The Dark Souls 2 PC version is pretty damn good this time, but if you have a monitor outside of the 16:9 ratio you may be suffering from black bars on the screen. Obviously that’s a bit rubbish and not entirely ideal, but there is an external modding option available to you to potentially solve this problem.
Flawless Widescreen has just been updated with a Dark Souls 2 plug-in that, while a work-in-progress at this stage, may be able to fix the black bar issue. You can download Flawless Widescreen here for both x86 and x64 systems. Once installed, look for the Dark Souls 2 plug-in option and begin configuring the options. I’ve not got a huge amount of experience with the program myself (I just downloaded it now to poke around inside) but if you’re used to tweaking stuff to get it working in optimal fashion on PC it shouldn’t be too daunting.
The creator says that “I haven’t really tested anything other than surround resolutions, eg. 5760×1080, and multiples of 16:9… so no idea how 21:9 etc would go or if it even works,” so development is obviously at an early stage, but as a quick fix it may work for you.
If you’re struggling with the early stages of Dark Souls 2, IncGamers has a handy guide for the first couple of hours featuring the locations of some helpful items.