Humanity

Title

Humanity

Subject

A usable item and resource in Dark Souls.

Description

An item vaguely resembling the silhouette of a human with a white outline around them. In game, the item is described as a "sprite." When used, this item floats in the player's hand. The player then crushes it in their hand, greatly restoring the their health and adding to the Humanity statistic. There are many ways to obtain Humanity, but most notably, the item is often found on corpses or dropped by slain enemies. This implies that these tangible items are a representation for the abstract concept of humanity. However, the game reveals little about the nature of this item.

The idea of one's humanity is another that is important to Dark Souls' themes. Purveying the whole game is the threat of "going hollow." It is often theorized that one goes hollow in this world when they have fully given up. To connect this to a theme, the player by default is considered "Hollow." However, by offering the Humanity item to a Bonfire, they can become human. This would imply that giving up and going hollow is the antithesis to humanity. This is to say that the essence of humanity as a concept is the drive to continue fighting. One only loses their humanity when they have given up. This connection is further enforced by the gameplay elements of the Humanity item.

Upon using a Humanity, the most noticeable effect is the player being healed. By consuming Humanity, the player is able to take more damage and thus fight longer. One could consider this to be the player's hope being restored through their humanity, fending off the threat of dying and going hollow. The other effect the Humanity item has is increasing the player's Humanity statistic. This statistic, when increased with more Humanity, likewise increases other attributes of the player. Most notably, the player's resistance to particular status conditions increases. This reinforces the connection between humanity and the ability to persevere. By acquiring more Humanity, the player can push through otherwise debilitating conditions to continue their journey. One's ability to persevere is determined by their level of humanity, and vice versa.

Creator

Hidetaka Miyazaki

Source

Dark Souls

Publisher

FromSoftware Inc.

Contributor

Damian Kortus

Format

Video Game

Type

Fantasy

Files

Humanity.jpg

Citation

Hidetaka Miyazaki, “Humanity,” The Museum of Fictional Literary Artifacts, accessed December 1, 2022, https://mfla.omeka.net/items/show/411.