Three years ago – during the Xbox conference at E3 2019 – we met Elden Ring. This is FromSoftware’s new ‘soulsborne’, which features the participation of writer George R.R. Martin. This writer is known for being the author of the book series Song of Ice and Fire, which was adapted by HBO in the Game of Thrones series. This union between George R.R. Martin’s talent for creating worlds and the dark fantasy vision of Hidetaka Miyazaki’s games, takes us on a crusade through the Midlands to become the Lord of Elden. It’s time to know our opinion in this Elden Ring review.
|Platform||PlayStation® 5 / PlayStation® 4 Xbox Series X | S / Xbox One / Steam|
|Special Feature||Secrets all over the game|
Caught in a war between demigods in Elden Ring game
Bandai Namco previously revealed some information in the Elden Ring story trailer.
The character we control in Elden Ring is called “Lightless.” He is a warrior guided by the lost grace of the past, whose mission is to restore the Elden Ring. When it was destroyed and turned into fragments, which are known as the “Great Runes”, it ushered in an era of decay and misery in the Midlands. This kingdom came into conflict due to the lust for power of the demigods, descendants of Queen Marika. These characters possessing the lineage of “The Eternal One” -as Queen Márika is also known- took possession of the “Great Runes”.
The theft of the rune of death started an event known as The Night of the Black Daggers.
After the theft of the rune of death, whose power is the one that delimits life and death, the demigods were attacked by an unknown force. Godwyn was the first to fall causing the destabilization of Queen Márika and starting a war between demigods. Who is behind the theft of the rune of death? What will happen when we restore the Circle of Elden? All these answers can be found during our journey.
As usual in Hidetaka Miyazaki’s games, the story of Elden Ring can be discovered by reading the description of the objects. However, in Elden Ring the NPCs and their tasks will reward us with good information about every corner of the Midlands.
An open world to die and… die
With Elden Ring, FromSoftware has taken the step to the open world for its ‘soulsborne’ or ‘soulslike’ games. At first glance, one might think that this might negatively impact a game of this style. However, with Elden Ring it has been proven that far from being a negative point it is something that can be helpful for new players to enjoy the game without being stuck in one spot. This – while it may still happen, – is no longer a wall in difficulty.
Players now have a robust map at their disposal to explore. However it is likely that after a while – when we have identified areas of interest and already possess a better command of our character – we will end up using the fast travel option more. This is possible thanks to the discovery of the “places of grace” or bonfires for the veterans of the genre.
On the map of Elden Ring we have the possibility to leave up to 100 marks, with which we can identify places of interest on the map of the Midlands.
In the Midlands we can find an endless number of materials, which will help us in the creation of objects. These will serve to replenish our health, heal us from negative states, imbue our weapons with a specific power or create arrows or daggers of various types. Additionally, while exploring the Midlands on Torrente’s back we will find optional bosses, caves with treasures or traps, catacombs and dungeons where bosses and in some cases juicy rewards await us.
A Lightless with many initial paths
The narrative takes on an important role as we explore the Midlands. On our journey, we will witness the wars between the different factions in the world of Elden Ring. Intervening in these clashes of enemies and defeating them will help us obtain more runes to level up our Lightless and consequently develop our character build as we wish.
In Elden Ring we will have access to a rich character creator. In addition, players will have the option to choose between 12 different classes. This first decision is quite important, since the rhythm of the first hours of our adventure will depend on it and will determine the type of play style that we will use with our Lightless. From this point on, everything depends entirely on the player’s skill.
This is not to say that you have to be a “soulsborne master” to advance or enjoy Elden Ring, as there are many ways to leverage your character’s stats in favor of fighting. Fortunately, the movement of the Lightless -without reaching the dynamism of the Wolf in Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice-, is of great help for new players to adapt to the fighting style in this ‘soulsborne’ from FromSoftware.
Magic, strength, faith or occult
With high intelligence, faith and arcane level we will be able to have access to magics that will help us to face enemies at a distance.
Our Lightless will not only have the basic soulsborne tools at their disposal. In ‘Elden Ring’ we will be able to equip our weapons with War Ashes. These grant weapons, with an available slot, abilities that consume PCs. In addition to the War Ashes we will have at our disposal the possibility of summoning spirits -in specific areas of the game- to assist us in fights. The depth of Elden Ring’s combat, although it can be overwhelming at first, is extremely rewarding when mastered.
Leveling up our weaponry and verifying that there is synergy between it and our characteristics is critical to combat.
Fortunately, Elden Ring -just like Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice- has integrated tutorials that help -without bothering players who come from other FromSoftware games– to understand the options we will have at our disposal.
A visual as well as musical journey
Our journey through the Necrolimbo -or other zones of the Midlands created by George R.R. Martin- is adorned by large structures, villages or destroyed and abandoned places with a great artistic design. Additionally, the musical arrangements by the talented Yuka Kitamura -known for her participation in the soundtrack of Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice and Bloodborne- provide an epic atmosphere for Elden Ring’s combats.
Our review of Elden Ring was done on a PC with an AMD Radeon 5700 GPU, 16 GB of RAM and a Ryzen 7 3700X processor. However, again the optimization was not up to par for a FromSoftware game. In our experience during the review of Elden Ring we have experienced similar sensations to those experienced in Bloodborne (city of Yharnam), only this time the drops and instability of the ‘frames’ in areas with higher density of enemies or vegetation are much more intense.
Additionally, the PC version with which we have reviewed Elden Ring suffers from violent moments of stuttering. Hopefully this will be mitigated when Bandai Namco releases the game’s day one patch.
Elden Ring VerdictElden Ring
Storyline100/100 The bestA deep and rich storyline makes players to open wikipedias about Elden Ring.
Graphics / Design100/100 The bestAwesome graphics. Some locations worth a real-motion picture. Giant bosses impress a lot.
In-app purchases100/100 The bestYou pay for a game once. There are no hidden payments.
Controls80/100 Very goodControls are hard for new players, but this is because of the game's genre.
- Open world full of secret areas and optional bosses
- Great level design and epic musical arrangements
- A robust story with plenty of NPCs to contextualize it
- On a technical level the game needs optimization
- Hard difficulty for newcomers
- Some bosses are repetitive with no visible changes in their patterns