The first anime also has a completed Abridged Series done about it; so if someone wants to know the base premise, but doesn't want to get into grimdark territory, that'd be good for them.
That’s true and while I do think the Abridged series was actually one of the good ones, it’s still a parody so you’d miss some of the immersive quality of it. The writing, sound design and the soundtrack of the 90′s anime is something I wouldn’t want someone to miss. The 90′s anime is significantly less gory than the manga anyway, but I do get where you’re coming from, it still captures the darker tones that permeate the series pretty effectively.
I would definetly recommend it anyway because it’s good for goofs and the guy who made it obviously loves Berserk and is self aware of the abridged scene at the time so it doesn’t feel disingenuous. n_n