Dark Souls

Waylon Brown

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The main game that every player sees when they play dark souls, without looking into the hidden details throughout, is focused around collecting the soul shards of Gwyn to again renew the fire. You fight through levels of enemy knights and hollows to get to the boss who sometimes they themselves are hollow. But what is a hollow? What does it mean to “go hollow?”

Well hollowing can be thought of as a kind of curse. Its origins completely unknown but seems to be able to happen to anybody, humans gods and animals alike. It appears as a sign called the Darksign that looks like a ring of fire. In game it is used to explain the mechanic of being able to respawn at the bonfire(checkpoints). Activated on death, it will bring the “accursed undead” back to the last bonfire rested at. This ties into hollows because that is all that a hollow is – a cursed human or animal. The cursed are essentially immortal but still experience the pains of life and death in and endless loop of suffering, thus driving them all mad to the point of attacking all those around them, with the exception of other hollows.

In the opening cutscene in Dark Souls 2, the narrator says that souls will help heal your ailing mind. This also helps to understand why hollows will attack the player all the time, they want to souls that you carry to help them revive who they once were. Becoming a hollow, as stated before, will slowly drive you insane but there’s more to it. Collecting souls and what are called humanity in Dark Souls 1 and human effigy in Dark Souls 2 is said to help with the deterioration of the mind. But what happens when you live for so long without going completely insane? What happened with Lucatiel of Mirrah in Dark Souls 2. She was a knight from the land of Mirrah known for its peoples skill with the sword. She got the curse and came to the land where the 2nd game takes place and as you meet her progressively throughout the game she begins to notice that she is slowly losing all of her memories, oldest first. The last time you see her she hardly remembers who you even are even after becoming friends not so long ago. The curse make even though you might fight off the hollowing, will eat away at your memories until they, and who you once were, are nothing and you don’t even care because you will be a different person. That is all people are, their memories and experiences. So if you take away one’s past memories and experiences and replace them with new ones they will essentially become a new person all together. This is the struggle with the accursed undead.

Much is unknown about the dark souls timeline and and lore. The whole game itself is clouded in mysteries. I’ve spent hundreds of hours playing the game and still don’t know everything about the story. There are gaps left to us to fill in with our own theories and explanations and if you disagree with what I say I would be happy to have a friendly debate it with you. You can email me at [email protected]

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Dark Souls