Elden Ring: Miyazaki talks about story, gameplay, world-building & more

Elden Ring, oh Elden Ring! I don’t know about you all but I am really excited about this title. Sekiro was brilliant and FromSoftware has proven again and again that they can deliver an unforgettable experience each and every time.

So far we know very little about the game. We do know that initially the game was supposed to be a continuation of the Dark Souls series, but Miyazaki had other plans as it seems. Of course we also know, the studio does not like sequels and that is probably the reason why we seeing new IPs.

Elden Ring is a third-person action role-playing game with a fantasy setting. The gameplay is not so far from Dark Souls. That doesn’t mean that the gameplay will be identical, but you could say that Elden Ring belongs to the same genre. Hidetaka Miyazaki

This game is going to be open-world, something the studio has never done before and this concerns me quite a bit.  Though the previous titles might be considered open-world-ish since there is no loading, for the most part, and almost all the areas are interconnected.

Villages will be the dark dungeon-like ruins that you have come to expect from us. Creating a more open game is a big challenge for us. Hidetaka Miyazaki

My biggest concern is the story and that’s because From approaches story and storytelling very differently from other studios. But I guess that’s were R. R. Martin comes in play. More specifically R. R. Martin works closely with Mayazaki on creating the world of Elden Ring. Time will tell and to be honest I cannot wait.

The player will be able to learn about Martin’s mythology through exploration. Hidetaka Miyazaki

Below are some highlights regarding the game:

  • Elden Ring is a third-person action RPG with a fantasy setting. The gameplay is not so far from Dark Souls. That doesn’t mean that the gameplay will be identical, but you could say that Elden Ring belongs to the same genre.”

  • According to Miyazaki, Elden Ring goes beyond simple changes to the game systems. By adding larger and more open environments, he believes that the game will evolve on a greater scale.

  • “With a larger world, new systems and action mechanics inevitably become necessary. In that sense, I think that Elden Ring is a more natural evolution of Dark Souls.”

  • “While the narrow and complex dungeons of our previous games were indeed interconnected, Elden Ring’s environments will be much more open and vast. The more extensive world will form the base of Elden Ring’s gameplay, and its mechanics are designed with that type of environment in mind.”

  • The dungeons of Miyazaki’s previous games were interconnected in the style of a Metroidvania game, but this time there is a vast field between them. According to Miyazaki, the inclusion of such an environment was decided for the sake of showing the story and world on a larger scale, to increase the freedom and depth of exploration, and to create more variation for battles.

  • You can get around the world on a horse, and you can fight enemies while riding.

  • Miyazaki wants to offer depth to exploration in Elden Ring in a way that Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice did not.

  • Do not expect vibrant villages and towns. According to Miyazaki, “Villages will be the dark dungeon-like ruins that you have come to expect from us. Creating a more open game is a big challenge for us. If we were to add towns on top of that, it would become a bit too much, so we decided to create an open-world-style game focused on what we are best at.”

  • Miyazaki studied various open-world games as reference for Elden Ring‘s world, while at the same time not being too heavily influenced by a specific work, to make a game that is true to the DNA of a From Software game.

  • Regarding the collaboration with George R.R. Martin, Miyazaki said, “It all started with me being a fan of Mr. Martin’s works. A Song of Ice and Fire and its drama adaptation Game of Thrones are both masterpieces. I am also very fond of Fevre Dream and Tuf Voyaging.”

  • Miyazaki got in touch with Martin for a meeting, which he found to be surprisingly easy to do. From there, the two clicked and Martin was all in for Miyazaki’s idea of making a game together.

  • According to Miyazaki, Martin did not write the main story of Elden Ring. Rather, he wrote the events that happened long before the era the player explores—in other words, the “mythology” of the world. Miyazaki said that there were two reasons he had Martin write the mythology rather than the main story.

  • “Storytelling in video games—at least the way we do it at From Software—comes with a lot of restrictions for the writer. I didn’t think it was a good idea to have Martin write within those restrictions. By having him write about a time the player isn’t directly involved in, he is free to unleash his creativity in the way he likes. Furthermore, as From Software we didn’t want to create a more linear and story-driven experience for Elden Ring. Both issues could be solved by having Martin write about the world’s history instead.”

  • According to Miyazaki, the excitement, drama, and depth in the mythology written by Martin had a major impact on From Software’s creation of the world for Elden Ring.

  • Miyazaki compared Martin’s mythology to the dungeon master’s handbook in a tabletop RPG.

  • “The player will be able to learn about Martin’s mythology through exploration. We are known for letting the player explore the game’s lore through fragments of environmental storytelling, and this time around Martin’s story is what you will be trying to unravel. The period the player actually explores is still connected to the old times, so as you slowly discover why the world has become the way it is, you will learn more about Martin’s mythology as well.”

  • “There is no fixed main character in Elden Ring. We mostly leave it up to the player to decide the characteristics and personality of the character they create.”

  • Miyazaki believes that Elden Ring‘s NPC characters will be more compelling than his previous works thanks to Martin’s mythology as a source of inspiration.

There is no official release date at the moment, but since the game has been in development for quite a while we should probably expect some gameplay in the coming year.

Thanx IGN & Gematsu

Chris Kountouras

Chris was born in the early 80’s along with the very birth of home gaming. After spending many maaany drachmas on arcades, his father decided to buy him a PC instead of going bankrupt. He lived through the advancing and development of the gaming industry, having played TONS of games on all platforms. He is always honest and will never hesitate to give his true opinion on a game no matter what. Loves stealth games and dislikes microtsansactions, DLC and pre-ordering…who doesn’t after all?! Contact: Email