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PC Gamer has reviewed the Dark Souls III - Ringed City DLC:
Thanks henriquejr!Dark Souls 3: The Ringed City review
Dark Souls 3: The Ringed City rushes through the series' history like an unhinged amusement park ride. It's excessively punishing, even by Dark Souls standards, and unusually straightforward, with a flat, linear design that doesn’t leave much room for exploration or inspire curiosity. Full of haunting landscapes and with a few exhilarating (and some infuriating) fights, it’s more Dark Souls, but not the fitting end the series deserves. With some of the worst level and encounter design of the series, The Ringed City blows by its dreary themes and thin story beats by constantly pushing the player towards an inevitable, obvious conclusion.
Analyzed for its story alone, The Ringed City is an incoherent mess. Lore hunters will find new names and locations to build theories around, but theories are all they’ll ever be. Slave Knight Gael and the Painting Woman are the only characters that get somewhat complete arcs, and they were only just introduced in Ashes of Ariandel. I’m OK with no answers about the greater Dark Souls lore, but for anyone expecting to find a keystone of vital lore intel to tie it all together will be massively disappointed.
At times the difficulty and dreary landscapes are enough, but overall The Ringed City was one hell of a soft note for Dark Souls to go out on. As a surface level thematic experience, the finale is a fitting way to end the series, leaving the faintest glimmer of hope amidst all the ash. I had fun descending through a visual collage of the series’ history—it's much more interesting than Ashes of Ariandel—and I can appreciate the symbolic significance of its ending, but this is Dark Souls design at its most uninspired.