I have re-written my original review because it did not do justice to the game. I am a few hundred hours into the game and feel better placed to review than before. I have upped my score to a 3 because I still think some of the down sides outweigh the upsides. I understand this was the first port to PC for the designers so it is worth noting that. At the price you got a lot of gameplay for your money and the new game and player versus player can help to extend that. On the whole I would recommend this game for the more hardcore gamers. Casual gamers will hate this game.
1 - The game is hard and challenging and you have to remember what you are doing because there are no quest markers to remind you. This makes it both rewarding and frustrating at times.
2 - There are a hundred or so different magics and a similar number of weapons and armour. Along with the freedom to build your stats as you like you can configure your character to be anything from a knight tank to a powerful mage.
1 - The games camera can be really frustrating and has caused me to die on several occasions by making me fall of a ledge (the tree down to Ash Lake is a good example of this). Sometimes the camera is way too quick and other times its too slow.
2 - The port was a little lazy showing the controls using the xbox joypad rather than showing the current key configurations set.
3 - When interacting with NPCs you can accidentally attack them. If you do you cannot talk to them again unless you visit an NPC on top of the Undead Parish, after the gargoyle fight) and pay a fine in souls. I only found this out after killing Andre the blacksmith. This locked out my ability to do some upgrading.
4 - The graphics sometimes look look quite dated. There is an unofficial patch that helps with this that makes it a bit prettier at higher screen resolutions. I've added this patch and it works OK for me.
5 - You cannot play online without a valid code. My code had already been registered when I bought it, possibly someone using a keygen because the game was brand new. After speaking with Microsoft and the software providers (not Play) they agreed to send me a code to allow online play. You can play through the single player without this but miss out on some of the online features, like summoning other players to help in those difficult boss fights.