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Elden Ring - chortlesome japes


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Had a good session last night. I knew I was getting near the end, even though I've played the game more or less blind from the very beginning. Not knowing if I was up against the actual last boss (at the end of tornado land) I decided to take a step back and do some exploring. 

 

Spoiler

I started the session with a go at Elemer of the Briar, a boss I've struggled with many times. He went down on my first go. Then I managed to kill the Bale Shadow and Astel, thus completing a rather lengthy quest line. Then I went and found the final torch and killed the Ancestor Spirit (I'd done the regal one ages ago). From there I continued to the twin gargoyles before teleporting to Castle Sol where I took down Commander Niall. I decided to have a look at the boss in tornado land before quitting for the night, was a fat dude called Maliketh that turned into a lion or something on phase two. My mimic summon was able to tank him and turned out to be a very easy fight, he went down on my first try with only a couple handful of attacks.

I'm pretty sure I'm on the final stretch now, but I'm rather pleased with last nights session which also netted me six achievements. 

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Every time you upgrade a shield you reduce the stamina it takes to shield a hit (guard boost). Depending on your weapon and playstyle you can counter attack quicker after absorbing a shield hit versus a roll. Plus guard counters do high stance damage. You can always put it away if you don’t want it for a fight/area/photo op.

 

(Edit, not every time, it increases by approx 10 over the course of 25 levels)

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This is my first proper attempt at a From game, but after visiting the Academy and Eternal City (or whatever it’s called), I need to get a PS4 Pro and try Bloodborne! So gothic and atmospheric!

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7 minutes ago, jonamok said:

Finally ended Commander Niall and his two chums last night. He’s tougher than many of the massive bosses. Finally onwards to lands new.

I have no idea where this bloke is? 

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2 hours ago, Stoikovich said:

You’re briefly invincible when you roll, so try to roll towards an enemy on their big/final attacks. Punish them for a couple of hits, then get clear


And you can attack from a roll, buffering the attack input as you come out. It’s great if you only have a small window to get in, attack and get out.

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So I've played a fair bit of BB and a little of DSIII and I picked this up yesterday; as much as I'm enjoying it there seems even less direction than in most From games! 

 

I've got a half-decent twohander, but no armour to speak of, nor any real idea where to go - I've cleared a couple of little dungeons (a werewolf guy and that Pumpkin Head one; the Sword Cat Statue kept mashing me though so may save that for later). 

 

Does anyone have a few tips for getting...I dunno, stable? Should I be aiming for the main hub, farming, looking for weapons? Obviously I feel very squishy at the moment, and keep chopping and changing my stats. 

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29 minutes ago, Moz said:

Every time you upgrade a shield you reduce the stamina it takes to shield a hit (guard boost). Depending on your weapon and playstyle you can counter attack quicker after absorbing a shield

hit versus a roll. Plus guard counters do high stance damage You can always put it away if you don’t want it for a fight/area/photo op  

 

Yeah, this. A fully upgraded brass shield is very tanky and not that heavy. Certainly wouldn't recommend no shield for a first playthrough, I'm dual wielding on my second time through and it takes more skill.

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13 minutes ago, Timmo said:

 

Yeah, this. A fully upgraded brass shield is very tanky and not that heavy. Certainly wouldn't recommend no shield for a first playthrough, I'm dual wielding on my second time through and it takes more skill.

 

I might switch my dual greatswords for this though, so fucking cool.

 

 

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I'm a bit behind most of your still (although ahead of the newcomers in this thread) and I got to Radahn last night.  Cripes, that was a step up!  Currently level 44 and felt like I wasn't ready for a fight like that.  Decided to look elsewhere and realised I'd missed an area in Liurnia - that Manor north of the blacksmith with the magic defences, so think I'll try there instead.


I've got Moonveil now, which was a surprise drop (I presumed it was from a harder boss, further along). I'm already using my uchigatana most of the time, so thinking of aiming towards using this, but only have 11 INT at the moment, so would need another 12 level ups before I could use it.  I know its possible to respec, but I'd really just be trading Vig and End for Int, and I'll need them later anyway, so doesn't seem worth doing that.  Plus I don't have the item yet.

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I never knew upgrading shields made them more effective in blocking. I didn’t bother in the previous games, as I thought upgrading them just increased the damage they did, and was therefore almost pointless. 
 

Is this a new thing for Elden Ring, or have it just been doing it Elden Wrong all this time?

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Defeated the final boss last night with 120 hours on the clock. What a game. I haven't started NG+ yet, still just checking out areas of the maps with no grace points and am finding new caves and catacombs. Will this game ever run out of content?

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1 hour ago, Uncle Nasty said:

 

I think this is horrible advice for a newcomer to the series. Elden Ring is bewildering and overwhelming enough even to people familiar with FROM games, but suggesting a newcomer goes in without a shield whilst attempting to absorb and process the sheer density of systems and information that they're about to get submerged in? Come on. In the early stages when your HP is low a shield is the difference between life and death, that's potentially hours of progress. When you're squishy and vulnerable at the start and facing off against enemies that will take you out with one bite or arrow, a shield is going to at least allow you to turtle through an area to the next Grace.

 

You also forgot to mention Guard Counters which are no-brainers to pull off and the easiest way to land a critical hit on otherwise impossible to defeat enemies. There are also shields with offensive Ashes Of War which are a massive benefit to more cautious players.

 

I would suggest getting a small shield and a pokey Halberd. Learn Guard Counters and yes, parrying, turtle a bit, raise your Faith for some defensive buffs, take your time and work your way up to running around naked and shieldless. But that is not the way for a new player.

 

 

 

Was going to say, not using a shield at all is terrible advice! Or at least, be aware that a shield is very, very useful in some situations, even for a veteran Bloodborne dodger. Examples would include:

 

  • Walking into a dark room, or across a bridge in the open, not knowing if there's a bastard with a crossbow
  • Dealing with dogs (especially if paired with a rapier, which lets you poke with shield up
  • Guard Counters, as you say
  • Parrying - whilst I argue it's not essential, you need a shield to do it (parrying daggers notwithstanding)

 

That's before you even get into the special features of certain shields, barricade shield, various shield attacks etc.

 

It's horses for courses. Sometimes a bow is useful, sometimes a shield. I don't really get this whole prescriptive "I'm just going to roll and two hand every time" approach. Use all the tools at your disposal, and more importantly whatever makes the game fun!

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3 minutes ago, K said:

I never knew upgrading shields made them more effective in blocking. I didn’t bother in the previous games, as I thought upgrading them just increased the damage they did, and was therefore almost pointless. 
 

Is this a new thing for Elden Ring, or have it just been doing it Elden Wrong all this time?

 

Always been a thing. Higher stability shield = less stamina to block.

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2 minutes ago, Davros sock drawer said:

 

Was going to say, not using a shield at all is terrible advice! Or at least, be aware that a shield is very, very useful in some situations, even for a veteran Bloodborne dodger. Examples would include:

 

  • Walking into a dark room, or across a bridge in the open, not knowing if there's a bastard with a crossbow
  • Dealing with dogs (especially if paired with a rapier, which lets you poke with shield up
  • Guard Counters, as you say
  • Parrying - whilst I argue it's not essential, you need a shield to do it (parrying daggers notwithstanding)

 

That's before you even get into the special features of certain shields, barricade shield, various shield attacks etc.

 

It's horses for courses. Sometimes a bow is useful, sometimes a shield. I don't really get this whole prescriptive "I'm just going to roll and two hand every time" approach. Use all the tools at your disposal, and more importantly whatever makes the game fun!

 

Yup. I'd also caution about rolling to dodge everything as you'll inevitably fling yourself off a bridge or into the path of a deadly attack. And definitely for exploring the low light conditions of underground tunnels and catacombs = shield up!

 

After the shield the most important piece of kit is the lantern.

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4 minutes ago, K said:

I cant believe I didn't know that. What a doofus!

I think someone said really early in the thread that the shield stability goes up only on every third upgrade, so easy to miss, and takes quite an investment in smithing stones when they're in short supply early on.

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It’s more that I’ve been playing these games for over a decade, exclusively with sword and shield builds. It’s ultimately not that surprising that someone could play Souls games for that long and miss a mechanic like that given how complex and obscure they are, but it’s still quite strange. I wonder how much easier the older games would have been if I’d known that. 

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Just a note RE shield upgrades, the guard efficiency stat, or whatever it's called, only goes up every 4th upgrade.  Usually only by a point or so.  So try and start with a shield that has fairly high guard efficiency to begin.  Brass shield is mad good for a medium shield. 

 

Ultimately though you're only going to be adding about 6 or 7 points to the efficiency overall.  IMO slapping barricade on a shield is waaaay more effective.  Makes guard counters so easy. 

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5 minutes ago, Ste Pickford said:

I think someone said really early in the thread that the shield stability goes up only on every third upgrade, so easy to miss, and takes quite an investment in smithing stones when they're in short supply early on.

 

Yeah, it's shit design. You should get a stability upgrade on the first upgrade and then spread out after.

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19 minutes ago, Ste Pickford said:

I've got Moonveil now, which was a surprise drop (I presumed it was from a harder boss, further along). I'm already using my uchigatana most of the time, so thinking of aiming towards using this, but only have 11 INT at the moment, so would need another 12 level ups before I could use it.  I know its possible to respec, but I'd really just be trading Vig and End for Int, and I'll need them later anyway, so doesn't seem worth doing that.  Plus I don't have the item yet.

Hey I got moonveil last night, and I use uchigatana as my main. To be honest I'm a bit disappointed by it, despite upgrading a few times it doesn't hit as hard as my unchi with a lightning skill on top. Uses different type of upgrade stones though so I'll keep upgrading them both as I can.  

 

As for shields, I love them. I start my battles at range with sword and staff, then switch to sword and shield to finish things off. Might not be the best way to play but I find it very satisfying. 

 

I also found a teleport to a very scary area where everything was broke.  Killed two enemies after several attempts by cheesing one and the other fell to it's death. Was a dead end thankfully so was able to run away!

 

Also got myself a sweet stone head which increases Dex and int, but lowers health, and makes me look like a complete freak. 

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It'd be nice if upgrade materials were a bit more common, so you could experiment with weapons a bit more. It's not as bad as in Bloodborne, where it felt you got locked into one or two weapons very early on, but in a game where you feel like you need every possible edge to progress, it's hard to move away from the most powerful weapon you have.

 

it's hard to balance that in an open world game, admittedly. Maybe have a system where when you kill a major boss, you can upgrade one weapon to the level of your current highest weapon. That probably wouldn't work and could be gamed, but it'd be good to feel a bit more free to experiment with the dozens of weapons that drop mas you explore.

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8 minutes ago, PeteJ said:

Hey I got moonveil last night, and I use uchigatana as my main. To be honest I'm a bit disappointed by it, despite upgrading a few times it doesn't hit as hard as my unchi with a lightning skill on top. Uses different type of upgrade stones though so I'll keep upgrading them both as I can.  

 

As for shields, I love them. I start my battles at range with sword and staff, then switch to sword and shield to finish things off. Might not be the best way to play but I find it very satisfying. 

 

I also found a teleport to a very scary area where everything was broke.  Killed two enemies after several attempts by cheesing one and the other fell to it's death. Was a dead end thankfully so was able to run away!

 

Also got myself a sweet stone head which increases Dex and int, but lowers health, and makes me look like a complete freak. 

 

Moonveil is all about the RT/R2 skill, which staggers (this is massive) and has good range. There's a huge number of enemies in the game which you can pretty much just spam it on. Cheesy, though.

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Had a lovely sesh on this last night, resumed in Castle Sol after feeling a bit burnt out the other night. I was really close to the end too!  Felt dead please when I figured out a trick to the horrible teleporting enemies..

 

Spoiler

Sometimes there are those weird shouty guys in small cage things, if you kill them before they shout they don't summon in enemies! 

 

Great Boss there.  I tried to coop a few times to learn the fight, but MY GOD hosts are so squishy.  Nobody is levelling their health, clearly.

 

Ended up smashing it with my mimic tear, OBVIOUSLY. 

 

Ended the session in a nice way, did all the paintings I've found so far (which was super good fun!), bar one which is in caelid, near where you fight Radahn.. 

 

Spoiler

Well I think I've found it, a mad path down cliff-based ruins with a golem battle on a tiny ledge?! Bastards. 

That's my first objective tonight!! Can't wait to dive in for more.  Best game.  120 hours, nearly.  And that's just my main save! 😮

 

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