Every Dark Souls game gets rare sale for huge discounts ahead of Elden Ring's Shadow of the Erdtree DLC

There's only a little over a month or so until the Shadow of the Erdtree DLC drops for FromSoftware's 2022 Game of the Year-winning ARPG Elden Ring, and hype for the expansion is starting to escalate. Beating the game and making sure you've got a strong build ready to go is a great way to kill that time, but if you've taken care of that already, a good way to spend it is checking out some of FromSoftware's older titles — and thanks to some major deals, there's never been a better time for PC players to do so.

Right now, every Dark Souls game is on sale for 57% off at Steam key seller Green Man Gaming — a slightly higher discount than the 50% markdown available on Steam itself. That means both Dark Souls: Remastered and Dark Souls 2: Scholar of the First Sin are $17.20 (down from $39.99), while the Deluxe Edition of Dark Souls 3 is $36.54 (was $84.98). Additionally, the standard edition of Dark Souls 3, its DLC Season Pass, and individual Ashes of Ariandel and The Ringed City expansions are all 57% off as well, which you may prefer to get if you either don't want the DLCs or already own some content and just need to get what you're missing.

Dark Souls: Remastered | $39.99 $17.20 at GMG (Steam)

Dark Souls: Remastered | $39.99 $17.20 at GMG (Steam)

The first Dark Souls game isn't where Soulslike gameplay originated — we have Demon's Souls to thank for that — but it is the title that made it popular. The remaster of the 2011 classic features high-res textures, 60 FPS support, and password-based co-op summoning, and also includes the fan-favorite Artorias of the Abyss DLC.

Dark Souls II: Scholar of the First Sin | $39.99$17.20 at GMG (Steam)

Dark Souls II: Scholar of the First Sin | $39.99 $17.20 at GMG (Steam)

Dark Souls 2 may be considered the black sheep of the trilogy overall, but it's still a great game, and one you should definitely play if you're checking out the series. The Scholar of the First Sin edition includes all of its DLC and some updated item and enemy placements.

Dark Souls III: Deluxe Edition | $84.98 $36.54 at GMG (Steam)

Dark Souls III: Deluxe Edition | $84.98 $36.54 at GMG (Steam)

My personal favorite of the trilogy, and the one with combat most similar to Elden Ring's. Dark Souls 3 is the series at its most refined, with exhilarating boss fights, tons of build variety, nuanced PvP systems, and the weapon art moves that inspired Elden Ring Ashes of War.

Also see: Dark Souls III (base game) | Season Pass (both DLC) | Ashes of Ariandel | The Ringed City

✅Dark Souls is perfect for: Players who like the sound of FromSoftware's beloved tough-but-fair design, lots of action RPG build variety, Metroidvania-like exploration, and intriguing dark fantasy stories

❌Avoid Dark Souls if: You want to play something on the easier side, prefer heavily structured linear levels, are looking for a straightforward narrative, or don't like fantasy worlds

Before Elden Ring, there was Dark Souls

The Ashen One faces off against a Lothric Knight in Dark Souls 3. (Image credit: Bandai Namco)

Elden Ring may have been the game that rocketed FromSoftware into the mainstream — it sold 12 million copies just a few weeks after its launch — but long before it was in our hands, the studio was refining and perfecting its trademark stamina-based ARPG gameplay with the Dark Souls series. After spawning the "Soulslike" genre with 2009's Demon's Souls, the developer built on that foundation over time with the three Dark Souls titles that would grow to become quite popular.

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2011's Dark Souls, remastered in 2018, is the first "Souls" game that truly got big, with fans falling in love with its methodical and tough-but-fair combat systems along with its huge Meroidvania-like dark fantasy world players could explore non-linearly. All the different weapons and spells you could use to build your character were also a big draw, as was Dark Souls' cryptic narrative, its wealth of fascinating lore, and its cast of few, but very memorable NPCs.

2014's Dark Souls 2 was similar, though was criticized for having jankier animations, a world that felt less cohesively put together, and a "quantity over quality" approach to bosses. Still, it's a great game in its own right, and notably, it introduced the "power stancing" mechanic (dual-wielding two of the same weapon type to access a unique moveset) that would go on to reappear in Elden Ring. Scholar of the First Sin, a 2015 rerelease of the game, updated it with tweaked enemy and item placements and included all three of its excellent DLC add-ons.

The Chosen Undead and a summoned ally challenge one of Dark Souls' boss creatures. (Image credit: Bandai Namco)

Finally, there's 2016's Dark Souls 3, which is Dark Souls at its most refined. The series' measured combat mechanics became more fluid and a bit faster in the trilogy's final game, and though its world was considerably more structured, its individual levels still had plenty of the interconnectedness that fans had come to love. It also featured weapon arts — essentially Elden Ring Ashes of War — as well as a huge number of different weapons, armors, and spells. Personally, I think it's got FromSoftware's best boss fights and storytelling as well, and The Ringed City expansion concludes the series perfectly.

All three games are some of the best PC games and best Xbox games for fans of ARPGs, and are absolute must-plays if you enjoyed Elden Ring. I strongly recommend getting them now while they're discounted this much, as historically, sales on FromSoftware games are very rare and their deals are never better than these ones. The 50% Steam markdowns last until May 16, and I expect that's when Green Man Gaming's will end as well, so take advantage of them while you can.

Brendan Lowry

Brendan Lowry is a Windows Central writer and Oakland University graduate with a burning passion for video games, of which he's been an avid fan since childhood. You'll find him doing reviews, editorials, and general coverage on everything Xbox and PC. Follow him on Twitter.