If you’re new to Demon’s Souls, then the game’s mechanics might sound pretty confusing at first. That’s especially true for Demon’s Souls World Tendency – a mechanic that greatly affects gameplay but isn’t straightforwardly explained. What is it and how can you manipulate it to your benefit in Demon’s Souls? Let’s find out.
What Is Demon’s Souls World Tendency?
Our conduct and choices often affect us in good and bad ways in real life. Whatever we choose to do, consequences will always follow. The same is true in certain video games that have a “karma” or “morality” system. In these games, the environment and its enemies often react to players based on their alignment. That same system also exists in Demon’s Souls and it’s called World Tendency.
As a beginner player, your World Tendency will take a neutral scale. The actions you take will nudge it towards black or white and will affect the world around you. “Good” deeds will push things toward the white side while “evil” deeds will make your Tendency more black. However, it doesn’t simply shift towards pure white or pure black after just one decision. Each action builds on the other and there are shades of gray as you progress. The more intense your Tendency is in one way, the more the effects intensify.
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World Tendency Effects
In Demon’s Souls and Demon’s Souls Remake, World Tendency, or simply Tendency, goes one of two ways for each character. There’s White and Black Tendency, representing good and evil alignments. The more good you do in the game, the more your tendency goes White until it reaches Pure White. Conversely, doing evil deeds turns your character’s Demon’s Souls World Tendency darker until it’s Pure Black.
Now, why would you ever want to get a black Tendency? After all, doing evil deeds will surely become disadvantageous to you as a player, right? However, both alignments of your Demon’s Souls World Tendency have risks and rewards.
Whiter Tendencies will lower your enemies’ HP, attack power, and defense, allowing you to get rid of them faster. Moreover, your attack power can remain at a heightened level whenever you stay in Soul Form. However, the downside is that enemies drop fewer upgrade stones and healing items. They also give you fewer souls.
On the other hand, Blacker Tendencies will give you the complete opposite effect. All the enemies will be tougher to beat because of higher HP, stronger attack power, and better defense. In addition, you’ll lose the advantage of having increased attack power whenever you’re in Soul Form. Worst of all, your max HP is lower if your Demon’s Souls World Tendency is Black. Nonetheless, you might feel it’s the better option if your priority is getting more upgrade stones, healing items, and souls.
How to Tell World Tendency in Demon’s Souls?
If you’re a new player, you might not know how to tell which Tendency you lean toward. So, how do you know your World Tendency in Demon’s Souls? Thankfully, determining your World Tendency is pretty simple.
There are in-game Archstones that change state whenever you commit any good or evil deeds. You’ll find the state of each one in the menu under the World Tendency Tab. The brighter the Archstone’s state, the Whiter the Tendency.
This brightness or darkness of your Demon’s Souls World Tendency will exist on a spectrum. Generally speaking, there are eight rankings between Pure Black to Neutral and between Neutral to Pure White. Furthermore, every world has a specific ranking which you can find through the menu under the World Tendency Tab.
Of course, the Archstones indicating your Demon’s Souls World Tendency doesn’t change states immediately. You’ll have to travel to the Nexus every time you want to see the Tendency change. Once you do, you’ll be able to figure out your current state and plan your next steps.
On another note, the World Tendency section also shows your Character Tendency. This metric is somewhat similar to Demon’s Souls World Tendency. However, the metric is independent of your World Tendency and is more character-based. In general, it involves killing Black Phantoms – but that’s a different topic we’ll discuss later.
Demon’s Souls World Tendency Guide: How to Change Your Tendency
With that said, you might be wondering how to change your World Tendency to fit your desired strategy. Here’s a guide to help you understand what you can do to change your Tendency’s state in Demon’s Souls.
How to Get Pure White Tendency
How do you farm World Tendency in Demon’s Souls most effectively? Pushing your Demon’s Souls World Tendency toward the whiter end of the spectrum is pretty straightforward. That’s because there are a couple of sure-fire things you can do to make it happen.
The simplest and fastest way to farm for World Tendency is by defeating a boss. This will give you a +1 point towards the White ranking (boosting your Demon’s Souls World Tendency by about 45%). There are 3 bosses in most areas. Defeat every boss you find and you can easily achieve Pure White World Tendency eventually.
You can also do other things to boost your Demon’s Souls World Tendency. You can defeat the Red or Blue Dragon which also gives you +1. Alternatively, you can also vanquish Black Phantoms or Primeval Demons which will both give you +3.
There’s one little caveat about Primeval Demons, though. That is the fact that they only spawn when you possess a highly Black World Tendency. Moreover, only one of them appears in each world you visit. While they push your Demon’s Souls World Tendency towards White by a lot, they’re pretty hard to come by. However, we still mentioned them in case you find yourself too deep in the Black and want to switch back.
Black Phantoms also only appear when your Demon’s Souls World Tendency is near Pure Black. Hence, it’s not exactly the best method for farming World Tendency when you’re already in the White spectrum. Although it may be useful when you’re in Black. Apart from this, you can also defeat invading players to get to White. However, be careful of this method because losing will cost you World Tendency, too.
How to Get Pure Black Tendency
Shifting toward a Black Demon’s Souls World Tendency is also fairly simple. There are three main things you can do if you want to step into the dark side. The first one is dying while you’re in body form and outside of Nexus. This gives you -1 point and shifts your tendency toward black.
If you want something that harnesses more points, you can murder Old King Doran for -2. Lastly, you can just kill an NPC if you want to fast-track your way to the dark side. That’s because this action is truly sinister and gives you -3 points.
Of course, some of these things are completely preventable if you want to stay on the light side. After all, killing NPCs is entirely optional and you can go without doing so throughout your playthrough. However, you might find it difficult not to die while in body form. That’s why it’s always more advisable to use your soul form when you can.
What Happens in Demon’s Souls Online?
In the past, your World Tendency offline would be different from when you played Demon’s Souls online. Starting the game offline would immediately place you at Neutral Tendencies for all worlds. This is what you might be familiar with right now if you’re a new Demon’s Souls player. However, starting the game online would shift your Tendency toward the collective Tendencies of all online players back then.
Unfortunately, this feature was removed by the developers when they shut down online servers back in February 2018. Now, you can only play Demon’s Souls online through the PlayStation Network. Doing so will require a subscription, of course, but also opens you up to various modes. Some of these include PVP, co-op, and asynchronous multiplayer gameplay. However, your Demon’s Souls World Tendency will no longer be affected by everyone around you.
Bonus Tips for Managing Demon’s Souls World Tendency
Now that you know what changes World Tendency in Demon’s Souls, how can you take advantage of this knowledge? Here are a few bonus tips we’ve picked up that might just help you as you play the game.
Farming Demon’s Souls World Tendency Through PS5 Friends
If you’re playing Demon’s Souls on the PS5, we recommend finding a few friends who do the same. That’s because one easy way to cheese the mechanic and gain World Tendency is through invasion. Having your friend invade you and subsequently defeating them can easily boost your Tendency without much hindrance. Doing the same for them will also help them progress in case they need to achieve Pure White.
Of course, you might have reservations when it comes to this method. That’s because most people assume that invading someone else’s game might have adverse effects. However, does invading truly affect World Tendency in Demon’s Souls? Thankfully, the answer is no. Using the Red or Black Eye Stone to invade doesn’t shift your World Tendency at all, regardless of the results.
White to Black Progression
Unfortunately, not everyone is lucky enough to have friends who play Demon Souls on the PS5. Most people aren’t fortunate enough to afford a PS5, either. That’s why the majority of players will have to take the long route to progress through the game. What’s the optimal way to achieve that?
Well, we recommend doing the White to Black method to help you progress through Demon’s Souls smoothly. This just means getting through the game in Soul Form until you reach Pure White first. Afterward, just finish all the Pure White-exclusive events in the area and then drop down to Pure Black. This way, you can clear all important events while reaping the benefits of both Tendencies.
Demon’s Souls World Tendency Not Changing
So, you’ve finally gone ahead and killed an NPC to shift your Tendency more towards black. However, for some reason, your Demon’s Souls World Tendency is not changing. What happened? Is killing NPCs suddenly not sinister anymore? Has morality itself changed?
When this happens, don’t panic. Your Demon’s Souls World Tendency will change – but not immediately. That’s because you’ll have to go back to the Nexus for it to take effect. Killing bosses or NPCs won’t affect Tendency until you warp back to the Nexus and come back to the world.
How Does World Tendency Affect Your Playthrough?
The effects of your Demon’s Souls World Tendency are tremendous and can truly make or break your gameplay. What are its effects on the way you experience the game? Let’s take a look at both white and black tendencies to see what each of their effects are.
Having a White World Tendency in Demon’s Souls has tons of benefits. It can lower the HP of your enemies and decrease their defense and attack power as well. Moreover, there’s a higher chance your enemies will drop healing items compared to when you’re Black or Neutral. To top it off, your character gets an up to 20% boost in terms of attack power while in Soul Form.
Apart from this, you can get even more benefits when you achieve Pure White World Tendency. That’s because some events only happen once you’re at Pure White and are inaccessible otherwise.
Overall, the benefits of having White World Tendency are pretty great. You’re a lot more powerful and can easily chew through enemies leaning towards White. However, this doesn’t mean it’s all sunshine and rainbows when you’re leaning towards white. That’s because enemies will drop upgrade materials a little less. In addition, certain events within the game are only available to those with a Black World Tendency.
A Black World Tendency in Demon’s Souls will have the opposite effect on your experience. That’s because being on the blacker end of the spectrum gives your enemies more buffs. This means higher HP, defense, and attack power across the board. In addition, your character’s max HP will be limited when in Soul Form so things will be tougher overall.
However, what’s great about having Black Tendency is that it increases the drop rate of upgrade materials. You’ll also get more souls from enemies and find more Black Phantom versions of NPCs. Furthermore, only characters with a Black Tendency will encounter Primeval Demons. Lastly, like with White Tendency, having a Pure Black World Tendency also provides exclusive events per world.
Pros and Cons of Each Tendency
Regardless of which Demon’s Souls World Tendency you possess, there are pros and cons to each. Let’s break down all the advantages and disadvantages that both White and Black World Tendencies have to offer.
White World Tendency
Generally speaking, the developers of Demon’s Souls incentivize White World Tendency more than Black World Tendency. That’s pretty evident because of how many benefits you get with this Tendency during the game. For example, you’re much stronger in Soul Form this way and your enemies also get a lot weaker. It’s also much easier to play through the game in White World Tendency as opposed to Black.
In addition, you gain access to exclusive events when you’re in the whitest extreme of the spectrum. These Demon’s Souls Pure White World Tendency events only appear during that state. Otherwise, you won’t even be able to trigger them at all. However, the main cons are the poorer loot you gain as you defeat enemies. Sure, killing enemies can be satisfying but what’s the point if the rewards are terrible?
Black World Tendency
Most people automatically assume having a “White” or more “moral” Demon’s Souls World Tendency is the better option. After all, everybody wants to be the hero/good guy most of the time, right? However, that’s not always true in Demon’s Souls because having Black Tendency also has its perks.
For one, the higher drop rates enemies have means you can get rare items and more souls quicker. Black Phantom NPCs (which are exclusive to Black Tendencies) drop useful items and materials, too. Overall, having a Black Demon’s Souls World Tendency is the better option if you want more (and better) goodies. It’s especially useful if you need to find rare drops like the Pure Bladestone.
Furthermore, some Demon’s Souls World Tendency events only appear at certain levels of Black Tendency. Hence, you’ll need to step into the dark side if you want to unlock everything the game has to offer.
Every Demon’s Souls World Tendency Event
Looking for all the events related to Demon’s Souls World Tendency? Here’s a complete list of everything that exists so far.
At the Boletarian Palace, there are 2 main Demon’s Souls World Tendency events for White Tendency players. The first one occurs at 75% White World Tendency where both Red and Blue dragons vanish from the first stage. During this time, the gate to the Execution Grounds also unlocks.
Go a bit higher at 90% White World Tendency and you’ll find Executioner Miralda at the pit’s top area. If you can’t find the pit, it’s the one at the back of the gate around Boletarian Palace’s front side.
On the other hand, Black World Tendency players have a lot to look forward to here. That’s because there are 3 main events to look forward to. The first one is simple: Black Phantoms simply make their entrance when you’re at 50% Black Tendency. Bumping that up to 75% unlocks the Execution Grounds gate and unleashes the Primeval Demon in the Inner Ward.
Lastly, at 90% Black Tendency, you’ll find Black Phantom Executioner Miranda. You’ll also find that Black Phantom versions of NPCs begin to appear around this time.
Shrine of Storms
At the Shrine of Storms, White World Tendency players will need to be at 90% for anything to trigger. Once you’re at the proper level, Satsuki should show up in the level’s beginning. You’ll also find a dead body with Magic Sword Makoto in the hole where Patches pushes you into.
On the other hand, the events are pretty similar to Boletarian Palace for Black Tendency Players. That’s because Black Phantoms and Primeval Demons also appear at 50% and 75% Black Tendency. You’ll find the Primeval Demons spawning at the Ritual Path behind the illusory wall. However, instead of an Executioner, a Black Phantom Satsuki will appear at 90%.
In Stonefang Tunnel, White World Tendency players can only look forward to Scirvir the Wanderer at 90%. He spawns around the Armor Spider Archstone. In addition, the way to the Underground Temple will automatically unlock.
For Black World Tendency players, Black Phantoms and Primeval Demons appear, once again, at 50% and 75%. This time, Primeval Demons will spawn at the bottom of the Smithing Grounds. To get there, you can take the lift underneath the enemies that fling rocks. Apart from this, the Black Phantom Scirvir, the Wanderer also appears at 90%.
Tower Of Latria
At the Tower of Latria, you’ll find the clutter near Lord Rydell will clear up at 90% White World Tendency. Moreover, you’ll finally be able to open the gate to Prison of Hope East’s second floor. There’s also a bridge that will spawn at Upper Latria that should lead to Lord Rydell’s cell key.
On the other hand, Black World Tendency players can look forward to mostly the same things. Both Black Phantoms and Primeval Demons still appear at 50% and 75% Black World Tendency. The Primeval Demons can be located around Upper Latria.
At 90% Black Tendency, a Black Phantom version of Lord Rydell will show up. You’ll also be able to get the Sodden Ring in Upper Latria’s Prisoner Horde.
Valley of Defilement
Lastly, White World Tendency players can look forward to Selen Vinland’s appearance at the Swamp of Sorrows at 90% Tendency. You’ll also be able to find a Black Phantom version of Garl Vinland after vanquishing Rotting Raven’s final boss. Lastly, players will find a ladder that leads to Istarelle in the Depraved Chasm.
For Black World Tendency players, you’ll find Black Phantoms and Primeval Demons appearing at 50% and 75% once again. The Primeval Demons should be located somewhere in the Depraved Chasm. At 90% Black Tendency, you’ll find a Black Phantom version of Selen Vinland.
Does Character Tendency Matter In Demon’s Souls?
Demon’s Souls World Tendency is entirely separate from Character Tendency. However, it is pretty similar in principle and affects your gameplay in similar ways. That’s because, like Demon’s Souls World Tendency, Character Tendency is based on morality. It essentially indicates how prone your character is to do good or bad deeds. However, unlike World Tendency, your Character Tendency is specific to your character and is harder to manipulate.
Effects of Character Tendency
Like Demon’s Souls World Tendency, Character Tendency that leans toward either side will have different effects. For one, the game has special events reserved for players with a specific Character Tendency. Hence, you’ll get exclusive content depending on your character’s propensity to do good or evil.
In addition, having a whiter Character Tendency will benefit your character in various ways. For example, your character will deal more damage while in Soul Form with a White Character Tendency. Having a Demon’s Souls Pure White Character Tendency boosts this even more. Moreover, you can even obtain a Friend Ring from the Monumental with a Pure White Character Tendency.
On the other hand, having a Black Character Tendency will give your character a huge disadvantage. That’s because having a Black Tendency will lower your character’s HP while in Soul Form. Meanwhile, Pure Black will deplete your max HP even further and give you a more difficult time during the game.
However, there’s one silver lining in all this and that is the summoning of an NPC named Mephistopheles. You see, you can only summon him into the Nexus when you have a Black Character Tendency. Why would you want him around? That’s because this NPC gives you assassination quests that yield amazing rewards for killing other NPCs.
Despite how important Demon’s Souls World Tendency is as a mechanic, it’s not clearly explained when you first play. Nonetheless, it’s an incredibly important mechanic to wrap your head around especially because of how it affects your gameplay.
Having a White World Tendency will make things easier for you but will also give you worse loot. In contrast, having a Black World Tendency will make enemies tougher and the game generally harder. However, you’ll get much better rewards from the enemies you do defeat. With this dichotomy at play, shifting your Demon’s Souls World Tendency becomes a thing of perspective. Which advantage or disadvantage is worth more to you? Moreover, how much are you willing to put up with?
With all that said, shifting your Demon’s Souls World Tendency is, thankfully, pretty easy. The actions in the game are pretty black-and-white and there aren’t any morally gray actions to confuse the system. World Tendency then becomes just a stat you can manipulate depending on your goals.