Pop culture obsessives writing for the pop culture obsessed.

Maybe this Ken Burns spoof can teach us what the hell Dark Souls was about

To promote the release of Dark Souls III, the game’s official Tumblr launched a contest that challenged fans to create videos the would help new players understand what the hell was going on in those first two games. As anyone who’s played Dark Souls can tell you, that’s a lot easier said than done. The story of the Souls universe is hidden, sometimes deeply, beneath the games’ surface, and its creators leave plenty of room for interpretation and speculation. It’s why videos explaining Dark Souls lore have become an industry unto themselves. But the folks at Nerdy, Inc. did something a little different for their contest submission.

Instead of slapping some melodramatic narration over meticulously captured game footage, they’ve fashioned their explanation of Dark Souls mythology into a short spoof of Ken Burns-style documentaries. In between “3-D recreations” (in-game footage) and so many slow zooms into screenshots, two “historians” quickly rundown the story of The Chosen Undead and the world this warrior has been tasked with navigating. There are lots of fun little touches for the initiated, and the interplay between the historians—one giddy and poetic, the other skeptical and matter of fact—is a clever reflection of how diehard fans actually approach dissecting and talking about Dark Souls’s endless mysteries.

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