Elden Ring: FromSoftware’s new masterpiece review

La recensione di Elden Ring: il miglior videogioco FromSoftware? thumbnail

The wait has finally come to an end: Elden Ring is ready to arrive in the homes of all video game fans FromSoftware with its vast open world and intricate lore co-written with George RR Martin. We at Tech Princess have had the opportunity to put our hand to the game before the releases and, after having explored it for a long time, we are ready to offer you our review of Elden Ring.

The start of the journey

As with all the other FromSoftware games except Sekiro, this time too our journey started with character creation, a place where we have already begun to notice some pleasant differences compared to the past. Firstly in Elden Ring the customization options are more in-depth and qualitatively better than in the past, and we were finally able to create a character that actually looked like a human being.

But beyond this aesthetic quirk, what surprised us most was the choice of class and initial gifts. The classes are in fact much more interesting than the old Souls, given that in this case we are faced with warriors equipped with an excellent basic armory, at least in some cases, such as the Samurai or the Hedge Knight.

It is probably a choice aimed at making the game more accessible, certainly appreciable, as it does not directly simplify the gameplay, but simply gives the player a fair amount of more options to play with right away, which is definitely a good thing. Also initial gifts in this sense they are no less, given that among them there are really powerful and useful objects, whose nature we will not tell you about.

Although the classes were inviting, our adventure started with Sventurati, then naked and armed only with a club: after passing a first introductory part very similar to the initial section of Demon’s Souls, we started making our way through the streets of Sepulchridthe first area of ​​the game.

The Elden Ring review

Having played the network test a few months ago, we were able to immediately notice how much the gameplay of Elden Ring is different in the full game, a feature about which we initially had some perplexity, quickly dispelled once the first steps were taken in that of Sepulchrid. Forget the sets and weapons that are found in the beta, in the final version the equipment you will have to look for and work it out by exploring the map down to the smallest details.

This is good, since in the network test the general difficulty of the game was affected a lot by the amount of resources made available to the player. So don’t worry: in Elden Ring you die and a lotespecially in the first parts, in which you will still have few arrows in your bow and you will have to travel a long time to improve the arsenal at your disposal and we are not just talking about weapons and armor.

Exploring in fact you will find many other gameplay additions useful for the progression of your character, such as a set di crafting which will allow you to build some useful objects in the field (whose recipes are however found around the world); or a special cruet in which it is possible to combine two substances to obtain particular enhancements, such as regeneration of health or vigor.

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Not to mention the Spiritsof evocations that can only be carried out in some specific points, usually the bossfight or particularly crowded outposts, which we had already enjoyed in the past. These Spirits seemed much more balanced to us now, and are ultimately a pleasant added component to the gameplay, also given the possibility of enhancing them and their enormous variety.

Of course in some cases they are still very powerfulperhaps too much in some cases, but their usefulness will fade as you progress through the game, also because the most powerful require a lot of mana to be summoned, a cost not affordable for all builds.

Sword, shield and… Jumps?

Regarding the gameplayin this Elden Ring review we can only confirm what we already glimpsed in our previous test: the Elden Ring’s combat system is complex and incredibly layered as it draws on mechanics from virtually every FromSoftware game out there so far.

The classic pattern of attacks in the Souls then returns, with light and thoughtful strokeswhich can be done by pressing R1 and R2 (our test took place on PS5, so we will keep the configuration of the Sony controllers as a reference), the defence with L1 and the parry or the ability assigned to the shield with L2. To add to the playful economy there is a running attack with R2, the jumpwhich is done by pressing X and the crouched positionwhich is assumed with L3.

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Own through the jump it is possible to make a special attack with R2, which not only deals decent damage, but is also extremely useful for breaking enemy posture, an invisible bar that once broken will leave your opponent exposed to a critical attack. This mechanic, borrowed from Axit will prove to be really useful for facing some particularly tough enemies, since in this way we will be able to carry out a reposte that will inflict devastating damage on them.

It follows that it is good practice familiarize yourself immediately with this new mechanic, since it will make some fights much easier, thanks to the iframes that the jump has and that allow you to dodge some attacks simply by jumping.

Elden Ring review

Also very important Defense counterattacks, another new mechanic of the combat system of the game that can be activated by pressing R2 after parrying any type of blow, and in addition to doing a good amount of damage it also wears down the enemy posture, not as much as jumping attacks, but still considerably.

The best part of this move is that you don’t have to make a perfect block to use it, just block a shot to be able to execute it, which is extremely useful against practically every enemy in the game, if used wisely, and elevates the concept of reactive tank, a style of play that has always shown a little flank in the leveled Souls tall.

Elden Ring review

Less central is it stealthwhich will be really useful only in specific cases, especially to avoid being noticed more than to attack, even if we found the idea of ​​spells that accentuate its properties, allowing you to act undisturbed even in the face of large groups of enemies.

The Ashes of War

Another novelty of Elden Ring are the War Ashes. These ashes can be equipped with a weapon or shield to give them a special ability while affecting their attributes. Each War Ash corresponds to a specific special attack that you can assign to your weapon and execute by consuming mana by pressing the left spine, the old weapon art so to speak.

Also, depending on the type of ash you are using, this will also change the attributes from which your weapon gets the most bonuses, the so-called scaling. An ash could increase a weapon’s scaling in dexterity, for example, resulting in consequence ideal for builds that rely on this attribute.

Elden Ring Network Test New Skills Thunderbolt Ash Of War

Furthermore, if the ashes we were using were magical or linked to some other type of element such as fire or lightning etc., in addition to activating the relative scaling on intelligence, faith or arcane, the weapon in question will be able to obtain, in most of cases a mixed damagebetween the physical one and that of the element in question.

The best part of it all is that you can decide whether or not to activate the scaling given by the ash in the dedicated menu at the graces, so if you want a certain weapon art but not split damage and altered scaling you can do it, which allows you to range a lot more with your build.

A horse and a world to experience

Immediately after unlocking Stream, our faithful mount, we immediately realize that the game world around us is not only boundless, but can also be explored in its almost total entirety without artificial blocks of any kind. Just to give an example from the beginning we will be directed to the Grantempesta Castle, where he resides Godrickone of the main bosses of the adventure.

However, nothing prevents us from going elsewhere, not only to Sepolcride, but also to neighboring regions, where we will be able to run into other “plot” bosses without being blocked by game design limits. Finding the way is even possible completely bypass Storm Storm Castleto get to the next macro area regardless of our dear grafted lord.

Elden Ring weight

Precisely for this reason, one of the words with which we can define Elden Ring in this review is undoubtedly “freedom“: Freedom to explore, but also freedom in approaching the fights that the game puts us in front of, given that another strong point is the enormous variety, which, however, manages not to become dispersive thanks to a careful level design and designed to impress in the player’s memory every panorama that he will have the pleasure of admiring in the Interregnum.

The exploratory process works precisely because the game world is full of secrets to discover and NPCs to converse withwho, when they do not unlock quests, will tell you about the game world, opening important windows on the history of what happened before our arrival in Sepolcride, always interesting to listen to, also …