It’s only fair that Japan gets earlier access to the Dark Souls II beta than we do in North America, seeing as the game was developed by From Software in their country. In return, it is only fair that a brave hero fires up a recording capture device, runs through the game and uploads it to social media platforms for the rest of us to get a peak at. Stories like this are already happening, as Dark Souls II beta gameplay videos are sprouting up on Youtube.
Most of what Souls fans have seen in terms of gameplay footage is the same scene/scenario that debuted back at E3, but the video above is very much different. The familiar summoning and message signs are present in an all-new map, allowing users to bring in some fellow Dark Souls II beta testers to join in on jolly cooperation. A glaring difference, however; your summoned companions can recover their own health using flasks, and can access bonfires you light to create torches.
The Dark Souls II beta video seems to show improved gameplay from the original Dark Souls, not branching too far off of the beaten path. A great addition is different sets of backstabbing animations, depending on the weapon(s) of use. Whereas a sword would slash up an opponent’s back, a javelin would skewer them. The marvelous backgrounds, narrow paths up high on cliffs and enemies hiding behind corners all make their return, making sure that the team behind one of the most difficult action RPG’s in recent memory stays true to the series.
Check out the entirety of the video above to get a better idea of gameplay for yourself. The North American Dark Souls II beta gameplay will begin for select North American PS3 owners on October 12th, with the final product coming to the PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360 on March 11, 2014. The PC version will launch at a later date.