Elden Ring would’ve been better if it had a story – Reader’s Feature
A reader is disappointed to find that, after beating Elden Ring, even the experts are confused as to the details of the story and its lore.
It’s pretty obvious that Elden Ring is going to dominate the game of the year awards in 2022 and I wouldn’t take seriously anyone who said it didn’t deserve it. After three months of struggling, I’ve just beaten it and there’s no doubting it’s an amazing game. Nothing’s perfect but I would say I only have one major complaint: at no point did I have any idea what was going on.
Everyone starts off like that with the game, as you slowly learn how the controls and the various systems work but I would say, to anyone that has not yet jumped in, that it’s actually relatively straightforward. My inventory looked like it would fill a warehouse by the end of the game but how to use all the spells and weapons and so on is relatively easy to get the gist of.
The story though… I have no clue. There’s a sort of slide show intro that talks about the Elden Ring being shattered and something about various demigods keeping the shards. It took me a long time to realise that the ring is not actually a ring, but I’m still not even sure about that. I think it’s more a collection of magic runes and the only reason it’s called a ring is because they’re circular?
If you haven’t played the game and think that sounds simple enough, I’d say I was 80% through the game before I even pieced together that much. I still don’t really understand who shattered the ring and why, or who all the warring factions are. Or what the Lands Between (between what?) is or where all the ordinary people went (are those soldiers just zombies? And if so how are they different from the animated skeletons?).
It’s not just a question of having lots of unanswered questions though. There are lots of characters in the game but it’s never made clear who they are what they want. The only time you ever hear most of them talk is minutes before you kill them and there are hardly any ordinary cut scenes – and most of those are for going up a lift.
I still don’t understand who Ranni is or what she wants, or what the motivation is for any of the others. This was my first From game and I heard they were all like this, so I just chalked it up to me missing out on clues and not being tuned in to From’s style of doing things. So after beating the game I was really looking forward to reading up on what the experts said was going on.
So imagine my surprise when all the YouTube videos I watched, and wiki entries I read, were filled with vague guesses, leaps of logic, and an admission that they didn’t really know either. They’d worked out a lot more about what was going on than I did but nothing was certain and many clues, that were themselves hard to work out, seemed totally contradictory.
If that’s how From roll then who am I to criticise them. I wouldn’t say it spoiled my enjoyment of the game but if Elden Ring had a story I could have followed, even if it was still a bit obscure, I can’t help but think that it would’ve been even better.
By reader Dustan
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