The Dark Souls and Demon Souls games are some of the hardest mainstream console games in recent memory. Making it through any of these games without a single death is an amazing accomplishment for hardcore gamers. For the average player, making it through with less than 100 deaths is a major feat. There are many ways you can die in Dark Souls, but here are some of the most common deaths.
Not Respecting Bosses
Unless you skip an area and come back to it much later in the game after leveling up a few dozen times, it's safe to say that every boss can kill you in one or two hits. There are a number of different healing items in the game, but few instantly replenish your health, and you can't attack or guard while consuming these items. If you get hit, you will be in a rush to regain that lost health. This will cause you to use a healing item when you "think" the boss isn't going to attack. It's at this point that you will die because the boss will attack just as you're using the healing item.
You'll also get antsy as you're fighting a boss, especially if you're doing well and its health is low. You'll start to think, "Just one more attack and the boss goes down." While this is likely true, you still need to take your time in order to land that final blow. If you begin to rush, you will get careless. It's common to see someone die because they attacked a boss one too many times, drained too much stamina and couldn't guard against the next attack.
Falling, Falling, Falling
You’d be surprised how easy it is to fall off a cliff and die in Dark Souls 2. Some cliffs are easy to see and shouldn't pose much of a threat, but it’s easy to fall off a path while strafing around an enemy. Perhaps you accidentally take a hit and start running away to avoid dying and losing all of your souls. Maybe you're locked onto an enemy and can't see how close you are to the edge.
It's rare to fall and not take any damage, but you don't have to fall a great distance to die. The more health you have the harder it is to die from a fall, but it's not until much later in the game that you have enough health to survive a good number of falls. Not to mention you generally fall while in combat, which means you've probably taken a few hits. It's not classy, but it's far too easy to die multiple times just from falling in the wrong spot.
Attacking a Group of Enemies
The quickest way to die in Dark Souls 2 is to simply engage a group of enemies as though you actually have solid defense. It's bad enough that almost any enemy in the game can kill you with one or two hits. Imagine what happens when you engage three or four enemies at once. Sure, if you have a shield that absorbs 100 percent damage you can fend off some of the attacks, but that shield has a very limited coverage range. If an enemy is slightly to the side, their attack will go right through your shield, and don't even think about getting hit from behind.
You may even think you're doing well. Perhaps you're rolling to avoid attacks, using your shield only when directly facing the enemy and using a solid hit and run tactic. But then you realize your stamina is limited, and suddenly, you no longer have enough to roll to avoid the next attack. Not to mention the fact that you lose stamina every time you block an attack. If you don't lower your shield, you won't be able to regain that stamina. That's when you die.
Retrieving Lost Souls
Any Dark Souls veteran knows the pain of losing all of your souls due to an unwelcome death. What's even worse is when you're heading back to the previous location to retrieve those lost souls... only to die again, losing those souls for good. When you die during a boss battle it's even worse because you almost always have to traverse a great distance, fighting off every single enemy that respawned when you died, just to get back to the boss area and hopefully grab your souls before the boss kills you again.
When this happens three or four times, you start to get a little impatient. You know that if you die you'll lose 15,000 souls and the pressure is on to stay alive. Maybe you think you can run past a group of enemies, but then you run out of stamina and they catch up to you. Maybe you think you can grab your lost souls before the boss attacks. Whatever the case may be, you're not thinking straight because you're desperately trying to reclaim all those lost souls.
For more Dark Souls 2 tips and strategies, be sure to check out our complete walkthrough and boss battle guides.