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Elden Ring debuts 15 minutes of new gameplay

Friendship ended with Epona; now spirit horse is my best friend

Elden Ring, the newest Souls game from FromSoftware, was featured in a livestream event showing off 15 minutes of new footage — the biggest chunk of gameplay we’ve seen yet. The preview debuted some exciting, never-before-seen features like item crafting and a very detailed world map while also giving us a glimpse of what’s sure to be a crowd favorite — the spirit horse.

The Elden Ring footage was from a PC build, showing off impressive visuals from the world known as the Lands Between. Instead of bonfires or lanterns, sites of grace are now where Tarnished can rest and replenish their health. Occasionally, touching a site of grace will spawn a beacon that can guide players to their next objective, which will definitely come in handy for such a seemingly large and expansive world. To help travel through the world, you’re given a spirit horse, which was my favorite part of the demo. I hope we’ll have the opportunity to bond with our spirit horse ala Roach from The Witcher 3. It is unknown if you can pet the spirit horsey, but I understand you can feed it, fight on it, and use it to vault off spirit springs and fly through the air to reach elevated areas.

Bandai Namco

Epona, eat your heart out.

The demo previewed the co-op system, calling in a fierce-looking barbarian lady to assist with a boss. For those who wish to play offline to avoid a potential invasion, you can summon spirits for a short time to help you take down a pack of enemies. According to the video, there are different types of spirits, allowing you to mix and match your spirit parties to find one that best suits your playstyle. For those of us (me, I mean me) who have a hard time with some of the more difficult elements of Souls games, this spirit helper system is sure to come in handy.

The preview didn’t go too in-depth about what kind of story Elden Ring tells, although we did meet a woman with a tattooed eye named Melina who apparently wants to offer us an accord. We also saw one of the game’s bosses, Godric the Golden, who, as the self-styled king of all things golden with a prancing lion on his axe, could be a long-lost Lannister and a whiff of George R. R. Martin’s influence on the game.

The preview ended with a brand new trailer and the reveal of the Collector’s and Premium Collector’s edition of the game (which was spoiled earlier in the day by commercials on Twitch). Pre-orders are available now, with Premium edition buyers getting a sweet-ass 1:1 replica of the winged helmet Malenia, Blade of Miquella, wears.

Elden Ring hits PlayStation, Xbox, and PC on February 22nd, 2022.