It finally happened: we now have an Elden Ring release date. Previously announced at the Microsoft E3 conference a few years ago, Elden Ring has been confirmed for Xbox One and Windows PC and will be produced by Bandai Namco, and developed by Hidetaka Miyazaki’s studio, FromSoftware.
With the Dark Souls and Sekiro director at the helm, we already know we’re in for mystery, nightmarish boss designs, and a whole lot of dying. The announcement trailer gives off some very Dark Souls vibes. Although Miyazaki confirms that Elden Ring gameplay is heavily based on the Souls series, combat will play out very differently due to the “open and vast environment”.
Keeping things FromSoft, Elden Ring is also a third person open-world dark fantasy RPG, but what’s new is that it features a collaboration with Game of Thrones writer and author of A Song of Ice and Fire, George R. R. Martin. As a result, we’re anticipating plenty more in terms of storytelling than we’re used to from Miyazaki, without sacrificing any of the rich, lore-soaked environment and boss designs we know and love from the Souls games. Elden Ring will also feature music from Dark Souls 3 and Sekiro composer Yuka Kitamura.
Elden Ring release date
Elden Ring will be released on January 23, 2022. This release date was announced at the end of the Summer Games Fest 2021 showcase.
Elden Ring trailer
Alongside the release date, we also got to see a bit more of the open-world game in action, as our nameless ‘tarnished’ rides on their spectral horse through the bleak countryside, slicing through monsters with their blade, and leaping on glyphs to reach new heights.
Alongside the E3 announcement, FromSoftware released a teaser to mark the reveal of the new RPG. Although this teaser doesn’t show us any gameplay, Soulsborne fans have drawn parallels between Elden Ring and Celtic folklore, specifically a character from Irish history called Nuada. The latest trailer shows stabbing players after grabbing them.
Elden Ring gameplay
Yes, Elden Ring gameplay will be hard, very much like Dark Souls, we’re told to expect difficult combat and big boss fights. However, Miyazaki confirmed that the game will also have a more “manageable” difficulty than previous Souls games. Although some melee has been confirmed, it sounds like the combat will draw from RPG elements and focus more on magic, unlike the recent Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice. Since it’s more open-world than Dark Souls, From Software has confirmed fast travel will be in Elden Ring.
Elden Ring is an entirely new mythos, co-created with George R.R. Martin, where players will be able to “design and control their own unique character”. FromSoftware’s business director reached out to Martin, as Miyazaki was a fan himself, especially of Martin’s lesser-known title Fevre Dream, a vampire novel set in 1982. In an interview with IGN, Miyazaki confirmed that Martin’s involvement was not in the writing of the main story, but in crafting the lore, and that “thanks to Martin’s lore, Elden Ring’s world and characters naturally have a lot more depth and personality”.
A press release references the inclusion of multiplayer, as you can play the game “alone or online with friends”. This could be a hint that linking up with friends to play together might be a little easier than before.
Elden Ring open world
Unlike Dark Souls, Elden Ring will be open-world, and the gameplay, combat and narrative will have to adapt to player exploration. In an interview with IGN, Miyazaki confirmed the game will not have towns or settlements, but will be traversable on horseback saying “If we would add towns on top of that, it would become a bit too much, so we decided to create an open-world style game focused on what we are best at.”
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Miyazaki went on to say that “Creating a new type of game is a big challenge for us,” and we can only imagine that the open-world environment will shift the style of gameplay from the Souls series.
As for how the world will be structured, a more recent interview with IGN confirmed that the realm will be split into six distinct areas, each one ruled by a demi-god that serves as that area’s boss. The demi-gods have a piece of the Elden Ring, which the ‘tarnished’ player is seeking. These areas have more traditional Souls-like areas, including locations like catacombs, caves, and fortresses. Every area is linked together by a hub area and can be explored at will. Some monsters were shown in the trailers, including these adorable sentient pots.
Stay tuned for the latest news on the Elden Ring game as it develops, including trailers and gameplay details.