Dark Souls II: Crown of the Sunken King review – deadly traps in beautiful locations

Dark Souls 2 DLC Crown Of The Old Iron King 1

Kicking off the "Lost Crowns" DLC trilogy, Sunken King takes players into the depths of Drangleic to face terrifying new enemies and ever more deadly traps.

While it's as controller-shatteringly difficult as anything in the core game, what really impresses is its dedication to, of all things, scenery. For a solid five hours (likely longer given how often you'll die), battles rage through some of the most disturbing yet beautiful locations seen on a current generation console.

The new Sanctum City area, helpfully furnished with a fast-travel bonfire right at the start, allowing access or departure at will, also introduces some environmental features.

Huge pieces of architecture slide in and out of reach through the manipulation of ancient switches, the more puzzle-oriented progression changing the gameplay significantly. A welcome update to Dark Souls II, then, although with two chapters yet to arrive, perhaps a bit light on overall content.

Powered by Guardian.co.ukThis article was written by Matt Kamen, for The Observer on Sunday 10th August 2014 00.04 Europe/London

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