Details are scarce about the upcoming fantasy game Elden Ring, but we’ve compiled everything we know about the mysterious title right here.
Elden Ring is an upcoming game for the PS5, Xbox Series X/S, and PC. It is a joint project from two of the world’s most talented dark fantasy fiction creators – George R.R. Martin and Hidetaka Miyazaki.
George R.R. Martin is the author of the hugely popular A Song of Ice and Fire books, of which Game of Thrones is an adaptation. Miyazaki is best known for being the twisted mind behind the Demon's, Dark Souls, and Bloodborne games.
The game is being developed by FromSoftware, the studio behind the above games and others. While the studio has remained tight-lipped about the game so far, certain details have leaked.
We can also make a variety of assumptions based on the track records of Martin and Miyazaki. Below is everything we know about Elden Ring, but we’ll also be speculating about the game.
However, our speculation will be grounded and based on realistic expectations and evidence. Let’s go.
Elden Ring Gameplay
No Elden Ring gameplay has been revealed as of yet, but from looking at the teaser trailer and concept art, we have a good idea what it could look like.
FromSoftware’s games have a particular look, feel, and style. Even back during the PS1 and PS2 days, their games were often bleak fantasy worlds stooped in darkness.
George R.R. Martin is also known for his savage and brutal medieval fantasy settings. So we expect Elden Ring will bear some similarities to the Souls series.
Although don’t expect Elden Ring to be a Souls clone. The purpose of Elden Ring was to create an entirely new IP, not Dark Souls 4 or Demon’s Souls 2.
Sequels to these games (including Bloodborne 2) may arrive in time, but FromSoftware haven’t joined forces with Martin to create something that already exists. While we’re confident Elden Ring will have similarities to the Souls games, we’re expecting something totally fresh.
While Bloodborne was a Souls game in everything but name (and setting), the same cannot be said for FromSoftware’s last game – Sekiro. This was a new IP that borrowed heavily from the Souls games in terms of combat, but the similarities ended there.
Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice, was a stealth game just as much as it was a fighting game. Those who played it like Dark Souls or Bloodborne were in for a shock – it’s a very different experience.
Our point here is; that this is what we expect Elden Ring will do, especially in terms of gameplay. The title will need to differentiate itself from the Souls series and be its own entity.
What Have the Creators Said About Elden Ring?
Miyazaki once described the game as an “open field” game, so we’re confident it will be more open world than previous FromSoftware titles. A dark, bleak open world at that.
Imagine a playable Westeros but suffering from something like the Undead Mark from Dark Souls. Sign us up.
This is what both Miyazaki and Martin have said about Elden Ring in the past.
“Collaborating with George R.R. Martin to create the Elden Ring mythos has been a genuinely delightful experience and a source of wonderful inspiration. The team is working hard to ensure that the world of Elden Ring will be a fascinating place for players to explore, filled with peril and wonder from its furthest reaches to its lowest depths.”
He went on to say, “This is a FromSoftware title through and through, rich in fantasy and RPG action. We sincerely hope you look forward to it.” Martin himself is also excited for the game to receive a proper reveal.
He said, “Building the world of Elden Ring with Miyazaki-san and his team was a treat! The graphics, mythos, and action-RPG gameplay will deliver an unforgettable experience. I can’t wait for people to see what Elden Ring has in store for them.”
Will Elden Ring Have Multiplayer?
It’s unknown at this stage if Elden Ring will contain multiplayer. If it does it may use the gameplay style seen in the Souls series, most recently Demon’s Souls on PS5.
The Souls games and Bloodborne all contained multiplayer. While each game was a solo adventure, it was possible to summon other players for assistance with difficult areas or bosses.
PVP was also possible due to the invasion mechanic each game employed. Dark/Demon’s Souls and Bloodborne all facilitated this in some way. It allowed players to invade other gamer’s worlds, steal their loot, and duel to the death.
Although the game could opt for an entirely new multiplayer style - or contain no multiplayer at all. George R.R. Martin’s involvement suggests that Elden Ring will place more emphasis on narrative.
A narrative-driven title may have no need for multiplayer. This was the approach FromSoftware took with Sekiro, so it’s not out of the realm of possibility.
Yet, we hope it does contain some form of co-op and PVP. But speaking of the storyline...
Elden Ring Plot
Again, we know very little about the story of Elden Ring. But due to Martin’s involvement, expect it to be a crucial part of the game. This is why one of the world’s most popular authors is helping to make a videogame after all.
The trailer shows us a collection of characters; each looks like they’ve been through the ringer. If you can excuse the pun! Some are clearly warriors, while others look like supporting characters.
What we know is someone has destroyed the Elden Ring, and in doing so, has brought about some kind of cosmic disaster. At least this is what the narrator in the trailer laments.
Miyazaki’s style of storytelling is often a less is more approach. The Souls games leave breadcrumbs for players, allowing them to piece together the game’s events for themselves.
Which a neat way to leave many story beats open to each player’s interpretation. For example, was it a good decision to ‘link the flame’ or ‘let the fire fade’?
Martin’s approach to writing is a little more traditional, focusing on multiple POVs in chronological order. So it will be interesting to see how both men’s narrative style’s gel when Elden Ring is released.
Elden Ring will likely exist in a world where concepts of morality could be skewed, to say the least. The game may force players to confront some uncomfortable moments. The Red Wedding anyone?
Elden Ring Release Date
The recent Elden Ring release date leak proposed the 31st of December 2021. But we think this is inaccurate and was most likely just a placeholder.
However, we think as far as a launch window goes, Q4 2021 or Q1 2022 makes a lot of sense. It’s clear that the game is still some time away from launch, but 2021 was the original target.
The pandemic and other related challenges may have resulted in delays though. Therefore, our money is on the launch window above being accurate.
While you’re waiting for confirmation about Elden Ring, check out the PS Plus lineup for February. The creators of God of War Ragnarok are also hiring for a new mystery game.