I think I've wrote on here before about how I'd recently been playing Bloodborne. This game is my first experience with a From Software title, and I got hooked almost immediately, with the intensity of the combat and the exhilaration that comes from successfully defeating the many bosses.
Whatever the reason, I kind of put the game down a few weeks back, just before a big boss fight that I'd been struggling with. The boss was the Shadow of Yharnam, a fight where you need to fight three separate dudes with three distinct attack patterns and abilities. One throws fireballs, another wields a flaming sword, and the last uses a regular sword but pursues you the hardest.
I wasn't altogether too bummed by the boss fight, so I don't think that's why I put the game down. I think it was probably that I was busy catching up on One Piece so I pushed games to the back of my mind.
Another reason why I might've dropped the game for a small while was that I'd been beginning to feel a little drudgery in the game. I haven't gotten many of the Hunter's Tools (basically the spells of the game) and I haven't gotten any of the cool weapons; weapons that come as drops from enemies instead of those that you can buy in from the bath messengers. That combined with the distraction of reading over 600 chapters of One Piece and I didn't see a reason to boot the game up for a while.
The thing is then that I finished catching up on the One Piece manga yesterday, and I found myself feeling that strange emptiness that comes from the accomplishment of a goal you thought would never happen/take forever to do. I decided to boot my save up and plunge back into the fray.
Unfortunately none of these are stills taken from my playthrough, but they help to establish the scene. I booted the game up and found myself back in the Forbidden Woods, ready to go and fight the Shadow(s) of Yharnam. I went in prepared, this time seeing that I was able to summon an Old Hunter to help with the fight.
I know that there is a section of Bloodborne (and Souls too I guess) purists who think that a real playing of the game is done solo, but I am not a purist of any kind and I'm also a giant wimp, so if I can get the help I will, even if they're just cannon fodder. Which, generally, they wind up being. The NPC summons seem to generally just get shafted in these boss fights. Somehow, not this guy. I don't remember the name of the Old Hunter you can summon for the Shadow of Yharnam fight, but this dude threw DOWN. I immediately went for the non-fire wielding shadow and focused on killing that one first. All the while, the NPC held his own and did serious damage to the other two Shadows.
I killed my guy then went on, prepared to have to do the serious fighting for the remaining two only to find that NPC homie having already been handling it. We made short work of the remaining Shadows, and he even delivered the winning blow.
After that fight you move immediately on to Byrgenwerth, a smaller area on the map with some fucked-up looking enemies. There's not a whooole lot that is happening here - it's mostly just set up for the next Boss, and one that changes the dynamics of the game. This is where you will fight Rom, the Vacuous Spider. Once that happens, certain events transpire in the game and areas become changed or locked out.
I fought my way through this area, defeated the enemy Hunter, and got to Master Willem. I took the plunge into the Moonside Lake and confronted Rom for the first (of many) times. I got totally wrecked by him and his spiderlings.
Taking a mental step back from my attempts at the encounter, I did what most gamers do nowadays when they get a little stuck, or need a little guidance. I google'd that shit. Turns out, Rom has a weakness to bolt damage. Alriiight. Except I have no bolt anything, so I have to go find some.
At this point in the game, it's possible to have made it to a later part of the map, Ya'hargul the Unseen Village, by getting killed by a particular type of enemy. If you managed to get in there, there's an optional Boss fight that you can now do earlier that usual. This boss is Darkbeast Paarl, and he's a lighting wolf wraith thing who will drop an item that allows you to buy the bolt-damage inflicting Tonitrus from the bath messengers.
To make a long story short, I stepped back from one boss fight so that I could fight and kill a totally different boss, just to get a small leg-up on Rom. I went and hunted down new prey just for the sake of making this one fight slightly easier.
By the time all was said and done it was 2:30 in the morning and I had to go to work in too few hours. But know this, Rom. I am coming for you. Soon.