'Elden Ring' Review: I'm Just Not Built for This Game

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Bandai Namco Entertainment

10:15:06. That's the total playtime I clocked into FromSoftware's latest foray into the "Soulsbourne" sub-genre it helped popularize.

I'm sure I'll get a ton of smoke from folks for not being able to beat Elden Ring, but I'll gladly accept all of the heat that'll hit my Twitter timeline. I'll freely admit to liking so many of the game's elements that make their debut here and the ones that have been brought over from past Demon's/Dark Souls games. But I'll also admit to losing my patience at the end of my 10-hour run and being unable to find the will to go on any further.

So let's just get into it - here are my final thoughts on everything I saw, heard, and did during my somewhat enjoyable yet highly frustrating run-through of Elden Ring.

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Bandai Namco Entertainment

When I did manage to bring down the opposition, I was supremely satisfied. Putting my careful battle plans into action and successfully landing a killing blow with my trusty Uchigatana always felt good. But being unable to make any usage of Elden Ring's summonable "Ashes" spirits even though I had the "Spirit Calling Bell" needed to do so frustrated me to no end. And losing all of the "Runes" I had accrued over time due to an enemy one-shotting me and me being unable to retrieve them on my next run lowered my will to keep going even more. I needed to level up certain attributes in order to use any of the sorceries I gained during my arduous journey. But my rising death counter kept me from earning enough runes to upgrade my character enough to keep him in the fight, which killed my enjoyment of Elden Ring even more.

After I met yet another unfortunate end during my trek through Caelid's Smoldering Wall, I finally had the tough realization that Elden Ring just wasn't for me. The overwhelming odds stacked against me from the game's powerful opposition just became way too much to bear. From this point forward, I'll be forced to see how the rest of its fantastical tale unfolds from afar as I watch more experienced Soulsbourne fans live stream it.

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Bandai Namco Entertainment

Elden Ring game producer Yasuhiro Kitao was quoted as saying his latest project "is the perfect title for those who have been interested in our games in the past but who have been put off by concerns about the games being too difficult." After my 10-hour run ended in nothing but sadness and ruin, I'm here to say that's simply not the case...

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