If you purchase an independently reviewed product or service through a link on our website, Rolling Stone may receive an affiliate commission.
2022 has already been a good year for video game releases, first with February’s release of Horizon Forbidden West, the sequel to the popular Sony game Horizon Zero Dawn, and last week, the launch of Elden Ring,the highly-anticipated spiritual successor to the fan-famous Dark Souls series, which hit game shelves for PlayStation, Xbox and PC players.
The game’s popularity is soaring and Elden Ring has already amassed close to 900,000 concurrent players on Steam within three days of its release — some of it has to do with the fact that Game of Thrones author George R.R Martin provided materials for the game’s setting. The fantasy open-world game is also trending heavily on Twitter with players both ranting and raving about the new game. For those of us that haven’t (yet) had a chance to download or buy Elden Ring, here’s everything you need to know about the new FromSoftware game.
What Is Elden Ring?
Elden Ring is an action/adventure, role-playing game that follows an open-world design similar to older Dark Souls games and adventure games like Zelda Breath of the Wild. You start off as a “Tarnished” or a character with no real title and pave your way to the Elden Lord title. How you get there is up to you — there are castles to explore, beasts to fight and puzzles to uncover. All in all, it’s a slightly chaotic, absurdly fun and at the same time — frustrating — a game that will have you screaming with joy, agony and most of all, pride (in yourself) by the end.
If you’ve never played a Dark Souls game before and want to go in completely blind — that’s okay too. Be prepared to be caught off guard and bear in mind there’s a bit of a learning curve, especially as you figure out combat moves and how to move about the open-world map, but a few hours of gameplay in, you’ll gain your footing (for the most part). In between the constant combat, I recommend taking a beat to just “be” so you can actually take in the stunning graphics and enjoy fictional “Lands Between” (where the game is set) for what it is — a grotesque, slightly damaged world packed with infinite possibility.
Where Can You Play Elden Ring?
You can play Elden Ring on your PlayStation 5, Xbox Series X/S and even on older consoles like the PlayStation 4 and Xbox One. Elden Ring can also be played on your PC, although we recommend getting it on your console as PC players have reported a bunch of technical issues since the game’s release.
How Much Does Elden Ring Cost?
You can buy Elden Ring (Basic Edition) for $59.99 on Xbox, PlayStation or on your PC. As for the deluxe edition, you’ll be shelling out about $79.99, although the deluxe edition comes with a digital artbook as well as the original Elden Ring soundtrack which could be of interest to collectors.
How Involved Was George R.R. Martin With Elden Ring?
Fantasy Novelist George R.R. Martin was brought on to write Elden Ring‘s backstory, according to an interview given by video-game director Hidetaka Miyazaki to The New Yorker. Martin was responsible for writing snippets of the story, including information about Elden Ring’s setting in the fictional world of “Lands End,” its characters and aspects of its mythology.
What Games Exist in the Souls Universe?
Elden Ring is the spiritual successor of other Souls games, which means while Elden Ring features similar characteristics to Dark Souls games — like vast medieval open worlds with a heavy focus on combat — the game was designed to stand on its own. That said, if you’ve been playing Elden Ring or enjoyed watching gameplay videos on Twitch and Youtube, you might want to consider adding some Dark Souls games to your collection.
Right now there are four games in the Souls universe, the oldest being Demon’s Souls which was released first in 2009 followed by Dark Souls I, II and III. You can buy these games for your PlayStation, Xbox, PC and even newly for the Nintendo Switch.
Where Can You Find More Work by George R.R. Martin?
George R.R. Martin was famously responsible for writing the Song Of Ice And Fire series, which was adapted into the hit HBO TV show, Game of Thrones. You can currently buy all five books in the series on Amazon in a convenient boxed set. Amazon also has individual books available, if you need to complete your collection. Martin has yet to release the final two books in the series.
As for the TV show Game of Thrones, you can currently subscribe to HBO Max starring at $9.99 a month to binge all six seasons of the fantasy show.
All seasons of Game of Thrones are also available as a boxed set on Amazon right now, in regular DVD format as well as Blu-Ray and 4K.