Since the very first trailer, Code Vain gameplay was compared to a widely known game, Dark Souls. Players were arguing which game is going to have more “Dark Souls” in it. Instead of arguing though, it might be a good idea to simply compare both games. Let’s see which one of them is harder and better.
You are going to die a lot – Dark Souls vs Code Vein
One of the basis in games such as Dark Souls is their difficulty level. Thus, comparing both Code Vein beta with Dark Souls gameplay might be a good idea. In general, the Code Vein beta allowed players to check two levels. One of which was finished with a boss battle, so it was possible to grasp the gameplay and the overall difficulty level of the game itself. After checking both games, it is safe to assume that difficulty of both of them is actually comparable. However, what differs is the approach to the battle. In each of these games, even weakest of enemies are going to kill you if you are not prepared for battle. Furthermore, button mashing is not going to work in either of them. What is also important, the basis of the fighting system is pretty much the same. They award proper dodging and correct timing of each action.
However, here is the place where differences start to appear. Authors of Code Vein decided to focus on a different approach. While Dark Souls was mostly a solo game, Code Vein forces players to cooperate with their companions. While vampires by themselves are very strong, alone they don’t stand a chance against enemies. Hence, the player must learn how to utilize team attacks and pick proper teammates in order to be able to fight with strong enemies. Furthermore, vampires have a set of skills called gifts. Gifts have a fair amount of variety, including sacrificing defense to greatly increase your attack for a brief period of time, or a projectile to fire long-range at enemies. Utilizing these gifts is a key factor in a battle.
Score: A tie. Both games have good mechanics, and both are demanding in terms of skill and overall patience of the player. Though they take a different approach to challenge. Dark Souls, relies on 1vs1 battles, while Code Vein gameplay requires you to utilize team tactics. Thus, the choice of the game should be based on what the player is actually seeking for.
From zero to…little less than zero – character development
As RPG games, both Dark Souls and Code Vain allow the player to customize their characters. With each level, the player can add points to various sets of skills in order to become a more powerful warrior. Dark Souls has a pretty basic model of development. At the beginning player chooses a class, facial and skin attributes and burial gift. Then he distributes a few points between such parameters like strength, dexterity etc. As it can be seen as nothing extraordinary, it actually is, because Dark Souls focuses more on the equipment of the character and abilities of the player himself. While stats are important, they are pretty basic and self-explanatory.
Code Vein offers also a rather typical system of character development with, a few interesting additions. Class building and Gift development have huge consequences in terms of gameplay, giving players the choice to play around their preferences. Furthermore, players are going to have much more freedom in the context of the character visual customization than in Dark Souls. A complex character editor allows for even cosmetic changes of the appearance. Anime graphics in general allow for much more in context of character appearance than normal games.
Score: Code Vein wins in this category by a huge margin. While both games have similar basis in context of character development, still Code Vein offers much more thanks to the gifts and class building, which focus on the vampire skills. Besides, an ability to change the appearance of the character is important for many players and Code Vein offers a lot in this context.
Code Vein vs Dark Souls – the story
Code Vein plot takes place in unspecified future. Mysterious thorns destroyed the surface of the Earth and wiped out human civilization. The only people still alive are Revenants, vampires with powerful abilities which help them in this harsh environment. The task is to simply discover what stood behind the apocalypse.
The Dark Souls story on the other hand, offers only the opening movie (at least at the beginning), which mostly covers an ancient war between lords and dragons. While you are an average “hero” who died even before the game started. Then you get an info about two bells you have to ring and that’s all. Not too much of a story. However, it is a wrong impression. There is much lore hidden in items, books etc. So much, that people were reporting new things about Sen’s fortress even after twenty or more visits to it.
Score: The point is going to be given to Dark Souls. Both games do not put much of emphasis on the story, focusing more on gameplay instead. However, the lore of Dark Souls is interesting to discover and hidden in many places. Thanks to this, the game is repeatable.
As it can be seen the choice between Dark Souls and Code Vein is hard. Each game shines in different aspects. However, if we would be forced to choose between one of them, then Code Vein would be the one we would pick. The battle system is more complex and allows for much more diversity than the system from Dark Souls. Dark Souls lacks in the context of teamplay or AI controlled teammates that might be able to help you and Code Vein shines in this aspect. This is why, it is considered as better than Dark Souls. Code Vein was announced to be released in 2018.