Recalling the first time I climbed the crumbling stone stairs at the end of the Cave of Knowledge and saw the Lands Between for the first time brings back many happy memories.
It was the first step in what would be a difficult but fascinating new quest, one that would help me on my way to vanquishing the Shardbearers and taking the throne of Elden. Why Elden Ring deserves to be named The Loadout’s Game of the Year 2022 is because of the feeling of discovery and wonder I had when I first stepped into its universe.
About FromSoftware’s landmark Elden Ring, what else can be said that hasn’t already been said? Since its debut in February, discussions about the game’s open world layout and exploration have dominated the gaming community, much like the reaction to The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild.
For good reason, Elden Ring has remained at the top: FromSoftware once again demonstrates that it is the master of its craft, conjuring warped worlds that, despite their best efforts to turn you away, only make you more determined to press on and learn more of the story, visit more locations, and take on more difficult boss fights.
Despite widespread critical praise and a dedicated fanbase, FromSoftware games have often failed to appeal to the larger gaming audience due to talks of overwhelming difficulty. This meant that only the most dedicated gamers could enjoy the intricately designed gothic settings and compelling stories of earlier games in the series.
In our in-depth analysis of Elden Ring, we discuss how expertly FromSoftware balanced making the game more accessible to novices like myself without sacrificing the difficulty that has been synonymous with the Souls series.
With a variety of playstyles, improved checkpoints, an open world design, and helpful tools like Summons, Elden Ring lets players have their own unique experience.
These updates and improvements have improved Elden Ring and made it possible for more players to enjoy the immense sense of accomplishment that comes with defeating one of the game’s most challenging bosses. What’s most essential is that more people may experience the game’s quality in its fundamental features, which are exploration and adventure.
Never before have I been so taken with a planet as I am by the Lands Between. Each image retains the sombre tones and feeling of scale characteristic of artwork from the Romantic era, while adding a dash of gothic flavour to create a singular and stunningly gloomy setting.
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Also, the Lands Between seems to be a reaction to the conventions of modern open world design, as it does away with things like a cluttered map screen, GPS-style navigation, and clearly defined boundaries. Without a shadow of a doubt, it is one of the best open world games on Xbox and PS5.
Having no limiting guidance meant I could dive headfirst into this realm and discover all there was to see. I spent countless hours exploring the vast Limgrave fields and the twisting passageways of Liurnia, where I was rewarded with tales at every turn and gold at every crevice.
Being able to use my intuition to navigate this vast universe has given me a newfound appreciation for its minute details; I feel as though I can still recall practically every move I made and every foe I dispatched with my Holy sword.
Perhaps Elden Ring’s greatest achievement is the game’s world; after more than 100 hours, I’m constantly amazed by the things I can find. I’m excited to see what other bleak and evil worlds FromSoftware has in store for us after the stunningly bleak, twisted, and detailed universe of The Lands Between.
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Another helping of The Loadout
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