The games that Hidetaka Miyazaki has had a hand in have long been defined as a separate souls-like genre. Complex, dark and challenging action rpg games are considered masterpieces by some, but they are publicly reviled by others. About the games themselves we’ll talk another time. Today we are much more interested in the lore and backstory of the most recent and largest FromSoftware project – Elden Ring. It will be complicated and interesting. And yes, attention – there will be an unbelievable amount of spoilers.
How did the fantasy world of Elden Ring come to be?
How did the fantasy world of Elden Ring come to be?
When and how the local fantasy world appeared is unknown. But we can definitely say that the events of the game unfold only in one of its pieces, called the Inbetween World. A huge island where humans, giants, their derivatives and a countless number of not quite typical for fantasy worlds creatures got along at best. And all would be well, while on Interspace turned its attention to a great cosmic entity called the Will. The Will brought prosperity to the world, grew a huge tree, created the very ring of Elden, which is a set of great runes, and appointing his viceroy went on.
But it’s not all so simple and straightforward. The embodiment of the Will are the two indivisible forces, good and evil, darkness and light, or as they are commonly called in the world of the Elden Ring – the two fingers. Their symbols awaken the runes, their interpreters help us gain the power of the defeated guardians. Seems like great guys, except for one nuance – there should be three of them, and they existed before the arrival of the Will. The third “god” can be called chaos, twilight, or whatever. In the world of Elden Ring his legacy is alive, though it is not commonly mentioned in view of the fact that the dominant belief is precisely the worship of the Two Fingers, the Tree, and the Golden Order. This is worth keeping in mind, for an understanding of all that happened next. And yes, this is what explains some of the endings.
It’s time for the Golden Order to be established
In any case, it was time for the Golden Order to be established. A woman named Marika was elevated to the rank of goddess. Her body was to be the receptacle of the totality of the great runes. But she could not rule the lands of the Inbetween Worlds unchallenged, and was in essence a mere conduit of the will, pardon the tautology, of the Great Will. The Ring and its vessel must have a guardian, and an executioner at half rate. The first such in the history of Middle-earth is Godfrey. A great warrior and an excellent warlord very quickly subdues most of the lands, giving all competitors rivers of blood and the Golden Order. It was under his watchful leadership that the kingdom of the Giants was destroyed. Marika and Godfrey manage to rebuild a majestic capital, and also make half-goddess children: Godwin, Godric and Morgott and Mogh. Marika, by the way, was a girl of surprise. The first surprise is Radagon, who was not Godfrey’s son.
The advent of an era of total control over all living things is thwarted by one powerful kingdom, the lands of the Karia family known to players as Leurnia. The local academy of magic was not just turned on the study of the stars and celestial bodies, but was one of the few shards of power of the true divine masters in the Inbetweenlands. Queen Rennala Full Moon, then at the helm as Raya Lucaria’s academy became a target for Radagon.
The marriage between Rennala and Radagon
The great war did not happen, but the marriage between Rennala and Radagon did. In spite of political and religious differences, the alliance was very strong, and it gave birth to Radan, Rikard and Renny. It would seem that they should be someone ranked below demigods, right? That’s a little different. The fact is that Radagon as such was not a demigod, but an actual god. In fact, it is the male incarnation of Marika. There’s no indication of Radagon’s origins in the game, and since Rennalla was quite human and her children became demigods, it’s not hard to put the facts together. And anyway, the gods can afford a lot of things.
In any case, the most interesting events await us ahead, as the time of Marika’s many moves begins. Subsequent events, if we believe the “official” version set forth to the player in the fortress of the round table, Godfrey is stripped of his status and expelled from the Underworld, and the vacated place decides to take Radagon, breaking off his relationship with Rennala. Radagon becomes the new guardian of the Elden Ring and the husband of his female counterpart, Marika. The marital duty within this strange union has been fulfilled steadily, as they have children: Malenia and Mikella.
A turning point in the history of the Interspace
Some time after these events, a turning point in the history of the Interspace occurs. Someone, using the rune of death, created special black knives that were able to kill the demigod, Godwin the Golden. Marika, in a fit of desperation, breaks the ring of Elden and the world plunges into an age of discord. So says the official version as told to the player in the fortress of the Round Table. It is said that history is written by the victors, and the golden tree of Eerd with two fingers believes itself to be such. However, things are much more complicated than that. The fact is that the great Fleece of Death is part of the Ring of Elden. It was separated and placed in the hands of the children of Radagon by Marika herself. And it was done for one purpose – to rid the world of the Golden Order. The ring was broken, Godfrey, who was extremely successful in inflicting lethal damage on all opponents of the new power, was banished and became extinguished, and a rancor for a place on the throne began among the demigods. And while the two fingers spend their time in endless meetings, Grace, guided by Marika’s will, begins to summon the heroes of the past, the extinguished, so that one of them might reach the tree of Erd and perhaps change the world for the better.
Shortly before Marika moves on to the climax of her plan, another swindler, Renny, enters the scene. It was she who, using the Death Rune handed to her, arranged for her cousin Godwin to have a night of black knives. For this deed, she received a kind of non-life and a personal overseer watching her every move. This character was not yet the biggest problem for Renny in achieving her plans to establish the power of the extinguished in the Meanderings. Her own brother Radan used his semi-divine powers to defy the celestials and win. And if you consider the close connection of all of Rennala Full Moon’s offspring with the movement of the stars, it is easy to guess that the beast-like warlord literally “froze” the course of his relatives’ destinies.
The question may arise here – why Renny in particular? Marika has been quite prolific in all her guises, so why does the lover of big hats stand out from the rest. The fact is that of all the offspring of the first Elden ring keeper, only three could become its new receptacle.
In the game this property is called “ethereal,” which alludes to some special form of immortality that allows you to remain in the material world after the death of the physical shell. The recipients of the gift, in addition to Renna, were Malenya and Mikella. Unfortunately, things didn’t work out so smoothly with them. Malenya, the very warrior and one of the symbols of the game, was struck by the terrible Red Rot, and Mikella was doomed to remain a child forever. So it turns out that all hope for the new order rests on the shoulders of Renna, who, in turn, kills her mortal body to make sure she is safe from the influence of the Two Fingers.
However, Malenya and Mikella have not resigned themselves to their infirmities, nor have they gone to rot quietly in a ditch. While Malenia honed her fighting skills, becoming the strongest of the demigods, Mikella sought a way to cure her sister’s ailment. Quickly realizing that the Golden Order and the Erd Tree would not help him in this endeavor, he decides to create his own faith, which would surely contain a cure for the Red Rot. Mikella merges with the tree and begins to grow, hoping one day to surpass the Erd Tree. His little sister, rewarded with soreness and madness Radan becomes the keeper of the new tree in a secret location. However, while she was napping, recovering from the battle, Mog snatched Mikella from the cocoon inside the tree and took her to his abode, where he used blood magic and unknown rituals to try to rid the eternal child of his curse. In a way, he succeeded, because something else began to form inside the cocoon from Mikella. However, it was not born to the end, emptying the last crumbs of life in front of the player’s eyes.
Two More Important Actors
There are still two important characters left in our story, which, unsurprisingly, are connected to the family spawned by Marika. So get it together – we’re close to the finale. It is also worth noting the last fire giant. The lands of the giants, due to their complete refusal to obey the Golden Order, have been subjected to a total sweep, and the last of their kind has been destined to watch over the extinguished anvil forever. Why, it would seem? You could kill him, and forever extinguish even the shadow of hope of destroying the Tree of Erd. You do remember Marika’s multi-tricks, don’t you?
The first important person is Maliket, the shadow of Queen Marika and guardian of the Death Rune, which is also referred to as the preordained death. The queen’s shadow is a title given to the protector and overseer, appointed by two fingers. Renna also had one – the half-wolf Blyde. It is because of his presence in the game that we can understand that shadows were supposed to watch over the Elden ring bearers and “take out” their queens when necessary.
Maliket failed in his duties, as he managed to screw up his queen, didn’t save the ring, and didn’t properly save the death rune he was entrusted with. From all these unpleasant events, he has not recovered, choosing to exile. And here’s the problem – because the rune of death was distant from Mezhdunar, in these lands, death, in the usual sense, was absent. Therefore, in the course of the game we meet the creatures, the viability of which can be questioned.
Second in order, but not in importance, is Rikard. The older brother of Renna and Radan was fascinated by forbidden knowledge and lava magic. After helping his sister as much as he could, he continued his own fight against the Golden Order and the power of the capital and the Tree of Erd. He placed the stronghold of his power in the mouth of a volcano, erecting a huge Gothic castle there.
In the course of his research, he stumbled upon an immortal serpent god, as well as fragments of an ancient cult that worshipped him. In search of power and immortality, Rickard merged with the serpent god, becoming what might be called a god-eater. The constant sacrifices didn’t please Ricard’s people, who saw him only as a monster, so he had no loyal companions left, except Tanith, a dancer and the wife of the rebellious demigod.
And in this world, divided between such strange and terrible creatures, the player finds himself. In fact, the task is one – to restore the ring of Elden. Because of the peculiarity of the narrative and complete freedom of action, as well as a solid variability, each player will have his own story within the game itself. And depending on the depth of immersion, and the fulfillment of the assignments MeTerland befall different fate. The standard and neutral outcome is the restoration of the ring and our protagonist becoming the new Lord of Elden. The player is also free to plunge the world into chaos, bring the curse of death and decay on everyone – it all depends on the actions after defeating the final boss of the game. The ending of Renna stands out against the general background. If you go through her entire long chain of quests, the world of Middle-earth will be rid of the power of the Great Will and the two fingers. It will be an era in which the world will live bereft of grace, under the light of the moon and the stars.
What ending to this story have you chosen?