The last blog post was focused on how the design element of game mechanics are used in the video game Dark Souls on the Xbox 360. This post will be based in the same game world of Dark Souls but will focus on how the game uses the design element of atmosphere.
Atmosphere – A world of evil…
In video games, atmosphere seems to be the one design element that can turn a good game into a masterpiece. Atmosphere in Dark Souls ties all the other design elements together to create the amazing yet evil world that exists in the game.
Throughout the course of the game, players will venture through numerous environments each having a different look and feel than the previous. At the beginning of the game the player is stuck in a dark and lifeless prison where they cannot wait to see the sun again. The art style and visual effects used to create environments like the prison, work so well together that they influence the player’s experience.
Sound in Dark Souls is done in a very unique way. At moments in the game, the only sounds the player hears are the breaths of the evil waiting for them around the corner. With no music, the smallest noises become loud to invoke feelings of fear and desolation within the player. Music in Dark Souls is used only at specific times such as when a player can momentarily rest or when a player encounters a true boss battle.
Dark Souls is one of the most unique video games on the market today. The game pushes the player to uncomfortable limits at times while offering an experience and a feeling of accomplishment that is unparalleled.