Links of note:
Beta Dialogues part 1
Beta Dialogues part 2
Beta Item Names
Beta Item Descriptions
This is all overwhelming information so I will try to do it on the most orderly way possible.
Question 1: Is Dark Souls 2 a prequel, or a sequel?
The game was generally assumed to be a prequel, but several of the item descriptions challenge this assumption and make the issue more complicated. Let's try to find Dark Souls references in these descriptions to try to find out...
This seems like a normal reference to Gwynevere. Not much to see here, I believe, except that the existence of the Princess of Sunlight is known.An ancient miracle, said to have been passed
down by an ancient warrior in the service of
the Princess of Sunlight before his death.
This miracle boosts the attack and defense
of the user and people nearby for a short
period of time
Aside from the reference to the "Iron King", which we know nothing of (this will be pattern, basically all lands and characters mentioned in these descriptions are new) this description tells us something important: This land had fallen to the Undead curse, and it had fallen a long time ago.Some sort of key wrote:Key to the prison in the Huntsman's Copse.
The Undead hunts during the reign of
the Iron King took place in this forest,
and the cells in which the Undead were
held still stand there to this day.
However, the march of time has eroded
any difference between the captors
and the captives
In Dark Souls 1, while references to other lands are sparse, we know that most of these lands have normal humans (like Sieglinde) and that they hunt undead, killing them or sending them to an asylum as it happens to the player character. The only kingdom we know that has fully fallen to the undead is Balder. Still this is not really helpful, as it does not mean that there couldn't be others to suffer the same fate, or even ones that fell before Balder.
Let's see the Estus Flask now
This starts to get curious. "Some kind of link between the Estus Flasks and the bonfires" is suspected, but not really understood, the details of which having been "long forgotten". If we compare it to the Dark Souls description...A green glass bottle of unknown make.
Fill it with Estus at a bonfire, and drink
from it to restore HP.
There is some kind of link between the Estus
Flasks and the bonfires that illuminate the
world of the Undead, but knowledge of this
has been long forgotten.
All that is known now is that this flask
remains a prized possession of the Undead.
While also vague, it cites the "Dark Tales" which explain how the power of the Estus comes from the Fire Keepers. Said Dark Tales quote is also intentionally vague, but the mere mention of the Dark Tales hints at some part of this world's culture, alike to the Chosen Undead "prophecy", which refers to the Estus' origins in that specific passage. This clashes with the Dark Souls 2 description, obviously. "All that is known is that this flask remains a prized possession of the Undead".Dark Souls 1 Estus Flask Description wrote:The Undead treasure these dull green flasks.
Fill with Estus at bonfire. Fills HP.
The Estus Flasks are linked to the Fire
Keepers. The Dark Tales also make reference:
An emerald flask, from the Keeper's soul.
She lives to protect the flame,
And dies to protect it further
Interesting, and this is not the end of it.
A folkloric master archer whose name is now lost to time? Oh myLeather Hat Description wrote:
A commonplace leather hat with a feather.
Favored by hunters skilled with a bow, this hat was based on the one worn by a folkloric master archer whose name is now lost to time.
This seems to clearly show that the Dark Souls 2 description is from a long time after the Dark Souls 1 description. The name of Pharis was completely forgotten, his figure shrouded in legend. The look of that Leather Hat is identical to Pharis's hat, by the way.Pharis's Hat Dark Souls 1 Description wrote:
Broad-brimmed hat favored by the archer hero
Pharis was an accomplished archer, and though
he was human, he ranked alongside Hawkeye
Gough, one of the Four Knights of Lord
Gwyn. His hat is universally popular among
This, however, complicates things further:
Chaos Hood Description wrote:Pyromancer's hood.
Has the power to resist fire.
Pyromancy was developed over time through practice of the Art of the Primordial Flame by the pyromancers who inherited this art.
Pyromancy... there are things here that also point to this being set in the future of Dark Souls, the most obvious one is the name of the art, pyromancy, which refers to the alternative to Fire Sorcery that came about after the creation of the Flame of Chaos and the fall of Izalith (this would rule out the possibility of a prequel or at least limit the time period where it could have taken place). Also pyromancies are called ancient and "passed down through word of mouth", which would fit with something that thrived on the Great Swamp.Combustion Description wrote:One of the most ancient pyromancies, passed
down through word of mouth. Releases an
intense flame in front of the user.
It is unknown who created the first pyromancy,
but ancient pyromancies such as this are
being passed on by an unknown practitioner
of the art to this day.
However, there are some inconsistencies, like the spells being casted through a catalyst, and a weird reference to the "Art of the Primordial Flame".
Another weird description that points to a distant future of Dark Souls. These people do not know about the relation between lightning and the Sun, they do not know about Gwyn, and as we have seen they also do not know what links Estus Flasks to bonfires.Lightning Spear wrote: A miracle that launches a giant spear of lightning.
This miracle came into the possession of
the Melfian clergy through ancient lore.
Little is understood about the source of
its power. Perhaps this miracle belonged
to some long-forgotten hero.
Gwynevere seems to be the only one of the previously known gods to remain known.
Melfia is a new location, the only thing we know so far is that magic warriors seem to be popular there.
Now for the last item description of this post...it's from some sort of mage hood and...
Some Mage Hood wrote:
Hood worn by the great sorcerer Straid.
Straid was a sworn brother-in-arms of
the ancient king of old Olaphis.
Together, they slew the Ancient Dragon,
and tasted omniscience.
However, even the renowned wisdom of
Olaphis was not enough to control the
peculiar magic birthed by his arts.
Old Olaphis? A sorcerer and a king slew *the* Ancient Dragon, and acquired omniscience? Is this some legend born of a bastardization of Gwyn and Seath killing the Ancient Dragons?
What peculiar magic? Soul sorcery? It does not look dangerous to me. What does it do, awake the Old One? Or was he the wretch who invented Dark Bead?
Questions, questions. This last description is by far the most puzzling.
Anyways, that's it for the first post, this already got quite long. Feel free to comment on any of this or other item descriptions or dialogue I did not link yet. I will try to make another of these posts soon-ish, focusing on some things I did not mention yet.
Speculation for everyone!
tl;dr: What? Seriously? you were expecting one?
I am afraid that you are unable to learn lore.
The basic framework, you see. It cannot be taught.
Oh, do not fret. Life isn't all about lore. You will find your own way.
Don't frown with regret; peer forward with your head held high.
Keh heh heh
Last edited by CaligoIllioneus on Sat Oct 05, 2013 1:54 am; edited 2 times in total