What is Elden Ring — Story Explained

If you played the Souls games before Elden Ring, you know how complex and implicit their stories are. This kind of storytelling, which has become an identity of FromSoftware, has a logic that forces players to learn more.

This isn't a problem, of course, but in Elden Ring, this situation has changed. You can follow the events more efficiently during your adventure in Lands Between. Still, let's summarize: What is Elden Ring – Story Explained.

Before we start telling the origin story, let's put your mind at ease. This article won't contain any significant spoilers for the later hours of the game. Instead, it'll overview the Elden Ring universe, its characters, NPCs, bosses, and general story.

Everything we'll tell you here consists of information you'll discover in the game's first few hours. We can take it to Godrick, the first demigod boss fight.

Elden Ring takes place in the Lands Between. Though it's now ravaged, corrupted, and filled with deadly creatures, it wasn't always so. Once, it was the home of peace, development, and goodness that went along with Elden Ring's existence.

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Erdtree, Elden Ring – FromSoftware

Erdtree in Elden Ring

The giant tree in the center of the Capital City of Lindell is the source of everything. The tree, which can be seen from every point of the Lands Between, is also the most magnificent being in the universe. “Erdtree” has the wisdom to illuminate everything around it, just like the trees of life in other mythologies.

The importance of this tree in the Elden Ring universe is so great that even many items that affect gameplay have their effects. For example, the Warming Stone is an item created by magic that mimics the warmth of this tree. Or Golden Seeds are pieces that fall from the tree. As you can see, this tree is at the center of the universe and the story.

What is Elden Ring Story Explained
Golden Order, Elden Ring – FromSoftware

What is Elden Ring's story?

Elden Ring held the entire universe together. Because of its importance, it was protected by a group called the Golden Order. The members of the Goldern Order were followers of the Greater Will. This outer deity brought the Ring into existence as a manifestation of order and balance in the world.

It is important to note that the Elden Ring is not a physical manifestation; it is more a representation of how nature works. The Ring consists of Great Runes, which are the world's DNA; they encode how the world works, like laws of nature.

Queen Marika the Eternal is the god of The Lands Between – as chosen by the Greater Will – and her children are demigods who rule over parts of the region.

Godfrey is the first Elden Lord, protector for the Ring and the realm of The Lands Between.

What set things in motion

The events of Elden Ring started on the “Night of the Black Knives.” During the events of the Night of the Black Knives, someone stole the Rune of Death, one of the Ring's Great Runes, and killed Godwyn the Golden, Marika's, and Godfrey's son.

This led Marika to despair and initiated The Shattering, the destruction of the Elden Ring.

The shattering of the Elden Ring changed the Lands Between forever. Queen Marika disappeared, and all that was left were her demigod children. Marika's children took control of pieces of the Ring and became its protectors, known as Shard Bearers.

These shards gave them incredible powers but also turned them away from good.

Eventually, Marika's children elected to start a war for power and control of the remaining pieces of the Ring.

The war ended without a victor.

Malenia the Blade of Miquella, and Radahn, the Conqueror of the Stars, fought to a draw. During this fight, an injured Malenia infected Radahn with a disease known as Scarlet Rot. 

As a result of this act, Radahn was cursed with an eternity of madness and suffering, while the surrounding area of Caelid was infested with disease and its sky turned blood-red.

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Queen Marika the Eternal, Elden Ring – FromSoftware

After the Ring shattered, the source of good that had guided the Lands Between for centuries was no more.

The remnants of the Golden Order advise the main character to seek the shards of the Elden Ring.

Among these beings called Two Fingers, there's someone who thinks differently. Melina, who's become your Maiden (guide), believes that chasing shards of the Elden Ring is against the rules of the Golden Order.

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Fia the deathbed companion, Elden Ring – FromSoftware

What does Tarnished mean in Elden Ring?

After the Golden Order was destroyed by demigods whose minds were filled with evil, the Lands Between became what it's today. Elden Ring begins precisely at this point.

You're one of the Tarnished. These beings resided in the Lands Between but ended up being outcasts.

Now they are pawns in a power play, chasing the pieces of the Ring. Their goal is the same as yours – to unite the shattered pieces of the Elden Ring and become the Elden Lord.

You'll encounter these other Tarnished characters during your adventure in the Lands Between. The names of the glorious heroes mentioned in the opening cinematic are as follows:

  • Hoarah Loux – chieftain of the badlands.
  • Goldmask – the ever-brilliant.
  • Fia – the deathbed companion.
  • Dung Eater (yep, that's the name).
  • Sir Gideon Ofnir – the all-knowing.

After you complete the first few missions Melina has given you, she'll invite you to the Roundtable Hold, the game's safe zone. There you'll find Two Fingers along with other Tarnished characters. Two Fingers, who continue to believe in the Greater Will after the shattering of the Elden Ring and the destruction of the Golden Order, can also be found here.

After you defeat Godrick, the first relative of Queen Marika, Two Fingers will ask you to become Elden Lord. But that's not all it wants. It will also tell you to rebuild the Golden Order destroyed by the demigods. Since the spoiler part of the game starts here, we can end the article.

The story of Elden Ring is fascinating. It manages to make the great atmosphere of Lands Between even more meaningful.

Even if it doesn't save you from getting angry every time you die, it's lovely to know the history of the enemies that killed you 83 times.

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