Elden Ring is a Masterclass in Creature Design

Elden Ring
Bandai Namco via YouTube

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Japanese game developer FromSoftware is no stranger to praise, having released landmark titles like Dark Souls, Bloodborne, and Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice. If there’s one thing that FromSoftware is known for, beyond making their games incredibly hard, it’s the massive bosses and exceptionally grotesque creature design. In that regard, Elden Ring is by far their strongest effort yet, featuring over 100 unique bosses and a plethora of abhorrent monstrosities. That said, what makes Elden Ring and its roster of nightmare-fuel monsters so brilliant? Let’s take a look at how FromSoftware made the beasts of Elden Ring more terrifying than ever before.

The Horrifying Genius of Elden Ring’s Creatures

Like most FromSoftware projects, Elden Ring is immensely rich with lore, but it can be hard to parse at times. Condensed into its most basic parts, Elden Ring is a story about a skilled warrior who returns to a desolated land to reclaim powerful artifacts and become one of the kingdom’s rulers. To do so, the warrior must face off against dozens of terrifying creatures. In the world of Elden Ring, the scale of enemies is often a context clue to the unfolding war in this forgotten land. For example, massive giants are chained to carriages and forced to act as the sole source of transport, but it begs the question, what beast was big enough to restrain these enormous foes?

As you embark on your adventure to recover the artifacts, you’ll face off against a slew of extremely unique bosses, each one more disturbing and challenging than the last. The high degree of difficulty in Elden Ring helps hammer this point home, as enemies are often just as deadly as they look. Whether you’re battling a cancerous, sentient tree or taking on a mind-bending being of Eldritch magnitude, one false move can spell your death.

It’s not just the bosses of Elden Ring that reinforce the ever-present feeling of danger. The land is also full of corrupted and deformed wildlife, often towering in size and presence. Giant rats and ants swarm through tunnels, massive bears lurk in the forest, and there are plenty of horrors waiting under the water as well. Even standard enemies like skeletons, wolves, and crows have become demented with FromSoftware’s touch, resulting in demented mobs of murderous beasts. While Elden Ring offers an exciting world to explore that contains an exceptionally interesting story, it’s the morbid and macabre bosses and enemies that make it something truly special.