Dark Souls II: Crown of the Ivory King (PC) Review

By SirLink 08.04.2015

Review for Dark Souls II: Crown of the Ivory King on PC

The first Dark Souls received one sizable expansion called Artorias of the Abyss that was well received by fans and critics alike. The three expansions of Dark Souls II, called The Crown of the Sunken King, The Crown of the Old Iron King and The Crown of the Ivory King sadly can't match the level of quality of Artorias of the Abyss, but they are still good additions for those adventurers that are longing for more areas to explore.

Accessing the DLC is still done manually within the game, but it's a lot more straightforward compared to the fairly cryptic process of entering Artorias of the Abyss in the previous instalment. Bonfires that can be used for warping are available immediately, so these new areas can easily be returned to at any given time. It should be mentioned, though, that they can be quite difficult and perhaps shouldn't be tackled without a good amount of levels and some late-game equipment.

The Crown of the Sunken King features a giant cavern and the general theme seems to be all about poison, as nearly everything has the ability to poison the character. Simply traversing one particular area can prove to be quite tricky, too, as there are many bottomless pits that are perfect for those embarrassing deaths by falling.

Screenshot for Dark Souls II: Crown of the Ivory King on PC

The Crown of the Old Iron King is set in Brume Tower, a place with a lot of fire coming from the environment and foes alike. Last but not least, The Crown of the Ivory King takes place in a snowy landscape that brings back some memories of an optional area in Dark Souls, called The Painted World of Ariamis. It's a stunning environment that's a welcomed change of scenery compared to more commonly present themes. These DLC episodes feature some of the most difficult portions between all three Souls games, which should please those that have an easier time dealing with many of From Software's tricks by now.

Unfortunately, though, all three pieces of DLC share one of the main weaknesses of the main title, which are the boss fights. Some are a lot better than others, but many of them feel too much like slightly different versions of already existing bosses. That's not to say that they can't put up a good fight, but substantial DLC packs should come with a good amount of new and fresh content. Slight twists on old concepts should be the icing on the cake, not the main course.

Screenshot for Dark Souls II: Crown of the Ivory King on PC

Cubed3 Rating

7/10
Rated 7 out of 10

Very Good - Bronze Award

Rated 7 out of 10

Dark Souls II's three DLC episodes aren't as great as they could have been, but they are still good additions to the core experience that are worth a try for dedicated Souls fans. These three expansions are also included in the new Scholar of the First Sin edition of Dark Souls II, alongside a slew of improvements, such as better balance, different enemy placement, and new NPCs, which will be part of a free patch for existing owners of the title. For those that have yet to venture into Drangleic, this updated release might just be the best opportunity to jump in. Meanwhile, fans that have already conquered Drangleic may find it a convenient excuse to tackle it all once again.

Developer

Bandai Namco

Publisher

Bandai Namco

Genre

Real Time RPG

Players

1

C3 Score

Rated $score out of 10  7/10

Reader Score

Rated $score out of 10  0 (0 Votes)

European release date Out now   North America release date Out now   Japan release date None   Australian release date Out now   

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