Not content with merely offering up expensive collector’s editions, Namco Bandai have hopped on the “pre-order to get free digital stuff” train with Dark Souls 2.
The company has today announced that pre-orders of Dark Souls 2‘s Black Armour Edition or Collector’s Edition will come with a voucher that will “unlock early use of weapons contained in the Black Armour Weapons Pack.” Yes, there’s a weapons pack called Black Armour. Yes, I know.
This pack offers “five weapon packs available for early access at the beginning of the game”. The Black Flamestone Dagger and Black Flamestone Parma are heavy, but sharp and damage resistant, respectively. The Yellow Quartz Long Sword and Yellow Quartz Shield are light and powerful, though corroded and easy to break. The Bound Hand Axe and Bound Wooden Shield are a little bit weaker than they should be but are wrapped in chains and thorns and cause enemies to bleed. The Homunculus Mace and Homunculus Wooden Shield are heavy, but powerful. Finally, the Transgressor’s Staff and Transgressor’s Leather Shield “cause an effect known as Darkness.”
The reason why I’ve quoted so much of the press release is that I’m not quite certain how early these can be accessed. The weapon descriptions imply that they’ll be found in various locations within the game, but the text saying “at the beginning of the game” indicates that you’ll start with them. I’m genuinely hoping it’s the former: starting Dark Souls with relatively powerful weapons just feels all kinds of wrong. I don’t like pre-order content that mucks about with game balance, particularly when the game is based around being difficult.
“With this Black Armour Weapons Pack offering an early in-game access to five sets of weapons and shields, adventurers will most certainly welcome a little help to survive the dark world surrounding!” exclaimed Hiroaki Ochai, senior VP of IP strategy at Namco Bandai Games Europe. Not if they’re looking for a challenge, Mr. Ochai, nor if this means that anyone who didn’t pre-order is going to get invaded by people with an advantage in terms of armaments.
Ugh. And we’re still not sure when the PC version will be out, either.