zephid7 wrote:Was it XP in Diablo? I thought it was just gold and equipment.
In Diablo you dropped XP as well, but it wasn't as big a deal since XP didn't pull double duty as gold. But yeah, there are actually very few things Demon's Souls pioneered, with the major one being its multiplayer system (summoning, invasions, messages, player bloodstains, ghosts, world tendency, all intertwined with the single player). Everything else was used in well known games from a long time ago, up to and including the storytelling. It might be hard to see at first, but the way Dark Souls tells its story has a lot in common with the way Legend of Zelda does, only LoZ doesn't have the benefit of item descriptions unless you read the manuals. I was having lore discussions for LoZ long, long before Dark Souls ever came out.
IMO, Soulslike is a misleading term. A game can be like Souls, but Souls itself is a callback to games from 25+ years ago when the priorities were challenge, atmosphere, and polish. Saying a game is a soulslike is, to me, a pretty good sign that the person saying it hasn't played the classics. Salt and Sanctuary probably could be called one (it's clearly inspired by the game, including some of the multiplayer ideas), but it borrows just as much from Castlevania and other classics on top of having enough of its own identity to not fit neatly under a single umbrella with other so-called soulslikes.