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Our full, five-page review of From Software's Dark Souls sequel is now available, the text of which may or may not convince you to become one of the several dozen deaths that happen every minute in the unrelenting action RPG. A little something to get your blood moving:
Speaking of improvements over the original title, the stats breakdown in Dark Souls II feels overall more sensible than it was in Dark Souls, though not without a fair amount of weird quirks and puzzling choices, an unfortunate tradition for the Souls series. At every level up you are given one single point to spend on one of the game's main nine stats: Vigor (which determines HP), Endurance (which determines your total Stamina), Vitality (which determines your maximum equipment load), Attunement (which determines the number of your Attunement Slots and your Cast Speed), Strength (which improves damage on Strength-scaling weapons), Dexterity (which improves damage on Dexterity-scaling weapons), Adaptability (which improves your Agility, a derived attribute which improves the speed of some of your actions and adds invincibility frames to your dodge roll, and many of your resistances), Intelligence (which boosts your Magic Defense and Bonus and the power of all spells save Miracles) and Faith (which improves Lightning Defense and Bonus and the power of all spells save Sorceries).