12 million units sold in 20 days of marketing: Elden Ring is a colossal card. It grabs the best ratings, conquers more and more players and captivates content creators, who find it hard to get them… A game that fascinates, amazes and casual, will represent a new model for a generation of open world games. Here are 5 things Elden Ring will change in the video game industry.
- A New Approach to Difficulty
- The Future of From Software
- Ended the opposition “Niche game VS mainstream”
- Being an assistant doesn’t always pay off…
- Community emulsion: a key element
The following text is a transcription of the video above
A New Approach to Difficulty
The first point that will drastically change the success ofElden Ring, this is the approach to difficulty in video games. We know it’s a very subjective topic, but casually, after spending a certain number of hours on the game, we see a genius modus operandi taking shape to calibrate the difficulty of the players. With his game, Miyazaki and his teams have, of course, bet on one level of difficulty, but with adjustable parameters. This open world concretely means that you can very easily meet the first boss by being level 30 instead of level 10, which is a first freedom on the difficulty of the game. But don’t forget that Elden Ring offers you summons from allies, summons from players, sometimes several, and the souls of animals or monsters that can support you in certain confrontations. All this helps to soften the combat and thereby make the game more affordable.
If you are not convinced of the effectiveness of this argument, have fun, with each unlocked achievement in the game, look at what proportion of the players unlocked them, you will be surprised how many buyers of the game play it compared to an old one souls . With all these elements making the game more accessible, we rarely get the impression of “cheating” using these methods. This is fully integrated into the game.
In the same way, the game remains difficult for your allies and always makes you understand that you are taking a freedom that comes with significant costs. For example, when we summon a friend, our bottles of Tears are cut in half. When we summon a creature to help us, the summon action lowers our mana and lasts three precious seconds.
Long story short, Elden Ring lets you know it’s a From Software game. On the other hand, it’s impressive to see all the liberties he takes to offer you to get around his principle, his heart of his gameplay. And that’s exactly why Elden Ring will change things in the overall game design of games, because it proves that you can make a difficult game, without imposed difficulty levels, just by providing facilitating elements that aren’t there. Like it. First evolution then, and we continue with the internal adjustments in the studio…
The Future of From Software
The second element that will drastically change Elden Ring is simply the way From Software will make its next games. Since Demon’s Souls in 2009, the studio has produced quite a few fairly similar games, except for Sekiro, which is more lighthearted and story-driven. We hardly see how they can go back to making games that are more linear and without an open world, so much Elden Ring makes progress freer and therefore more welcoming to new players. By returning to the basic Souls formula, the Japanese studio risks losing those millions of players that Elden Ring converted. Before the millions of Elden Ring players became experts in dark soulsready to rush with an old From Software game, there’s still a long way to go.
The most logical would therefore be that From Software goes with this structure, having mastered it the first time, and takes us out of other productions with the same very open structure.
It is therefore difficult to know if Elden Ring can co-exist with Dark Souls, or if it will take its place. One thing is for sure, in the studio the game will make things happen, and in the industry too.
Ended the opposition “Niche game VS mainstream”
The third important point, we will have to change our way of being naive towards niche games and blockbusters. A bit like in the cinema, we often have the image of a market split in two. On the one hand, the author’s game, it is innovative, abrupt, but it is only sold to an expert audience, and on the other hand, the somewhat conventional game that players who care little about it will buy per palette.
By reasoning like this, we pigeonhole ourselves and break any opportunity for innovation in the studios for fear of risk. While risk drives the industry forward.
Naturally,The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild We’ve been there before, but we’re talking about a Zelda game and a Switch game, so the player engagement will be huge either way. For Elden Ring, the bet was more tense, this total overhaul was a huge risk, but was a success. From Software turns the heir to a niche saga into one of the biggest startups of the past 10 years.
Being an assistant doesn’t always pay off…
The fourth point that will upset Elden Ring is the idea of assistantship in video games. We’ve already mentioned the difficulty, so we’ll need to include the . mention UI and UX of the game UI for user interface, UX for user experience. To put it more clearly, these two sciences, combined, create and realize the interfaces of your video game. It’s about how they are conceived, formed, arranged, designed and introduced. Are the interfaces clear enough to understand how this or that element works? Will a captive audience gather there? And most importantly, can a novice who doesn’t know controllers well get away with it? It must be said that From Software games do not excel in their excellence. The interfaces are sleek, heavy and the explanations are not always clear. But these interfaces have the advantage that they remain relatively clear on the screen. Sobriety usually leaves the action in the foreground: we look at the screen, the set, the characters, more than indicators placed here and there. In other words, the lack of care in the player’s assistance options makes the most of the gaming experience.
We tend to forget it, but our triple A, our usual blockbusters, developers often try to do too much to support players who are not used to the medium. Points of interest everywhere, mini maps, proximity indexes, status elements to know if you are alert or not. Of course it is often possible to hide these elements, but in a world where the open worlds are 100 to 150 hours long and often run through the same mechanics, we tend to get used to it. Seeing Elden Ring so austere in terms of its interfaces gave some ideas to internet users who wondered what Elden Ring would look like with all these modern elements, typical of triple A, which gives a rather funny picture. The joke has gone a bit far since then, but there’s no smoke without fire, and these parodies started when members of the industry criticized the game’s poor quests. These people often work for large studios and produce modernized triple A’s.
We therefore better understand their frustration with a game in which the UX elements of the UI of Quest Design, their professional specialty, are also little used, and yet are praised for the immersion that this provides. It’s old school in a way, hyper hospitable to the player, even if it means taking him a little too much by the hand, opposite the new school, camped by Zelda and Elden Ring, who are the interpretation, discovery and observation of the environment. And if we don’t have a scavenger hunt log, that’s okay. If you missed a dialogue, you had to follow. If you don’t understand an object, test it. In a sense, it’s the community that’s going to create that help, through in-depth messages, to help, through video and written guides, through Twitter, Twitch, YouTube, word of mouth. And the more mutual aid will be present, the more it will increase the natural prominence of the game.
Community emulsion: a key element
The last point where Elden Ring will change everything is the community emulsion it generates. We’ve seen it, everyone can play Elden Ring and everyone shares their little journey on social media. The freedom of action, the way you can explore the game, means that no run is like the other, like in a book where you are the hero or in a role-playing game. But that is not everything. There’s also the lore, dug right out of the gate by avid storytellers who scour item descriptions for the tiniest bit of story, even going so far as to dig into game files to learn more. There is then a real desire to analyze the content of this game and everything around it. A real movement that leads passionate players to evangelize the curious for a more or less long period after the release of the game.
And since the game is exciting, it’s easy to find a way through, whether it’s competitive with the wild PVP, humorous with the messages, the jokes that swarm in the floor messages of Elden Ring, whether it’s artistic with the panoramas we share on social networks, or even narrative with, for example, the hidden histories of the various bosses. Whatever happens, there are always elements that invite the sharing of experiences, the little anecdote from the session of the day before. That’s a community emulsion, ensuring that any player or curious person can talk about the game and tell others about their adventure, which will inevitably put a coin back into the machine.
This is exactly what happens with Elden Ring, which, thanks to its mystery, its free exploration and thanks to its completely free cutting, allows everyone to create their adventure. This community emulsion naturally monopolizes the discussion rooms and it may turn out to be spoiled or quite heavy, but the result is simple: 20 days, 12 million copies sold. Quality appeals to the public and the 5 elements we just mentioned also contribute to this.