Elden Ring Difficulty, Gameplay Details Revealed at TGS 2021

FromSoftware staff Yasuhiro Kitao shared a new development update on Elden Ring at TGS 2021 and explained some gameplay details related to difficulty.

By Iyane Agossah

October 3, 2021

While Elden Ring was not featured directly at Tokyo Game Show 2021, the Famitsu x Dengeki TGS 2021 stream on October 3 featured Yasuhiro Kitao of FromSoftware, who shared some development updates and new details on the dark fantasy action JRPG, we translated everything below.

  • MORE – How Berserk influenced Elden Ring and FromSoftware

ELDEN RING – Official Gameplay Reveal

ELDEN RING – Official Gameplay Reveal

Yasuhiro Kitao is in charge of promotion, marketing, and production at FromSoftware and regularly appears at events. You’ve definitely already spotted his cool hairstyle before.

The discussion started early on in the stream, around 33:00, for around 10 minutes. The timestamp might be slightly off as the stream is currently still ongoing. Update: Now that the stream has ended, I’ve got a precise timestamp for you, 32:45.

Elden Ring and its seamless open world

Yasuhiro Kitao started by explaining Elden Ring is a typical FromSoftware game with dark fantasy elements, but with several differences from Souls games. One of the novelties is how the game is open world and how it’s seamlessly connected to several dungeons.

You have small and medium-sized dungeons spread on the open world like underground tunnels. And there are what he called “legacy dungeons” which are huge castles and typical environments which also appear in Demon Souls and Dark Souls. One of the ways to enjoy the game is exploring the map and seamlessly discovering and entering areas like that.

Players traverse the open-world field using a horse, called Reima (Ghost Horse), which you can summon anywhere using the whistle. Except inside dungeons. The open world is huge and is designed to be another source of danger, different from the sense of danger you’ll get in dungeons, which adds to the fun. Kitao also touched on how the horse affects battles. For example, as seen in the gameplay trailer, when fighting giant enemies such as dragons, you’d rather be on horseback. But in narrower areas, it’s best to be on foot.

Next, Kitao explained that Elden Ring has no indications like “go to this dungeon next”. You’re free to explore and go wherever you want. Though sometimes you might be completely lost as to where to go next, so there are features that will help in those times, like maps.

Yasuhiro Kitao explained that, unlike past Souls games, you can find pieces of maps in the open world. You can then open the map and set objectives so they appear as pillars of lights to guide you.

TGS Elden Ring details – Game difficulty, development update

Yasuhiro Kitao said he’d be “lying” if he stated Elden Ring was easy, but it’s not like the game is hard just to be hard. It’s designed so you can feel a sense of accomplishment when succeeding in doing something or discovering something, and the high difficulty is one of the ways to achieve that.

However, there are several systems that make the game easier to help players, like being able to summon allies. There is also a stealth system like in Sekiro that lets you backstab and oneshot enemies, to avoid harder frontal assaults. And if the dungeon you’ve just reached is too difficult, you’ll always be able to find easier dungeons to level up first, so this will help players a lot too.

Yasuhiro Kitao ended the segment by thanking the fans who didn’t forget about Elden Ring even when they went silent on the game for two years. And only revealed gameplay for the first time at Summer Game Fes in June 2021. He added that the development is progressing smoothly and they’ll try their utmost to answer our expectations.

Elden Ring is launching on January 21 on PS4, PS5, Xbox One, Xbox Series X/S, and PC. You can always reach me @A_iyane07 on Twitter to ask me stuff like how Berserk influenced pop culture or how it was influenced by The Rose of Versailles. Be sure to check the rest of our TGS coverage as well.

Elden Ring’s development is almost finished (October 8 2021 update)

GIving the interview another listen, I’ve notcied and as pointed out by FAmitsu in its report that it was also stated that the development of Elden Ring is almost over. Meaning it’s unlikely the game will be delayed.

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Iyane Agossah

Living near Paris, Iyane is the head of Japanese content at DualShockers. He speaks Japanese, has been watching anime for over 25 years, and plays Genshin Impact mainly for its story. You can reach him on Twitter at @A_iyane07.

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