Souls games ranked
Here is a ranked list of all the souls games (Images via FromSoftware)

FromSoftware, the developer of some of the best games ever created, has made the history books with the success of Elden Ring. After winning the Game of the Year award two times now, we can assume that every game created by them is great. Souls games made by FromSoftware are all fantastic titles in the scene. There are seven released to date (not including the remade or remastered versions).

For the fans of action RPGs, you should try the games listed on this list. If you crave challenging hardcore boss fights in a dark fantasy setting, these games are the go-to choices for you.

This is a ranked list, thus it is a very subjective one. Every game is just magnificent in its kind and the difference between the ranks is very fine. Here are all the souls games, ranked:

Disclaimer: This article is very subjective and does not attack anyone else’s ranking. This just reflects the writer’s views on the matter.

Souls games: A ranked list of all the 7 of its kind

7) Dark Souls 2 (2014)

Souls games ranked Dark Souls 2
Dark Souls 2 (Image via FromSoftware, Bandai Namco)

Platforms: PC, PS3, PS4, Xbox 360, and Xbox One.

Cost: Paid

You might already start raging after looking at Dark Souls 2 at number 7. But if you put it up against its counterparts, Dark Souls 1 and 3, you will notice a lot of gaps. Made by the reserve team in FromSoftware, this game just could not cope with the high standards Miyazaki prefers.

Be it the boss battles, or the environmental setting, Dark Souls 2 was inferior in almost every way compared to the other games on this list. It is no wonder that this is a great game, but it lacks creativity compared to the other souls games. Moreover, you have to invest in agility points to start moving smoothly in the game.

Overall, this might be a great game with a great story, but still, it fails to compare against the challenge of the other souls games on this list.

6) Demon’s Souls (2009)

Souls games ranked Demon Souls
Demon’s Souls (Image via FromSoftware)

Platforms: PS3

Cost: Paid

Demon’s Souls got a remake in 2020, with better visuals and frames, but the main aspect of the game more or less remained the same. This game is the father of all souls games, as it was FromSotware’s first ever souls title. Released in 2009, it was fairly new for all the fans to have a game with lore-heavy content, non-linear levels with RPG elements, and hard combat mechanics.

The combat and movement, along with the graphics and gameplay were not smooth at all. Due to its old age, Demon’s Souls seems to be even more irrelevant in 2023. The in-game world is huge as it is made of a combination of five different worlds, with four levels each. You can choose where to begin your journey after completing the first area. The levels were enormous with little to no checkpoints in between them. Thus the walk to the boss fights always tend to be long.

But again, Demon’s Souls is a fantastic game to start the souls journey, and it forms the bedrock of all the other games on this list.

5) Dark Souls (2011)

Dark Souls
Dark Souls (Image via Bandai Namco)

Platforms: PS3, Xbox 360

Cost: Paid

If Demon’s Souls is the father, Dark Souls is the one that gave guidance to all the following souls games. With the high difficulty and beautiful RPG elements, this game framed the entire lineage of the franchise. Dark Souls series is a trilogy of games, and the first game is the progenitor of its play style.

The combat mechanics and gameplay are much smoother in this title, compared to Demon’s Souls. It is a very well-balanced game with some of the greatest enemies in Soul’s games. The game also has a great DLC, which some have said that it is better than the base game. Thus overall it is fairly a pretty good game with straightforward mechanics and linear gameplay. Exploration is always rewarded too.

You might be wondering why the game is at number 5 on this list. Well, that is simply because now we are entering the realm of masterpieces by FromSoftware, the top 4.

4) Dark Souls 3 (2016)

Souls game DS 3
Dark Souls 3 (Image via FromSoftware, Bandai Namco)

Platforms: PC, PS4, Xbox One

Cost: Paid

Dark Souls 3 is better and more polished than any of the other souls games released till 2016. The beautiful environment with lore-heavy boss fights and other enemies just fit in completely. The balance between gameplay and difficulty is ideal in this game.

Some of the best boss battles all of the time are a part of this game. Bosses like Darkeater Midir, Aldrich, and the Nameless King are just legendary. The final boss of Dark Souls 3, has arguably the best design among all three Dark Souls titles.

The DLCs of the game known as Ashes of Arandiel and The Ringed City are also epitomes of the souls formula. Some of the best bosses such as Sister Friede and Slave Knight Gael will make suspect your skill level up until now. Thus it is by far the best Dark Souls game in the franchise.

3) Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice (2019)

Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice (Image via FromSoftware, Activision)

Platforms: PC, PS4, Xbox One

Cost: Paid

Many people will disagree with Sekiro being this high up on this list, but the fact that it was the first Game of the Year made by FromSoftware, says something. This game completely ditches the souls formula and combat. It revamps everything souls games was known for. The setting went from a dark fantasy world to feudal Japan from the Sengoku Era. The combat went from linear, to fast-paced parry-based combat.

The game is comparatively short but with a great storyline. It can feel more like a boss run where you can randomly encounter any boss at any point in time. Here you play as a ninja called Wolf, whose appearance or weapons you cannot change throughout the game (unless with mods).

As mentioned earlier, the combat is much more fluid and fast-paced. You have to learn the parry mechanics of the game and various other parkour skills, including skills with prosthetics and a grappling hook to tackle all the bosses in the game. Thus Sekiro feels to be much more challenging than the other games on this list. Bosses like Genichiro, Demon of Hatred, and Owl (Father) are some of the best bosses in the game. The final boss fights too, is arguably the best and the most difficult boss fight FromSoftware has ever made. It gives tough competition to Malenia, The Blade of Miquella from Elden Ring.

2) Elden Ring (2022) 

Elden Ring FromSoftware
Elden Ring (Image via FromSoftware, Bandai Namco)

Platforms: PC, PS4, PS5, Xbox One, Xbox Series X|S

Cost: Paid

Elden Ring is the most recent and successful title made by FromSoftware. The Game of the Year winner in 2022 has sold more than 20 million copies worldwide and its DLC is currently in development. You get back your dark souls formula after Sekiro while being in a heavily RPG-based open world. If you want to know more about the upcoming Elden Ring DLC, look here.

Elden Ring has combat similar to Dark Souls, but the exploration opportunity is immense. With an extensive range and types of bosses, with increasing difficulty depending on the location and your level, the game never fails to amaze its fans. Every item, location, scrub enemy, boss, and much more, have its distinctive lore. Some of the boss battles in this game are nothing short of poetic and surreal, like Dragonlord Placidussax.

The game is massive. The Lands Between is a huge area with different provinces under it. Limgrave is an excellent starting area for exploration. It will roughly take you 100 hours to finish the game with reasonable amounts of leveling and exploring. Amazing visuals with modern-day graphics and animations, beautiful sound design, and fluid mechanics, all make the game legendary even though it was released just over a year ago.

1) Bloodborne (2015)

Bloodborne (Image via FromSoftware)

Platforms: PS4

Cost: Paid

It was easy to give Bloodborne the number 1 spot because it is a masterpiece that probably even FromSoftware will not be able to replicate again. Welcome to the world of Bloodborne where you as a hunter, are supposed to kill demons who were humans once before. The dark horror setting of Yharnam truly sets it apart from the rest.

People who once desired to transcend humanity, have now become tragic demons, and infest Yharnam. Due to the extensive variety of enemies, you will have to face mobs a the same time. Your skills will truly be tested in this game. Bloodborne does not limit itself to the customary swords or halberds. It has Molotov cocktails, guns, and bombs too to help you in combat. You can even transform your weapons into something deadlier.

Sadly, PC and Xbox players have not been able to get a taste of what Bloodborne is like. Poetic boss fights and lore-heavy sequences are some of the best features of this game. What separates it from the other games on this list is the attention to intricacy. Every small question in this game can be answered by any Bloodborne player, as the game makes you drown in it. The final boss battle, might not be the hardest one FromSoftware has ever made, but surely is the most poetic one. It still gives chills to the fans, years later. Thus it surely deserves the number 1 spot on this list.

This concludes our list of the top souls games ever created from Demon’s Souls to Elden Ring.

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Do you agree with our list? Let us know your thoughts below!

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Souhardya Choudhury is a veteran musician and an audio engineer but has now been writing as a hobby for a long time. He is currently pursuing Media Science and Film Making as his major. He also considers himself a hardcore gamer as souls games like Elden Ring, Sekiro, and Dark Souls series are his go-to genre for gaming. RPG open-world games come next.