I love getting excited for video games. I adored Horizon Zero Dawn, and I’m desperate to continue Aloy’s journey later this year in Forbidden West. I can’t wait to wander down some alleys as a cat in Stray. I’m so hyped up for Ratchet & Clank: Rift Apart after its glossy trailer in the PS5 reveal, and just recently I wrote about how thinking about Titanfall 2 has made me even more ready for Deathloop. There’s tons more besides, too. But you know what all those games have in common? I know stuff about them! I’ve seen trailers, watched gameplay footage, read interviews with the devs, looked at some concept art… I know what I’m in for. With Elden Ring, we know almost nothing, so maybe calm down a bit, yeah?
I don’t even say this out of annoyance; that’s only a very small part of it. This is mostly motivated by concern. Sometimes – quite often in fact – when I get a little too excited about a game, the game itself never quite lives up to my expectations. It’s rarely that the game is bad either, it’s just that I’d allowed myself to become so overhyped that no game could ever live up to those standards. So seriously, everyone who’s on a sugar high off the tiny crumbs of Elden Ring info we’ve got so far, maybe it’s time to take a step back for your own good.
If you’re reading this having somehow missed all of the hype and coverage around Elden Ring – first, please tell me your secrets – here’s a quick rundown of everything we know so far. It’s a video game, and it’s being made by George R. R. Martin (the Game of Thrones guy) and Hidetaka Miyazaki (the Dark Souls guy). That’s it! That is all we know about it. So why are there hundreds upon hundreds of articles around the game, speculating on what might be involved, who the villain might be, what hair customisation options you’ll have, and how many game of the year awards it’ll scoop. We don’t even know if the Elden Ring is a group of people, a building, an object, or the body part of a disgusting monster. It makes as much sense as speculating about what might happen in The Last of Us Part 7, to be honest.
There seems to be some blurry leaks of a trailer floating around, but while these will definitely feed the hype and fuel approximately six hundred articles about what a horse could mean for Elden Ring, they don’t really tell us anything. Cyberpunk had a trailer eight years before it came out, remember.
It’s cancelled, then it’s shadow dropping tomorrow, then it’s not getting finished until after The Winds of Winter, then it’s the reason The Winds of Winter has been delayed. It will have a trailer next week but it also won’t have one until 2023. Let’s be honest, we just don’t know! None of us do! There’s no hidden Easter egg in Demon’s Souls, there’s no cryptic clues on FromSoftware’s website, and you won’t find the release date if you look at every sixteenth character in Hidetaka Miyazaki’s last tweet of every month for a year. It’s just a video game, and it’s a video game we know basically nothing about.
Don’t get me wrong, the brains behind Dark Souls and Game of Thrones – technically A Song of Ice and Fire, if you want to get snippy – could definitely come up with a brilliant video game. But like everyone, they could also fail. It happens. Not everything needs to be the greatest thing ever, it just needs to exist. But let’s be honest, we don’t even know if Elden Ring really exists yet. We don’t have much more than a title font, blurry leaks, and the names behind it, names who are already very busy on other projects anyway.
Please, people, there are other video games. We’re getting some Final Fantasy 7 Remake DLC this year, plus a new Resident Evil and some new Pokemon games. Mario’s even heading back to the links for the return of Mario Golf. There’s loads of actual games to get excited about, games we know about, games we can watch trailers and gameplay from, games where we don’t guess at every single detail, or interpret every vague comment from anyone tangentially connected to them as a clue.
It probably isn’t cancelled, and it probably isn’t coming out next week either. It’s something in between there, it’s just a video game slowly being made somewhere. Just let them get on with it, yeah? And hey, if it does get cancelled, it’s not like we actually know anything about it to begin with, so maybe just take a deep breath and move on.
I get that it’s nice to be excited, but maybe try being excited for games we already have details on. Games you might get to hear more about, or better yet, actually play sometime soon? It’s okay for us to not have details on Elden Ring, it’s not like other games have stopped existing, so let’s all chill out. It’ll get here when it gets here. We saw what the hype cycle did to Cyberpunk 2077, and less than three months later, let’s at least pretend we’ve learned our lessons from that for a little bit longer.
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Stacey Henley is an editor for TheGamer, and can often be found journeying to the edge of the Earth, but only in video games. Find her on Twitter @FiveTacey
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