Ah, yes, Elden Ring—the game everyone was looking forward to. It seemed to exceed players’ expectations. Or, were people just hyped because difficult games that make you split hairs are the current trend now? Either way, the game topped the charts; the critics showered it with praise and acclaim; and most importantly, the “get-good” elite had something fresh to work with.
All kidding aside, Elden Ring is a masterclass in game design. It is similar to how the original Dark Souls was when it was first released. Players have total freedom to explore the amazing non-linear world map and plunge headfirst into unknown dangers.
With the much-advertised collaboration of the famed novelist George R.R Martin (Game of Thrones) and Hidetaka Miyazaki (Dark Souls, Bloodborne), suffice to say people were stoked to see the final product. With such a pedigree at the helm, the game would always be a major draw. The lore and gameplay blend seamlessly, and one feels a sense of embarking on an epic adventure.
More than a year since Elden Ring’s release, we must ask ourselves: Is Elden Ring worth it? Let’s find out together.
Features that Make Elden Ring Worth Playing
Here’s what Elden Ring offers to players in a nutshell:
- A Narrative That’s Easy to Follow and Understand: I’m grateful for not having to watch hours of lore videos to keep up with the story.
- Non-linear Level Design: A brilliant feature that returns in full form since Dark Souls 1).
- Combat That’s Challenging and Fun: Perfectly balanced, still cheesing the enemies is my go-to method.
- Stealth Mechanic: This is a welcome addition that adds a new dynamic to the gameplay
- In-Depth Character Creation: Both the appearance and character’s skills are highly customizable.
- Crafting: Okay, so this time around, crafting isn’t a complex process. You find recipes and ingredients, and then you make stuff, simple!
- Multiplayer Mode: Jolly cooperation returns!
The list above is what you’re in for when you play Elden Ring. Now let’s dive into them briefly to get a bit more information about these features before we can answer the titular question.
Rich Lore & Deep Narrative Help Make Elden Ring Worth Getting
Elden Ring is perhaps the only Souls-like game developed by its original creator that doesn’t try to hide things from the player. The game’s story is straightforward. Yet, that doesn’t mean everything is explained through traditional cutscenes; no, one still has to work to piece together the narrative.
If you pay attention to the NPCs’ dialogue, the item descriptions and follow the questlines, you will understand everything. The different endings mostly depend on the type of character you want to play as. What’s great is your choices will impact the final epilogue you see.
We enjoy the great storyline and rich details that are very accessible to new players. This helps make Elden Ring worth purchasing, even today, with other options available.
We play as the Tarnished, one of the Nameless Exiles who has been summoned to The Lands Between to reunite the Elden Ring shards, for the Demi-Gods have become corrupted by their shards and are wreaking havoc all over.
Related Guide: What is the Max Level in Elden Ring?
Non-Linear Level Design Helps Make Elden Ring Great and Defenitely Worth It
The elephant in the room, so to speak, of Elden Ring, one cannot talk about Elden Ring without addressing its most acclaimed feature: the non-linear level design. We can literally explore any level as long as we have the drive to venture out into dangerous enemy zones and look for shortcuts to bypass most challenges, including boss fights.
The game won’t hold your hand; it is entirely up to you to venture out and look for signs that point you in the direction of alternative paths and secrets, but they’re all there for you to discover.
The creative lead of Elden Ring, Mr. Miyazaki, has gone on record saying that the feeling he was hoping to instill in the players was a sense of exploration and adventure, and he has succeeded spectacularly.
No two regions are similar. Each area feels distinct and unique, and even the dungeons with somewhat repetitive gimmicks do not overstay their welcome. The full and rich world helps make Elden Ring worth recommending.
Combat is a Balance Between Fun and Challenge
Some players have been critical of the combat in Elden Ring. This is not because it is easy or hard but because the game doesn’t address the situation if you become over-leveled.
The criticism is somewhat justified; however, a counterpoint is that the game does not explain how to play.
It was a design choice to let players go about their playthrough how they see fit. The combat can be difficult for those who are new to the game or whose level isn’t high enough. On the other hand, one can practice the primary combat mechanics, such as blocking and riposting, dodging and backstabs, with different melee weapons, not to mention weapon arts and sorceries.
The game is challenging, yet it also provides you with the tools to become overpowered and confront those challenges, making it a perfectly balanced game. I use sorcery and am not ashamed to admit it, as it is the easiest way to beat bosses.
An Interesting Stealth Mechanic Makes Elden Ring Worth Picking Up Compared to Other Similar Titles
Coming off from the last point of “cheesing,” Elden Ring has allowed players to create the perfect stealthy ninja role-playing build. Too afraid to confront the intimidating boss or enemy? No need to worry; you can snipe them and attack from behind to reduce their HP significantly and even the odds.
Stealth in Elden Ring has introduced a new layer and approach to combat depth for players. Using stealth-based attacks and the kiting approach can make difficult areas easier.
Once the bothersome enemies have been thinned out, you can take out the rest with a frontal assault until the area is cleared to explore at your own pace.
We really enjoy being able to take combat head-on or move around it with stealth. This helps make the Elden Ring a game worth playing in 2023.
In-Depth Character Creation is Possible and a Great Feature of Elden Ring
Any Souls-like game by FromSoftware has always allowed players the freedom to create their characters however they choose. Having said that, the level of depth in character creation in Elden Ring is on a completely different scale.
The graphics, for one thing, are the best of all the previous games, and by extension, the physical appearance and details that can be seen and customized feel great.
The starting classes and a keepsake item have little impact on how you play the game once you begin your journey with Elden Ring; you will need to experiment to find out which is better suited for your playstyle.
Crafting is Simple Yet Useful in Elden Ring
A big reason why I enjoyed my time with Elden Ring was that I was motivated to find upgrades for my weapons through crafting.
To get the particularly rare recipes, you must search every nook and cranny of the game world and then comb through each section to find the ingredients for upgrading your weapons.
Most of the ingredients you get come from defeating enemies. Therefore, it is a good way to keep yourself in high spirits.
Trust me, nothing is like a big, overpowered weapon to take out your pesky enemies with. It’s a highly satisfying feeling. We love playing with massive, overpowered weapons that we’ve helped craft. This is another terrific feature that helps make Elden Ring worth playing.
Okay, so as a fan of mostly single-player games, I don’t like using multiplayer mode in games. However, Elden Ring is much more fun, not to mention an easier experience if you invite others to join you on your journey to vanquish those nightmarish bosses.
Elden Ring’s multiplayer mode is a significant improvement over previous efforts from FromSoftware. The game hardly lags, and your friends can help you out of a tight spot if you’re having trouble with a particular boss or level.
Given the number of combat styles in the game, it can create a spectacular display on your screen if you have three players helping you. However, inviting others also exposes you to hostile players who can invade you.
Final Thoughts on Whether Elden is Worth It in 2023
Okay! Now that we have established what Elden Ring offers to the players, let’s return to the question: Is Elden Ring worth it in 2023?
The answer is a resounding yes! Elden Ring is absolutely worth purchasing and playing today.
Why? Because not only does it give you total freedom to play how you want, but its breathtaking visuals and entertaining story combined with satisfying combat make it an experience worth revisiting.
The Elden Ring is a timeless classic that will be remembered for years to come as the forebear of how an open-world action role-playing game should be crafted.
What do you think of Elden Ring? Have you beaten it? Are you in the middle of a playthrough? Or do you never want to touch the game? Let us know your thoughts in the comment section below.
For more great guides and articles, check out some of our other content, including our guide to 21 story-driven games like Firewatch.