Elden Ring is a souls-like game that primarily revolves around difficult combat in an incredible open-world. Developed by FromSoftware and published by Bandai Namco, the Japanese game companies responsible for creating the widely-known Dark Souls series. Hidetaka Miyazaki, the creative director of Elden Ring, has publicly stated that he takes influence from games such as “The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild” and the manga series called “Berserk.” As you begin the game, you are referred to as a “Tarnished,” blessed by grace, and are determined to travel through The Lands Between with the goal of becoming an Elden Lord. As the user traverses the lands, they will encounter many unique enemies, weapons, and areas to discover.
Elden Ring falls under the genre of dark fantasy, action RPG, and adventure in the third person perspective. The game is set in a fictional world called “The Lands Between,” taking place in what seems like a medieval time period. It consists of a very long and interesting campaign story which takes upwards of 80 hours for players to complete and is available on Xbox One/Xbox series X, Playstation 4/Playstation 5, and PC for $60. With how massive the map is, exploring in Elden Ring is very enjoyable and refreshing. The map is divided into 14 regions in total with approximately 157 bosses, however only 15 main bosses are required to defeat in order to continue progressing. There are a total of six unique endings that players can experience, and the decisions one makes throughout the game leads up to them. Enemies can typically kill the user in very few hits, making timing and coordination a top priority in the difficult game. Elden Ring takes the best aspects from FromSoftwares previous game titles, such as having freedom of progress and a detailed character customization system. The incredible customization adds another deep layer for the game with various skills and mechanics that you can alter in order to create your ideal character, which leads to a great variety regarding players build to build. There are many variables that contribute to why players find Elden Ring so enjoyable that include the user experience, world building, no micro-transactions, and the stunning visuals.
Elden Ring also includes a multiplayer system, allowing players to be able to play as a team, fight against, or explore with others online. FromSoftware does a good job of not guiding the players to where they need to go, allowing them to explore the breathtaking world at their own pace. Upon completing the campaign for the first time, a feature called New Game Plus is unlocked which allows players to start a whole new world but they get to keep your gear and items from the previous journey. The sheer amount of content that Elden Ring contains guarantees that the user won’t find everything that they thought that they did during their first run though, making it very replayable.
Elden Ring took approximately six years to finish developing and the game was finally released on February 25, 2022. The first announcement of the game was all the way back in 2019 and peaked many people’s interest, and it’s safe to say FromSoftware did not disappoint. Elden Ring quickly garnered attention as one of the best games of the year so far and has gained universal praise from critics. The initial release of the game caught many by surprise, with no hints of being unfinished, as it only contained some very minor hitches which were fixed shortly after. Bandai Namco has publicly stated that they only expected Elden Ring to sell four million units within its first five weeks of release, but after the first month, the developers announced that about 12 million copies were sold globally which exceeded their expectations by a long shot.
As for the future of Elden Ring, Bandai Namco’s president, Yasuo Miyakawa, has mentioned future plans of continuing to develop the game so it can reach various fields that don’t only include games. Although FromSoftware has not officially announced the development of DLC’s, additional downloadable content, many players have been speculating that they will release some for Elden Ring because of their history of releasing additional downloadable content for their previous games such as Sekiro, Soulsbourne, and Darksouls. FromSoftware’s involvement with George R.R. Martin, their desire to follow in the footsteps of their other successful series, and pressure to create another visual masterpiece caused them to have absurdly high expectations by the public. Not only did they meet these expectations, but they surpassed them undoubtedly.
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