Elden Ring was originally revealed at E3 2019, but since then FromSoftware has been very tight-lipped about the whole project. We knew it was going to be a collaboration between Hidetaka Miyazaki and George RR Martin, and that it would be the largest game FromSoftware has tackled to date, but we knew little else leading to a drought of information with some wondering if the game even existed at all. Well, that doubt has been removed because Elden Ring now has a trailer and a release date, and it’s not too far away at all.
The long-awaited trailer for Elden Ring was shown off at Summer Games Fest 2021, with Geoff Keighley almost welling up when introducing it, which is great to see because he’s very passionate about what he does. Also, this is likely to be one of the biggest trailers of the season, so he was pretty chuffed at getting to announce it. Bandai Namco is publishing the game, and they have a presentation of their own during E3 2021, so we could see even more details so watch this space. Bandai Namco did release some more details post-trailer, and here are a few things we learned about Elden Ring.
This is apparently FromSoftware’s biggest game to date. Perhaps highlighted with the horses, which is something new to FromSoftware games. In other games, we’ve always walked around on foot, however, this time we have a horse and it looks like we can fight on horseback as well as jump super far. That was one of the most memorable moments for me in the trailer, seeing the horse leap vertically at the speed of a jumping pad. Given we have horses this feels like the land we traverse could be very big indeed, something on the scale of The Witcher III or Ghost of Tsushima.
FromSoftware games tend to feel like open-world games, but this is a bit of trickery with smaller zones connecting via loading areas, or in the case of Demon Souls they have a hub world. Elden Ring promises much more of an open-world feel to things, so it’ll be exciting to understand how this is going to play out. Open worlds have been done well (and badly) over the past few years, so I’m interested to see how FromSoftware tackles this.
We’re going to be able to explore and fight during the day and night, plus there’s dynamic weather on offer too, making for a very realistic environment to explore. Day and night cycles have appeared in FromSoftware games before, however, they have been linked to specific encounters. All of the NPCs in the game have deep lore, and this time we have the benefit of the collaboration between Hidetaka Miyazaki and George RR Martin. We don’t know to the extent that GRRM is involved, but it’s likely to attract a new audience. According to the press release characters will have “unique motivations for helping or hindering your progress” and they all have “profound backgrounds”.
We have confirmation of a couple of biomes in the game so far including “grassy plains, suffocating swamps, spiraling mountains, foreboding castles and other sites on a grand scale”. The key plot points are still a well-kept secret. However, we do have a snippet of the plot from the official website which says:
The Golden Order has been broken.
Rise, Tarnished, and be guided by grace to brandish the power of the Elden Ring and become an Elden Lord in the Lands Between.
In the Lands Between ruled by Queen Marika the Eternal, the Elden Ring, the source of the Erdtree, has been shattered.
Marika’s offspring, demigods all, claimed the shards of the Elden Ring known as the Great Runes, and the mad taint of their newfound strength triggered a war: The Shattering. A war that meant abandonment by the Greater Will.
And now the guidance of grace will be brought to the Tarnished who were spurned by the grace of gold and exiled from the Lands Between. Ye dead who yet live, your grace long lost, follow the path to the Lands Between beyond the foggy sea to stand before the Elden Ring.
And become the Elden Lord.
Journey through the Lands Between, a new fantasy world created by Hidetaka Miyazaki, creator of the influential DARK SOULS video game series, and George R. R. Martin, author of The New York Times best-selling fantasy series, A Song of Ice and Fire.
Unravel the mysteries of the Elden Ring’s power. Encounter adversaries with profound backgrounds, characters with their own unique motivations for helping or hindering your progress, and fearsome creatures.
Elden Ring features vast fantastical landscapes and shadowy, complex dungeons that are connected seamlessly.
Traverse the breathtaking world on foot or on horseback, alone or online with other players, and fully immerse yourself in the grassy plains, suffocating swamps, spiraling mountains, foreboding castles and other sites of grandeur on a scale never seen before in a FromSoftware title.
You’ll be able to upgrade Elden Ring from PS4 or Xbox One to a newer PS5 or Xbox Series X version nice and easily. Xbox will benefit from Smart Delivery, as with other titles on the Xbox Series X and PlayStation owners will likely have to download a patch. Elden Ring will feature multiplayer for up to four players. According the press release it says “players will be able to traverse on foot, or horseback, alone or with friends”.
On the collaboration with George RR Martin, Miyazaki said:
“The actual collaboration itself begun with Mr. Martin ever so politely confirming what sorts of themes, ideas as well as many game-related aspects I had envisioned for the game,” Miyazaki said.
“Even I myself find it hard to contain my excitement from time to time. We hope that everyone else is looking forward to the world we have created.”
There’s plenty to look forward to when it comes to Elden Ring. Plus, we now know it’s real, and it has a release date of 21st January 2021. It’s not very far away at all, and it’ll come round very fast.