It's hard to tell if the folks at Bandai Namco and From Software are just confident, or if the early release in Japan forced their hand. Either way, today, more than a week before the release of the game in most territories, we get our first wave of reviews for Dark Souls III, supposedly the last in the challenging series of dark fantasy action-RPGs.
Overall, the scores are very positive, though a few of the less enthusiastic reviews seem to hint at a certain fatigue setting in among reviewers. Given this is the fourth title of this kind we got from From Software in about five years, it's not surprising to see reviewers come in with heightened expectations, which weren't always met.
IGN complains about framerate dips but is otherwise very positive, 9.5/10.
Polygon's Philip Kollar wasn't quite satisfied and feels the game was pushed out too quickly after Bloodborne, 7/10.
GameSpot complains about the camera and the endgame, 8/10.
VideoGamer.com decided to wait until they could test the online component before giving a score. They find the title to be a little too familiar, though the review is positive:
Destructoid also complains about the excessive familiarity, 8.5/10.
VG247 calls it "Miyazaki's triumphant middle ground" between the original and its sequel, scoreless.
The Jimquisition, 9/10 (8/10 on PS4 due to performance problems.)
Eurogamer feels like the game lacks the poetry of the original and wonders if the overt self-celebration wasn't mandated by its publisher. The game still gets an Essential nod, however.
Frugal Gaming is one of the few publications disappointed by the lack of references to Dark Souls II and hopes for a more complete edition later down the line, 8/10.