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Elden Ring (Release Date: Feb 25th, 2022)

Juggs

Lose without excuses
Lead Moderator
100%. More explanatory, hype-inducing theatrics before notable bosses. Things like voice lines from Moongrum (maybe hinting at the war between the Golden Order and Raya Lucaria or hinting at what's happened to Rennala, both being reasons he refuses to let you pass) while you fight him just before Rennala, a cutscene chat with Melina before Morgott since she can be summoned for that fight, literally ANYTHING that indicates that Godfrey has come back instead of walking into the room to find him there and being wildly confused who the fuck it is, something to indicate why you're at / what you're looking for in Farum Azula (could just be lines from Melina at the Mountaintop or a separate cutscene), having specific NPCs you've worked with for whatever ending you choose showing up in the final cutscene to hit home what your choice has done, etc.

I don't need an excessive amount of hand holding nor do I expect it in a Fromsoft game, but hot damn give us something to draw us in when there's a very high chance there's 5-10 hours between a player's previous major story step to the next because they've been exploring.
Absolutely agree. I think the original intent was to make the game more immersive by not having a lot of story cutscenes and to try and figure out the story and lore on your own via talking to NPC’s and via item descriptions, but I think the route they took with Radahn is the best path forward. I was actually hoping for more of that with Elden Ring since it was technically a new IP (even though it’s essentially a reskinned open world DS3, which I don’t mind). Like, I could play different versions of Dark Souls forever, but it does get redundant after awhile and a bit tedious. Since Game of Thrones dude was apart of the writing and story telling to some degree, just had more expectations for the story telling aspects of the game.
 

Saboteur-6

Filthy Casual
For any lore questions, there’s usually YouTubers whose main job is to explain the lore. The main one being VaatiVidya. There’s sooooooo much lore for this game, it’s wild
Yeah I've been subbed to him for a while for exactly that reason. It's just... It sucks that yet again I have to go to an outside third-party to explain something about the game. There's just too much of that in Souls series games for me. It's that way for builds and questlines too. Only game that felt more cohesive (therefore more enjoyable) was Sekiro which is why it's my favorite Fromsoft game.

I mean imagine having to read Krypt item descriptions and rely on YouTube for a cohesive narrative for Mortal Kombat.

This was one of my bigger gripes with the game as well. I know Fromsoft's stories and story presentation style aren't straightforward and this worked just fine to me for Dark Souls 1-3. However, it feels like they dipped their toes into attempting something different with Elden Ring by having long quests that set up separate endings with potential huge implications but failed miserably on it. Every single ending is lackluster at best, disappointing at worst. Seems like not a lot of effort was put into having any sort of notable conclusion which feels like a let down after committing 100+ hours to a character.
I never enjoyed it in Souls games either and honestly it feels like the same approach. Hell it feels like the same story for that matter. At least Bloodborne had a cosmic horror thing going on.

The ending I got felt and looked like the ending of DS2.
 

Darth-Nero

Come Thunder! Come Lightning!
Melania kept destroying me, over 100 deaths and still couldn't beat her. everything in her second phase one shots me. Hardest battle so far yet today i managed to beat her without summons. then got to the the godskin duo and beat them on my 1st attempt :D

fighting Melania for so long will get you better at the game :')
 

Juggs

Lose without excuses
Lead Moderator
Having infinitely more fun on my 2nd character than my first. Still at RL 50, and just beat Radahn. Definitely way more fun of a fight at level 50 vs level 80. Had no idea there was even technically a 2nd phase to him (where he jumps into the sky and comes crashing down to you like a fkn meteorite). Actually took me a few tries to beat him this time. However, he’s still not as hard as people have made him out to be. The dungeon that’s IN the Radahn boss fight area, I never found that on my first character. That place was insanely difficult to navigate at my level, not to mention the boss was probably the hardest I’ve faced so far.

Anyway, I know I keep harping on this, but this game is absolutely way more fun at lower levels. Even though I dropped myself a RoB Katana, which helps A LOT, it’s still a much more fun experience than being overleveled!
 

Darth-Nero

Come Thunder! Come Lightning!
Im glad you got to experience Radahn's 2nd phase, it's really the most fun battle in the game. Can't wait to fight him again in my second run.
 
Radahn is just weird. If you are interacting in the way the game wants you to (horse + summons), it doesn't matter what level you are, you can just hang back and it'll resolve itself.

Anyway, my lv1 play-through continues, because lower level is more fun. Except vs grabs, then I just die.
 

Juggs

Lose without excuses
Lead Moderator
Radahn is just weird. If you are interacting in the way the game wants you to (horse + summons), it doesn't matter what level you are, you can just hang back and it'll resolve itself.

Anyway, my lv1 play-through continues, because lower level is more fun. Except vs grabs, then I just die.
Yeah it’s kinda odd. I never summon help, and I stopped using Spirit Ashes for the most part because a lot of them are essentially like a summon as well. But with the Radahn fight, it actually makes it more fun, just based on the lore and story elements, and all the theatrics before the fight. I didn’t want to summon anyone, and I didn’t the first couple attempts. But decided to try it and it definitely gave the fight a more fun, immersive feel to it. BUT, as you said, it does make the fight much easier. It’s hilarious when you summon Patches though. He’s such a little bitch, lmao.

And nice! I definitely want to do a level 1 run in this game. I did one in Dark Souls 1, it’s super fun. Right now I’m doing a mid level run, my level cap is RL 70. This is for both the challenge in PvE, but also, mid level PvP atm in this game is much more fun than meta level.
 

xWildx

What a day. What a lovely day.
Is anyone else running around with the Envoy Long Horn? It’s both hilarious and powerful at the same time, and I can’t believe more people aren’t talking about its Ash of War.
 

Wigy

There it is...
Are claw/fist weapons just ass? Doing a playthrough and not finding much in the way of shining positives.

Wish certain weapon types had more standout features. They could do a lot more with claw/hammer/fist weapons
 

Arqwart

Resident "Subhuman Piece of Trash" Edenian Player
Are claw/fist weapons just ass? Doing a playthrough and not finding much in the way of shining positives.

Wish certain weapon types had more standout features. They could do a lot more with claw/hammer/fist weapons
All I've seen about fist builds is you have to specialize in 1 of 3 ways: Bleed (Star Fist), parry god (Caestus), or giga poise tank. Otherwise, their garbage posture damage and hitbox sizes don't appear to be worth the effort.

Claws are mostly in the same boat but also naturally do bleed. Claws do give the option of doing a potent melee poison build with Venomous Fang if that interests you. Toss on the helmet and talisman that give attack power when something gets poisoned and you can build some silly damage output.
 
Yeah fist weapons are pretty disappointing in this game. I don't understand why they're determined to ignore the awesomeness that was Dark Souls 2 Bone Fist.
Bring that shit back, FROM, you cowards.

They don't even have any cool AoWs.
 

Juggs

Lose without excuses
Lead Moderator
Beat the 3 R’s on my 2nd character at level 50! Well, beat Rennala at level 40, then Radahn and Rykard at RL 50. Rennala and Radahn were much harder than my 1st character, since I wasn’t overleveled this time. And I never got to Rykard on my 1st character. But it seems you’re supposed to be anywhere from level 80-110 or so for this fight, which seems high to me. Anyway, luckily I had a bunch of Rune Arc’s to spare due to PvP.

I keep regurgitating this same point, but I definitely recommend making a new character and trying to play through the game at a lower level. Once I beat the game with this character, where my max level cap will be RL 70, gonna make another challenge run of a level 1 character playthrough. I did it for Dark Souls 1, and it took me such a long time to complete that. Can’t imagine how much longer it’ll take in Elden Ring, but I’m excited to do it eventually!
 

KingKhrystopher

Official Merlin of TYM
Having infinitely more fun on my 2nd character than my first. Still at RL 50, and just beat Radahn. Definitely way more fun of a fight at level 50 vs level 80. Had no idea there was even technically a 2nd phase to him (where he jumps into the sky and comes crashing down to you like a fkn meteorite). Actually took me a few tries to beat him this time. However, he’s still not as hard as people have made him out to be. The dungeon that’s IN the Radahn boss fight area, I never found that on my first character. That place was insanely difficult to navigate at my level, not to mention the boss was probably the hardest I’ve faced so far.

Anyway, I know I keep harping on this, but this game is absolutely way more fun at lower levels. Even though I dropped myself a RoB Katana, which helps A LOT, it’s still a much more fun experience than being overleveled!
Well like, to be fair, since you fought him now, he’s been severely nerfed from how he originally was.
 

Juggs

Lose without excuses
Lead Moderator
Well like, to be fair, since you fought him now, he’s been severely nerfed from how he originally was.
He was originally unintentionally nerfed, but they fixed that so that he’s pretty much as he was pre-patch afaik.
Is anyone else running around with the Envoy Long Horn? It’s both hilarious and powerful at the same time, and I can’t believe more people aren’t talking about its Ash of War.
Never even heard of it. I’ll have to look it up.
 

Juggs

Lose without excuses
Lead Moderator
I still haven’t beaten the game, LOL. Finally got 100hrs+ in on my 2nd character (lvl 70), so I’m caught up with my first (lvl 135). But I’m entering a PvP duel tournament at the end of the month, for lvl 150. So been playing a little more on my 135 because there’s A LOT of stuff I still need to get, as well as fully upgrading my weapons.

Beat Commander Niall first try completely solo on my 135 build. Beat Alecto without cheesing, only using Katana’s, on my lvl 70 build. The lvl 70 playthrough is a blast but has been challenging. Now that I’m finally in the Moutaintops of Giants, it’s that much harder.

Still invading occasionally, but I kinda put it on pause because there’s SOO much left I still have never done PvE wise in this game. Who knows how long it’s gonna take me to beat some of the harder, late game bosses at lvl 70 anyway.
 

Juggs

Lose without excuses
Lead Moderator
Didn’t realize just how many cookbooks there were in this game, or how many I missed throughout my playthrough, until I went down the list of them and decided to collect ’em all. On one hand I think it’s cool that there’s a lot that you get to scavenge for, on the other hand, there’s SO MANY that only give you one single extra craftable item. Anyway, I think I only have a couple left. They’re ones that will let me craft things I’ll never use, but just for the sake of completion, I’ll get them.

Anyway, there’s a ton of super useful ones, just wish there was one that let you craft the Boiled Crabs. I killed that stupid blacksmith/merchant that eventually sells them to you later on (ON BOTH MY CHARACTERS). The one that you can buy the necklace from that he stole. You can either buy it from him and let him live, or kill him and get them and his bearing. The problem is, the bearing doesn’t update after you give it to the Twinhusks, so I gotta rely on my bro or other people to supply me crabs. Just give me crabs, that’s all I want, nothing wrong with people sharing crabs or passing crabs around, right?
 

John Grizzly

The axe that clears the forest
I'm really looking forward to NG+ but I just can't bring myself to rush through my first playthrough. I really can't remember a game I've enjoyed more. I would love to complete my first playthrough before the DLC comes out, though.

I can't bring myself to stray from my Moonveil/Carian Regal Scepter loadout. It just crushes.

I think on my second playthrough I may explore greatswords more.

I love this fucking game so much.
 

Juggs

Lose without excuses
Lead Moderator
I'm really looking forward to NG+ but I just can't bring myself to rush through my first playthrough. I really can't remember a game I've enjoyed more. I would love to complete my first playthrough before the DLC comes out, though.

I can't bring myself to stray from my Moonveil/Carian Regal Scepter loadout. It just crushes.

I think on my second playthrough I may explore greatswords more.

I love this fucking game so much.
I agree. I have 2 characters, a lvl 136 and a lvl 70, and I’m not leveling up either one anymore. Level caps are for both PvP and for PvE. For PvE, it’s so you have actual “builds”, and not just one character that can do everything. It’s also for more of a challenge in PvE, especially in this game, overleveling makes this game so ridiculously easy. But level caps are also for PvP, mainly for duels and tournaments. The “meta” levels right now are pretty much anything from lvl 125-150.

Anyway, I have 130 hrs on my 135 character, and 105 hrs on my 70 character. Still haven’t beaten the game yet, lol. I play just about everyday. Just a couple hours on weekdays, and a lot on the weekends. I do PvP and PvE (which is another reason I haven’t beaten the game yet other than having 2 characters and exploring every nook & cranny lol). I have yet to even come close to getting bored or getting burnt out. Honestly, it’s probably my most favorite FromSoft game. There’s just so much to it. Yeah the PvP isn’t perfect and there’s some absolutely broken shit like the Bloodhound’s Step, but I’m sure that’ll be nerfed in the next balance patch. But yeah, I fkn love this game!

If you never have gotten into the PvP in a Souls game or in this game yet, I definitely recommend trying it out. Especially if you’re a fighting game fan.
 

Juggs

Lose without excuses
Lead Moderator
Who here plays on PlayStation and likes to PvP? Gonna want to get some sets in this week and weekend. Even though there’s a lot of issues with Elden Ring PvP, it’s still super fun in duels, as long as a few rules are put into place (for instance, banning BHS lol)
 

Dankster Morgan

she don’t call me daddy she call me Grandmaster
Gotta say, after finishing the game, then going back to Sekiro, I think FS does a much better job with more tightly paced linear games. It is just so much more satisfying to play Sekiro. Despite it being an older game than Elden Ring, the performance is much better, the gameplay is tighter, the difficulty curve is curated for the one move set Wolf has, so it doesn't suffer from the silliness of some of the Elden Ring bosses. Elden Ring is still an excellent game, but I must just be missing whatever makes people think its a masterpiece. Would love a Sekiro sequel but it is doubtful considering the monumental success of Elden Ring.
 

Dankster Morgan

she don’t call me daddy she call me Grandmaster
Also some of the endgame boss fights are kind of terrible imo. The Elden Beast is unbelievably tedious, with a boring arena, stupid attacks like the stars, and having to chase it's fat ass down without Torrent was a slog. Malenia attacking 8,0000000 x in a quarter of a second. Dragon Xashfafhusnfdfanjdgo (the one in the big tower) who whips out that laser thing where you just pray to the RNG Gods to not get 1 hit right there at the end. Fire Giant was great spectacle, but good God the actual fight is boring tedious dog shit. Godskin Duo was dogshit as well, having to fight two enemies you've already seen several times by then, that clearly weren't designed to be fought together like Ornstien / Smough from DS1, and was there to trick souls players into thinking it's a good fight like "Oh yeah I remember the fat guy and skinny guy in that room with all the pillars!! I loved Dark Souls!" (insert soyjack). To be clear, I don't think the game is too hard, I just think it is obviously designed around mimic use, which is fine. Maybe if I did a magic build I'd feel different, I dont know. I based my build around Bloodhound Fang, which was a very fun weapon to use, and felt very strong as well.

On a more positive note, Margit / Morgot, Godrick, and Renalla (despite being a gimmick fight kind of) were all very fun. I loved Radahn too, my jaw hit the floor when he came back through the atmosphere, and I was very impressed with how Limgrave was changed after the fight. The dungeons were fun to clear the first time too, as well as the world bosses, until you had to fight Mad Pumpkin Head / Misbegotten / cat statue thing, Tree sentinal, Nights Cavalry etc ect a billion times, and the worst offender of 13 fucking identical Erdtree Avatars.

The quests are also shit. Talk to NPC, google where NPC will be next, talk to them again, rinse and repeat. Ranni's quest was fun because of all the cool places and bosses you can see (Astel would have been a really cool fight if even he wasn't a fucking copy / paste), and Blaidd is a cool character. It's so obvious they want us to do these quests, so just give us a quest log, because I don't know a single sane person with a full time job who would do Ranni's quest without a youtube guide.

Still like the game quite a bit though, my gripes in such a huge game being summed up in one rant post speaks to how much I like it. 8/10
 
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Marinjuana

Up rock incoming, ETA 5 minutes
Gotta say, after finishing the game, then going back to Sekiro, I think FS does a much better job with more tightly paced linear games. It is just so much more satisfying to play Sekiro. Despite it being an older game than Elden Ring, the performance is much better, the gameplay is tighter, the difficulty curve is curated for the one move set Wolf has, so it doesn't suffer from the silliness of some of the Elden Ring bosses. Elden Ring is still an excellent game, but I must just be missing whatever makes people think its a masterpiece. Would love a Sekiro sequel but it is doubtful considering the monumental success of Elden Ring.
Yeah I'm kind of in the same boat here dude, I played Sekiro and Dark Souls Remastered as my first Fromsoft games, enjoyed both but felt like Sekiro was way ahead of Dark Souls in terms of boss fight enjoyment(which is probably where most of your notable playtime goes).

When the hype train busted in for Elden Ring, I was expecting to to have that level of polish that Sekiro had with its fights. While the game is really good, it ends up playing in a style just like Dark Souls where you roll past boss attacks. There's a bunch of options that Sekiro didn't come close to offering, but the strategy just falls back into roll away, circle around, attack. Like you said, the difficulty curve was consistent in Sekiro and the parry system was a really enjoyable minigame that added gameplay elements that you see in fighting games. That said, I think Elden Ring is more fun to just run around, fight normal enemies and explore but those boss fights were awesome in Sekiro and I wanted to see a bit more in Elden RIng. Still a ton of game left for me to play though