When you're invaded in a Dark Souls game, it's never certain whether the trespasser is there to kick you off a bridge, offer up a helping hand, or judge your outfit. And until now, playing soccer with a phantom has never been one such possibility. To see what I mean, you'll need to download and install the Lothric Olympics mod, one of the most impressive Dark Souls 3 mods I've seen yet—and I've seen Pocket Souls, a mod that turns the game into a grimdark Pokemon.
But what Pocket Souls does for PvE, the Lothric Olympics does for PvP, creating whole new games within Dark Souls 3 rather than adding new cosmetics or tweaking basic variables.
The Lothric Olympics mod description puts it plainly, asking what the Ashen Ones do in their spare time. Dark Souls 3 is pretty difficult, so I figured they'd kick back and relax, sip on some craft estus, but mod creator Wallacetheswifter thinks they'd instead kick around a Rock Lizard in a soccer field suspended over Archdragon Peak or stumble through an elaborate, devious obstacle course in the Undead Settlement.
Rock Lizard soccer is basically Rocket League, but with feet. You'll need to round up at least two other people to play, though five including yourself are ideal: one to serve as the referee that summons the rock lizard and players while the rest duke it out on the field.
Try to use your light attack and you'll kick instead, the action overwritten to make the mode a bit more accessible. Friendly fire is on to discourage players from crowding the lizard, stunlocking one another endlessly with kick after kick. Backstabbing is possible too, so do try to restrain yourself and coordinate with rather than kill your teammate. The ref can always step in and reset the ball if things get out of control, and if anyone falls off the field, they'll respawn at the center.
Things get wilder in the Undead Settlement obstacle course. Think of it like Road Rash, but with feet and a much more dangerous Undead Settlement than you're used to. It's not just a simple sprint through the vanilla level—traps and obstacles and enemies are piled up at every turn. There's a stretch where your encumbrance is artificially increased, slowing you to a crawl while harried by a CPU-controlled phantom and an endless volley of spears tossed by that giant from across the way. The young white branch won't save you here.
You'll need to avoid massive corkscrews oscillating in and out of a wall right above a cliffside, and stumble through a shack occluded with toxic gas that a Boreal Outrider Knight calls home. I'm partial to the skeleton cage labyrinth near the end, with peppered with a minefield of perfectly camouflaged skeleton cage enemies. All this, while your opponents harass you with whatever they're carrying, be it lighting bolts or huge hammers. Everyone's going to make use of the infinite FP buff you get at the starting gate. Don't miss out.
To see the Lothric Olympics in action, check out the video above. You get a full match of soccer and the obstacle course, with commentary (subtitles are provided) and some nice graphics that keep tabs on the score. If you can wrangle up some buds, it looks like a great excuse to dip back into Dark Souls 3. Before we get to rekindling the First Flame, why not rekindle some friendships by kicking the ol' stoneskin around?