Dark Souls 2 pre-orders now include early access to useful weapons

As if guaranteed defeat and crushing frustration weren't enough to tempt players into pre-ordering Dark Souls 2, Namco Bandai has sweetened the pot by offering early weapon access to those who pre-order the game's Black Armor or Collector's Edition incarnations.

Far from a game-breaking boon, this bonus offers players a choice between five weapons and their complementary shields that would otherwise not be available until a few hours into Dark Souls 2. None of the armaments on offer appear to provide any spectacular bonuses, but they are a drastic improvement over the arguably functional weapons players would otherwise start their quest carrying. You'll find a full list of these readily available killing implements past the break.

As mentioned above, earning these weapons early will require players to pre-order either the Black Armor or Collector's Edition versions of Dark Souls 2. We covered the contents of the $120 Collector's Edition in September, but the Black Armor Edition includes a special metal case and a soundtrack disc alongside the game for $60. Neither the Black Armor Edition nor the Collector's Edition have yet been announced for the PC iteration of Dark Souls 2, though that's to be expected given that the game's release date is still in question.
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NAMCO BANDAI GAMES EUROPE ENHANCES ITS LIMITED BLACK ARMOUR AND COLLECTOR'S EDITIONS WITH EARLY ACCESS TO BLACK ARMOUR WEAPONS PACK

PARIS, FRANCE – 12th February 2014 – Leading video game developer and publisher NAMCO BANDAI Games Europe S.A.S. announced today that fans who pre-order the DARK SOULS™ II Black Armour Edition or the DARK SOULS II Collector's Edition will receive an exclusive voucher allowing players to unlock early use of weapons contained in the Black Armour Weapons Pack. These inventory items will help players as they begin their journey to the sequel of what many critics and gamers call one of the most challenging experiences in video game history. Coming in Europe and Australasia on March 14, 2014 for the PlayStation®3 computer entertainment system, Xbox 360 games and entertainment system from Microsoft and shorty after for PC. DARK SOULS II will top all fans' expectations with two exclusive editions and never-before-seen challenges!

The DARK SOULS II Collector's Edition will feature a premium quality Warrior Knight figurine, an exclusive hardbound art-book filled with stunning images coming out of the talented artists' minds at FromSoftware and a sizable full-colour fabric map of the DARK SOULS II game world.

On top of this exclusive offer, survivors who pre-ordered the game will instantly have access to the Black Armour Edition. This Pre-Order offer contains a metal case, the game disc and the official game soundtrack.



To reward fans who pre-order the DARK SOULS II Black Armour Edition and DARK SOULS II Collector's editions, FromSoftware has made 5 weapon packs available for early access at the beginning of the game. Discover the five set of items of the early access Weapons Pack:

Black Flamestone Dagger and Black Flamestone Parma – A dagger and shield encrusted in Black Flamestone both found in the Gutter at Black Gulch. Even though they are heavier than a normal dagger and shield, the Flamestone crystal's unique properties make the dagger extremely sharp and give the shield high resistance to damage.



Yellow Quartz Long Sword and Yellow Quartz Shield – A straight sword and small shield hardened with yellow quartz both uncovered at the bottom of the Iron Keep. Even though these items can break easily due to their high level of corrosion, they are exceptionally light and their power to inflict damage has not declined.



Bound Hand Axe and Bound Wooden Shield – A brutal hand axe and shield found in the Undead Purgatory. Both items are wrapped in chains and thorns to cause additional bleeding on enemies. Both the axe and shield have diminished in overall slashing power but their ability to deliver pain has been deliberately increased.



Homunculus Mace and Homunculus Wooden Shield – A mace and shield with spherical protrusions found in Aldia's Keep. Although heavier than normal maces and shields, the hard protrusions greatly increase the striking power of the mace as well as the shield's defensive capabilities.



Transgressor's Staff and Transgressor's Leather Shield – A staff and leather shield entwined with an unknown and seemingly lackluster element; these items are found in the Dark Chasm of Old. They have become a catalyst for sorcery and hex and cause an effect known as Darkness.



The Black Armour Edition and its rewards are also included in the very exclusive Collector's Edition! In order to guarantee one of these versions, customers will need to pre-order as they are limited!

"DARK SOULS II will offer hardcore fans and all gamers a new challenge to overcome. The word "challenge" will reach a whole new level with this new opus!" said Hiroaki Ochiai, Senior Vice President of IP Strategy at NAMCO BANDAI Games Europe. "With this Black Armour Weapons pack offering an early in-game access to five sets of weapons and shields, adventurers will most certainly welcome a little help to survive the dark world surrounding!"


DARK SOULS II will launch in Europe and Australasia on March 14, 2014 on the PlayStation 3 computer entertainment system and Xbox 360 games and entertainment system from Microsoft with the PC edition to follow shortly in 2014. To learn more about DARK SOULS II and pre-order the game, please visit http://www.DarkSoulsII.com.To stay up-to-date with DARK SOULS II, please visit the DARK SOULS Facebook page at www.facebook.com/DarkSouls.

This article was originally published on Joystiq.