Review Discussions are interview-style discussions hoping to discuss specific aspects of the game in question that may or may not be included in the written review. In some cases, the discussion will be the only critical conversation we put out for a game, in others it may complement a review.
It’s time! FromSoftware’s hotly anticipated, massively open, and hugely explorative Elden Ring is upon us. After spending some time with it, Alex finishing it twice, Scott about halfway through, we dive into our thoughts on Elden Ring.
I obviously cover most of it in our discussion, but Elden Ring is definitely excellent. It has a huge variety of options, fun nooks and crannies to explore, and let’s exploration be a reward instead of a checklist. Much like the more innovative open world games before it, FromSoft trusts the player to set goals, find NPCs, and explore on their own terms, which just naturally complements their more freeform, nonlinear game design. On top of that, combat is the best it has ever been in a FromSoftware title, excluding the outlier Sekiro, which still remains the king.
Weapon Skills serve a huge purpose here, as opposed to what felt like missed potential in Dark Souls 3. Build variety, weapon variety, and welcomed returning mechanics like dual wielding make combat feel really deep, and more than ever you have dozens of ways to approach Elden Ring’s best and most exciting challenges. I do think the back half of the game suffers from repetitious, a de-emphasis on exploration, and loses a lot of the magic the first 75% of the game contains, especially with the huge list of “palette-swap” enemies, but even still, it’s final few bosses do make up for it as being some of the best and most epic in the entire game.
It’s huge, it’s very FromSoft, and it’ll have you coming back to try new things, so Elden Ring is absolutely a resounding success.
Played by the reviewer predominantly in performance mode on a PlayStation 5 Digital Console with a copy purchased by the reviewer.
Follow Scott on Twitter – https://twitter.com/solidsnake120
Follow Alex on Twitter – http://twitter.com/alfighter27