Now that Elden Ring is finally upon us, you might be wondering how hard the game is and whether there is an easy mode for grind-averse players.
It would certainly appear as though all the hype surrounding this game was well and truly earned - it is being heralded as a masterpiece by many publications.
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The game has a vast world crafted, with a little help from Game of Thrones creator George R R Martin, and it looks to be every bit as epic as we had all hoped. But how tough is the game?
Those who have played, or even heard about Dark Souls could be put off by the thought of a relentlessly brutal challenge awaiting them, but is it as tough as those games notoriously were?
Here is all you need to know about how difficult Elden Ring is.
How hard is Elden Ring?
Many of the minds behind Dark Souls are responsible for Elden Ring, and that franchise is well known as bringing some of the roughest gaming experiences that you can get your hand on - it can be frustratingly difficult for those of us who enjoy a more casual gaming experience. But is this the case for Elden Ring too?
Well, thankfully not! Elden Ring is undoubtedly quite hard, but the game has been crafted for everyone to have a go at it. That does not mean it will be a walk in the park, though.
Boss battles and other combat encounters will have a similar level of difficulty to Dark Souls, inspiring that 'try and try again' gameplay style that fans of FromSoftware games have come to expect.
However, much of the game is geared around open-world exploration, something that everyone can enjoy! And better yet, you should be able to escape any fight that you aren't enjoying simply by travelling away. You can come back and try again later. So this does make it a little bit less gruelling than Dark Souls.
The developers seem keenly aware that brutal difficulty does indeed put a large portion of their potential audience off from giving the game a try, and they have countered that by making sure that there are ways to make things easier. Upgrades can be used which will massively help, and you can call on NPC allies to help you out when the going gets tough.
Not only that, but stealth has been incorporated into the game in a big way so the option is there to sneak past something that looks like it will cause you a gaming stress headache. It's a good approach as it will allow players to still explore the world and all it has to offer, while at the same time building up skills and confidence to take on a massive enemy that you may have snuck by previously.
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Does Elden Ring have easy mode or difficulty options?
Alas, no. There is no easy mode in Elden Ring. In fact, there aren't any difficulty options to choose from in the menus. You get what you're given here!
In a move similar to many open-world games out there, there are no difficulty options included for the game, and we will all be facing the same level of toughness when we start playing.
Given the way the game has been designed, it makes sense to not give players an easy option and we doubt very much any future patches will come along to include one.
If you're looking for a way to make Elden Ring easier, we'd recommend using magic and other ranged attacks instead of always going in for the close-up swordplay, where you're liable to get whacked. You should also be stealthy where you can and pick off enemies one by one, rather than rushing into a crowd and getting yourself killed.
There's also an Elden Ring money cheat of sorts that can help you get rich quick and level up fast, which certainly helps negate some of the more gruelling segments of the game. Loading up on runes using this handy hack will also allow you to buy better weapons, which should make Elden Ring at least a bit easier!
Read more on Elden Ring:
- Elden Ring review - our final verdict
- Elden Ring multiplayer - how does it work?
- Elden Ring PC requirements - minimum & recommended specs
- Elden Ring release date - all the key details
- Elden Ring classes - what's the best starter?
- Elden Ring demo - network test recap
- Elden Ring bosses - top tips on facing them
- Elden Ring length - how many hours do you need?
- Elden Ring trophies & achievements - the full list to unlock
- Elden Ring weapons - best early weapons
- Elden Ring keepsake - which starter gift to pick
- Elden Ring server status - error message explained
- Elden Ring map - everything you need to know
- Elden Ring runes - how to get rich quick
- Elden Ring smithing stones - where to find them
- Elden Ring staff - the best staffs in the game
- Elden Ring armour - where to find the best armour
- Elden Ring Ashes of War - how to get the best upgrades
- Elden Ring Ranni quest - how to find it and finish it