Sega Bleach: Dark Souls
Anime-based gaming done right.
- Plenty of new moves and characters, entertaining story mode provides plenty of bite-sized challenges
- Many fights can't be managed without the auto-block option, ridiculously overstuffed battle system still needs a little fixing
Bleach: Dark Souls isn't just a good sequel, it's undoubtedly one of the most impressive fighting games on the DS.
There's no doubt about it -- Bleach for the Nintendo DS is anime-based gaming done right. While Dark Souls feels more like an update than a full-out sequel to its predecessor, it provides just the right amount of action, story, and new content to warrant some attention from fans of the series. With tweaked controls, more balanced characters, and engaging combat to boot, Bleach once again raises the bar for all DS fighting games.
Bleach is one of those anime series that hits all the right buttons -- good writing, decent animation, and tons of memorable fight scenes. Bleach: Dark Souls for the Nintendo DS also hits the right buttons, while improving on a lot of sore spots from last year's title, Blade of Fate. Any DS owner should try it at least once, even if you're not the kind of Bleach fan who keeps a full-size replica "Zanpakuto" blade in your sword collection.
Dark Souls, like the previous title, puts you in control of main character Ichigo Kurosaki, your archetypical "spiky-haired Japanese teenager turned Soul Reaper with attitude," as he fights his way through allies and enemies in Soul Society (a.k.a. Japanese Spirit World). As you progress though the game, you'll access many characters from the Bleach series that can be used in various modes. It's also refreshing to see that the story mode in Bleach: DS has been updated to follow the most recent plot arc in the American dub, along with new characters and a wider pool of special moves.
While the plot isn't anything ground breaking, the combat in Dark Souls is a different story. In a typical Bleach: DS fight, you'll clash swords and fists in two-to-four-man battles, being able to freely move between the foreground and background, much like Fatal Fury or the Naruto Ultimate Ninja series. Being a bit of a button masher, I found myself relying heavily on using the DS's button pad to dish out quick combos and special attacks. The touch screen can also be used to dish out your high-powered moves, via hot buttons on the lower right side. However, it's not the most intuitive use of the touch screen -- once I got comfortable with the pace of combat, I used it rather sparingly.
There's also the returning card system, which lets you use a pre-built deck to boost your strength or drain your opponent's abilities. While it's a good idea, the card system actually overcomplicates Bleach: DS just a bit too much. When I'm in the middle of a match, it's awkward to shift my hands and tap the touch screen while simultaneously trying to keep my enemy at bay. It's really only useful for special moves, since doing extended "fireball motions" doesn't really work too well on the DS D-Pad to begin with. Eventually, I stopped paying attention to my card deck altogether once I turned on the auto-block option.
Speaking of which, the auto-block is a necessity for getting through the harder parts of Bleach: DS, which doesn't say wonders about the difficulty. Honestly, it's probably more than the average player can handle, and I'm no slouch when it comes to fighting games. Even with the auto-block activated, I still had to fight tooth-and-nail against enemy A.I. that seemed too damn crafty. Even with that minor gripe, the game still kept me coming back for more, especially when I was on the hunt for unlockables and secrets.
All things considered, I'd have to say that Dark Souls is a much better (if largely similar) game than Blade of Fate. There are over a dozen new characters, the story mode retains the almost-adult humor of the anime series (making the game's "T" rating well-deserved), and the combat system is MUCH more refined. Overpowered characters have been fairly de-powered, recharge meters now prevent "attack spamming," and the flash-step/damage-canceling mechanics have been adjusted, putting a bigger emphasis on dodging. If you didn't buy the first game, you'd do well to pick up Bleach: Dark Souls -- especially if you've got a willing friend to play against.
Join the newsletter!
Panasonic OLED 4K Ultra HD TV - TH-55EZ950U
Breitling Superocean Heritage Chronographe 44
Panasonic OLED 4K Ultra HD TV - TH-77EZ1000U
WD MY PASSPORT™ X Gaming Storage
Apple iPhone X
cloudandco Smart Cane
WD MY PASSPORT™ Gaming Storage
Dyson Supersonic™ Hair Dryer Fuchsia/Iron
SanDisk MicroSDXC™ for Nintendo® Switch™
Nespresso Creatista Coffee Machine
Toys for Boys
LaCie Rugged USB-C Portable Hard Drive
Onyx Smart Walkie Talkie
Google Daydream View VR Headset
Bose SoundLink Micro
Ubiquiti Network’s Front Row Camera
Lego Mindstorms EV3
Leica M10 Digital Rangefinder Camera
UBTech First Order Stormtrooper Robot
Propel Star Wars T-65 X-Wing Drone
Panasonic 4K UHD Blu-Ray Player and Full HD Recorder with Netflix - UBT1GL-K
Belkin Pocket Power 10,000mAh
Xbox One X
Toffee Bags Commuter Satchel
PETKIG Go Smart Dog Leash
Amazon Echo Bluetooth Speaker
Dearear Endear In-ear Wireless Earphones
WD MY CLOUD™ HOME Personal Cloud Storage
iRobot Roomba 980 Vaccum Cleaning Robot
Nest Protect Smart Smoke Alarm
Panasonic Hi-Fi - SC-UA7GS-K
Lexon Flip Alarm Clock
Tile Pro Bluetooth Tracker
Fallout Geeki Tikis
Raspberry Pi Starter Kit
Kogan Bluetooth Soundbar
3SIXT 3-in-1 Smartphone Lens Kit
Razer DeathAdder Expert Ergonomic Gaming Mouse
Ikea NORDMÄRKE Wireless Charging Pad
Urbanworx Full HD Action Camera
Logitech Doodle Collection Wireless Mouse
Panasonic Portable Splashproof Fun - RF-D20U
Most Popular Reviews
- 1 Huawei Mate 10 Pro Review: A solid winter flagship that cribs from the best
- 2 Google Pixel 2 review: not quite 'pixel perfect' but damn close
- 3 Google Home Mini review: a welcome addition to the smart speaker family.
- 4 Huawei Nova 2i review: Flagship features get smuggled into the mid-tier
- 5 Moto X4 review: This is what a world without MotoMods looks like
Latest News Articles
- Australian Destroyer joins in World of Warships
- Acer attempts to woo Australian gamers with reveal of its new Predator range
- Nintendo Switch software update: What does 4.0.0 feature and how to install it?
- Robot House announce vacuum-bot adventure game ahead of PAX Australia
- Wargaming launches ANZ servers for World of Tanks
PCW Evaluation Team
I would recommend this device for families and small businesses who want one safe place to store all their important digital content and a way to easily share it with friends, family, business partners, or customers.
It’s easy to set up, it’s compact and quiet when printing and to top if off, the print quality is excellent. This is hands down the best printer I’ve used for printing labels.
Brainstorming, innovation, problem solving, and negotiation have all become much more productive and valuable if people can easily collaborate in real time with minimal friction.
The print quality also does not disappoint, it’s clear, bold, doesn’t smudge and the text is perfectly sized.
The Huddle Board’s built in program; Sharp Touch Viewing software allows us to easily manipulate and edit our documents (jpegs and PDFs) all at the same time on the dashboard.
The biggest perks for me would be that it comes with easy to use and comprehensive programs that make the collaboration process a whole lot more intuitive and organic
- PC World 2017 Editors' Choice Awards Nomineees Announced
- LG V30+ review: The videographer's smartphone arrives
- Fitbit Ionic review: Impressive but not quite iconic
- What's the difference between an Intel Core i3, i5 and i7?
- Laser vs. inkjet printers: which is better?
Product Launch Showcase
- CCBusiness AnalystVIC
- FTSalesforce DeveloperOther
- FTMySQL Database Administrator- Meadowbank locationOther
- TPSecurity AnalystVIC
- TPTechnical Consultant - SOE, SCCMNSW
- FTData Analysts/ EngineersACT
- FTSenior IT Business AnalystOther
- FTSystems EngineerVIC
- CCServiceNow ConsultantVIC
- FTTechnical Support Engineer - OnsiteOther
- CCCloud Test EngineerNSW
- FTSenior Sales Executive ? Technology ConsultingQLD
- FTDigital BAOther
- TPDevSecOps SpecialistACT
- CCProject ManagerNSW
- FTBusiness Analyst/Functional AnalystOther
- FTICT Cloud Transformation Program Coordinator - SAPOther
- CCPlatform Engineer - Identity & Access Management - Contract - SydneyNSW
- TPSenior CRM Business AnalystQLD
- CCHP Service Management Engineer/adminVIC
- FTSenior Project Coordinator, Operational ProjectsOther
- CCReact.js DeveloperQLD
- CCChange Analyst-TransformationNSW
- FTProcess/ Reporting AnalystOther
- FTAutomation Test ManagerOther