Why I Can’t Wait to Die Again and Again in 'Elden Ring'

Rinse and repeat has never looked so enticing

Key Takeaways

  • Elden Ring was initially announced in 2019.
  • The game is a collaboration between Dark Souls creator Hidetaka Miyazaki and Game of Thrones author George R.R. Martin.
  • Elden Ring looks to blend the difficult, brutal combat of the Dark Souls series with a deep high fantasy narrative like Martin has become so well known for.

A screenshot from 'Elden Ring.'

Bandai Namco

After a long wait, we finally know more about Elden Ring, the upcoming Dark Souls-like game by FromSoftware and George R.R. Martin, and it looks absolutely gorgeous.

When FromSoftware gave us our first look at Elden Ring in 2019, I was hooked on the idea of a game that blended George R.R. Martin’s narrative skills with the dark fantasy worlds that Hidetaka Miyazaki—the creator of Dark Souls—has become so beloved for. Not much was shared back then, but it was enough to whet my appetite for another deep fantasy role-playing game (RPG).

Now, almost two years after that first reveal, we finally have our next look at what Elden Ring will look like, as well as a release date. Let’s just say January 2022 can’t come soon enough.

"All around, it looks like a deeper, more RPG-like Dark Souls experience, which is something I’m completely on board with."

Open Your Mind

Elden Ring looks to borrow quite a bit from FromSoftware’s acclaimed Dark Souls series, and that isn’t a bad thing. The tried and true systems are something that many have come to know and love over the years, so seeing them brought to life in a new world with a new narrative is exciting.

But FromSoftware isn’t simply trying to recapture what made Dark Souls and its subsequent games great. Instead, it’s trying to improve and expand on those elements. As a result, new mechanics made an appearance in the gameplay reveal, including the ability to take part in mounted combat.

Elden Ring will also include a dynamic weather system and day and night cycles, which should make it even easier to get lost in that dark and brutal world.

It’s unclear whether we’ll be getting faster combat like that displayed in Bloodborne and Sekiro or if Elden Ring will go for the slower combat seen in previous Dark Souls games. Still, though, it should at least deliver on that brutal feel that comes with fighting in those games.

A screenshot from 'Elden Ring.'

Bandai Namco

Parries, dodges, and timing your attacks has always been one of the staples of the combat in FromSoftware’s games, and based on what we’ve seen so far, that’s still the case in Elden Ring.

It also includes some other tried and true mechanics from the Dark Souls titles, including a reference to Dark Souls’ Hollows, a group of people who have lost their humanity. All around, it looks like a deeper, more RPG-like Dark Souls experience, which is something I’m completely on board with.

There also appears to be room for growth, as Bandai Namco has already hinted at possible spin-offs and exploring the world of Elden Ring outside of the game.

Getting Lost in the Darkness

I wasn’t always a fan of the Dark Souls games or the brutal combat they’ve become so well known for. What I was a fan of, though, was the way that Miyazaki and the team at FromSoftware wove the lore into their games.

Everything from weapon descriptions to level design all helped to push the narrative forward in some way while giving players control of how deep they get lost in it. This is something that few other RPGs ever handle so masterfully, and it’s one of the reasons that I’ve found myself going back to the Dark Souls series despite not being the biggest fan of its more difficult combat situations.

A screenshot from 'Elden Ring.'

Bandai Namco

What makes Elden Ring so special, though, is the inclusion of George R.R. Martin. If you enjoy high fantasy novels or television shows, then chances are you’ve heard of A Song of Fire and Ice or Game of Thrones—depending on whether you’re a reader or a watcher.

Despite the lackluster ending of the series, Martin’s fantasy series has become one of my favorites in recent years, and he does a great job of pulling in the audience and letting them get lost in the world he’s created.

Bringing Miyazaki and Martin together is like bringing two iconic directors together to create a new movie. You don’t know how things will turn out, but the sheer amount of talent and skill on display will be well worth exploring.

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