The Let's Play Archive

Dark Souls II

by IGgy IGsen

Part 5: Huntsman's Copse

Showing some descriptions in the post might be a good idea. Even though I showed them on screen in the videos a couple times I only did so very briefly to not disrupt the flow of the videos. I might bring up some of the descriptions that I think are relevant in future posts and retrofit old update posts with them. But don't expect that to happen over night.

And uh. If the image for the boss of this area seems of a little bit lower quality than usual that's because I had to scan it myself from the strategy guide (which I don't think is very good, by the way)

What a horrible night to have a curse. And yes. It took me till the seventh episode to actually show leveling up.

Y'know, I'm a pretty big fan of Castlevania so I thought: "why not make a Simon Belmont build". We're wearing the Varangian torso piece. Which is the relevant part for this get-up I believe. You can mix and match the gloves and pants as you see fit, really. In fact, I don't fully remember what the parts I used actually are. Might be hard leather or knight leggings. I went with a hood too, just because my guy doesn't have long enough hair to be a Belmont. This build was surprisingly fun, but let me tell you that the Old Whip I was using was only upgraded to +1 (out of 5) because I didn't have the materials necessary to upgrade it further. It still did a decent job. I might run a build like this for fun eventually and perhaps I'll revisit it. The downside of whips is that their durability goes down faster than most other weapons and they do really bad against armored opponents. So you'll want to bring a back-up of sorts if you want to use a whip. If I ever do a proper Belmont build I won't use a bow, of course and I'll need to find another back-up melee weapon that can serve as a back-up in case of the whip breaking or armored dudes showing up. Maybe an axe?

Skeleton Lords

This is quite an interesting boss. First time I fought him I was really disappointed because he just seemed like a fight against a couple random mooks. I managed to defeat them all but did not catch on to the main mechanic behind the fight until the end. The individual Skeleton Lords aren't too dangerous. Not even when fighting all three of them at once. There's another reason you don't want to do that. Whenever you kill one of the Lords a number of skeletons will spawn and the type of skeleton will vary depending on the lord you killed. The Scythe Lord (left-most at the start) will spawn four armored skeletons, nothing special, really. The Halberd Lord (middle) will spawn a couple bare sword and shield skeletons. Much like the armored ones they aren't anything special. If you made it this far you should be able to deal with them. The most dangerous lord is the Staff Lord. He throws fireballs at you so it's best to keep a pillar between you and him. And if you kill him he will spawn four of one of the most infamous enemies from the first game: Bonewheel Skeletons. For those not savvy: They are wooden torture wheels with Skeletons attached to them. Well, it's probably the other way around, but who cares? The skeletons utilize the wheels as weapons. By basically revving up and running you over. They aren't as dangerous as they were in the first game but you still don't want them to catch you off guard so it's best to kill them as they spawn. Sadly you can't get their wheel as a shield anymore. It was the best shield for shield builds.

Depending on which lord you kill first and how many you kill at once this fight will become harder or easier. The smartest way to go at it is to just kill one lord at a time and deal with his spawns. If you want to intentionally make it harder for you you could just kill all the lords at once and deal with a ton of skeletons at the same time. I don't think there's another way to have to deal with this many humanoid enemies at the same time anywhere else in the game. I'm not sure if they intentionally designed the fight with the purpose to make it possible for you to choose your difficulty that way because they probably just wanted you to figure out how the boss works and beat it accordingly. I'd like to give them credit for that though.

Boss Weapons
Soul of a Skeleton Lord, who reigned from deep within the Huntsman's Copse.
The Old Iron King commanded the capture of all Undead, but those charged with the task were overcome by the curse.
Give it to Straid to make...

Roaring Halberd

Moveset/Weapon Class: Halberd
Physical Damage (+0/+5): 72/180
Dark Damage (+0/+5): 100/130
Scales with: DEX (B), DARK (C)
Requirements: 16 STR, 12 DEX, 12 INT, 12 FTH
Damage Type: Slash

In-Game Description:
Halberd forged from the soul of a Skeleton Lord. Imbued with the power of dark.
The unsettling skull carved into this halberd recalls the final moments of the Skeleton Lord from whom it was created.

The description of the Soul and weapon basically give as all the lore of Huntsman's Copse that I'm aware of. Sadly this area doesn't really have much in terms of Lore, it's a pretty long area but not much thought put into it. The Soul also namedrops the Old Iron King, though. Whom we may meet in the future.

The red phantom Artificial Undead we met near the waterfall are one of the enemy NG+ enemy placements I like. Basically you see this big red dude spawn in front of you. From your last playthrough you might still remember that a NPC phantom will spawn if you proceed towards it, so the natural reaction would be to turn around to get that guy away from there. Which is when you notice the other red phantom Artificial Undead behind you. That's just the mix of cruelty and anticipating the player's behaviour to make it less unfair I can get behind of.

Item Descriptions
Undead Lockaway Key
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.

Black Hollow Mage Set
worn by Hollowed Drangleic mages.
Drangleic mages wore different garb depending on their sex. What function this served, however, is unknown, as with many old practices. This is a women's hood/robe.
Note: We didn't get it in the video. It's a rare drop from the Necromancers and they don't respawn.

Warlock Mask
Strange mask worn by Aldia warlocks. Grants dark defense, and increased soul acquisition.Warlocks in Aldia gave rise to wicked things, and even forbidden rituals upon themselves. No one knows if they were born mad, or if their own misdeeds drove them over the edge.
Effect: Increases number of Souls acquired by 2.5%
Note: Drops from Merciless Roenna, so we didn't get it either. To grind I'd need to use Bonfire ascetics to make her respawn.

Ricard's Rapier
Dark Souls II: An exquisitely decorated rapier.
Said to belong to a prince who appears in an ancient tale.
There are numerous variations of the story of the prince who wandered the lands and eventually became Undead.
The majority of these tales end in tragedy. but there are some exceptions.
Dark Souls: A rapier with intricate decorations. Chosen weapon of the famous Undead Prince Ricard. Ricard's exploits are told in a monomyth. He was born into royalty, but wandered the lands in a fateful ill-conceived journey. He became Undead and disappeared up North.
Note: A monomyth, according to Wiktionary is a cyclical journey or quest undertaken by a mythical hero. In Dark Souls we find someone who presumably is Ricard, since he's using the Rapier in Sen's Fortress. He wears the Elite Knight Set.

Soul Spear
Dark Souls II: Sorcery that fires souls shaped into a spear. Pierces enemies, causing heavy damage.
This spells was said to have been devised by a master sorcerer, but his name is long forgotten.
Dark Souls : Sorcery developed by Big Hat Logan. Fire piercing soul spear.
A symbol of Logan's strength, the soul spear is referenced repeatedly in the legends, and is said to be on par with Lord Gwyn's lightning

Pharros' Lockstone
Stone activating a creation of Pharros the Vagabond.
Pharros the Vagabond was a legend who wandered the lands, creating contraptions to help those in sincere and dire need.
The scope of his travels was so wide that the Pharros has been mistakenly credited with many inventions that were crafted by others