FromSoftware’s ELDEN RING from the creators of Dark Souls and Bloodborne showed behind closed doors – what the journalists saw

Within the framework of the exhibition Gamescom 2022 company Bandai namco showed Western journalists a new 15-minute gameplay video of the long-awaited role-playing game Elden ring from the studio and other Russian gaming publications did not take part in the event, so we translated for you a preview from IGN… It details what the developers showed in the video at Gamescom. Below is the material Mitchell Saltzman

When we spoke with Hidetaka Miyazaki back in June, one of the most interesting moments of the interview was how often he returned again and again to the philosophy of Elden Ring, where freedom of choice is at the forefront. Now, having familiarized myself with 15 minutes of gameplay from different parts of the game, I perfectly understand what exactly was meant. Elden Ring truly offers a lot more freedom than any previous FromSoftware project.

The opening scene of the demonstration was a kind of wide open field, stretching in all directions at once, where it was easy to see several interesting locations at once. There was a small watchtower on the left, a giant world tree stood far in front, and a local analogue of bonfires was nearby. It is curious that a ray of light stretched to some of the places, indicating the available routes, but it is up to you to follow them or not.

The feeling from viewing this section was as if literally anything could be expected in this game.… We were shown how the hero went out on a squad of enemies sitting by the fire, and suddenly a dragon flies in and burns them all with lightning speed, just like in Dark Souls. And immediately after the fight with the boss begins. Another time, the developers demonstrated how several creatures move along the road along with a huge wagon, which, it seems, can be looted, provided you survive the battle. The next episode focused on another carriage, only this time in a large-scale camp, through which the character carefully sneaks and even uses arrows with sleep gas to calm one of the guards.

Of course, to move around the open world, the faithful will come to your aid. a ghostly steed that, thanks to special platforms, can even jump over rocks and crevices, which gives the levels a significant degree of verticality. Along with this, an atypical element for Dark Souls appeared in the game – a full-fledged map… In the process of passing, it gradually improves due to the fragments found. Visually, the map looks like a real parchment, on which a cartographer living in these lands could have worked. You yourself can directly interact with it – leave notes about enemies, allies, treasures or entry points to dungeons. When you put a mark, it is also rendered directly in the gameplay, allowing you to follow the path from the beacons.

The dungeons mentioned above are scattered around the world and, of course, full of deadly enemies, traps, ghost walls, and treasures… We were shown a fairly simple dungeon with a room where there were huge guillotines, as well as a treasury guarded by guards. But since the presentation was edited from several separate clips, I did not manage to fully assess the scale and elaboration of this level.

But it turned out to look at one of the so-called “Heritage Dungeons”… This is one of the key locations in the game, located in each of the six regions of the local world. We were shown the very first – Stormvale Castle. You can overcome it in two ways – go with an attack directly in the forehead through the main passage, colliding with an army of enemies, or choose an alternative and secret passage, offering narrow passages from which you can fall and crash to death.

Most of all, the Castle evokes associations with the Palace of Boletaria from Demon’s Souls… The similarities stretch until almost the same moment, where you go out on several explosive barrels and enemies ready to set them on fire. Such sections are perceived as small references from which attention immediately switches to other things. For example, to the fascination of the process of researching this level, where we constantly saw various alternative routes that the hero did not visit during the demo. Meanwhile, on all sides there were other curious things, for example, a lonely house at the end of the gorge, to which it is not clear how to get… When the camera snatched out a mountain range, the gaze immediately caught on a great many platforms and temples. Since now the hero can jump freely, one involuntarily wonders whether it is possible to freely jump over this or that gap and stumble upon something interesting at the other end… As the developers explained, Stormvale Castle was designed with great freedom of choice in mind – it is a complex and multi-level location.

The study of the castle ended with an exit to the roof, from which you can see the very beginning of the level, the very one along which we could go to storm the location through the main entrance. But since an alternative route was chosen in our demo, the enemies did not know anything about our presence, which made it possible to again resort to sleep arrows for the giant monster and enter the room to the boss unnoticed.

The boss who was shown to us is the same multi-armed lord from the trailer… And he one hundred percent reflects any expectations from the boss from the Souls series – wide swings, hits on the ground, counterattacks and the subsequent stage where the boss attacks with his turned dragon hand, simultaneously makes unblockable grabs. It looked as brutal as possible, and now I want to try this fight on my own.

Returning to the idea of ​​the freedom of choice in the game, throughout the presentation, I constantly noticed how many options there are. You can move in any direction, fight or hide, give the dragon a fight or flee, move unnoticed or mindlessly storm the enemy’s camps… Or the same two-route option through Stormvale Castle. Of course, this is a passed stage for RPGs in the open world. But for RPGs from From Software, we have never seen this level of freedom before. And all this is layered on the traditional ability to use a wide variety of weapons or magic.

With each new acquaintance of Elden Ring, it becomes more difficult to wait. But nowhere to go, all that remains is to patiently look at the release date set for January 21, 2022.

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