Elden Ring has arrived and has already proven itself an instant classic. Its a game that is massive in scope and filled with mystery and adventure. But Elden Ring is also a game that can be intimidating for new maidenless Tarnished. As majestic as its world appears to be, it’s a dangerous one that can make short work of those who are not prepared.
RELATED: 10 Best Games Like Elden Ring
From plenty of obscure secrets and mechanics to basic tricks and tactics useful in all Soulsborne games, there is a lot a new Tarnished should know before they begin their perilous journey to find the Erdtree and restore the Elden Ring.
10 Get A Maiden
In Elden Ring, the Tarnished will not be able to level up until they have discovered at least four Sites of Grace. So early on follow the faint wisps of gold in the air to the first Sites of Graces on the overworld. Eventually, after resting at one you will meet Melina. Agree to her request and every Site of Grace will become a place to level up.
Melina will also occasionally provide a bit of interesting lore at Sites of Grace too, so be sure to check on her every once in a while. After a certain specific point in the game Melina will also grant you access to Elden Ring’s hub area, The Roundtable Hold.
9 Be Crafty
Crafting in Elden Ring is incredibly important. From firebombs to bone arrows, and even poison cures, crafting saves a Tarnished a lot of trouble. A crafting kit can be bought from the Santa-looking merchant in the Church of Elleh. For a mere handful of runes, the Tarnished can make what they need on the fly.
Be sure to check out other merchants for recipes too. The crafting kit is only one of many early game items that will make a Tarnished’s life much easier.
SCREENRANT VIDEO OF THE DAY
8 Don’t Be Afraid To Run
In Soulsborne games, there is always the temptation to fight everything. But the reality is a new Tarnished is often better off running past enemies to their intended destination.
There is no better teacher to this lesson than the first Tree Sentinel, a character that is featured prominently in Elden Ring memes, and who is more than happy to smash unsuspecting tarnished like bugs atop their glorious steed. Sometimes the key to success in Elden Ring is Learning to bravely run away!
7 Explore Aggressively
In Elden Ring there are always surprises and secrets tucked away behind a surprising number of mysterious corners. If it ever feels like an area hides secrets, good chance it is worth investigating. There’s always a cheeky cave or similar potential area to explore just out of sight, so dedicated explorers will often be rewarded.
RELATED: Reddit’s 10 Favorite Elden Ring Easter Eggs
There are also mysterious statues that may point the way to various secret dungeons. Just be warned that for all its majestic wonder and mystery, Elden Ring is shockingly devoid of secret caves behind waterfalls.
6 Don’t Sweat About Stats Too Much
If a Tarnished is the type of obsessive-compulsive RPG player who is worried about investing in the wrong stats, fear not. Elden Ring lets players respec using an item called a Larval Tear that can be found throughout the world.
After a certain point in the main quest, a prominent NPC will let tarnished use it for a fresh start. However, if a player does have a build or playstyle in mind its best to know all the starting classes and which ones have the most potential.
5 Weapons Are Key
Although it’s good for a player to boost their Tarnished’s stats, the best way to increase damage will always be upgrading weapons with smithing stones. It’s also worth noting that it’s more economical and somewhat easier to upgrade special weapons (like the incredibly popular Bloodhound’s Fang) than it is basic weapons.
To tell the difference, special weapons start off needing somber smithing stones, while normal need regular stones. Regular weapons do however provide extra flexibility in the Arts of War a tarnished can use, as well as elemental affinity. Which is best then really does come down to a Tarnished’s build and preferences.
4 Torrent Is A Parkour King
The Tarnished’s trusty yak-horse is more than just an excellent judge of character, they are a mountain climbing king. Not only can Torrent double jump mid-air but can change direction mid-air as well. This makes exploring mountainous and dangerous areas a breeze with some experience.
RELATED: 10 Theories That Prove From Software’s Soulsborne Games Are All Connected, According To Reddit
Torrent can also use thermals to super jump or safely glide downward as needed. Just beware that double jumping before landing a great distance will not save torrent and the player from taking damage.
3 Don’t Go It Alone
Elden Ring might feel like a lonely solitary hero’s journey, but it doesn’t have to always be so. There are even some bosses in the game that feel like they are balanced for co-op. Fortunately, after getting an item known as the Spirit Calling Bell, the tarnished can summon all kinds of spirits from the beyond to help in battle.
Finding this bell simply requires visiting The Church of Elleh near the beginning at night and talking to a mysterious witch (If she doesn’t show up, just fast travel there after nightfall). There are also plenty of players to be summoned, but if you use the multiplayer, just be careful of “invasions,” the game’s insidious brand of PVP.
2 Learn The Art of War
There are a ton of neat special abilities called Ashes of War that can be added to most of a Tarnished’s weapons. This gives the tarnished incredible amounts of customizability in their build. Ashes of War can be applied to the Tarnished’s weapons using a whetstone.
The first one can be found very early in a basement in the first encampment of Godrick’s soldiers (just follow the road from the starting “tomb”). These not only provided special attacks but can alter a weapon’s affinities to better match a Tarnished’s build.
1 Learn To Embrace The Unknown
Elden Ring like all the other Soulsborne games is so large and mysterious a single tarnished is not likely to figure it all out on their own.
These games are designed to be communal (hence the messages everywhere) so when a player is no longer worried about spoilers, they should not be afraid to look things up. Elden Ring already has a very active community that is discovering new secrets every day. Who knows, perhaps any new tarnished could be the first to discover new secrets in The Lands Between.
NEXT: 10 Best Movies & Shows For Fans Of Elden Ring
Pokémon: The Water Starters, Ranked
About The Author
(5 Articles Published)
Chris (he/him) comes from the radioactive hills of southern Idaho. He received his MFA from UNC Greensboro. He writes about Ligers.
More From Chris Swensen