Dark Souls III

From Before I Play
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Character Generation

  • You can't really mess up by going with any of the classes but here's some tips:
    • The knight is the strongest starting class because it starts with a decent shield and a deceptively strong weapon.
    • The assassin starts with a strong weapon and a very useful utility spell.
    • The deprived is the most difficult start but it's not really as bad as it sounds.
    • Dedicated spellcasters aren't particularly encouraged for a first play-through because you can easily miss out on many spells and even entire trainers playing blind.
  • Here's a quick rundown of the gifts worth taking:
    • The best item is probably the Fire Gem, as it gives you very early access to a fire weapon.
    • Use the Black Firebombs to crack through early hard encounters.
    • Sure, the Life Ring only gives you like 7% more maxhp; but it's the only equippable gift.
    • A lot of enemies have a small chance to drop pieces of their equipment on death. If you see something you like, the Rusted Gold Coins should help you get it to drop pretty quickly.

General Tips

  • Some enemies can be incapacitated for several seconds when struck by fire. Use this to your advantage.
  • If you don't really use spells, you'll rarely ever want more than 1-2 ashen estus flasks.
  • If you do decide to use magic, know that you can use a different sort of magic if you run into something that shrugs off your main damage type. Sorcery and miracle users can stretch into pyromancies, and pyromancers can stretch into one or both of the other schools.
  • Don't stress out too much over what to upgrade with titanite shards/large shards; they become very common drops as you push forward into the game.
  • Without spoilers, you will fail to follow most, possibly all sidequests through to their ends. You can beat the game without completing any of them, so don't worry.
  • You can turn boss souls into useful and interesting things fairly early on. It's recommended you hold onto them. They honestly don't give very many souls when consumed anyway.

Cheesy Tips

  • If you see an ambush ahead, you can use a ranged weapon to pull one or two enemies out of it before charging in.
  • Having trouble fighting an NPC? Fast weapons with relatively high damage llike straight swords or thrusting swords can stunlock them pretty effectively.
  • Knee-deep water or mud can slow you down considerably. A skill called Quickstep (found mostly on daggers) will allow you to travel through much more swiftly. It even continues to work when you run out of FP!

Online Features

  • The multiplayer mechanics are entirely opt-in. To summon other people to your world and allow others to try to invade your world and kill you, you have to actively use an ember.
  • If you intend to co-op with a friend, you can set a shared online matchmaking password to make it easier to find and summon or be summoned by them.
  • There is a system designed to prevent players with high levels and/or highly-reinforced weapons from clowning on new players. It works, somewhat. You'll probably get clowned on anyway due to skill differences. Don't get too stressed out about it. There will always be more souls/embers/whatever it is you lost because of your assailant.
  • If you are invaded, respond aggressively. Instead of running or hiding, try to kill them. You'll probably lose, but you'll definitely lose if you don't fight for your life. Not to mention that the greatest thing you can experience in these games is defeating an invader in 1-on-1 combat.
  • If you die while at least one invader is in your world, you get a generous grace period before you can be invaded again. Don't be afraid to ember back up and resummon that horribly disfigured naked man with a preposterously large weapon.