The 'Gods', even besides the Fire going out, were ineffective rulers at best. They lost the 'annals', their family was dysfunctional by any sane standard, they had the whole ordeal with Priscilla and the Occultists (and she was originally going to serve an in-game purpose similar to the Maiden in Black/Emerald Herald, suggesting a possibly more active resistance to the 'Gods') and they outright abandoned Anor Londo and seem to have not been very active since.
The 'Gods' seem to have enslaved the race of Giants. Aside from a handful of those who rose, they're all covered in chains and performing types of tasks and in such awful locations as to suggest that it's forced labor.
The practice of such things as cutting out the tongues of those who speak out against the church is apparently rather common. Even though the Crestfallen Warrior is wrong about Anastacia herself, the practice is apparently common enough that she easily could have been such.
Everything about Anastacia points to a pretty crappy Church. Not only were her tongue and feet taken, she was isolated and locked up in a little cave-and she thinks she deserves it. We're never given any hint that she did anything to bring that upon herself; and even besides that, that speaks volumes on the culture-and religion-she was brought up in.
All undead-even those that aren't Hollow-are absolutely terrorized and abused. This has more than a little to do with Lloyd's stance on the undead. The Hollow Merchant's (Male, possibly Female as well) make the treatment of Undead-even those that are still plenty sane-quite clear. At that point, it's not just safety, it's bigotry, and the religion preached by the 'Gods' plays a part in that.
There's a fair amount of evidence that suggest the Way of White sends its members who become undead to Lordran to find kindling or die-and that it's no real loss if they die.
The mere existence of the Firekeepers-especially Anastacia-speaks volumes on how far the 'Gods' and their servants are willing to go to stay in power.
The existence of the Occultists point to dissatisfaction with being subjects of the 'Gods', albeit how much of this is greed and how much is a response to tyranny is difficult to determine.
Oscar-the devout Knight who sent the Chosen Undead on his quest in the first place-was originally going to play a much more active role and eventually take the other path-side with the serpent the player did not. If the player sided with Frampt to Link the Fire, he calls the player character 'a foolish slave to the Gods'. Note that this was a devout knight who originally aimed to Link the Fire himself, not someone already against the 'Gods' or even neutral.
We were never given any reason whatsoever as to why the Lords committed genocide on the dragons. As far as we know, the dragons were content to just sit there as always until the Lords attacked them.
The Gods have most certainly deceived humans, as Kaathe said; virtually no one knows about humanity's true connection to the Dark, or perhaps even of the Furtive Pygmy's existence. Humanity is not a subject race to the 'Gods'; they are another race that, while 'weaker', stands apart from the 'Gods'. There is no good reason for the 'Gods' to lord over humanity as they do.
There's some compelling evidence that the Darksign itself may have been a curse placed on humans by the Lords-watch Vaatividya's video on Nito.
We also now have the ending to Dark Souls 2, where's made blatantly obvious that it doesn't matter whether the player Links the Fire or spreads the Abyss. Considering how awful the Abyss is, how bad must that mean keeping the 'Gods' in power must be to match it?
I am the Grey that shall become Red, the Ysbrid that shall become the Ddraig, the cloud and lightning. Red aether art I, the Heaven/Venom of Ben Nevis
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