Games Inbox: Elden Ring DLC story theories

Games Inbox: Elden Ring DLC story theories

The Wednesday letters page has more recommendations for recent arcade racers, as one reader is unimpressed by Street Fighter 6 and Tekken 8.

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Dream expansion
So, we finally have confirmation that Elden Ring DLC exists and suddenly we have ourselves a new puzzle: what is it all about? I think GC did a good summary of the most obvious questions and theories and I’d have to say that it must surely be Miquella on Torrent. The image is so close to the one in the game that it’d just be plain unfair of From to bait and switch us like that.

Whether that’s the Erdtree or the Haligtree I don’t know but I think the best guess of what’s going on is that this is going to be set in some kind of dream world created by Miquella. There was a lot of cut content in the game about him being the God of Slumber and a whole thing where you were siphoning off the dreams of creatures to use as some kind of ingredient. You can read all about it on the wikis.

That seems a pretty good idea for DLC, in that it’s quite self-contained and creates a simple excuse to add and change things as you will. Although if that is what’s going on it seems odd that it presumably won’t add to the main map, which is surprising as it has some big holes in it. Perhaps that’s an indication there’ll be more than one expansion?

Cheap reveal
So after months of speculation the Elden Ring DLC is just announced out of the blue on a Tuesday morning, with no trailer, no information, and just one ambiguous looking bit of artwork. It might have started with Sony but I think this idea that the ‘showmanship’ of the games industry has been lost is definitely true and is spreading to more and more companies.

I assume the problem is some combination of publishers thinking the hype doesn’t work (which seems… unlikely) and it’s too expensive? But how expensive is a one minute trailer and a bit of voiceover? And how short of cash are these companies if they do think that’s too expensive?

I hope this is what those fools who celebrated the end of E3 wanted because to me it has made the games industry considerably less interesting than it used to be.

Fighting change
Looking at the trailers for Tekken 8 and Street Fighter 6, it’s hard to get excited.

They’re basically the same as before but with slightly prettier graphics. How about stuff like destructible environments, seeing the fighters get bloodied and bruised, and ripped clothes as the fights go on?

Street Fighter 4 was such a big success because it looked and played so different to all the Street Fighter games that came before it – it was a big leap forward. Apart from those colourful finishing moves, Street Fighter 6 looks just like Street Fighter 5. Same thing goes for Tekken. Where’s the big leap forward with the new generation of consoles? I wouldn’t be surprised if they both flopped.
Rangersingh (PSN ID)

GC: Surely Street Fighter 4’s success was primarily down to nostalgia and the fact that it successfully channelled the look and feel of Street Fighter 2?

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Chasing the 90s
In response to RickAndRolla’s letter on Monday, about new racing games, Horizon Chase Turbo is a really good arcade racer. It is a throwback to ‘80s and ‘90s games like OutRun and Lotus Turbo Challenge, in both graphics, music, and gameplay. Highly recommended if you haven’t tried it before. The only thing it lacked for me was online multiplayer.

The sequel is already out on iOS but I am holding on for the console versions which are due this year.

On the same subject I’d love to see sequels to Ridge Racer, Speed Freaks, and MotorStorm.
Tony- -1975 (PSN ID)

No second choices
The game looked really bad, especially based on the demo, but it’s interesting to see how Square Enix gave no second chances to the makers of Forspoken. One flop and that’s it, they’re off to do background textures for Final Fantasy, or whatever the worst job at Square is.

It’s always interesting to see how long some companies are willing to stick at an idea or not. As has been pointed out, EA are surprisingly generous in the second (and often multiple other) chances while Nintendo are somewhere in the middle.

The thing that gets me about Forspoken though is that one of the main goals of the studio was to take advantage of the PlayStation 5 and the Luminous engine but… did no one at Square Enix notice that the graphics were really bad? That should’ve bene a warning sign long before it got close to release.

Difficult question
As an older-ish gamer I’m surprised by all of the letters bemoaning difficult games. I still enjoy a challenge in games. I’m under the impression that games are being made easier these days. I managed Elden Ring without the customary rage break (where you leave the game for a few days). Walkthroughs have removed a lot of challenge, there’s videos for most bosses in any game you are stuck on. I don’t normally use these unless I am tempted to have rage break, like for example when one of the Bloodborne bosses refuses to just die.

The big issue for me is the quality of the games themselves. Both Shadow Of The Tomb Raider and Far Cry 6 have been a rocky road of glitches, bugs, and crashes. Tomb Raider even refuses to load in at all sometimes, but this could all be down to my ailing/aging Xbox One S, which I hope to swap out for the Xbox Series X at some stage this year.

Do Sony have stricter quality assurance than Microsoft? I don’t recall many issues with my PlayStation 4 games.

I think I might have went on a tangent.

GC: Have there been a lot of letters lately, complaining about difficulty? We hadn’t noticed.

Rare opportunity
Rare Reply is currently on sale for £4.99 on the Xbox Digital Store, which includes the recently released GoldenEye 007 game. The offer ends in six days at time of writing (Tuesday evening).

Just got it myself as I am not on Game Pass and I enjoyed playing GoldenEye 007 on rental on N64,
back in the day.
Andrew J.

Beyond late
Taking note of your article about Beyond Good And Evil 2, and the calamities that have surrounded its development, I just thought I’d chime in and say that the original game came out 20 years ago from this year.

For a single experience all that long ago, and nothing since, that’s an awfully long wait. Better in my eyes to let it lie, and I say that respectfully, having enjoyed the original immensely.

What would be the point of tacking on the number 2 when many younger gamers won’t have played or heard of the original?

Perhaps a better stance to take, should Ubisoft pull their proverbial finger out, would be a remake and expansion of the original. Then, they could take into account the prequel they were perhaps trying to build, include the original story elements, and conclude the cliffhanger at the end of the first game too. On top of that, Ubisoft could then successfully sell it to the old and a new audience. It works for Capcom with Resident Evil these days.

To be honest, for Ubisoft, it would be great to see a mature departure from Assassin’s Creed and allow their studios to breathe and get some creativity back. Some people may not like Immortals Fenyx Rising, but I quite enjoyed its playfulness and silly wit, not to mention ripping Zelda off in an appreciative way.

Ubisoft need to strive for those new IP instead of constantly rehashing what has come before. Beyond Good And Evil could start bringing that about, if the investment is considered worthy these days. Let’s put it this way, I’d rather they dump Skull And Bones because Rare beat them to that long ago, and produce Beyond instead. As always though, the money will do the talking.

GC: You’re right, it’ll be 20 on November 11. As for the sequel, there are suggestions that it was originally a completely unconnected game that Ubisoft just applied the Beyond Good & Evil name to, which certainly makes sense given what we’ve seen of it so far.

Inbox also-rans
Looks like I’ll have to polish up my rusty anchor in anticipation for the Elden Ring DLC release. I just hope the map is sufficiently different, as I’ve over 200 hours in the main game and would appreciate a scenery change.

Just to let you know, the intro video to Gran Turismo 7 is indeed not skippable but… You can turn it off from playing again once you’re in the game and turn it off in the settings. Hope it helps your sanity!

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The small print
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