Rage/Dark Souls review round-up

Last week saw the release of two big fall titles – Rage and Dark Souls. The first comes from id Software and premieres the id Tech 5 Engine, which allowed the developer to create a graphically rich world using the blatantly named “megatextures”. The second comes from From Software and acts as a spiritual successor to 2009′s Demon’s Souls, a game with a rabid fanbase who connected with the game’s traditional sensibilities and lack of handholding. Both games had quite a lot to live up to, with id’s pedigree and Demon’s Souls’s legacy on the line, so their reviews hold a particularly hefty amount of weight. First, let’s start with Rage:

  • Joystiq (3/5)RAGE is pretty at times, but it’s not enough to paint over the truth – that Id’s labor feels like a scaffolding for a game of bolder ideas, ideas which, for whatever reason, aren’t realized. -Arthur Gies
  • Giant Bomb (4/5) - A deep and sprawling experience it’s not, but as a focused, directed shooter with a few other things to do between the shooting, it hits the right notes. And damn does it look good doing it. -Brad Shoemaker
  • IGN (8.5/10) - Despite the lack of genuinely exciting context, all the content packed into Rage is still a blast to play, including the surprisingly entertaining car combat mode and co-operative challenges. Rage isn’t revolutionary, but is an expertly crafted, beautiful shooter. -Charles Onyett
  • Game Informer (9.00/10) - Rage’s story and overworld design feel dated, but its heart-pounding gunplay is a nice change of pace in a market filled with “follow me” and pop-and-fire shooters. -Andrew Reiner

Dark Souls had to face a lot of consumer expectations after the cult hit Demon’s Souls, but many reviewers had to face the game fresh of any previous experiences:

  • 1UP (A) - Success in Dark Souls can only be found through experimentation and thoughtful reflection on said experiments, and while this may require a much greater deal of investment on the player’s part, knowing you personally orchestrated every element of your victory brings forth an amazingly rewarding feeling that’s far too rare in video games. -Bob Mackey
  • GamePro (5/5) - In short, it’s everything I could have hoped for in a (spiritual) successor to Demon’s Souls. I’m pleased to recommend it to anyone who wants to see the medium pushed to its limits and beyond. -Kat Bailey
  • GameSpot (9.5/10) - The game’s world is so memorable, and its action so thrilling, that it might invade your thoughts even when you aren’t playing, silently urging you to escape the real world and return to this far more treacherous one. -Kevin VanOrd
  • Official Xbox Magazine (8.5/10) - Few games have the intestinal fortitude to defy genre conventions and player expectations at the expense of enjoyment, but that’s what hooked us. We obsessed over exploring every hidden area, slept less to slay dragons, and probably sustained a bit of psychological damage in the process. But it was worth it. -Mitch Dyer