I preferred the first game. It was a love letter to The Legend of Zelda, except with its own unique art style, setting, and themes. The second one brought in so many new elements from all over the place. Even though most of them worked, it didn't feel as polished as the first game. I absolutely hated the loot system. In the first game, I was able to look forward to new gear and tools in each dungeon. If a chest didn't contain gear, it contained the Darksiders equivalent to a piece of heart. The replacement for that was randomly-generated loot, that ninety-percent of the time was trash? It really took the excitement out of finding chests, since I knew nothing cool would be in any of them.
Don't get me wrong, I had fun with the second game. But the first Darksiders was one of the best games of this gen.