Lords of the Fallen

From Before I Play
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  • Don't spend your XP on unlocking spells, you can find enough items that give you a spell point to unlock everything (which you don't need anyway)
  • Character creation: class determines your starting stuff and equipment, magic type what spells you have access to. You can alter stats, you can't pick another spell school until NG+; that being said, the game is easily beatable without magic.
  • Speaking of, every magic type has a decoy spell, a ranged attack and a self-buff. They aren't necessary but if you find a spell you like, it can make your life a lot easier. If you want to focus on magic, it's probably best to take the deception school: Stab is probably the best offensive move and Shift makes you go invisible and do crazy backstab damage.
  • The combat is slow. If you want the maximum bang for your buck, focus on slow, heavy weapons, killing a boss with knives will take a while.
  • You'll find the ranged weapon pretty early in the game and it's mostly independent of stats (damage scales with faith but you can customize it for other purposes). The flip side is that it goes in your shield hand so if you want to use it, you'll have to rely on dodging.
  • If you beat a boss while fulfilling a special condition, you get a slighly better version of their weapon; look those up in a guide if you want them. With the first one it's taking no damage.
  • If you have trouble with a boss, try poison. Some enemies are immune but it's an amazing way to cheese most of the game.
  • Explore, backtrack. The game world is pretty small but chock-full of secrets. Also, characters that give you quests usually aren't too helpful regarding the location of what they send you to find.
  • Early on in the game you'll encounter a monk dying from a poisoned bite. Cut off his hand; you'll meet him again later on that way. Letting him die has no benefits whatsoever.
  • In the first building, you'll probably find an item called "Shard of Heroes" which the game is supremely unhelpful about. It doesn't come into play until you fight the second boss: the arena they're in has three statues. You can either kill the boss and use the shard at one of the statues to change your class to that and reallocate any stats you added OR you can insert the shard in one of the statues before/during the battle and then lure the boss into breaking it. After the battle, you'll find a pretty good weapon for the class of the statue you used. If you want the item and didn't get the statue broken or the shard in it, there's going to be another boss fight in this arena later on so there's another shot at it.
  • Don't fear death. You learn by dying and the consequences of it are very little. It's a good idea to take a moment and think about what killed you and how to avoid it the next time, though.
  • Dodging is almost always better than blocking, but blocking is much easier. Experiment.
  • Weapons damage calculation is based on two things: a base damage of the weapon and a scaling based on your stats. Different weapons scale differently so pay attention to the little numbers.
  • There's a fuckton of secrets. If you see a locked door, feel free to jot down a note, the game won't remind you about it and is pretty vague about what keys go where.
  • You can sort of upgrade your equipment at an NPC you'll meet a bit into the game. There are runes that go into sockets on items. Remember that you can also pull the runes out - so you don't need to save the good ones until you find a weapon you think will last you a long time.