Unless you've been trapped in a cave for the past three weeks, you'll have probably noticed that this new game called Dark Souls is actually quite hard. If you stick with it for long enough to overcome the ludicrous mean-streak, things quickly get better: Make use of the tips in our handy beginners guide - and you may well soon find yourself enjoying what we think is one of 2011's most exciting games.
Whilst the elation of eventual success makes your perseverance eventually worthwhile, that doesn't stop Dark Souls from occasionally being a massively unpleasant twitjabber. After spending more than 60 hours with the game, I'm happy to share the 10 most evil moments that Dark Souls has to offer.
If you're keen on avoiding spoilers, treat anything below this point as some sort of deadly trap designed to destroy your eyes and brain. Otherwise, dive in - and be sure to share any moments that you think we've missed!
1. THE BASTARD FROGS
Oh no, I've fallen down a hole! Oh no! There are lots of frog-things rushing up to get me, and they're spitting out some sort of weird grey gas! Hang on... Why won't my health bar go up beyond the halfway mark? Surely that will reset to normal once I die, right..? Oh-ho. Oh-ho-ho. Once you're cursed, the only way to restore yourself back to normal is by chipping together 4,000 souls for a one-shot cure, or heading off to find a healer in an evil area filled with murderous ghosts. Realising just how screwed you are at a point like this caused me to invent a numerous selection of brand-new expletives almost immediately - including Blizzchips; Fuzzlegunner; and Thunderous Muffle-chucking BlopJoggers.
2. TOO MANY DEMONS
If fighting the Taurus Demon on the bridge seems like a bit of a nightmare, wait until you get into the second half of the game. Standing on a tiny island surrounded by lava, you'll spot a distance bunch of about six medium-sized chaps minding their own business in the lake of magma. Fire an arrow across, and you quickly grab their attention - with a couple of the beasts running towards you for what seems like forever, in a hugely Monty Python-esque manner. After 15 seconds, it becomes evident just how far away they actually were - with Dark Souls once again giving you its trademark cheeky-grin whilst suggesting you should try and take on six Taurus Demons whilst surrounded by lava. If you need me, I'll be crying in the bathroom.
3. INVISIBLE KNIGHTS
Oh look, an enchanted forest. Well, what could possibly be worse than tree-monsters trying to eat my face off? Invisible Knights, apparently. Semi-Transparent Knights would be more accurate if you're going to be entirely pedantic, but the overall gist remains the same: Even though you can just about see them, their faintly ethereal nature means you can't lock onto them during a fight - making blocking their attacks and making clean strikes an impromptu master-class in carefully controlled combat. You know what? That's exactly what I need to deal with right now. Cheers, Dark Souls.
4. THE GHOST HOUSE
Oh right, so you're cursed and you can't afford to buy a cure? There's a bloke in New Londo who'll sort you out for free - but unfortunately he's standing on the roof of a house filled with ghosts. You know, they're a bit like the ones from in Casper, except they've got arms made of blades and want nothing more than to see you die alone, repeatedly, and screaming at the sky. I'm afraid the luxury of stairs isn't on offer - you'll have to climb a ladder in a chimney while ten of the gits stab you through the walls with their unloving-limbs. Are you alright? Do you want a tissue?