If there's supposed to be literally miles of land between each zone, then there shouldn't be any big connection between areas. That only further supports the idea that transitions are NOT LITERAL, so the elevator to Iron Keep, or the one to Dragon's Aerie both make no logical sense when looked at as literal rather than figurative. Should they have had loading screens between each area so you could grasp this great distance better? That's up to you to decide. Maybe they should have put a map on the loading screen between zones, too, with a dotted line showing your travel path from one zone to the next. But those don't fit the Dark Souls style.
There shouldn't be a harbour in the middle of the fucking ocean, an area positioned where it should be available from other areas, or an elevator heading up from a windmill. These are all things that mean the developers are being lazy about worldbuilding
. There's no free pass on creating areas that actually have good transitions or maps that make you go "that can't possibly
make sense". If something like Fallout can accurately position and place settlements based on an actual map of Nevada, or Skyrim can do an entire country and its environments in miniature, then I expect a game going for a big open world to at least meet minimum standards of "oh, so that's where I came from/what's in the distance". Only two places in DS2 seem to bother: Majula can see Heide's and you can see the path down to Brightstone Cove. DS3 isn't as huge but its areas aren't interconnected in the same way as DS1--but when you look at it, even where there's weird transitions you can see where things match up. Hell, I was standing around in Smouldering Lake and realised you can see Irithyll through the wall.
It's not expecting much to have the levels form part of a matched whole rather than being designed almost in isolation.
So the game requires you to use a mechanic provided in the game to do some side quests, and you don't like it? That's actually really kinda dumb. It's like saying you hate recruiting new crew members in FTL and that it's required if you wanna unlock the crystal ship. Or that you hate followers in Skyrim and how the Dawnguard DLC, along with a couple of other questlines, requires you to have a follower for parts of it. Or better yet, it's like saying you don't want to just talk to NPCs in different places just to see their stories in DS1, because that's only a basic level of interaction, and it should require you to summon them or have them summon you so you could share in "jolly cooperation".
I don't like it because it's a mostly-singleplayer game in a series that's marketed as being hard and challenging, and I have
to summon NPCs in order to do these questlines. Running entirely counter to the game's core concept is a pretty bad step.
And two of the places you can summon Lucatiel are major bosses!
You hate powerstance. Okay.
Yes. It's sloppily done, overpowered, and makes weapons less unique as you'll tend to use the same generic set of animations. :T
Brown and veiny:
The player can end up all manner of fantastic colours and be bright purple even without hollowing, and their hollowed colour seems to derive from their skintone. As opposed to Lucatiel apparently getting covered in moss and Lenigrast looking like Ganondorf.
As for left-handedness, I'm a southpaw. Isn't that a good enough reason for wanting to be able to have a lefty character? Or maybe a Link cosplay, or another lefty character. And besides, what extra complexity is there? Is it really complex to let a left-handed weapon deliver backstabs and ripostes? Or to use the exact same damage calculations as the right? Equal functionality for both hands isn't adding complexity, making them different is.
That's not a good enough reason to add it to the game. Having to make it so that the different actions can dynamically change hands and can't both be the dominant hand at the same time, with From's track record, is a very good way to add potential complications and the mother of all bugs. Parrying with both hands at once, double backstab opportunities, even more chance of buffing things that aren't meant to be buffed or weird spell interactions...
It's not something that anyone like From should be adding without significant gameplay reasons for it.
Mind, I'm not sure why they didn't
do it properly when they added the Majestic GS. Entire game without parries or backstabs because the weapon's designed to be used in the left hand and it can't do that. Was using Faith as well, so that wasn't a good choice. They gave themselves a gameplay reason to do it and... didn't?