Legacy — it's a gripping and action-packed adventure. 

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Spider-Man: Miles Morales essentially improves upon everything from the 2018 title, which you can read more about in our review, where we said, "it's better than its predecessor in almost every way," and that "the combat, streamlined UI, story, and overall game length is damn near perfect."

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Those who pick up the game's Ultimate Edition on PS5 (either physically or digitally) will also get Marvel's Spider-Man remastered. Those who pick up the standard edition of Miles Morales can upgrade to the Ultimate Edition in the game's main menu for $20. 

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The PS4 version of Marvel's Spider-Man: Miles Morales can be upgraded to the PS5 version for free. 

"},{"image":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_360,w_640/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/2/0/2/2020-ps4-ps5-games-c87e0-cf2aa.jpg","thumb":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_85,w_97/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/2/0/2/2020-ps4-ps5-games-c87e0-cf2aa.jpg","type":"slide","id":"216666","description":"

What gamer doesn't want to add some new games to their collection over the holidays? Especially so soon after a new console launches, as is the case with both the PlayStation 5 and Xbox Series X.

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Luckily, there's only one next-gen exclusive across both platforms: Bluepoint's Demon's Souls remaster for the PS5. Even Devil May Cry 5 Special Edition is available on both the PlayStation 5 and Xbox Series X|S. Other games, such as Sackboy: A Big Adventure and Marvel's Spider-Man: Miles Morales are available on both the PS4 and PS5.  

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In this list, then, we'll be putting the spotlight on some of the best buys for the PlayStation 5 and PlayStation 4 this 2020 holiday season.

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Demon's Souls Review: Key to Life's Ether https://www.gameskinny.com/ko7aw/demons-souls-review-key-to-lifes-ether https://www.gameskinny.com/ko7aw/demons-souls-review-key-to-lifes-ether Mon, 23 Nov 2020 14:47:06 -0500 Jonathan Moore

Though From Software couldn’t have known it at the time, the release of Demon’s Souls would change the face of gaming forever. It gave birth to an entirely new subgenre of RPG while also redefining the general context of difficulty in games. Deeply layered lore, a mysterious world, and methodical — almost surgical — combat mechanics cemented its place as a multi-generational must-play.

In the years since its release on the PlayStation 3 in 2009, Demon’s Souls has mostly watched from the shadows as its spiritual sequels have basked in the adulation for which it was the foundation. Darks Souls, Bloodborne, and even Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice are all exceptional games rightly lauded for their simultaneous adherence to and iteration of the original formula. Each brings something special and unique to the legacy of the Old One.

But they aren’t the same special concoction that is Demon’s Souls.

Indeed, the return of such an indelible classic on the PlayStation 5 is perhaps more than fans could have ever hoped for. Remastered and enhanced by the expert team at Bluepoint Games (who also gave us Shadow of the Colossus remastered and Metal Gear Solid HD), Demon’s Souls is a veritable triumph of execution and a stunning showcase for Sony’s newest console.

Demon's Souls Review — Key to Life's Ether

To be clear: Demon’s Souls on PS5 is a remaster with many breathtaking next-gen (now current-gen) enhancements. It is not a full-on remake. That, however, does not compromise what Bluepoint Games has accomplished or render it any less majestic.

The underlying code of the game remains intact, meaning that most of the gears that made the original Demon’s Souls work so well are still hard at work in the remaster — they’ve just been greased and oiled with the power of the PlayStation 5.

Combat, then, is mostly the same. It’s still tough as nails and predicated on methodical, patient play, where each enemy commands both respect and strategy to defeat. Take an enemy for granted at nearly any level, and you’ll quickly learn the definitions of pain and punishment. Late-game foes, even if they resemble those from earlier levels, can be utterly unforgiving.

Movement is a tad less janky than it is in the PlayStation 3 version. It feels noticeably less floaty and more substantial from the start, even if it sometimes finds ways to act up when rolling or treading carefully along a beam above a bottomless abyss.

Some of this “improvement” can be chalked up to the relative heaviness of the DualSense over the flimsiness of the DualShock 3, but I like to think that the development team has done some alchemy here to strike a balance between old and new.

The charm and personality of From Software’s original vision shines through brightly here.

As with combat, bosses mostly stay true to their original iterations. Tower Knight still lumbers around its arena trying to crush you with its gigantic shield, stomp you with its boots, skewer you with its spear, or hit you with a (sometimes) devastating Soul Arrow. Adjudicator still lashes you with its tongue while punishing slow, inattentive movement. And Old Monk still underscores the inventiveness of the game’s multiplayer system, summoning real players to act as the boss for Tower of Latria’s final level.

Worlds and level layout are virtually unchanged, as well. Enemies, items, and secrets are in the same places they were before. If you’ve played the original, you already know where everything is and how everything operates. But I, like many other Souls fans, wouldn’t have it any other way.

It’s like revisiting an old friend that’s grown wiser in the decades since youth, but one that remains familiar and approachable. The charm and personality of From Software’s original vision shines through brightly here, and for that, Bluepoint deserves everlasting praise.

Though many parts of Demon’s Souls still feel like Demon’s Souls, the remaster is the best version of the game because of the tweaks and changes Bluepoint has implemented from beginning to end. The most obvious of these, of course, is the dramatic graphical overhaul showcased in all of the trailers and screenshots leading up to release.

It’s to be expected DeS would look better on the PS5 than it does on the PS3, but it cannot be overstated how impossibly gorgeous this game is. There are two display modes available: Cinematic mode, which runs at 4K but a lower, choppier framerate, and Performance mode, which runs at a variable resolution but stays at a solid 60fps.

Not only does Demon’s Souls feel fantastic in Performance mode, but it also still looks fantastic, underscoring the fact that sacrificing frames for visuals in Cinematic mode just isn’t worth it. All of the game’s environments, from the ramparts of Boletarian Palace to the depths of the Valley of Defilement, are so incredibly detailed and refined in this mode that it’s the most definitive and enjoyable way to play the game.

Instead of relying solely on monochromatic color patterns as in the original, DeS remastered now intersperses worlds and levels with more diverse swatches of color that better realize the land of Boletaria. Though most environments are still rooted in darker browns and greens, there’s much more vibrancy and contrast to each location by way of expert lighting and other environmental effects just not possible on the PlayStation 3.

Torches twinkle in the dark of Stonefang Tunnel and the Valley of Defilement, casting looming shadows along the walls and decrepit buildings. Water puddles ripple as you splash through them, sending droplets flying in multiple directions each time. Banners flutter in the wind, twisting and turning in each gust. Lightning cracks through the sky in twisting arcs that ignites rolling clouds.

Walls, cliffs, boards, and doors have incredible texture, and geometric enhancements mean that certain surfaces are no longer flat or amorphous, allowing bricks and other architectural flourishes — such as the meticulous detailing on each Archstone — to jut outward or curve around exteriors realistically. Rocks pepper the ground in Stonefang Tunnel, making it feel more like an actual mine. Cracks and fissures in Boletarian Palace make it feel more run down and abandoned. 

This attention to detail carries over to character models, as well. Boletarian soldiers grimace in agony when attacked. The tongues of Depraved Ones droop from their mouths and flop about as they attack you. Mindflayers snake their tentacles toward you to drain your lifeforce in a terrifying waking nightmare.

In a nice touch, blood and mud now stick to your character, while the aura of soulform has graduated from a pittling glow to a detailed “steam” that rises from your character’s upper body and head.

At this point, it’s worth mention the improved character creation system. Bluepoint claims there are “16 million permutations” available in Demon’s Souls remastered, and while I only have two characters at the moment and I certainly haven’t spent hours and hours confirming there are truly that many options, what is on offer adds tremendous credence to the claim.

Options for body type and appearance are greatly expanded upon from the original, with 48 presets to choose from and myriad sliders to adjust everything from brow depth and nose height to facial hair (beards!), skin color, and tattoos.

Creating the perfect character isn’t a useless endeavor, either. There’s now an option in the primary menu that allows you to remove your headgear during play, and the in-game facial rendering means you can see every last detail of your meticulously created you. And yes, the incredibly awkward but timelessly chic friar cut makes a triumphant return.

The little details add up to show the amount of love poured into each and every aspect of this new Demon’s Souls experience.

Bluepoint has also added a plethora of new animations to the mix for attacks, parries, and backstabs. Each weapon, even those in the same class, can have different animations; only a handful of swords, axes, and spears operate the same visually. The heavy attack for the Great Axe and Guillotine Axe, for example, is similar but subtly different, lending to each a distinctive feeling.

Backstabs vary from enemy to enemy, as well as if you’re holding your weapon with two hands. Kicking a Blue Eye Knight off the end of your longsword is a powerful sensation and never gets old. Parries, on the other hand, which I’m terrible at, are effectively brutal, lending a sense of heft and energy to the move found in few other places.

Performing a parry with a long sword or crescent falchion jabs the blade through an enemy before you lift them and slam them down. With the dagger, you stab an enemy multiple times before slashing through their neck. Weirdly, the great axe includes a stabbing animation, which sees you ramming the blunt end of the weapon straight through an enemy. Ouch.

Spells aren’t left out in the cold. Soul Arrow, for example, uses a shoving animation, while Soul Ray has an animation that resembles underhanding a baseball. Warding is a singular circular motion, while Protection uses two circular motions.

These little details may not seem immediately consequential, but they add up to show the amount of love poured into each and every aspect of this new Demon’s Souls experience.

Attached to this is how the game implements the haptics and rumble features of the DualSense controller. Whacking a sword against stone creates a strong pulse from the middle of the controller that centers in your palm. Striking the tip of the same sword along a stone wall creates a smaller pulse that diffuses more evenly across your entire hand.

Soul Arrow rumbles through the controller as a small wave from the center outward, while Soul Ray does the same, just with an added punch at the end after a slight pause.

Like the archery sections of Astro’s Playroom, Demon’s Souls also uses tension in the triggers when using a bow. The initial bump feels a lot like nocking an arrow and pulling it back against a tense bowstring. I noticed that the tension isn’t the same every time, as it’s often strongest when you first nock an arrow after not doing so for a few minutes. 

It’s unfortunate that the rest of the game doesn’t make good use of the adaptive triggers. There’s no tactile power in parrying, and heavy attacks feel just as they would on a DualShock 4. Though, to be fair, having feedback in every swing and thrust would likely get grating quickly, not to mention wear out the triggers prematurely.

Perhaps some of the most welcome improvements to this version of Demon’s Souls come in the form of quality of life changes. These add to the overall experience without toying with the core mechanics detrimentally.

You can now send items from your inventory, or those in the world that would over encumber you, to Stockpile Thomas at the click of a button. This is incredibly helpful for transferring shards and stones while farming or for picking up unique weapons and armor you just don’t want to come back to.

Weapon and shield durability is smartly shown as a red bar next to your currently equipped items in the lower-left portion of the screen, cutting down on time spent in menus. There's also a hotkey toolbelt system that expands your ability to use items quickly in the heat of a fight in case you’ve forgotten to save them to your items list (just don’t forget to set them in the toolbelt, either!).

World and Character Tendency, the system by which your in-game actions are judged, is much easier to discern in the remaster, getting its own menu divided into the two categories. This is important for those seeking out certain NPCs and for knowing whether or not specific level areas have opened or remain blocked off. Being able to see changes in this system every time you return to the Nexus in an easy to access menu is leagues better than the nebulousness of the original approach.

You can now also warp between Archstones within worlds and from world to world, similar to the bonfire system in Dark Souls. Loading times may be lightning fast with the PS5’s SSD, but being able to skip the Nexus when you want to travel between areas is a very welcome addition.

In no small way is the original sound design refined in this version, made more potent by the use of 3D audio...

I’d be remiss if I didn’t spend some time talking about the strength of the remaster’s sound design and soundtrack, both of which pay respectful homage to the score and sounds of 2009’s version of the game. Silence still plays a key role in bolstering the sense of isolation and creeping dread in key areas, but the remaster's orchestration adds new textural nuance to places like the Prison of Hope and bosses like Flamelurker.

Shunsuke Kida’s original score is legendary in the Souls community for good reason. It’s unique, foreboding, and powerful in ways that few soundtracks are. I wish more of it had been salvaged and made available in the remaster, but I also appreciate the evolution of the score here, which takes Kida’s themes and creates a wider soundscape that is truly epic in its own right.

The game’s sound effects also deserve special mention. You can differentiate between water dripping on stone and steel; boards creak and groan under your feet; armor clinks with little taps as you walk; and soldiers belt out blood-curdling screams when set on fire.

In no small way is the original sound design refined in this version, made more potent by the use of 3D audio, which lets you hear where your enemies are and fathom the full might of a dragon as it flies overhead, the defining swoosh of its wings engulfing your senses.

Demon’s Souls isn’t perfect. Because it’s more remaster than remake, some of the original’s more vexing elements have made the transition.

Rubber-banding is still an issue from time to time, especially when fighting more aggressive bosses such as Maneater and Flamelurker. The camera, too, has an annoying tendency to whip around in certain portions of Upper Latria when Gargoyles descend their perches or drop down to catch you on staircases.

Enemies can still clip through walls when using certain attacks, something especially obvious with the SIlver Skeletons in Shrine of Storms, and switching targets while locked on to an enemy doesn’t always choose the one closest to you.

Summoning can still be a drag, even if it's improved and now employs a password system similar to the one found in Bloodborne. I appreciate its tenacious adherence to the old ways — objectively making it endearing — but I can’t help but wish for something less obtuse and protracted.

All of these would have been nice fixes for Bluepoint to address, if for nothing more than mitigating unnecessary frustration.

Demon's Souls Review — The Bottom Line

Pros
  • Stunning graphics
  • Amazing sound design and soundtrack
  • Silky smooth Performance mode
  • Lightning-fast load times
  • Ability to transfer items to stash
  • Smart warping system
  • Clearer World Tendency indicators
  • Omni-directional rolling
  • Multiplayer password system
  • Robust character creation tool
  • Photo mode
Cons
  • Lock-on system can be fickle
  • Camera can get stuck in places
  • Some janky movement and combat
  • Choppy Cinematic mode
  • Flavorless HP, MP, and Stamina bars

Demon’s Souls is a masterpiece. From jaw-dropping graphics that showcase the pure power of the PlayStation 5 and a sweeping soundscape that takes full advantage of 3D audio, this is a launch title to die for. Add to that a loving and tender adherence to the source material and intelligent quality of life enhancements that make for a more enjoyable experience, and Demon’s Souls on PS5 is perhaps the most complete remaster to ever exist.

I do have small qualms with the underlying code that I wish had been addressed, and it would have been nice for Bluepoint to give the status bars a bit more character. It’s a shame, too, that the Cinematic 4K mode is so unbearably choppy that it's rendered nearly unplayable once you experience the silky smooth framerates of Performance mode.

Regardless of those relatively small shortcomings, this remaster stands as a shining example of how transformative reimaginings can be, and how, with loving dedication, a remaster can be just as revolutionary and memorable as its source material.

[Note: Sony Interactive Entertainment provided the copy of Demon’s Souls used for this review.] 

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Demon's Souls: How to Find Biorr, of the Twin Fangs https://www.gameskinny.com/axk3t/demons-souls-how-to-find-biorr-of-the-twin-fangs https://www.gameskinny.com/axk3t/demons-souls-how-to-find-biorr-of-the-twin-fangs Wed, 02 Dec 2020 17:50:48 -0500 Jonathan Moore

Demon's Souls boss fights can be difficult for even the most seasoned players. While you can summon real players to help you beat bosses like Flamelurker and Tower Knight, you can also enlist the help of a certain NPC to help you against Penetrator and the Blue Dragon: Biorr, of the Twin Fangs.

For Biorr to help you fight these bosses, you must first find him and free him from his prison cell in Boletarian Palace. The walkthrough below tells you how. 

Where is Biorr in Demon's Souls? 

Biorr can be found near the Tower Knight Archstone in Boletarian Palace. There is a locked wooden door near the Tower Knight Fog Gate (the entrance to the Tower Knight boss fight) barring the way to a dungeon and Biorr's cell. 

For another reference point, the door is located between the Tower Knight Archstone and the gate leading to The Lord's Path (the gate guarded by the Blue Eye Knight and the three archers leading outside the castle walls). 

How to Open the Door Leading to the Dungeon and Biorr's Cell

To open the door, you need the Iron Key Ring, which is dropped by a Fat Official in The Inner Ward. The Inner Ward is the area locked by a large Fog Gate just beyond the Tower Knight Archstone.

To dissolve the Fog Gate, you must first defeat an Arch Demon. The easiest Arch Demon to defeat is the Dragon God, which is found in Stonefang Tunnel following the Flamelurker boss fight. 

Once you have defeated Dragon God, or one of the other Arch Demons such as Old Monk (Tower of Latria), Maiden Astraea (Valley of Defilement), or Storm King (Shrine of Storms), return to the Tower Knight Archstone and the Fog Gate will dissolve automatically, giving you access to The Inner Ward. 

A cutscene will play and the doors will open. 

How to Get the Iron Key Ring

Go through the doors and into the courtyard beyond with two carriages full of barking dogs. Defeat the two dogs near the fountain, and go up the large set of stairs leading up to a Fat Official.

When you reach the Fat Official, another cutscene will play. After the cutscene, turn right, toward a stack of crates and barrels. Three Boletarian Soldiers will burst through the crates and barrels, revealing a small passageway. Defeat the Soldiers and follow the path ahead. Defeat the Soldier and Spearman in the next area.

To proceed, you can go left and down the stairs, or you can roll off the edge of the landing just to the right of the stairs. Either way, you will have to fight an Imperial Spy, so be careful of its (very) strong attacks that can deplete both your stamina and health. 

After defeating the Spy, follow the path around and up to a large landing with lunch/picnic tables. Kill the Archer on the landing; be mindful that a Spy will sometimes come down the stairs behind you and attack.

From this landing, go up the stairs and stop just past the first torch on the left wall. This will trigger the Soldier at the top of the stairs to release the flaming boulder in front of him. Run back to dodge the boulder and fight the Spy coming down the stairs after you. 

Now go back up the stairs, minding the Archer in the first hallway to the right, the Soldier coming down the stairs, and the Spy in the second hallway to the right. At the top of the stairs, you'll see a Fat Official and three Archers in front of you.

Follow the stairs that go up to the left. Kill the Red Eye Knight in the corridor, and continue along the path. You will emerge into a large open area with lunch/picnic tables on the left and the three Archers ahead of you, just to the right (the same three Archers you saw before fighting the Red Eye Knight). 

A Spy will drop down just to your left. Kill them and stay left, along the very edge of the area. Go up the wooden ladder in front of you, then another wooden ladder.

At the top, you'll be faced with two Spearmen and two Soldiers. Try to take them out quickly; the Fat Official will be walking up the steps toward you.

A Spy will also appear if you get too close to the main stairs leading higher up, so try to stay near the wooden ladder you just came up until you thin the enemies out. 

Now, all you have to do is kill the Fat Official and take the Iron Keychain. With the Keychain in hand, go back to the door at the Tower Knight Archstone and open it (do this before you fight Penetrator in The Inner Ward). Follow the path down and eventually, you'll turn left into an area full of cells and a Fat Official.

Go straight ahead, and Biorr's cell is the last cell on the right, just past a torch on the right wall and a large cart on the left. It's hard to see him because he's sitting in complete darkness, but just unlock the cell and walk inside. 

How to Get Biorr to Help You Fight Penetrator

After you've freed Biorr, all you have to do for him to help you with Penetrator is enter the Penetrator boss fight, and he will spawn on the right side of the area, near the Fog Gate. It does not matter if you're in Soul form or Human form. 

Unfortunately, Biorr doesn't do much damage to Penetrator, but he will distract the boss for you, allowing you, or other players you've summoned, to focus on damage instead of defense. 

How to Get Biorr to Help You Fight the Blue Dragon

If Biorr survives the fight with Penetrator, he will "help" you fight the Blue Dragon in 1-4, The King's Tower. I say "help" because Biorr doesn't really do much in this fight and can be easily killed by the Blue Dragon's fire. 

Note: If you are trying to complete the Mephistopheles questline, you should kill Biorr before either fight to eliminate the risk of him dying and negating the entire questline. 

And that's all you need to know about how to find and rescue Biorr, of the Twin Fangs in Demon's Souls, as well as how to get his help during two of the games harder boss/more laborious boss fights. If you found this guide helpful, consider giving it a share! 

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Demon's Souls White Bow Locations Guide https://www.gameskinny.com/w2ov1/demons-souls-white-bow-locations-guide https://www.gameskinny.com/w2ov1/demons-souls-white-bow-locations-guide Wed, 02 Dec 2020 15:28:16 -0500 Jonathan Moore

Ranged weapons like the Compound Short Bow and the Compound Long Bow are useful for killing enemies from afar or kiting tougher foes away from a horde in Demon's Souls. You can upgrade those weapons to do heavy damage, but if you want to hit enemies from as far away as possible and do the most base damage while collecting mats for other upgrades, the White Bow is worth consideration.

Getting the White Bow in Demon's Souls is a bit involved, but unlike some other weapons (looking at you Demonbrandt and Soulbrandt), you have three chances to pick it up. 

It's important to note that the White Bow scales best with Strength and Dexterity, so if you aren't going with STR/DEX builds, the White Bow may not be worth the investment. Further, the White Bow is ultimately surpassed by other upgraded ranged weapons in terms of damage, such as the Sticky +5 variants of the Compound Long and Short Bows. 

The Ritual Path (Adjudicator Archstone)

From The Ritual Path Archstone (the Adjudicator Archstone), go down the steps and drop down. Turn around and follow the path forward. Pass Graverobber Blige (if you've freed him), and enter the room with the Reaper and Shadowlurkers

Take the left path, and kill the Shadowlurker. Drop down behind the Reaper below and kill it to remove all of the Shadowlurkers from the area.

From the Reaper, go down the stone stairs in front of the altar and into the stairwell on the right side. Go up two flights of stone stairs until you see a flight of wooden stairs. Don't go up them. 

There is a bricked-up archway to the right of the glowing skeleton in the wall. Strick the archway to reveal an illusory wall

Go through the archway and down. You will emerge outside on a cliff, and there is a Red Eye Dual-Katana Skeleton in front of you. The White Bow is on the body at the edge of the cliff behind the Skeleton. 

Penetrator Archstone

After defeating Penetrator in The Inner Ward of Boletaria Palace, follow the path from the Penetrator Archstone to the next area. You will see a dead Dragon and three archers. There will be three Black Phantoms (one with a bow and arrow) past the Archers. 

Defeat the three Archers first, then kite the two melee-based Black Phantoms one at a time back toward the Penetrator Archstone. Both Metas, Knight of the Lance and Alfred, Knight of the Tower are very powerful and can deplete half of your health bar in a single hit. 

Once you've defeated the two melee Phantoms, attack the last Phantom, Long Bow Oolan, either using ranged attacks (depending on the strength of your current bow and/or the spells you have on hand) or melee. If you get close and attack using a melee weapon, the Oolan will use a Kilij for very swift attacks. 

Oolan will try to create distance to shoot you with arrows; she can easily fire two arrows in the time it takes a normal Archer to fire one. She also has Firestorm, which she may use when her health gets low. 

Sparkly, the Crow (Shrine of Storms, 4-1)

This method is a bit more involved, if only because you need to give Sparkly, the Crow a piece of Pure Moonlightstone. If you don't know how to find Sparkly, here's a quick walkthrough. 

How to Find Sparkly, the Crow

Go to Shrine of Storms Island's Edge Archstone.

From the Archstone, go straight and follow the path past the Silver Skeletons up to the main gate (where the Skeleton Archers are shooting down at you and you can see Vanguard looming the distance).

Go halfway through the gate and turn left to see a pathway leading through the wall. There is a trap switch on the floor between the torches. Raise your shield or hug the right or left wall to mitigate the damage from the three arrows or miss them altogether. 

Go up the stairs and then left at the top, through the gap in the wall. Follow the path down and turn left at the end. Continue along the path, and kill the Silver Skeleton that rolls toward you. Beware of a second Silver Skeleton to your right when you enter the next room. 

Climb the stairs on the left side, and kill the Silver Skeleton at the top. Exit the room through the right archway and follow the cliff path up. At the top, you will see a huge tree, and when you get close enough, Sparkly will start speaking to you. 

To get the White Bow, you need to leave Sparkly a piece of Pure Moonlightstone. Leave the stone and go back to the Island's Edge Archstone. You can choose Island's Edge from the warp menu to reset the area. Go back to Sparkly, and the White Bow should be on the ground in front of the tree

White Bow Stats

  • Physical Attack: 100
  • Range: 75

You will need 30 Strength and 24 Dexterity to wield the White Bow. It can fire every arrow type. 

Upgrading the White Bow

The White Bow can only be upgraded using a Colorless Demon's Soul. There are quite a few ways to get these special souls in each playthrough. 

  • Trade Sparkly the Talisman of God and Gold Mask (2)
  • Perform Mephistopheles assassination quests (2)
  • Kill Primeval Demons (5)

You can also find a Colorless Demon's Soul after unlocking the gate near the beginning of The Gates of Boletaria Archstone. You will need Pure Black or Pure White World Tendency to open this gate. 

From the Archstone, go forward and left a short way to find a small staircase leading down. 

Go through the new area and enter the tower. Kill Executioner Miralda and descend the stairs until you reach a ladder leading down. Instead of taking the ladder, walk out onto the beams and drop down to the next set of wooden beams. Grab the Colorless Demon's Soul. 

That's all you need to know about how to get the White Bow in Demon's Souls and how to upgrade it. For more on the impeccable remaster of this From Software classic, be sure to check out our other tips and guides here. If you found this article helpful, consider giving it a share!

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Demon's Souls Compound Long Bow Location Guide https://www.gameskinny.com/2byia/demons-souls-compound-long-bow-location-guide https://www.gameskinny.com/2byia/demons-souls-compound-long-bow-location-guide Mon, 16 Nov 2020 19:33:23 -0500 Jonathan Moore

The Compound Long Bow is the third strongest non-upgraded bow (in terms of base damage) in Demon's Souls. It's a good upgrade to the Compound Short Bow, but it's harder to get. You'll have to weather the Shrine of Storms and its notorious Silver Skeletons if you want to add it to your inventory, which can be a task early on. 

You may also want to get this bow for crafting the Lava Bow, or to gain access to a high-level ranged weapon capable of inflicting Sticky damage. Though the Compound Long Bow doesn't provide any added benefits over the Compound Short Bow when crafting the Lava variant, it is a more powerful and longer-ranged Sticky variant.

Compound Long Bow Location

Go to the Island's Edge Archstone (4-1) in Shrine of Storms. From the archstone, go straight ahead and defeat the Silver Skeleton. Then go through the archway and fight the Silver Skeletons guarding the stairway; there are two on the immediate stairway, as well as an Archer on the right near the banner.

Slowly move forward to kite the first Skeleton, drawing it away from the others. Defeat it, and repeat the process with the second Skeleton. Ascend the stairway, and kill the Archer. 

Turn left and slowly continue up the stairway. You will see two Skeletons at the top. Kite one, defeat it, and repeat with the next Skeleton. When you get to the top of the stairway, mind the Archers shooting down from the rampart above. 

When you get to the large castle gate (just underneath the Archers firing down from the rampart), don't go completely through it. Instead, go halfway through it, and turn left to go inside the wall, as shown in the screenshot above.

Beware of the pressure plate halfway down the corridor, on the floor between the two torches on the wall. This triggers an arrow trap that fires three arrows in quick succession.

At the end of the corridor, go right and up the steps to the top. At the top, ignore the Silver Skeleton and two Archers in front of you to the right. Just make sure the Silver Skeleton doesn't follow you. Go left through the space in the stone wall. 

Go down through the rubble, toward the solitary Archer shooting at you from above. Go under the Archer and into the room ahead. Watch out for the Silver Skeleton waiting around the corner to the left.

Defeat the Skeleton and continue through the corridor. At the end, watch out for another Skeleton to your right. Defeat them, and go up the stairs to the left. There is another Silver Skeleton waiting for you at the top. Defeat that enemy, and go out onto the castle rampart.

(Note: Going out onto the cliff will lead you to Sparkly, the Crow). 

Follow the path out onto the rampart around to the right to find an Archer and a slouched body with an item on it. The Compound Long Bow is on the body, along with some arrows.

The Compound Long Bow can fire regular arrows, heavy arrows, holy arrows, rotten arrows, and fire arrows. It is perfect for the Armor Spider fight in 2-1, Stonefang Tunnel's Smithing Grounds if you're able to get through Shrine of Storms early. 

It has a base damage of 45 (10 more than the Long Bow) and a range of 60. It can be upgraded to +10 with Hardstone and Sharpstone. The +10 variant deals 90 damage. You'll need 22 Strength and 12 Dexterity to wield it. 

It can also be upgraded to a +5 Quality Bow using Clearstone; a +5 Sticky Bow using Spiderstone; and the Lava Bow using the Hard Demon's Souls. The Quality and Sticky variants require a Compound Short Bow +3. The Lava Bow requires a Compound Long Bow +7 and the Red Hot Demon's Soul (received for defeating Flamelurker in Stonefang Tunnel, The Tunnel City. 

That's all you need to know about how to get the Compound Long Bow in Demon's Souls. If you found this guide helpful, consider giving it a share! 

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Demon's Souls: How to Upgrade Weapons https://www.gameskinny.com/7uz9y/demons-souls-how-to-upgrade-weapons https://www.gameskinny.com/7uz9y/demons-souls-how-to-upgrade-weapons Wed, 18 Nov 2020 17:28:35 -0500 Jonathan Moore

No matter what class you choose in Demon's Souls, your starting weapons will only get you so far. Weapon upgrades are integral to progression and survival in both the PS3 version of the RPG and the PS5 remaster

Upgrading your weapons in Demon's Souls isn't exactly straightforward. There are two blacksmiths in the game, but one blacksmith is better than the other and harder to unlock. Here's how to upgrade weapons along any path (Hardstone, Bladestone, Moonshadestone, etc.) and forge stronger equipment and boss weapons. 

Note: Since Blacksmith Ed is somewhat hard to find, I've included a full walkthrough on how to find him, as well as how to give him the Searing Demon's Soul. 

Where is Blacksmith Boldwin?

Unlike his brother, Blacksmith Ed, Blacksmith Boldwin is very easy to find. He's located in the Nexus next to Stockpile Thomas. 

Blacksmith Boldwin Items

Here's what Blacksmith Boldwin sells and how many souls each item costs. 

  • Crescent Moon Grass (150 Souls)
  • Fresh Spice (350 Souls)
  • Ed's Sharpening Stone (2,000 Souls)
  • Dagger (700 Souls)
  • Short Sword (1,000 Souls)
  • Battle Axe (1,500 Souls)
  • Heater Shield (2,000 Souls)
  • Arrow (20 Souls)
  • Bolt (30 Souls)
  • Cracked Eye Stone (2,800 Souls)
Weapon Upgrades

Boldwin can only upgrade weapons that follow the Hardstone and Sharpstone paths, such as the Long Sword, Uchigatana, and Compound Long Bow. He cannot upgrade magical weapons, such as the Crescent Falchion, nor can he work on boss weapons, such as the Morion Blade or Northern Regalia. 

To upgrade equipment for any of the other stone types, including Cloudstone, Moonshadestone, and Dragonstone, you'll need to find Blacksmith Ed, which is a much more involved process. 

Where is Blacksmith Ed?

Blacksmith Ed is found at the beginning of world 2-1, Stonefang Tunnel's Smithing Grounds. But you have to start the elevator behind the merchant, The Filthy Man, to gain access to him. Here's a quick walkthrough of how to do that. 

How to Start Blacksmith Ed's Elevator

From the 2-1 Archstone, go up the stairs and go right. Cross the stone bridge towards the Scale Miners throwing rocks off the tower ahead. Go through the gate at the bottom of the tower, and go left.

Continue straight ahead. Make sure to kill the Scale Miners on either side of the next room to make the next encounter easier. Remember that Scale Miners are weak to piercing attacks, so use weapons such as the

  • Long Sword (heavy attack)
  • Mail Breaker
  • Dagger
  • Rapier
  • Short Spear

Go through the short tunnel and into the larger open area beyond. To proceed, you need to get to the archway straight ahead, but you should kill the Scale Miners first.

Do not go past the middle of the area: three dogs will burst out of the archway you're going towards. Take out the Scale Miners first, then the dogs, and go through the archway. 

Kill the Fat Official when you enter and go through the small archway on the right side of the room. Be careful of the Pickaxe Scale Miner just inside the archway to the right. Kill them and take the stairs up.

Turn right at the top and kill another Pickaxe Scale Miner standing in the passage. There is one more Miner coming out of the small archway to the right, so be careful in this tight space. 

Continue down the path and go up the stairs at the end. At the top, turn left and take the wooden ramp up. At the top of the ramp, turn left and go across the wooden bridge toward the Fat Official

The bridge will break. When you land below, turn right and go up the small set of steps. Follow the path all the way around, killing the Scale Miners along the way, and cross another wooden bridge. Kill the two Miners on the left and grab two of Ed's Sharpening Stones. 

Go right and under the platform with the Fat Official. Go to the back left corner and pull the giant lever. A cutscene will play and the gate to the right of the Fat official will open. 

Now jump back down to the area where you killed the dogs and go all the way back up to the broken bridge. When you get to the top of the wooden ramp leading to the broken bridge, take the stone stairs in front of you, and follow the path through the Fog Gate. 

You'll enter an area with a large water wheel. Take the wooden ramp up and go left at the top. Pass the water wheel, and go up the next wooden ramp to your left.

Follow the path around, passing the water wheel again, and go past the lava pit on the right. Kill the three Scale Miners on the stone stairs in front of you. 

There's a Fog Gate to your left and a cart in front of you. Destroy the cart and continue forward, killing the hammer-wielding Scale Miners. At the end of the path, you'll be outside. Go right and follow the path straight ahead. It will end at a wall with gears and a round crank. Turn the crank to start the elevator to your left. 

Jump on the elevator and ride it all the way to the bottom, where you'll find Blacksmith Ed. And make sure to grab the Renowned Hero's Soul on the landing outside his smithy.   

Blacksmith Ed Items

Blacksmith Ed does not sell any items. 

Blacksmith Ed Weapon Upgrades

While Blacksmith Boldwin can repair and upgrade some of your weapons and equipment, Ed can upgrade every weapon (and shield) in Demon's Souls along any upgrade path. Ed can also forge boss weapons, which are made from various Demon Souls. 

For Ed to forge Boss weapons, you must give him the Searing Demon's Soul (formerly the Red Hot Demon's Soul), which is obtained after beating Flamelurker in 2-2, Stonefang Tunnel's Tunnel City. 

How to Give Blacksmith Ed the Searing Demon's Soul

Put the Searing Demon's Soul in your inventory, and go see Ed. Speak with him until his dialog options run out. Then take the elevator back up and warp to The Tunnel City (Armor Spider) Archstone. 

Spawn and warp back to the Smithing Grounds Archstone. Go speak with Ed again, and he will mention the Searing Demon's Soul before asking for it. Choose "Yes" when he asks, and you'll now be able to forge Boss weapons. 

And that's that on upgrading weapons in Demon's Souls. If you're looking for various stone and shard types, such as Bladestone, Moonlightstone, and Mercurystone, head over to our tips section for those guides and more!

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Demon's Souls Compound Short Bow Location Guide https://www.gameskinny.com/09md6/demons-souls-compound-short-bow-location-guide https://www.gameskinny.com/09md6/demons-souls-compound-short-bow-location-guide Mon, 16 Nov 2020 18:00:04 -0500 Jonathan Moore

The Compound Short Bow is one of five bows in Demon's Souls (not counting the Lava Bow, which must be crafted with the Hard Demon's Soul). It's a great early-game option for ranged players and is easier to get than the Compound Long Bow, which is located in the Shrine of Storms, a notoriously difficult area — even for leveled players. 

Indeed, the Thief class starts the game with the Shortbow, and the Hunter class starts with the Longbow. However, the Compound Short Bow deals more base damage than both of those, so it's worth seeking out even if you started Demon's Souls as one of those classes. 

Here's how to get the Compound Short Bow. While it can be dropped by Silver Skeletons in Shrine of Storms, this guide will cover the easiest way to get the bow: by defeating the Phalanx Demon and gaining access to the Lord's Path in Boletaria Palace.

You can see how to beat Phalanx over in our guide for how to level up

Compound Short Bow Location

First defeat Phalanx, then travel to The Lord's Path Archstone (1-2) at Boletarian Palace. When you spawn at the stone, go straight ahead and through the tunnel in front of you. Continue through the tunnel into the next area, which has several Hoplites on either side, carriages, and dead horses.

Remember that Hoplites are vulnerable to fire, as well as attacks from the rear. Go through this area, and ascend the stairs at the end.

You will find yourself on a rampart looking toward the castle and city in the distance. You will also notice two towers on the rampart. The Compound Short Bow is at the top of the second tower.

How to Get to the Second Tower

There is a Red Dragon flying in this area. It breathes fire along the ramparts, killing you and anything else in its path. 

Go out to the first set of wooden barricades (shown in the image above) on the rampart, just past the charred bodies on the ground to the right. Once you reach the wooden barricades, turn around immediately and go back to the entrance.

You should hear the Dragon's wings flapping, signaling its approach. As soon as the Dragon starts breathing fire, start running across the rampart to the first tower. Don't stop to pick up any items; you may get caught in the Dragon's next pass if you do, and the fire will kill you instantly.  

Once in the first tower, there are two paths to take: either repeat the same process of waiting for the Dragon and crossing the second rampart between the towers, or take the small set of stairs to the right. 

If you go along the second rampart, wait for the Dragon to fly over and breathe fire. Then run behind it. Be careful, though: there are four Archers guarding the entrance to the second tower.

If you take the stairs in the first tower, exit through the archway to the outside of the tower. Take the stone staircase down two flights. At the bottom, take a right and follow the path forward through the iron gate. 

Be careful of the Dregling to the left of the cart just after the first wooden barricade, and continue past the large hole in the right wall. Very shortly after that hole in the wall, you will see a torch hanging on the left wall and the path starts going upward.

Move forward slowly; there are five dogs here that will easily kill you. Try to take them on one or two at a time. 

After you kill the dogs, continue up the path until you reach an open iron gate with an archer on the other side of it. Destroy the barricade just before and to the right of the iron gate to reveal a passageway (shown in the image above). Take the stairs up, exit to the outside of the tower, and continue to the top of the tower. 

There are two archers at the top of the tower. The bow is on the body at their feet. 

Compound Short Bow Ammo, Stats, and Upgrades,

The Compound Short Bow can fire regular arrows, heavy arrows, fire arrows, rotten arrows, and holy arrows. It is perfect for the Armor Spider boss fight in 2-1, Stonefang Tunnel's Smithing Grounds. 

This bow has a base damage of 40 (10 more than the Short Bow) and a range of 50. It can be upgraded to +10 with Hardstone and Sharpstone. The +10 variant deals 80 damage. You'll need 18 Strength and 10 Dexterity to wield it. 

It can also be upgraded to a +5 Quality Bow using Clearstone; a +5 Sticky Bow using Spiderstone; and the Lava Bow using the Hard Demon's Souls. The Quality and Sticky variants require a Compound Short Bow +3. The Lava Bow requires a Compound Short Bow +7 and the Red Hot Demon's Soul (received for defeating Flamelurker in Stonefang Tunnel, The Tunnel City). 

That's all you need to know about how to get the Compound Short Bow in Demon's Souls. If you found this guide helpful, consider giving it a share! 

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Demon's Souls: How to Level Up and Phalanx Boss Walkthrough https://www.gameskinny.com/ybuqf/demons-souls-how-to-level-up-and-phalanx-boss-walkthrough https://www.gameskinny.com/ybuqf/demons-souls-how-to-level-up-and-phalanx-boss-walkthrough Mon, 16 Nov 2020 16:00:57 -0500 Jonathan Moore

Knowing how to level up in Demon's Souls is crucial to your survival in the Kingdom of Boletaria. That's true in the original game on PS3 and the remaster on PS5. To upgrade character stats like strength, endurance, vitality, and magic, you must first beat the Phalanx Demon boss, then speak with two different NPCs in the Nexus.

Since you must Phalanx before you can level up, I've included a walkthrough for that boss below, including how to find and start the Phalanx demon boss fight, as well as how to defeat it.

If you've already completed that step, you can click the following link to skip ahead to "Step 2: Speak to the Monumental," which you will also need to do before Maiden Astraea allows you to seek soul power and level up in the Nexus. 

Step 1: Beat the Phalanx Demon

After the Demon's Souls tutorial, where you either beat the Vanguard demon or get crushed trying, you'll find yourself in the Nexus. This is the game's hub world, which gives you access to each of the five archstones — or worlds.

Go to the Archstone of the Covetous King behind the Crestfallen Warrior. This is the first archstone on the left stairwell behind the sitting Blue Phantom. This Archstone will take you to the Gates of Boletaria.

The mini walkthrough below tells you how to open the gate guarding Phalanx. 

How to Find Phalanx

Note: Be mindful to pick up all of the Firebombs and Pine Resin you can throughout the entire section ahead. You will need them to fight Phalanx, whether you're using magic or not.

When you spawn at the Gates of Boletaria, go straight ahead and watch out for the Dreglings on either side of the path. Ascend the stairs in front of you. At the top of the stairs, go left, and then go up another set of stairs in front of you. There is a Dregling with a flaming sword on the stairs for reference. 

At the top of these stairs, go left, and follow the path around to the right, minding the archer and two Dreglings there. 

Defeat them and go through the next doorway into the Soldier's Quarters. Mind the three Dreglings hiding around corners and in the darkness here.

Once through the Soldier's Quarters, go up the next set of stairs and follow the path around to the right. Defeat the two Boletarian Soldiers here and go through the Fog Gate.

Follow the path up the wooden staircases. There are Soldiers that throw Firebombs here, so be careful!

Keep going up until you reach a stone staircase (you'll briefly go outside of the castle just before you reach the stone staircase). Be careful here as well because a Boletarian soldier will roll a boulder down the staircase

Go about a quarter way up the staircase, turn around, and run back down. This should trigger the boulder, which will miss you.  

After the boulder comes down the staircase, go up, and defeat the Soldier. Go straight ahead and defeat the Blue Eye Knight (mind the Archers behind you, who can get in a few easy shots).

After defeating the Blue Eye Knight, go through the Fog Gate they were guarding and take the staircase down. Follow the path down and around to the left, minding the bomb-thrower ahead of you. 

Kill the bomb-thrower, and go right. Continue forward and defeat the Spearman and the Soldier in the next section. Continue to follow the path.

You'll quickly emerge and see a wooden scaffold ahead of you. Three Boletarian soldiers will either already be in your way or drop down in the space between you and the scaffolding. 

Kill them and climb the scaffolding. Be carfeul of the Dregling at the bottom, the Archers in the middle and top sections, and the Blue Eye Knight at the top. 

After defeating those enemies, go through the Fog Gate the Knight was guarding. At the end, you'll see a small wooden structure that holds several boulders. Strike it from the side, near the front, with your light attack to release the boulders. 

Follow the boulders down the path and take a right at the end. Go up the steps and fight the two Spearmen that appear. Defeat them and continue straight, up the steps. You'll see a bridge full of Soldiers, Spearmen, and Archers at the top.  

You can run straight across the bridge if you'd like. However, the best strategy here is to kite a few of the Soldiers and Pikemen away from the bridge. As you do so, a Red Dragon will appear and hover over the far end of the bridge.

Kill the enemies you kited, then run out onto the bridge (shield up) until the Red Dragon starts breathing fire. Now run back off of the bridge; the Dragon will kill the remaining enemies, except for two archers at the far end.  

As soon as the Dragon flies away, run across the bridge. On the other side, go down the stairs and straight ahead through the archway. Pull the huge wooden lever in front of you and a cutscene will trigger, showing the gate to Phalanx open up. 

Go through the archway to the left of the lever and follow the path through the Soldier's Quarters and down the tower. Mind the Dreglings, Spearmen, Boletarian Soldiers, and the Hoplites along the way.

Attack the Hoplites from behind, where they're weakest, but hold on to any Firebombs and Pine Resin you've accumulated. You'll need those for Phalanx. 

At the bottom of the tower, pull the lever to open the gate. You'll find yourself back at the Gates of Boletaria, where you began. Now the huge gate guarding Phalanx is open, and there is a Fog Gate in its place. Go through the gate when you're ready. 

How to Beat Phalanx 

The Phalanx Demon is covered in Hoplites, and there is a handful of them scattered around the boss area. To damage Phalanx, first remove the Hoplites covering its body

Since Phalanx and the Hoplites on it are weak to fire, use your Firebombs to knock the Hoplites off. It will take around three to four Firebombs to expose Phalanx.

Mind the roving Hoplites in the arena while you're doing this; a good strategy is to stop in one spot, wait a second, and then move a few feet to the right or left of Phalanx. The Hoplites will often attack your previous position, and this helps you throw Firebombs at Phalanx safely. 

Keep in mind that Phalanx can respawn Hoplites on its body and in the boss area, so it's best to focus on Phalanx and not the Hoplites in the boss area as much as you can. 

Once Phalanx's body is exposed, use Pine Resin to enchant your weapon with flame. For more damage, two-hand your sword and hack away.

Ranged builds could opt to attack Phalanx from afar, but putting souls into Fire Arrows this early in the game isn't advised (and choosing Fire Arrows as a starting gift only gives you 10). To buy more, you would have to first find Graverobber Blige in Shrine of Storms, which also isn't advised this early. 

If you chose Magician as your class, you can get Flame Toss immediately, which gives you a slight advantage in this fight. You will need Spice to replenish your MP, which you can buy from:

  • Boldwin in the Nexus (350 souls)
  • Royal Mistress in Tower of Latria, Prison of Hope 4F (250 souls)
  • Graverobber Blige in Shrine of Storms, Island's Edge (300 souls)

You can also find it as a drop by defeating Mindflayers in Tower of Latria, Prison of Hope. You can also get Bright Water as a starting gift, which replenishes some MP over time. 

For science, I tried this method, and it's hit or miss; targeting Phalanx is very difficult with all of the Hoplites in the boss arena. I ultimately chose to defeat it via the melee strategy using Pine Resin to speed things up. But you may have more success with it. 

Once the Phalanx is defeated, you'll get 1,270 Souls and a 30% increase to World Tendency. Touch the Archstone to get the Lead Demon's Soul, and go back to the Nexus. 

Step 2: Speak to the Monumental

Once you return to the Nexus, Maiden Astraea will tell you to speak with the Monumental near the top of the Nexus. 

Climb the outer staircase up two stories. You'll reach a landing at the base of the large statue holding a sword. Go through the archway to the left (or right if you're coming from the opposite direction) and take an immediate left to go up another staircase. 

At the top of the staircase, go left, and go up another staircase. That staircase will level off, before heading up. Don't go up. Instead, take a right.

You'll now be facing the middle of the statue holding the sword. Go forward and take a left. The Monumental is sitting on the ground on the left-hand side, about halfway down. 

Step 3: Speak to Maiden Astraea

After listening to the Monumental's story, go all the way back down to the bottom of the Nexus. Speak with Maiden Astraea. She will give you the Blue Eye Stone and the White Eye Stone

After receiving those stones, speak with her again. She will ask if you seek the power of souls. Say "Yes," and then choose "Seek Soul Power." You will now be able to use the souls you've acquired to level up! 

Though it's a little drawn out, that's all you need to know about how to level up in Demon's Souls, as well as how to find the Phalanx boss fight and defeat it. Good stats to upgrade early include stamina, endurance, and strength. For more on Demon's Souls, consider checking out our growing guides hub, and if you found this guide helpful, please consider giving it a share!

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Demon's Souls PS5 Trophy List https://www.gameskinny.com/ch6w4/demons-souls-ps5-trophy-list https://www.gameskinny.com/ch6w4/demons-souls-ps5-trophy-list Wed, 11 Nov 2020 11:08:31 -0500 GS_Staff

The trophy list for the Demon's Souls remake on PS5 has been revealed (thanks, PowerPyx). A quick look at the trophies makes it clear that Bluepoint Games has changed things up from the original, with the inclusion of two online-only trophies, as well as some for beating bosses in specific ways. 

Keeping with the spirit of From Software's watershed RPG, however, the Slayer of Demon trophies are still here, as are those for obtaining all spells, miracles, and rings, albeit by different names this time around.

However, some notable trophies are missing, specifically those for upgrading weapons with certain stone types like Moonlightstone and Mercurystone. No longer will players have to grind for Bladestone for the Master Slasher's trophy for example. 

Here's the full list. 

Name Type Description
Slayer of Trophies Platinum All trophies obtained
Phalanx's Trophy Bronze Slayer of Demon "Phalanx"
Tower Knight's Trophy Bronze Slayer of Demon "Tower Knight"
Penetrator's Trophy Bronze Slayer of Demon "Penetrator
False King's Trophy Bronze Slayer of Demon "False King"
Armor Spider's Trophy Bronze Slayer of Demon "Armor Spider"
Flamelurker's Trophy Bronze Slayer of Demon "Flamelurker
Dragon God's Trophy Bronze Slayer of Demon "Dragon God"
Fool's Idol Trophy Bronze Slayer of Demon "Fool's Idol"
Maneater's Trophy Bronze Slayer of Demon "Maneater"
Old Monk's Trophy Bronze Slayer of Demon "Old Monk"
Adjudicator's Trophy Bronze Slayer of Demon "Adjudicator"
Old Hero's Trophy Bronze Slayer of Demon "Old Hero"
Storm King's Trophy Bronze Slayer of Demon "Storm King"
Leechmonger's Trophy Bronze Slayer of Demon "Leechmonger"
Dirty Colossus' Trophy Bronze Slayer of Demon "Dirty Colossus"
Maiden Astraea's Trophy Bronze Slayer of Demon "Maiden Astraea"
Brother-in-Arms Bronze Vanquish Penetrator with Biorr
Fist of Legend Bronze Vanquish Dragon God with 
the Hands of God
A Dash of Sage Bronze Rescue Sage Freke the Visionary
Umbasa Bronze Rescue Saint Urbain
Road to Possibilities Bronze Give the Searing Demon Soul
to Blacksmith Ed
Witch of the Tower Bronze Rescue Yuria the Witch
Return to Form Silver Help a player vanquish a boss
Unwelcome Guest Silver Vanquish a player as an invader
One Shall Fall Silver Vanquish the Tower Knight without
killing any archers
Time for Rolling Silver Cross the walkway through the 
Idol's volleys of arrows
Not Fooled Silver Vanquish the Fool's Idol without
hitting any clones
One Shall Stand Silver Vanquish Adjudicator without having
him fall down
May You be Unharmed Silver Vanquish Maiden Astraea without
killing Garl Vinland
Worthy of the Sword Silver Deliver Makoto to Satsuki
One of the Few Silver Obtain Istarelle
Seekest Soul Power Gold Embrace the power of the Old One
Legacy of the Kings Gold Obtain the Northern Regalia
Sage's Trophy Gold All magic spells obtained
Saint's Trophy Gold All miracles obtained
King of Rings Gold All rings obtained

 

That's it for the Demon's Souls remake trophy list. Luckily, it looks like most of the trophies are far less grindy than they were in 2009. Will you go after the Demon's Souls platinum? Do you like the changes to the trophy list? Let us know in the comments below! And if you found this article helpful, please consider giving it a share! 

[Source: PowerPyx; Header Image: Sony]

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GameSkinny's Best Games of 2020 https://www.gameskinny.com/is88r/gameskinnys-best-games-of-2020 https://www.gameskinny.com/is88r/gameskinnys-best-games-of-2020 Thu, 31 Dec 2020 09:00:02 -0500 GS_Staff

To look back on the year that was in video games, we've collected our highest-reviewed games of 2020 into a "best of" list. We're a small staff at GameSkinny, so going the traditional "staff voting route" doesn't really make a whole lot of sense for us. The most democratic way to make a list like this is to include any game with a score of "8" or higher. So that's what we've done. 

This list will not include DLCs (such as The Foundation or AWE for Control), expansions (such as Destiny 2 Beyond Light), or hardware reviews. It will contain ports and remakes of games. 

Here are our best games of 2020, starting with a real good one and getting better from there. 

13 Sentinels: Aegis Rim

Publisher: Atlus
Developer: Vanillaware
Platforms: PS4
Rating: 10/10

What we said: 13 Sentinels: Aegis Rim mixes smart design with superb storytelling, then slathers the whole package in gorgeous style. 13 Sentinels: Aegis Rim spins a web of mystery around you, then chuckles smugly as you think you've found your way out only to realize you're in the middle of a maze.

Read the review

A Fold Apart

Publisher: Lightning Rod Games
Developer: Lightning Rod Games
Platforms: PC, PS4, Xbox One, Switch, iOS
Rating: 9/10

What we said: A Fold Apart is about hope and how love can get us through even the toughest of times. In that way, it's timeless. 

The game is so incredibly charming and so accurately depicts the rigors and pleasures of being in love that I can't help but adore it. The first title from Lightning Rod Games isn't perfect by definition, but even with a few tiny blemishes, it's only a fold apart. 

Read the review

Amnesia: Rebirth

Publisher: Frictional Games
Developer: Frictional Games
Platforms: PC, PS4
Rating: 8/10

What we said: Though its scares don't reach the heights of the original, Amnesia: Rebirth remains a must-play horror game for delivering a story more akin to a brilliant novel.

Read the review

Among Us

Publisher: Innersloth
Developer: Innersloth
Platforms: PC, Switch, Mobile
Rating: 8/10

What we said: Flaws aside, Among Us is a clever game that deserves its time in the spotlight. It works a surprisingly complex concept into a simple and accessible package where matches are quick, fun, usually hilarious, and sometimes even intense.

Read the review

Animal Crossing: New Horizons

Publisher: Nintendo
Developer: Nintendo
Platforms: Switch
Rating: 10/10

What we said: The latest Animal Crossing is also the best, full of life, charm, and near-endless ways to make your very own island paradise.

New Horizons is bursting with personality and charm, with opportunities to create something new and completely you. It's compelling and also one of the most chilled out games you'll ever play. In short, there's nothing quite like Animal Crossing: New Horizons.

Read the review

Assassin's Creed Valhalla

Publisher: Ubisoft
Developer: Ubisoft Montreal
Platforms: PC, PS4, PS5, Xbox One, Xbox Series X|S, Stadia
Rating: 8/10

What we said: Assassin's Creed Valhalla builds its world around a familiar formula, but with a compelling story and plenty of things to do, it's a game series fans will find inviting.

Read the review

Astro's Playroom

Publisher: Sony Interactive Entertainment
Developer: Team ASOBII
Platforms: PS5
Rating: 9/10

What we said: Astro's Playroom proves that the DualSense's haptics and adaptive triggers are for real — and that Astro Bot could have a very bright future on PlayStation 5. Though it's short and may lack enemy variety, Astro's Playroom makes up for it in character and heart. 

Read the review

Atelier Ayesha: The Alchemist of Dusk DX

Publisher: Koei Tecmo
Developer: Gust Co. Ltd
Platforms: PS4, Switch
Rating: 8/10

What we said: Atelier Ayesha DX is a solid entry starting off the Dusk trilogy, with compelling crafting and gameplay loops, as well as plenty of loveable characters. Overall, Atelier Ayesha DX is a great entry in the series whether you're new to it or just finding it now. 

Read the review

Atelier Escha and Logy: Alchemists of the Dusk Sky DX

Publisher: Koei Tecmo
Developer: Gust Co. Ltd
Platforms: PS4, Switch
Rating: 9/10

What we said: Atelier Escha & Logy DX refines the formula Ayesha laid out and other new features that make it not just the best in the Dusk trilogy, but one of the best Atelier games in general. All in all, Atelier Escha & Logy DX is easily the best entry in the Dusk trilogy  With refined mechanics, better combat, and seriously compelling crafting systems, it even stands among the top entries in the Atelier series on the whole.

Read the review

Atelier Shallie: Alchemists of the Dusk Sea

Publisher: Koei Tecmo
Developer: Gust Co. Ltd
Platforms: PS4, Switch
Rating: 8/10

What we said: Though Atelier Shallie falls short in some ways, it's still a solid package with compelling crafting and combat systems. Atelier Shallie is the weakest part of the Dusk trilogy. It's ambitious in doing away with the time system and trying for a more flexible approach. But there's just not enough worthwhile content to make the freedom and flexibility a satisfying trade-off for the systems it does away with, and it doesn't make good use of its own strengths.

Read the review

AO Tennis 2

Publisher: Big Ant Studios
Developer: Big Ant Studios
Platforms: PC, PS4, Xbox One, Switch
Rating: 8/10

What we said: AO Tennis 2 feels like a sports sim built first and foremost to correct its predecessor's mistakes, and that's a directive that pays off for tennis fans. Not without issues, AO Tennis 2 is my pick for the best tennis game on the market today. There's obvious room to grow, but this has quickly become Big Ant's best series in their ever-expanding catalog of sports titles.

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Before We Leave

Publisher: Balancing Monkey Games
Developer: Balancing Monkey Games
Platforms: PC
Rating: 8/10

What we said: Before We Leave is a relaxing take on the post-apocalypse and city building, with enough benefits to overcome its hiccups.

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Bloodroots

Publisher: Paper Cult
Developer: Paper Cult
Platforms: PC, PS4, Switch
Rating: 9/10

What we said: Bloodroots is a high-speed slash-and-bash extravaganza that always makes you want to beat "just one more level." A good game can be really fun when things are going well and you feel skilled and empowered. A great game remains fun when you feel like a useless idiot who can't do anything right. Bloodroots is a great game. 

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Blood Rage

Publisher: Asmodee
Developer: Exozet Games
Platforms: PC
Rating: 8/10

What we said: Blood Rage: Digital Edition is a strong port of the popular tabletop game that's challenging for both newcomers and veterans alike. Blood Rage: Digital Edition is a really strong port of a popular tabletop game. 

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Battletoads

Publisher: Xbox Game Studios
Developer: Rare
Platforms: PC, Xbox One
Rating: 8/10

What we said: Battletoads returns after 26 years, and it's a love letter to gaming past and present. The urgency at which it propels you through its runtime is both a blessing and a curse, as it’s hard to put down but ultimately a short affair. 

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BPM: Bullets Per Minute

Publisher: Awe Interactive
Developer: Awe Interactive
Platforms: PC, PS4, Xbox One
Rating: 9/10

What we said: BPM: Bullets Per Minute is a challenging rhythm shooter that’s difficult to master but highly satisfying. It's not a forgiving experience, and though it's difficult to master, BPM proves surprisingly easy to pick up and play. 

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Bubble Bobble 4 Friends

Publisher: ININ Games
Developer: Taito
Platforms: PS4, Switch
Rating: 8/10

What we said: Bubble Bobble 4 Friends is, for the most part, exactly what fans would have hoped for. It’s a modern classic that keeps all the charm we loved about the original 80s game. There’s a significant graphics improvement of course, but the gameplay itself is largely identical.

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Cake Bash

Publisher: High Tea Frog
Developer: Coatsink
Platforms: PC, PS4, Xbox One, Switch, Stadia
Rating: 8/10

What we said: There’s a lot to love about Cake Bash, and High Tea Frog has made an excellent party game for their debut title. With a variety of entertaining games, some lively stages, and good replayability, it’s a fun experience, especially with friends. We only wish there was more of it on offer. Though some minigames feel a little finicky, it’s otherwise a sweet treat all around.

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Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold War

Publisher: Activision
Developer: Treyarch, Raven Software
Platforms: PC, PS4, PS5, Xbox One, Xbox Series X
Rating: 8/10

What we said: Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold War is full of content that series fans will enjoy and offers a few unexpected surprises along the way. The vast amount of content at launch is enough to draw players in, while the promise of more will keep players around. 

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Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2 Remastered

Publisher: Activision
Developer: Beenox
Platforms: PC, PS4, Xbox One
Rating: 8/10

What we said: Modern Warfare 2 Remastered is a mostly commanding return of the game's classic single-player, though not without a few hiccups. It is a functionally updated retelling of a story millions know and played in their formative years. The characters and politics are somehow as relevant today as they were back when the game first released, and it still sounds, plays, and looks better than most shooters on the market.

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Captain Tsubasa: Rise of New Champions

Publisher: Bandai Namco
Developer: Tamsoft
Platforms: PC, PS4, Switch
Rating: 9/10

What we said: Captain Tsubasa: Rise of New Champions is legitimately the best arcade sports title to come out since Rocket League. The simple, easy truth here is that if you're craving an arcade soccer game, you really should buy Captain Tsubasa: Rise of New Champions. 

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Carrion

Publisher: Devolver Digital
Developer: Phobia Game Studio
Platforms: PC, Xbox One, Switch
Rating: 8/10

What we said: Carrion is a beautifully orchestrated symphony of blood, guts, and dismembered limbs. While Carrion won't win any awards, it plays out much like a late Friday night feature, full of gruesome horror and satisfying effects. More importantly, it doesn't outstay its welcome.

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Crash Bandicoot 4: It's About Time

Publisher: Activision
Developer: Toys for Bob
Platforms: PS4, Xbox One
Rating: 8/10

What we said: Ultimately, Crash Bandicoot 4: It's About Time had a lot riding on it. Being the sequel to a 22-year-old game likely presented Toys for Bob with some developmental challenges, but the development team nailed nearly everything about this sequel. The Crash series has seen its fair share of mediocre (or even bad) entries, but Crash 4 is a big step in the right direction, and the future of the series couldn't be more exciting. 

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Crusader Kings 3

Publisher: Paradox Interactive
Developer: Paradox Development Studio
Platforms: PC
Rating: 9/10

What we said: Crusader Kings 3 is the best looking and most accessible the series has ever been. If you've always been intrigued by the idea of Crusader Kings but bounced off of it, Crusader Kings 3 is the best way to get started. 

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Deliver Us the Moon

Publisher: Wired Productions
Developer: KeokeN Interactive
Platforms: PS4, Xbox One
Rating: 8/10

What we said: A narrative journey through space so intriguing and full of compelling puzzles that it easily papers over some minor cracks in execution and major leaps it asks the player to make.

Just as the interesting minutiae of the plot are enough to overcome some of the issues I had with the macro-level concept, the overall experience was more than enough to make up for having one or two bouts of irritation.

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Demon's Souls

Publisher: Sony Interactive Entertainment
Developer: Bluepoint Games
Platforms: PS5
Rating: 9/10

What we said: Demon's Souls is an instant classic, one of those rare retellings that stands triumphantly alongside the original as an essential experience. This remaster stands as a shining example of how transformative reimaginings can be, and how, with loving dedication, a remaster can be just as revolutionary and memorable as its source material.

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Desperados 3

Publisher: THQ Nordic
Developer: Mimimi Games
Platforms: PC, PS4, Xbox One
Rating: 8/10

What we said: Desperados 3 is a much-belated sequel that strikes the right balance between classic gameplay mechanics and modern sensibilities. It's a welcome return for the series. Mimimi Games has proven once again that they know the genre, as both Desperados 3 and Shadow Tactics demonstrate.

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Devil May Cry 5: Special Edition

Publisher: Capcom
Developer: Capcom
Platforms: PS5, Xbox Series X|S
Rating: 9/10

What we said: Devil May Cry 5: Special Edition makes a great game even better with a new character, new modes, and overhauled visuals for next-gen consoles. Devil May Cry 5 may not have a whole lot that's truly new to offer, but what it does add and change manages to elevate an already excellent action game into the upper echelon of the entire genre.

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Dirt 5

Publisher: Codemasters
Developer: Codemasters
Platforms: PC, PS4, PS5, Xbox One, Xbox Series X|S, Stadia
Rating: 8/10

What we said: Dirt 5 continues Codemaster's tradition of creating some of the finest racing games around that have neither the words "Gran," "Forza," or "Speed" in the title.

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Disgaea 4 Complete+

Publisher: NIS America
Developer: Nippon Ichi Software
Platforms: PC
Rating: 9/10

What we said: Disgaea 4 Complete+ is the definitive version of the game, with upgrades galore, tons of content to get lost in, and one of the strongest casts in the series. Disgaea 4 Complete+ is one of the stronger entries in the series, with its outlandish cast and relevant, if loose, story.

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Doom Eternal

Publisher: Bethesda 
Developer: id Software
Platforms: PC, PS4, Xbox One, Stadia, Switch
Rating: 9/10

What we said: Doom Eternal absolutely delivers on all-fronts by blasting us with one of the most intense and satisfying single-player shooter campaigns in years. From the moment you kill your first enemy with the starting shotgun to when you revel in the explosion of blood from your final enemy, Doom Eternal is a nearly non-stop thrill ride that exceeds almost every expectation.

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Dragon's Quest XI: Echoes of an Elusive Age Definitive Edition

Publisher: Square Enix
Developer: Square Enix
Platforms: PC, PS4, Xbox One, Switch
Rating: 10/10

What we said: Dragon Quest XI Definitive Edition makes one of the most joyous and downright wonderful gaming experiences of all time even better. The Definitive Edition of Dragon Quest XI is the perfect salve. It's a game unashamed to be a video game, and it's one that embraces its roots in a charming, beautiful way. It's unashamedly jolly and light, but most importantly, it's comforting.

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Dreams

Publisher: Sony Interactive Entertainment
Developer: Media Molecule
Platforms: PS4
Rating: 9/10

What we said: On one hand, Dreams is a bottomless bag filled with toys, vignettes, and indie games. On the other, Dreams is a must-own for anyone who's ever been curious about game design. Dreams is the best platform for anybody who loves playing tons of indie games, or who would like to make one themselves, or even just those who'd like to network into a game development community.

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Fall Guys

Publisher: Devolver Digital
Developer: Mediatonic
Platforms: PC, PS4
Rating: 8/10

What we said: Despite unbalanced team-match dynamics and pesky server issues (which the developers are ironing out) sometimes interfering with the fun, the simple approach of Fall Guys: Ultimate Knockout makes these negatives seem meaningless in the long run. This is not only the game we want in 2020 — but it's the game we need. Fall Guys: Ultimate Knockout is a comfort blanket that provides some warm, friendly fun with friends.

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Final Fantasy 7 Remake 

Publisher: Square Enix
Developer: Square Enix
Platforms: PS4
Rating: 10/10

What we said: Final Fantasy 7 Remake faithfully updates Midgar and the original’s enigmatic cast of antiheroes for a new generation, masterfully weaving its own grand tale in the process. In fact, it could be the best Final Fantasy game I've ever played — period.

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Fort Triumph

Publisher: All In! Games
Developer: CookieByte Entertainment
Platforms: PC
Rating: 9/10

What we said: Fort Triumph expertly blends genres into a strategy experience that's infinitely fun and endlessly charming. Fort Triumph is just a lot of fun, and the charm oozes from every arrow wound, spell singe, and sword strike, making it a very easy recommendation indeed. 

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Fuser

Publisher: NCSOFT
Developer: Harmonix
Platforms: PC, PS4, Xbox One, Switch
Rating: 9/10

What we said: FUSER would be an incredibly special game if it came out last year. But now, in late 2020, it almost seems necessary. This game is already something very, very special, and it's only going to get better as the community grows. After all, it's always better to make music with friends.

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Gears Tactics

Publisher: Xbox Game Studios
Developer: The Coalition
Platforms: PC, Xbox One, Xbox Series X|S
Rating: 8/10

What we said: Gears Tactics takes the intense third-person action of the console game into the realm of PC-centric turn-based tactical strategy. Thanks to intuitive controls, Gears Tactics is easy to get into even for players who have never played a turn-based tactical squad game before. It’s just a shame there’s not more here.

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Get Packed

Publisher: Coatsink
Developer: Moonshine Studios
Platforms: Stadia
Rating: 8/10

What we said: Get Packed is strangely not the only indie co-op arcade game about moving furniture to launch recently, but it ends up standing out with its own kind of hilarious chaos. Get Packed is playable for up to four players in local or online play and across several modes, including a campaign, versus, and destruction. Whichever you choose, the colorful and bubbly characters and levels you've come to expect from games like this are back once more.

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Ghost of Tsushima

Publisher: Sony Interactive Entertainment
Developer: Sucker Punch
Platforms: PS4
Rating: 8/10

What we said: Ghost of Tsushima offers an amazing open-world experience and satisfying combat, only mildly held back by its writing and characters. Ghost of Tsushima does a lot of things right. Its got fun combat, a wonderfully designed world, and top-notch sound design. Neither the story nor the characters moved me in any real way, even though I could tell both were trying.

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Ghostrunner

Publisher: 505 Games
Developer: One More Level
Platforms: PC, PS4, Xbox One, Switch
Rating: 8/10

What we said: In Ghostrunner, a single slash divides life and death. It's fast, frenetic, and, even in the face of its weaker moments, endlessly satisfying. Ghostrunner offers satisfying combat in a well-constructed, beautiful cyberpunk world. You will feel more and more powerful as the game moves on, and moving through the world is always a wonderful experience.

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Hades

Publisher: Supergiant Games
Developer: Supergiant Games
Platforms: PC, Switch
Rating: 10/10

What we said: Hades is everything great about the roguelite genre all but perfected. Few games aim as high, and fewer still reach their goals. Hades does, exceeding even the loftiest expectations.

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Half-Life: Alyx

Publisher: Valve
Developer: Valve
Platforms: PC
Rating: 10/10

What we said: While the "VR-only" part may alienate many current PC gamers, it's a triumph that a VR title as excellent as Alyx exists at all.

The release of a VR game like Half-Life: Alyx is a momentous occasion. Not only is this one of the very first AAA VR games to break the bubble, but it's also a revival of one of the most beloved game franchises on the planet, following up on a nearly 13-year hiatus that left us all on a very inconvenient cliffhanger.

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Huntdown

Publisher: Coffee Stain Studios
Developer: Easy Trigger Games
Platforms: PC, PS4, Xbox One, Switch
Rating: 9/10

What we said: Huntdown is a throwback run and gun shooter that cares about style and rewards precision. Huntdown understands the genre and its influences, and it carves its own path. It's short enough that you can play through it in a single sitting, taking four to six hours, depending on the difficulty you choose. 

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Hyrule Warriors: Age of Calamity

Publisher: Nintendo
Developer: Omega Force
Platforms: Switch
Rating: 9/10

What we said: Hyrule Warriors: Age of Calamity is a heck of a Warriors game and a fantastic love letter to Breath of the Wild and Zelda in general. Maybe Age of Calamity is a stop-gap to tide fans over until Breath of the Wild 2, but no effort was spared in making it a quality game.

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Iron Harvest

Publisher: Deep Silver
Developer: King Art Games
Platforms: PC
Rating: 8/10

What we said: Iron Harvest leverages its unique setting and strong design into an impressive and memorable RTS. If you're looking for a strong, single-player RTS with a unique world to explore, Iron Harvest is a perfect option. 

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Immortals Fenyx Rising

Publisher: Ubisoft
Developer:  Ubisoft Quebec
Platforms: PC, PS4, PS5, Xbox One, Xbox Series X|S, Switch, Stadia, Amazon Luna
Rating: 8/10

What we said: It may look like a Breath of the Wild clone, but Immortals Fenyx Rising has a lot of unique charm that makes it a must-play for fans of the genre. Immortals Fenyx Rising has undeniable charm. Your mileage may vary, but don't sleep on this one. It's worth the adventure.

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Journey to the Savage Planet

Publisher: 505 Games
Developer: Typhoon Studios
Platforms: PC, PS4, Xbox One, Switch
Rating: 8/10

What we said: Journey to the Savage Planet is a satirical and colorful Metroidvania that survives its corny jokes thanks to fun traversal and worthwhile exploration. With an intriguing world and creature design, the right amount of retro principles, and a surprisingly long post-credits tail worth chasing, Journey to the Savage Planet is a light-hearted, charming debut from a promising new studio.

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Kingdom Hearts: Melody of Memory

Publisher: Square Enix
Developer: Square Enix
Platforms: PS4, Xbox One, Switch
Rating: 8/10

What we said: Melody of Memory is a nostalgic, rhythmic celebration of Kingdom Hearts that fans of the series and the genre will adore. Drawing upon a rich soundtrack that ranges from original songs to Disney hits, there’s a lot to love in this new spin-off, but don’t expect any major story developments.

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Kingdoms of Amalur: Re-Reckoning

Publisher: THQ Nordic
Developer: Kaiko
Platforms: PC, PS4, Xbox One
Rating: 9/10

What we said: Kingdoms of Amalur: Re-Reckoning changes little from its original release because it doesn't need to. This is immediately one of the best RPGs you can play this entire generation.

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Kunai

Publisher: The Arcade Crew
Developer: TurtleBlaze
Platforms: PC, Switch
Rating: 8/10

What we said: Classic components come together to form a stellar slashing platformer, with the titular kunai providing a particularly high note.

Metroidvania games remain a popular niche in the gaming community with good reason, and KUNAI is a worthwhile addition to the genre. It's easy to pick up and get going, but it provides enough escalation as you progress to keep you interested as you move from sector to sector, picking up new toys and perks along the way.

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Maneater

Publisher: Tripwire Interactive
Developer: Tripwire Interactive
Platforms: PC, PS4, PS5, Xbox One, Xbox Series X|S, Switch
Rating: 9/10

What we said: Maneater's deep combat and deeper oceans provide just the type of blissful escapism we need right now. Even if it wasn’t on your radar at all, Maneater is a title that will gobble you up for a few hours of blissful escapism. 

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Marvel's Spider-Man: Miles Morales

Publisher: Sony Interactive Entertainment
Developer:  Insomniac Games
Platforms: PS4, PS5
Rating: 10/10

What we said: Insomniac wanted to please Miles Morales fans with their latest Spider-Man adventure. The result is a damn near perfect action-adventure game. It’s also close to being perfect when it comes to representation. Black and brown people fill out most of the roles and do so with gusto. Their performances, at times, eclipsing what came before. I’m thoroughly pleased with what Insomniac has accomplished.

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Magic: ManaStrike

Publisher: Netmarble
Developer: Netmarble
Platforms: Android
Rating: 8/10

What we said: Magic: ManaStrike is a very familiar strategy game that includes some classic characters to make for an all-around fun time. There is a constant stream of rewards for those who don't want to spend money, too, so you never feel hamstrung for not wanting to buy in-game items. It's fun and has enough depth to make for some interesting strategies, the more you play. 

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Mega Man Zero/ZX Legacy Collection

Publisher: Capcom
Developer: Capcom 
Platforms: PC, PS4, Xbox One, Switch
Rating: 8/10

What we said: Mega Man Zero/ZX Legacy Collection is an excellent little package that is sure to please fans both old and new.

Overall, you'd be hard-pressed to beat the Mega Man Zero/ZX Legacy Collection. All of the games are enjoyable, the new features make them far easier to consume for modern players, and the love to the series spills out of every frame. It's just a very good collection of very good games, even if the title is utterly absurd. 

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Metro Redux 

Publisher: Koch Media
Developer:  4A Games
Platforms: Switch
Rating: 8/10

What we said: Metro Redux arrives on the Nintendo Switch with a bombastic statement: absolutely nobody's safe from Switch-ification. 

Metro Redux on Switch feels like one of those rare Switch games that shouldn't exist. I mean that in a very, very good way. I also mean it in the sense that, thematically and technically, it doesn't seem like it would be a great natural fit for Nintendo's portable gaming console.

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MLB The Show 20

Publisher: Sony Interactive Entertainment
Developer: SIE San Diego
Platforms: PS4
Rating: 8/10

What we said: MLB The Show 20 doesn't rewrite the script, but its numerous tweaks to gameplay, modes, and options makes it the best baseball game around. MLB The Show 20 still feels like the most complete baseball title available — comfortably so, in fact. But it doesn't feel like a significant evolution over last year's entry in the series. 

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Mortal Shell

Publisher: Playstack
Developer: Cold Symmetry 
Platforms: PC, PS4, Xbox One
Rating: 8/10

What we said: Far from being a pretender, Mortal Shell is a sometimes exceptional entry to the genre. Its stumbles are noticeable only because there is so much to enjoy.

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Moving Out

Publisher: Team17
Developer:  SMG Studio
Platforms: PC, PS4, Xbox One, Switch
Rating: 8/10

What we said: Moving Out's familiar brand of local-multiplayer party-game fun lets everyone join in on the fun, laughter, and cursing. Whatever your preference is, Moving Out certainly provides the same flavor of co-operative tension and burst-out-loud laughter as Overcooked. 

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Murder by Numbers

Publisher: The Irregular Corporation
Developer: Mediatonic
Platforms: PC, Switch
Rating: 9/10

What we said: Murder by Numbers is an exquisite detective puzzler with wonderful writing, gorgeous graphics, and masterful music. The comparisons to the Phoenix Wright series are instantly evident. Not only do the visuals share the same motif of hand-drawn 2D sprites, speech boxes, and thick lines, but the gameplay is very similar, too. 

The soundtrack is lively, bouncy, and upbeat. It's inspirational and uplifting when the moment is happy, it's imposing and harsh when the pressure is on, and it's cold and gloomy when the protagonist doubts themselves. 

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My Hero One's Justice 2

Publisher: Bandai Namco
Developer: Byking 
Platforms: PC, PS4, Xbox One, Switch
Rating: 8/10

What we said: My Hero One's Justice 2 is a lot like the original, with a few minor adjustments that might entice you to enter the arena once again. Make no mistake, My Hero One's Justice 2 is a good, fun arena brawler on its own merits. Taken on its own, the game really does provide an amazing adaptation of the My Hero Academia franchise.

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NHL 21

Publisher: EA
Developer: EA Vancouver
Platforms: PS4, Xbox One
Rating: 8/10

What we said: NHL 21 provides more of the same, and with the uncertainty of the real world season, even less of what few changes fans come to expect of yearly releases.

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Nioh 2

Publisher: Sony Interactive Entertainment
Developer: Team Ninja
Platforms: PS4
Rating: 9/10

What we said: Nioh 2 takes everything great about the first game and dials it up. Despite a few returning gremlins, this is an instant hit for fans of the series. Nioh 2 is essentially more Nioh, but better. Fans of the series will find plenty to enjoy here, and newcomers won't feel like they had to play the first game to appreciate what it has to offer.

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Not for Broadcast

Publisher: TinyBuild Games
Developer: NotGames
Platforms: PC
Rating: 8/10

What we said: Who knew that overseeing a bunch of media personalities who say so little by saying so much could be so fun? Not For Broadcast is excellently paced. As soon as you pull up behind the switchboard, you're presented with a smorgasbord of screens, buttons, and switches. While it would be easy to overwhelm new players with options, the game takes it slow.

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One Piece: Pirate Warriors 4

Publisher: Bandai Namco
Developer: Koei Tecmo
Platforms: PC, PS4, Xbox One, Switch
Rating: 8/10

What we said: One Piece: Pirate Warriors 4 is not only one of the best One Piece games but possibly one of the best Musou games around. When you throw in the ability to grind out your skill trees and chase ever more impressive kill counts, One Piece: Pirate Warriors 4 is a game with an incredible level of replayability.

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One Step From Eden

Publisher: Humble Bundle
Developer: Thomas Moon Kang
Platforms: PC, PS4, Switch
Rating: 9/10

What we said: One Step From Eden is a fantastic rogue-like deck-building game that is a few small tweaks away from perfection. Like most roguelites, One Step From Eden is brimming with replay value but can easily be played in short stints, too; each run takes 30-60 minutes to complete — or, more often, 5-10 minutes to lose.

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Ori and the Will of the Wisps 

Publisher: Xbox Game Studios
Developer: Moon Studios
Platforms: PC, Xbox One, Xbox Series X|S, Switch
Rating: 9/10

What we said: Ori and the Will of the Wisps is another triumph return for the series — a beautiful game with only the smallest blemishes to its luster. If you want to play a beautiful, often difficult Metroidvania with some of the most satisfying combat and traversal mechanics the genre has to offer, Ori and the Will of the Wisps will give you plenty to be excited about.

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Othercide

Publisher: 
Developer: 
Initial Release Date: 
Platforms: PC, PS4, Xbox One, Switch
Rating: 8/10

What we said: Othercide is a modern gothic take on turn-based tactics. It's stylish, difficult, and a solid addition to the genre. If you want a tough take on turn-based tactics, Othercide is a great pick-up. If you've tried the genre before and bounced off because of the gameplay, it isn't going to change your mind.

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Orcs Must Die 3

Publisher: Google
Developer: Robot Entertainment
Platforms: Stadia
Rating: 8/10

What we said: Though its name offers no way around it, the creative ways you dispatch foes makes Orcs Must Die 3 perhaps the most addictive Stadia exclusive to date.

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Orwell's Animal Farm

Publisher: The Dairymen
Developer: Nerial 
Platforms: PC
Rating: 8/10

What we said: Orwell's Animal Farm faithfully recreates and even reinvents the classic allegory at a time when it's never been more relevant for some players. There's absolutely an audience for this game, and if you find yourself in it, Orwell's Animal Farm is a timely, effective reimagining of one of the last century's most notable allegories.

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Paper Mario: The Origami King

Publisher: Nintendo
Developer: Intelligent Systems
Platforms: Switch
Rating: 9/10

What we said: Despite a combat system that gets old quickly, Paper Mario: The Origami King's writing, puzzles, and worldbuilding make it the best entry since The Thousand-Year Door.

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Persona 5 Royal

Publisher: Atlus USA
Developer:  P-Studio
Platforms: PS4
Rating: 10/10

What we said: Persona 5 Royal improves on the original in almost countless ways, big and small, to deliver a top-notch RPG for new and old fans alike. If you haven't played Persona 5 countless times, you're in for a real treat. Persona 5 Royal is easily the best Persona game yet and one of the best RPGs available right now.

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Pikmin 3

Publisher: Nintendo
Developer: Eighting 
Platforms: Switch
Rating: 9/10

What we said: Pikmin 3 Deluxe is the best the series has to offer, a showcase of creative design and smart strategy. It's one of the most enjoyable experiences on the Switch.

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Pumpkin Jack

Publisher: Headup
Developer: Nicolas Meyssonnier
Platforms: PC, Xbox One, PS4, Switch
Rating: 8/10

What we said: With levels reminiscent of beloved 3D platformers and an irresistible audiovisual experience, playing Pumpkin Jack this Halloween is exciting and youthful like trick-or-treaters finding the house giving out full-size candy bars.

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Rune Factory 4 Special

Publisher: XSEED
Developer: Neverland
Platforms: Switch
Rating: 9/10

What we said: Rune Factory 4 is an abundant RPG, full of fun characters, things to do, and a compelling network of interlocking systems. While Rune Factory 4 might not reach the epic heights of Xenoblade Chronicles 2 or Dragon Quest 11 S, and as a simulator, it might get overlooked for Animal Crossing: New Horizons. However, Rune Factory 4 manages to be something else entirely and manages it very well.

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Resident Evil 3 Remake

Publisher: Capcom
Developer: Capcom
Platforms: PC, PS4, Xbox One
Rating: 8/10

What we said: Resident Evil 3 is a decent horror-action game that falls short of the Resident Evil 2 standard. To be fair, though, RE3 is trying some new things. It's much more of a straightforward action game than RE2, keeping a lot of the trappings of survival horror while emphasizing RE4-style shoot-'em-up gameplay. 

Read the review

Robotics;Notes ELITE & DaSH

Publisher: Spike Chunsoft
Developer: Mages Inc.
Platforms: PC, PS4, Switch
Rating: 8/10

What we said: Robotics;Notes ELITE & DaSH give fans lighthearted adventures with the Robot Research Club in the Science Adventure universe. Fans of the Science Adventure series, and visual novels in general, will enjoy Robotics;Notes ELITE. While it doesn’t quite reach the incredibly soaring highs of Steins;Gate, it is more enjoyable than the underwhelming Chaos;Head.

Read the review

Sackboy: A Big Adventure

Publisher: Sony Interactive Entertainment
Developer: Sumo Digital
Platforms: PS4, PS5
Rating: 9/10

What we said: After a six-year absence, PlayStation’s knitted icon returns in stunning form in one of the year's best platformers. With an A-list cast, superb visuals, and some strong co-op gameplay, Sackboy: A Big Adventure successfully proves that Sackboy can thrive without LittleBigPlanet’s creation mechanics, all while still paying homage to his roots.

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Sakuna: Of Rice and Ruin

Publisher: XSEED
Developer: Edelweiss
Platforms: PC, PS4, Switch
Rating: 10/10

What we said: Sakuna: Of Rice and Ruin is a bold genre fusion that pays off with superb farming and combat systems plus a cast of characters you'll remember for a long time to come. It might ask you to take it on its own terms from time to time, but that's a small price to pay when the experience is this rewarding and unique.

Read the review

Sakura Wars

Publisher: SEGA
Developer: SEGA 
Platforms: PS4
Rating: 8/10

What we said: Sakura Wars' unique LIPS system, thoroughly charming cast of characters, and great writing more than make up for its less than stellar combatIt's a strong reboot, and one I truly hope heralds an encore for the series. There's nothing else quite like Sakura Wars, and that's a compliment.

Read the review

Samurai Shodown

Publisher: SNK
Developer: SNK
Platforms: Switch
Rating: 8/10

What we said: 2019's Samurai Shodown is finally available for the Switch, bringing one of the foundational Japanese fighting games to a brand-new audience. Samurai Shodown has managed to make the trip to the Switch without sacrificing more than a little bit of graphical fidelity. 

Read the review

Sayonara Wild Hearts

Publisher: Annapurna Interactive
Developer: Simogo 
Platforms: PC, PS4, Xbox One, Switch
Rating: 10/10

What we said: In its one-hour runtime, Sayonara Wild Hearts transcends video games and becomes not just a playable pop album, but a hypnotic self-help soundtrack. It's an endorphin factory. Sayonara Wild Hearts is more than a game for me. It's a catharsis vessel. It's a story of self-love. It's a reminder that some things break but that doesn't make us broken. It was once a dream and now forever a memory. It's transcendent and undying, but, of course, it is. Wild Hearts Never Die. 

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Serious Sam 4

Publisher: Devolver Digital
Developer: Croteam 
Platforms: PC, Stadia
Rating: 8/10

What we said: Serious Sam 4 is a delightfully old-school first-person shooter that doesn't bring a ton of new stuff to the table but still hits all the right notes. Serious Sam 4 is a strong, polished, old-school shooter. The massive, open-air firefights are a fairly unique element to first-person shooters, and panicked kiting of hundreds of enemies is the name of the game.

Read the review

Shantae and the Seven Sirens

Publisher: WayForward
Developer: WayForward
Platforms: PC, PS4, Xbox One, Switch
Rating: 8/10

What we said: Shantae and the Seven Sirens is a welcome return of a now-classic platforming series. Shantae has been weaving her magic for nearly 20 years and still feels distinctive amidst the sea of other platformers. Her latest romp might not feel quite as fresh as Half-Genie Hero, but it’s still a worthwhile, highly entertaining adventure.

Read the review

Spiritfarer

Publisher: Thunder Lotus Games
Developer: Thunder Lotus Games
Platforms: PC, PS4, Xbox One, Switch, Stadia
Rating: 10/10

What we said: Spiritfarer is a finely crafted piece of artistic commentary on what it means to let go, and it's far and away one of the best games to come out of 2020.

Read the review

Star Wars Squadrons

Publisher: Motive Studios
Developer: EA
Platforms: PC, PS4, Xbox One
Rating: 9/10

What we said: Star Wars Squadrons is an instant classic and an ode to the space combat sims that came before it. Squadrons does a lot of things right. And it's the closest thing to a new X-Wing or Tie Fighter we're going to get. Though it's a stand-alone game, it's also a fantastic complement to Battlefront 2's starfighter assault mode, giving aces new and old two very good options to choose from. 

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Stories Untold

Publisher: Devolver Digital
Developer: No Code
Platforms: Switch
Rating: 9/10

What we said: Stories Untold is a boundlessly smart and stylish adventure game that both celebrates the past while changing the future. Stories Untold is a unique adventure game smothered in atmosphere. Switch players will have to contend with the port's less-than-ideal UI, but provided they can get over that relatively small hump, the rest of the game is an unsettling, intelligent, fourth-wall-breaking success.

Read the review.

Story of Seasons: Friends of Mineral Town

Publisher: Natsume
Developer: Marvelous Interactive
Platforms: PC, Switch
Rating: 9/10

What we said: Story of Seasons: Friends of Mineral Town might not re-invent the wheel, but it's an excellent reminder why the formula the original helped create is so beloved and long-lasting.

Read the review

Streets of Rage 4

Publisher: Dotemu
Developer: Dotemu
Platforms: PC, PS4, Xbox One, Switch
Rating: 8/10

What we said: Streets of Rage 4 is a surprisingly decent return to form for a franchise that's been collecting dust for over 25 years. It plays a bit of a trick on you if you’re a fan of this sort of game, where you fall into your old patterns almost immediately, but the game is built to smack you down if you do. Instead, it’s got a simple combat system with some real depth to it, and which only gets more fun as you add players in co-op.

Read the review

Surgeon Simulator 2

Publisher: Bossa Studios
Developer: Bossa Studios
Platforms: PC
Rating: 8/10

What we said: While some sequels fail to build upon the entries that came before them, turning into bloated, convoluted messes, Surgeon Simulator 2 reshapes the original idea into something entirely new. 

Read the review

Super Mario 3D All-Stars

Publisher: Nintendo
Developer: Nintendo
Platforms: Switch
Rating: 8/10

What we said: Little effort was put into modernizing Super Mario 3D All-Stars, and somehow, that's still more than enough. Super Mario 3D All-Stars is a satisfying gift for the series' 35th anniversary.

Read the review

Super Mega Baseball 3

Publisher: Metalhead Software
Developer: Metalhead Software
Platforms: PC, PS4, Xbox One, Switch
Rating: 9/10

What we said: Super Mega Baseball has never been given the accolades it's deserved, but this is the year baseball fans will finally notice this all-star. Don't let a lack of MLB licensing turn you away. This is a serious baseball sim in every way except for the silly naming conventions of its athletes.

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The Legend of Heroes: Trails of Cold Steel 4

Publisher: NIS America
Developer: Nihon Falcom
Platforms: PC, PS4, Switch
Rating: 9/10

What we said: Trails of Cold Steel 4 brings the Cold Steel series to a spectacular conclusion with some of the best storytelling in the genre and improvements to every gameplay system.

Read the review

The Last of Us 2

Publisher: Sony Interactive Entertainment
Developer: Naughty Dog 
Platforms: PS4
Rating: 8/10

What we said: The Last of Us 2 is an emotional rollercoaster that doesn't always hit the mark with what it tries to pull off. It does, however, provide enough amazing highs to outweigh its unfortunate lows.

Read the review

The Walking Dead: Saints & Sinners

Publisher: Skydance Interactive
Developer: Skydance Interactive 
Platforms: PC, PS4
Rating: 8/10

What we said: The Walking Dead: Saints & Sinners would be a great game even if it wasn't in VR. Suffice it to say Saints & Sinners definitely suffers from some modern-day VR problems, but it's still a great sign of the immersive and exciting things to come.

Read the review

Tony Hawk's Pro Skater 1+2

Publisher: Activision
Developer: Vicarious Visions
Platforms: PC, PS4, Xbox One
Rating: 8/10

What we said: Tony Hawk's Pro Skater 1 + 2 makes good on its promise of revitalizing a legendary franchise, but it's modern twists aren't all clean landed.

Read the review

Vitamin Connection

Publisher: WayForward
Developer: WayForward
Platforms: Switch
Rating: 9/10

What we said: Vitamin Connection is one of the best games on Switch. It's extremely fun, creative, and great with a friend. An easy pill to swallow. To bring this love-letter in disguise to a close: Vitamin Connection is a game that everybody should play. 

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Void Terrarium

Publisher: NIS America
Developer: Nippon Ichi Software
Platforms: PS4, Switch
Rating: 9/10

What we said: There's a lot to love about Void Terrarium, with its touching story and unique approach to the mystery dungeon genre, even if does occasionally frustrate. Void Terrarium is special for how it balances challenge and accessibility to create its own unique identity, a balancing act many other games struggle with. If you're new to the genre, it's a great place to start.

Read the review

Wasteland 3

Publisher: Deep Silver
Developer: InXile Entertainment
Platforms: PC, PS4, Xbox One
Rating: 8/10

What we said: Wasteland 3 invokes feelings of classic RPGs such as Fallout and manages to nail the feel and tone perfectly in a modernized setting. While the game often falls into some of the genre's more vexing traps, such as percentage damage idiosyncrasies and lackluster character models, it’s hard to deny its engaging power. 

Read the review

Watch Dogs: Legion

Publisher: Ubisoft
Developer: Ubisoft Toronto
Platforms: PC, PS4, PS5, Xbox One, Xbox Series X|S, Stadia
Rating: 8/10

What we said: Watch Dogs: Legion throws out a decade of Ubisoft's cluttered-map open worlds in favor of exciting systems that deliver unique emergent moments consistently. Watch Dogs: Legion drastically revises the Ubisoft open-world blueprint it has leaned on for over a decade. 

Read the Review.

Wintermoor Tactics Club

Publisher: Versus Evil
Developer: EVC
Platforms: PC, PS4, Xbox One, Switch
Rating: 8/10

What we said: The indie strategy game Wintermoor Tactics Club is one of the better children's books I've ever played. Kids will love it, but adults may find it too simple. Really, the highest recommendation I can make for Wintermoor Tactics Club is that it’s a funny, weirdly true-feeling interactive children’s book, with just enough tactical action to keep you interested throughout.

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Xenoblade Chronicles: Definitive Edition

Publisher: Nintendo
Developer: Monolith Soft 
Platforms: Switch
Rating: 9/10

What we said: Xenoblade Chronicles Definitive Edition makes one of the best RPGs even better, despite not spreading its improvements evenly over the whole package.

Read the review

Yakuza: Like a Dragon

Publisher: SEGA
Developer: Ryo Ga Gotoku Studio
Platforms: PC, PS4, Xbox One, Xbox Series X|S 
Rating: 10/10

What we said: Yakuza: Like A Dragon isn't just a great Yakuza title — it's legitimately one of the best modern role-playing games there is. Yakuza: Like A Dragon is an uplifting and hopeful story told with heart, supported by satisfying RPG gameplay and a host of entertaining side-missions and minigames. 

Read the review

Ys Origin

Publisher: Dotemu
Developer: Dotemu 
Platforms: Switch
Rating: 9/10

What we said: Ys Origin on Switch is one of the most focused, fluid, and exhilarating action RPGs around. Read our review to see why it absolutely should be on your radar.

Read the review

Zombie Army 4: Dead War

Publisher: Rebellion 
Developer: Rebellion
Platforms: PC, PS4, Xbox One
Rating: 9/10

What we said: Ever wanted to dodge zombie sharks while on a quest to destroy the undead animated by evil wizard-Hitler? Well, it doesn't get much better than Zombie Army 4. The game's shooting mechanics, its level design, and its ranking system come together in a much more satisfying way [than the core Sniper Elite series]. 

Read the review.

That's it for our list of the best games of 2020. What were your favorite games? Let us know in the comments below! 

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Demon's Souls Will Have a Photo Mode, Umbasa https://www.gameskinny.com/agxbx/demons-souls-will-have-a-photo-mode-umbasa https://www.gameskinny.com/agxbx/demons-souls-will-have-a-photo-mode-umbasa Thu, 05 Nov 2020 11:33:31 -0500 Jonathan Moore

Demon's Souls is an already gorgeous game. From the screens and gameplay trailers we've seen, the world of Boletaria has received a major graphical upgrade across the board. Even if it doesn't implement ray tracing, this remake seems to take full advantage of the PS5's capabilities.

Of course, for players like me, who are obsessed with documenting beautiful landscapes and taking screenshotting various hijinks in games like Ghost of TsushimaDemon's Souls will, thankfully, have a photo mode.  

The inclusion of photo mode was confirmed today in a PlayStation Blog post by Gavin Moore, Creative Director, SIE Worldwide Studios External Development. Sony only shared a few screens of it in action, but it looks similar to what's found in other games, such as The Last of Us 2 and God of War

The camera will move up and down and zoom in and out, while the GUI can be hidden. Options for dialing in depth of field, creating vignettes, and applying emotes will be available, though we don't know how many emotes there will be just yet.

Moore added that film grain and blur can also be added, and that players will be able to apply any photo mode filters to the game itself. 

In Photo Mode, you can hide and show weapons and helmets, or even turn off the character entirely to capture that iconic scene. Or maybe you’d like to strike a pose or change expression for the ultimate selfie. Of course, you can change the camera settings, zoom in and out, add film grain, or blur out your friends (mean!).

By the way, all filters are also available outside of Photo Mode during ordinary gameplay, including one designed to tune brightness, contrast and color levels to closely resemble those of the original PS3 game, for those who may prefer that classic look.

The blog post also unveiled the character creation tool for Demon's Souls, which not only allows for "16 million permutations," according to Moore, but it also lets players finally add facial hair to their avatars (yes, I'm excited about that.). It's also the first look fans have had at the game's diverse character models. There's more about it here

Demon's Souls will launch for the PlayStation 5 on November 12 (U.S.) and November 19 (E.U.). Stay tuned for my full review of the game in the coming weeks, and be sure to keep an eye on our guides hub for tips, tricks, and strategies (even if there will be ~180 help videos in the game at launch). 

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Demon's Souls Character Creator Allows for '16 Million Permutations' https://www.gameskinny.com/nu7sj/demons-souls-character-creator-allows-for-16-million-permutations https://www.gameskinny.com/nu7sj/demons-souls-character-creator-allows-for-16-million-permutations Thu, 05 Nov 2020 11:33:38 -0500 Jonathan Moore

Creating custom characters is perhaps one of the best parts of playing any RPG. I know I've spent countless hours honing my characters over the years in Skyrim, Dragon Age, and Fallout. Now it looks like I'll be clearing my calendar to spend even more time in the Demon's Souls remake when it launches on November 12 for the PlayStation 5. 

Sony has revealed Demon's Souls character creation tool today on the PlayStation Blog, not only giving fans their first look at what creation options will be available but also their first look at the game's unarmored character models. Up until this point, trailers have only shown the series' iconic knight, clad in armor from head to toe. 

Gavin Moore, Creative Director, SIE Worldwide Studios External Development, said that players will have a plethora of options to choose from and that Bluepoint Games has expanded the number of diverse options from the original. 

With this new character creator, you will be able to customize your appearance with up to 16 million permutations. We’ve added many more customization options than you’ll remember from the PS3 game, and also worked hard to ensure there is a satisfying variety possible for those who wish to tinker with every slider. Play as yourself, or who you want to be. Here are just a few of the many possible combinations.

Players will be able to customize everything from skin color to hairstyle, brow, eyes, ears, and mouth, among others. Honestly, I'm most excited for the addition of facial hair (finally). Beards, beautiful, beautiful beards. 

Character presets will also be available. Though it's not exactly clear how many presets there will be, the reveal shows 12 per page and at least four scrollable pages. If there are, in fact, 12 presets per page, there will be at least 48 presets at launch. Again, this is just observation based on the screens shown. It has not been confirmed as of this writing. 

Finally, Moore also showed off the game's photo mode, which we cover in more detail in a separate article

The Demon's Souls remake is just around corner, releasing on November 12 (US) and November 19 (EU) as a PlayStation 5 launch title. Stay tuned to GameSkinny for my full review, as well as tips and tricks guides to help you make it through the land of Boletaria alive. 

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Demon's Souls Offers Over 180 Videos to (Hopefully) Keep You From Dying https://www.gameskinny.com/xumgl/demons-souls-offers-over-180-videos-to-hopefully-keep-you-from-dying https://www.gameskinny.com/xumgl/demons-souls-offers-over-180-videos-to-hopefully-keep-you-from-dying Tue, 03 Nov 2020 12:24:41 -0500 Josh Broadwell

Demon's Souls on PlayStation 5 has over 180 help videos, Sony Interactive Entertainment Creative Director Gavin Moore told The Washington Post. These videos are built into the PS5's user interface and accessed without breaking the flow of gameplay.

Sony first revealed these videos using Sackboy: A Big Adventure as an example. Though the showcase video helped Sid Shuman, Senior Director of Global Content Communications at Sony, get past a small section of the game, it wasn't clear how helpful or in-depth the tips videos might ultimately be.

Moore said Demon's Souls help videos offer "increasing levels of visibility into what’s needed to complete portions of the game." These tips are available only for certain tasks, but Moore didn't say what types of tasks would have help videos.

It remains to be seen if, for example, there will be video strategies for the game's bosses, or if the videos will help uncover certain crafting items. 

Demon's Souls is one of PlayStation 5's launch games and showcases the DualSense's features in unique ways. Haptics and the controller's adaptive triggers reportedly let players feel the weight of their strikes and the energy of spells they cast. Apart from creating an immersive experience, Moore said these features offer clues about enemy weak points — what works and what doesn't.

From what we've seen so far, Demon's Souls is shaping up to be a gorgeous and faithful retelling of the original, and a showpiece for the PS5 when it launches on November 12. Check out our Demon's Souls pre order guide if you haven't snagged your copy yet, and stay tuned for our full review of the game in the coming weeks. 

[Source: The Washington Post]

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Demon's Souls Second Gameplay Trailer Mines the Beauty of Stonefang Tunnel https://www.gameskinny.com/oew8t/demons-souls-second-gameplay-trailer-mines-the-beauty-of-stonefang-tunnel https://www.gameskinny.com/oew8t/demons-souls-second-gameplay-trailer-mines-the-beauty-of-stonefang-tunnel Fri, 30 Oct 2020 21:11:30 -0400 Jonathan Moore

Good grief. Not only are we less than two weeks away from the launch of the Demon's Souls remake on the PlayStation 5, Sony and Bluepoint Studios have released another stunningly gorgeous gameplay trailer for the upcoming RPG. 

Whereas the first gameplay trailer shown back in September focused on the tutorial level leading up to the Vanguard boss, this gameplay trailer gives a lot of love to Stonefang Tunnel, the Armor Spider, and Flamelurker.

The layout of Stonefang in the remake is identical to the layout in the original game (at least in these sections), but the amount of detail and refinement here is, if not surprising, astounding. Definitely watch this trailer in 4K if you can. 

Some of the most notable and obvious changes come in the more detailed character models and the incredible use of lighting. Here, the Scale Miners looks more like withered yet ferocious vampires instead of mopey skin bags, and the Armor Spider looks downright terrifying with its wandering center eye. We still don't get a look at any builds outside of the Knight (who is, yes, wearing the Fluted Armor set), but we finally get to see spells in use. 

While the vastly improved lighting in the first trailer was certainly obvious, especially in the tower area leading to Vanguard, the lighting in this trailer really shows what the PS5 version of Demon's Souls is capable of. Here, where lights and darks play off of each other in flickering fire, and the bright blue flourish of the Soul Arrow spell, the PS5's graphical capabilities create an entirely new atmosphere for the game. 

I'm still picking my jaw up off the floor. 

Everything concludes with a fight against Flamelurker, as well as a look at other locations in the game, including the Tower of Latria and the Shrine of Storms. The quick look we get at a Mindflayer is utterly terrifying and full-on Lovecraftian, while what we see of the Silver Skeleton in the Shrine of Storms looks... ok. I'm not quite sold on it yet, but I'm sure its design will grow on me when I'm able to see more than what amounts to a flash. 

We get the Blue Dragon, Maneater, Old Hero, and so, so much more. I can't wait to play Demon's Souls in just a few short weeks, and I know I'm not alone. And if anyone's still on the fence, this trailer is sure to push them right off. Stay tuned for our full review and a full set of guides. 

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Demon's Souls Cloudstone Shards, Chunks, & Pure Materials Guide https://www.gameskinny.com/5atfj/demons-souls-cloudstone-shards-chunks-pure-materials-guide https://www.gameskinny.com/5atfj/demons-souls-cloudstone-shards-chunks-pure-materials-guide Wed, 28 Oct 2020 17:01:14 -0400 JosephYaden

Demon's Souls Cloudstone is an upgrade path that enhances the effectiveness of shields against magic. There are a slew of upgrade paths to choose from in Demon's Souls, from Mercurystone to Marrowstone, all of which have their own unique traits. 

It's not easy to find Cloudstone, but in this guide, we'll show you where to find Shards, Chunks, and Pure versions, as well as where to farm them in Demon's Souls

Cloudstone Upgrades

The first thing you should know is that you'll need to upgrade your shield to +6 before going down the Cloudstone path. This upgrade path caps at +5 and strengthens your shield's defense against magic, which can come in handy for places like the Tower of Latria. 

As always, visit Blacksmith Ed in 2-1 to upgrade your gear. 

Shard of Cloudstone

The most effective way of tracking down Shards of Cloudstone is to take out the Storm Beasts in 4-1, Shrine of Storms. These are the large Manta Rays that fly around this level. You must attack them with a long-range weapon such as a bow or magic.

Alternatively,  you can purchase Shards of Cloudstone from Graverobber Blige in 4-2

How to Farm Shards of Cloudstone

If you don't want to purchase Shards from Graverobber Blige, you can continuously take down the Storm Beasts around this area, though, it's much easier to simply purchase them from Blige. 

Chunk of Cloudstone

You can find a Chunk of Cloudstone in 4-4 Storm King Archstone to the right of the starting point, close to the cliff. In addition, Chunks appear as rare drops from the Storm Beasts. 

How to Farm Chunks of Cloudstone

The best way to farm Chunks of Cloudstone is to take out the Storm Beasts in 4-3. This area is particularly useful for farming these creatures since there is a huge open area to maneuver around. 

While farming, don't attack the Storm Beasts when they're above the water, as you'll lose the drop when they die. Make sure you take them out above land you can reach.

It's also recommended to have high-damage magic like the Soul Ray to take them out, or you can use the Storm Ruler to take out some of the Storm Beasts during the Storm King boss fight. 

The drop rate isn't great, but this is the best way to get your hands on Chunks. When you've killed all the Storm Beasts in the area, run off the cliff and start the process again. 

Pure Cloudstone

As for Pure Cloudstone, there's a surefire way to get one by defeating the Storm King in 4-3. After you take out the boss, make sure you touch the Archstone to acquire The Storm Demon's Soul and a Pure Cloudstone. You can't miss it. 

Alternatively, you can farm Pure Cloudstone from Storm Beasts, though the drop rate is even lower than with Chunks. You likely won't need more than one Pure Cloudstone, but if you do, the best way to collect it is by farming from this area in Shrine of Storms. 

How to Farm Pure Cloudstone

Use the same method as described above to farm the Storm Beasts in Shrine of Storms. It helps if you have Black World Tendency, as it increases the chances of better drops. 

With that, you should be well equipped to start gathering Shards, Chunks, and Pure Cloudstone in Demon's Souls. The nice thing is that all of the materials are condensed into one area, meaning you won't have to make trips to different Archstones. For more on Demon's Souls, check out its hub page here and don't forget to check back for more tips, tricks, and walkthroughs. 

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Demon's Souls Marrowstone Shards, Chunks, & Pure Materials Guide https://www.gameskinny.com/m65pi/demons-souls-marrowstone-shards-chunks-pure-materials-guide https://www.gameskinny.com/m65pi/demons-souls-marrowstone-shards-chunks-pure-materials-guide Mon, 26 Oct 2020 15:28:55 -0400 JosephYaden

Demon's Souls Marrowstone is an upgrade path that works with daggers, knives, spears. There are many upgrade paths in Demon's Souls, from Bladestone to Mercurystone, each with their own unique boons. Marrowstone increases the strength of critical strikes but lowers the overall damage of the weapon.

Getting your hands on the upgrade materials, Shards, Chunks, and Pure, isn't easy, but in this guide, we'll highlight where to find them, and we'll showcase the best farming locations for Marrowstone throughout Demon's Souls

Marrowstone Upgrades

To start down the Marrowstone upgrade path, you'll need to have an applicable weapon upgraded to at least +3. Marrowstone caps out at +5 and focuses on critical attacks.

Visit Blacksmith Ed in 2-1 to upgrade your standard weapons to special paths like Marrowstone. 

Shard of Marrowstone

The most abundant of the group are the Shards of Marrowstone, which are found only from drops by the Giant Ticks in 5-1, Valley of Defilement or the Giant Mosquitos in 5-2.

For best results, wait until you've got a higher level character to make killing them easier.

How to Farm Shards of Marrowstone

The best way to farm Shards of Marrowstone is to run through 5-1 and kill the bulbous Giant Ticks, which are found a few floors beneath the starting point.

The drop rate isn't amazing, but it's certainly better than trying to get something like Pure Bladestone. Keep running through this area and jump off the edge to kill your character to try again. 

If you're going to farm the Giant Mosquitos in 5-2, remember to bring a long-range weapon like a bow or some sort of magic, as these enemies fly around above you. From our experience, the mosquitos have a slightly higher drop rate of Shards than the Giant Ticks

Chunk of Marrowstone

As for Chunks of Marrowstone, you can find them in the exact same way as Shards: from the Giant Ticks in 5-1 or the Giant Mosquitos in 5-2. The drop rate is lower, of course, but you'll likely come across a Chunk while farming for Shards. 

How to Farm Chunks of Marrowstone

Run from 5-1 to the bottom portion of this section, where you'll find a handful of Giant Ticks. Make sure you stay back as you attack them so you can avoid their poison and jump off the edge to try again. Repeat this process until you have the desired amount of material.

Pure Marrowstone

Luckily, there is a sure-fire way of getting Pure Marrowstone, and it's found in the Plague Babies swamp at the bottom of 5-3, Dirty Colossus Archstone.

Make your way to the bottom, and you'll find Pure Marrowstone on a corpse, along with Pure Murcurystone nearby. Try and be quick, as you'll catch the plague if you stay in the swamp too long.

How to Farm Pure Marrowstone

In terms of farming Pure Mercurystone, you can find them the same way you gather Shards and Chunks: by killing the Giant Ticks in 5-1 or the Giant Mosquitos in 5-2.

Keep in mind, the drop rate is extremely low, so unless you have multiple weapons you want to upgrade down this path, you'll only need one Pure Marrowstone, which you can get from 5-3.

Also, keep in mind, you can increase drop rates by having Black World Tendency

That covers everything you'll need to know about Demon's Souls Marrowstone upgrade path. It's a tougher upgrade path to utilize since you have to traverse the dangers of Valley of Defilement, but hopefully, this guide has helped you bag a few shards, chunks, and pure variants. For more on Demon's Souls, check out its hub here and keep visiting GameSkinny for more coverage!

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Demon's Souls Mercurystone Shards, Chunks, & Pure Materials Guide https://www.gameskinny.com/7uvsk/demons-souls-mercurystone-shards-chunks-pure-materials-guide https://www.gameskinny.com/7uvsk/demons-souls-mercurystone-shards-chunks-pure-materials-guide Fri, 23 Oct 2020 18:10:20 -0400 JosephYaden

Demon's Souls Mercurystone is an upgrade material that works with knives, curved swords, and spears. There are numerous weapon upgrade paths, such as Bladestone and Moonlightstone, each with their own strengths and benefits. But Mercurystone imbues weapons with poison

Finding the upgrade materials required for the Mercurystone path isn't as tough as others in the game, but you still might want to have an idea of where to find them quickly. In this Demon's Souls Mercurystone guide, I'll show you the best way to find each upgrade material, including Shards, Chunks, and Pure versions, as well as where to farm them. 

Mercurystone Upgrades

To start down the Mercurystone path, you'll need to have an applicable weapon upgraded to at least +3. The Mercurystone path caps at +5 and gives a chance to inflict poison on your foe.

Don't forget to visit Blacksmith Ed in 2-1 to upgrade your weapons. 

Shard of Mercurystone

First up is the easiest of the bunch to find: Shards of Mercurystone. There are a couple of places to get your hands on shadrs, the easiest being from the prisoners armed with an Estoc (as opposed to the unarmed ones) at 3-1, Tower of Latria.

You can also acquire Shards from the Man Centipedes and Giant Man Centipedes at 3-2 and 3-3.

How to Farm Shards of Mercurystone

Instead of trying to farm the prisoners in 3-1, I advise trying your luck with the Man Centipedes. Spawn in at 3-3 and head up the steps right next to the Archstone.

Here, you'll find several Man Centipedes to take out as you make your way up. Kill any you come across and at the top, start the boss battle with The Old Monk. Let him kill you to repeat the process. 

Chunk of Mercurystone

Chunks of Mercurystone are found the same way as Shards. Take out Giant Man Centipedes or regular Man Centipedes across 3-2 and 3-3 for a chance at one of them dropping the material you're looking for.

You can also find one on a body in a swamp at 3-2, right next to the Prisoner Horde.

How to Farm Chunks of Mercurystone

The best way to farm Chunks of Mercurystone is to take out Giant Man Centipedes, found at the bottom of 3-2 in the swamp area.

Take one of the elevators down and make your way through the swamp section. The Black Phantom versions of the Giant Man Centipedes seem to have the best chance of dropping chunks, so prioritize them. Once you've made it through, jump off a ledge or let an enemy take you out to do it again. 

Pure Mercurystone

As for Pure Mercurystone, it works much like the chunks. They're dropped from the Giant Man Centipedes in 3-2, with the Red Phantom versions having a slightly better drop rate. 

However, one has a guaranteed drop towards the bottom of the Plague Babies swamp in 5-3 of Valley of Defilement. Spawn at the Dirt Colossus Archstone and head down, through a tunnel below, and go into the swamp on a body.

How to Farm Pure Mercurystone

The best way to farm Pure Mercurystone is to use the method above of taking out Giant Man Centipedes in the swamp of 3-2. Keep doing this until you get the required drop.

And remember, Black World Tendency helps with drop rates, as well. 

Now, you should have everything you need to start upgrading your weapons on the Mercurystone path. Thankfully, finding the required shards, chunks, and pure materials needed for this path isn't as bad as others in Demon's Souls. For more Demon's Souls coverage, check out its hub page here. If you found this guide helpful, consider giving it a share! 

 

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Demon's Souls Bladestone Shards, Chunks, & Pure Materials Guide https://www.gameskinny.com/2ank9/demons-souls-bladestone-shards-chunks-pure-materials-guide https://www.gameskinny.com/2ank9/demons-souls-bladestone-shards-chunks-pure-materials-guide Fri, 23 Oct 2020 17:59:43 -0400 JosephYaden

Demon's Souls Bladestone is one of the best upgrade paths in the game, as it increases damage and scales with many weapons, including knives, curved swords, and spears. However, finding the upgrade materials in the Bladestone path, such as shards, chunks, and pure variants is perhaps the hardest task you'll undertake during your time in Boletaria. 

In this Demon's Souls Bladestone guide, I'll show you the best way to find all three versions of Bladestone, including farming locations and multiple options for getting your hands on shards, chunks, and pure variants. 

Bladestone Upgrades

It's important to note that the Bladestone upgrade path begins at +0. This means you can start upgrading applicable weapons towards Bladestone right away.

The Bladestone path caps at +5 and scales tremendously with dexterity once maxed out. Keep in mind, you'll need to talk to Blacksmith Ed in 2-1 to upgrade towards this path. 

Shard of Bladestone

The first and easiest upgrade material to get in this path is the Shard of Bladestone. Shards are frequently dropped by the white skeleton enemies — not the regular grey ones — in World 4, Shrine of Storms

If you spawn in at 4-1, a white skeleton can be found in the pit behind where the Vanguard spawns. Trigger the pressure plate trap and strike the illusory wall to reveal the white skeleton here.

How to Farm Shards of Bladestone

To farm Shards, start at 4-1 and run ahead. Go up the stairs while taking out skeletons. At least one of them will typically drop a Shard for you.

After that, run to the spot mentioned above (behind the illusory wall), and take out those two skeletons. Then, run back up and jump off the ledge to try again. 

Chunk of Bladestone

The Chunk of Bladestone is slightly harder to obtain, but not by much. If you plan on grinding for Pure Bladestone (more on that below), the Chunks will come easily.

How to Farm Chunks of Bladestone

The easiest way to find Chunks is to farm from the  Dual Katana Black Skeletons found across World 4, Shrine of Storms.

There's one that spawns right by the Adjudicator's Archstone. From the Archstone, head back up the stairs, and you'll come to a hallway where the Black Skeleton is waiting, with his back turned. If you have the Thief's Ring equipped, you'll be able to easily sneak up on him for a backstab, dealing high damage.

The Chunks have a low drop rate, but they are much more common than Pure Bladestone. If you don't get what you're looking for, roll back down below, head outside, and roll off the cliff. This will respawn you right at the Archstone so you can try again. 

You can also find Chunks of Bladestone from the Golden Skeletons, though the drop rate is much lower than with the Black Skeletons. There are also Black Phantom versions of the Black Skeletons nearby you can take out with a slightly better drop rate, but they're harder to kill. 

Pure Bladestone

Finally, we have the Pure Bladestone, a material so rare, it has a 2.5% chance of spawning. This means you'll likely need to farm for a few hours before it'll drop.

The only way you'll be able to get your hands on Pure Bladestone is by killing a specific Dual Katana Black Skeleton, though it's different than the one mentioned above. 

How to Farm Pure Bladestone

To find the Dual katana Black Skeleton, spawn at 4-2, Adjudicator Archstone. Head forward, towards the outside section, drop down, and turn around to head back inside.

Follow the tunnel and once you're in, drop off to the left, all the way to the ground floor. You'll take damage, but it won't kill you. Just ahead of a puddle with an item in it is a path you can take on the left.

Take this path, go up two flights of stairs, and strike the illusory wall on the right. This will lead you to the Black Skeleton you're looking for. Remember, use the Thief's Ring to sneak up on it.

If you don't get the drop you're wanting, roll off the side of the cliff and do it again. Players have reported having to kill the skeleton upwards of 200 times before the Pure Bladestone would drop, so be prepared for a grind. Also, having a Pure Black World Tendency seems to increase the drop rate, slightly.

And now you should have everything you need to find shards, chunks, and pure versions of Bladestone in Demon's Souls! For more tips, consider checking out our guides page for the game, and if this article was helpful, think about giving it a share! 

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Demon’s Souls Moonlightstone Shards, Chunks, and Pure Materials Guide https://www.gameskinny.com/ckm17/demons-souls-moonlightstone-shards-chunks-and-pure-materials-guide https://www.gameskinny.com/ckm17/demons-souls-moonlightstone-shards-chunks-and-pure-materials-guide Fri, 23 Oct 2020 17:42:38 -0400 JosephYaden

Demon's Souls Moonlightstone is an upgrade material ideal for straight swords, curved swords, axes, and other similar weapons. As with most of the Souls games, the upgrade materials in Demon's Souls come in many rarities, with "shards" being the easiest to find and their "pure" versions being much harder to get your hands on. 

In this Demon's Souls Moonlightstone guide, I'll show you the best way to find all three Moonlightstone upgrade materials: shards, chunks, and pure. I've also included some farming locations to make things quicker.

Moonlightstone Upgrades

Before getting to the point of collecting Moonlightstone upgrade materials, you should be aware of a couple of things.

For starters, the upgrade path for Moonlightstone starts at +6, which means you'll need to upgrade an applicable weapon to that point before being able to migrate to the Moonlightstone upgrade path.

The maximum upgrade level within the Moonlightstone path is +5, and it's main draw is its boost in magic. Specifically, it imbues a weapon with magic and scales with the magic stat, which is perfect for sorcerers.

Remember to talk to Blacksmith Ed in 2-1 to upgrade towards this path. 

Shard of Moonlightstone

Starting things off is the easiest of the bunch: the Shard of Moonlightstone. This material can be found in numerous locations across World 3, Tower of Latria.

The easiest way to get your hands on a Shard of Moonlighstone is to kill the unarmed prisoners in 3-1. The drop rate isn't the best, but the unarmed prisoners are abundant, making it easy to come across eventually. 

Aside from that, you can purchase one for 3,000 souls from the Once Royal Mistress, who is located in 4F East in a cell. You'll find her when you go upstairs, then outside across a balcony, and back inside. She's in a cell on the right, just before the destroyed floor.

Alternatively, a Shard of Moonlightstone always drops in 3-2. To find it, go through the first main tower, take a right (opposite the stairs), and head outside. The Shard will be sitting on the ground at a dead-end outside. 

How to Farm Shards of Moonlightstone

For effective Shard farming, it's best to repeatedly take out the prisoners in 3-1. You can attack them through the cells without them striking you. There are many of them you can take out on the same floor as the Archstone, so once you've done a lap, jump off the edge and give it another go. 

Chunk of Moonlightstone

Next up is the Chunk of Moonlightstone and thankfully, it's not too difficult to find. I recommend you grab it from the Baby's Nail Black Phantom, who appears before you get to the Fool's Idol boss encounter. It has a 100% chance to drop. 

Upon defeating Baby's Nail, they'll drop three Chunks of Moonlightstone and two Stone of Ephemeral Eyes. 

How to Farm Chunks of Moonlightstone 

The various Crystal Lizards across 3-2 and 3-3 have a chance of dropping Chunks of Moonlightstone, as well. If you're farming for Pure Moonlightstone, Chunks will appear in the process. Also, the prisoners in 3-2 have a low chance of dropping them. 

Pure Moonlightstone

Of course, the most difficult upgrade mat to get your hands on this path is the Pure Moonlightstone. Unfortunately, there is only one way to get it, and it's purely luck-based.

Pure Moonlightstone has a chance to drop from the two Crystal Lizards across 3-2 and 3-3. You have a higher chance of getting one to spawn if you have Pure Black World Tendency.

However, there's actually a trick you can use to "re-roll" and give it another try. Once you take out a Crystal Lizard and grab its drop, you can reload your save (from the game's menu). This will reset the Crystal Lizard, allowing you to give it another try.

How to Farm Pure Moonlight Stone

Crystal Lizard 1

The first Lizard in 3-2 is found in the swamp area towards the bottom, after you go up a set of stairs that lead to a bunch of creepy tentacles. If you let the Lizard fall off the edge, you can actually go back down to its remains and collect the drop.

Crystal Lizard 2

As for 3-3, the Lizard found in the spiral staircase, just before the Old Monk boss. You'll have to get past the Man Centipedes and the Mind Flayers first. Make sure you equip the Thief's Ring so you can easily sneak up on the Lizard, and don't forget to use the reload trick if it doesn't drop a Pure Moonlightstone.

Now you should have everything you need to know about the Moonlightstone upgrade path in Demon's Souls. If you found this walkthrough guide helpful, consider sharing it with other players! For more on Demon's Souls, be sure to visit the game's guide page!

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Demon's Souls Pre Order Guide: Editions & Pre Order Bonuses https://www.gameskinny.com/yawrx/demons-souls-pre-order-guide-editions-pre-order-bonuses https://www.gameskinny.com/yawrx/demons-souls-pre-order-guide-editions-pre-order-bonuses Tue, 29 Sep 2020 20:57:21 -0400 Jonathan Moore

Much to the joy of Souls fans across the world, the Demon's Souls remake is leading the vanguard of PlayStation 5 launch titles. Eleven years of waiting are almost over, and we'll once again be able to take on classic bosses like Tower Knight, Armor Spider, and Flamelurker without dusting off our PS3s or revving up an emulator.

The world might very well be mended. 

Of course, fans like me may have already pre ordered the standard edition of Demon's Souls when they pre ordered their PS5s. But Sony has just unveiled what comes with that edition and the game's deluxe edition for those who want to sharpen their blades early. 

Demon's Souls Standard Edition

Price: $69.88 — $69.99

The basic standard edition of Demon's Souls, whether purchased physically or digitally, comes with the base game and the Reaper Scyth weapon. There are no special pre order bonuses for specific stores. 

Here's where you can pick it up: 

Demon's Souls Digital Deluxe Edition

Price: $89.99

As the name suggests, the digital deluxe edition of Demon's Souls isn't available physically and can only be purchased on the PlayStation Store for $89.99. It comes with the base game and the Reaper Scyth weapon, as well as the following in-game bonuses per Sony: 

  • Legendary Hero Soul
  • Renowned Warrior Soul
  • Storied Warrior Soul
  • Red-Eye Knight Armor
  • Boletarian Royalty Armor
  • Ritual Blade
  • Hoplite Shield
  • Ring of Longevity
  • Preservation Grains
  • Phosphorescent Grains
  • Bearbug Grains
  • Large Hardstone Shard
  • Moonlightstone Shard
  • Original soundtrack

As of now, there are no other editions for Demon's Souls on PS5. If that changes between now and launch, we'll be sure to update this guide with that information. 

Demon's Souls was first revealed in stunning detail during Sony's June PS5 event. That was followed up by a perhaps more impressive look at the beloved RPG earlier this month, in which fans got their first proper look at new gameplay. 

Bluepoint Games, who have also worked on Titanfall, Shadow of the Colossus, and Uncharted: The Nathan Drake Collection, are spearheading the remake, which is a complete overall built from the ground up. It will feature 4K visuals, haptic feedback through the DualSense, and 3D audio. Clocking in at 66GB, it will also take advantage of the PS5's proprietary SSD for faster load times across the board. 

Demon's Souls is set to release on November 12. Get your pre order in by using the links above and prepare to dial up the hype. Stay tuned for our full review at launch. 

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