5 Details You Missed From The Elden Ring Shadow Of The Erdtree Trailer

A convoluted past, Miquella's lore, and poison swamps? Sign me up.

Story Highlights

  • Elden Ring’s Shadow of the Erdtree DLC finally has a trailer, and it’s full of exciting new info.
  • The new antagonist Messmer and the shadow realm setting point to a possible convoluted past.
  • The trailer shows off possible lore connections to a distorted world and of course over-the-top bosses.

It needs no saying that FromSoftware’s venture into the open-world formula with Elden Ring proved to be a success like nothing else. And when this masterpiece announced an expansion, I was over the moon, considering past FromSoftware DLCs have all been superb. Now, the Shadow of the Erdtree trailer is here, and I can’t wait to share my excitement with you. Here’s my analysis of the trailer and some of the spicy details.

  • About the Author: I’ve played Elden Ring for 500+ hours, experiencing every mechanic and element the title has to offer.

YouTube video

The Scale Of The World And Design Variety

First, let’s look at the world design of the beautifully creative Shadow of the Erdtree. Before I begin, let me remind you that it was confirmed in an interview that the expansion would be larger than the base game’s Limgrave section, and in terms of design the same formula of open-world, legacy dungeons, and smaller dungeons would be adopted. That’s great, but the thing that surprised me was the variety.

Although massive, the base game’s Limgrave has a single theme throughout; every area of Elden Ring does. And that’s fine because it’s just a part of a bigger world. But in Shadow of the Erdtree, we have a Limgrave-sized map only yet I can point out ten different unique locations, which is pretty superb. The DLC seems to be establishing right away that it’s much more “quality over quantity” than even the base game.

byu/Turbostrider27 from discussion

You have a Deathblight swamp right away (of course we saw this coming), a mass graveyard-like location, Volcanic depths, massive castles, what seems like an old Raya Lucaria’s indoors, Throne rooms, blue-flower outdoors, and much more. Put Limgrave in comparison to this, and I don’t think it’s near as diverse as this DLC is promising to be, and this design variety has me excited beyond belief.

Shadow of the Erdtree's design variety has me hyped
Shadow of the Erdtree’s design variety has me hyped

Alternate Worlds And Distorted Past In Shadow Of The Erdtree

Next up, let me go over the story and setting a little; it’s time for some theory crafting and speculations. It’s confirmed that for this expansion, we’ll be going to an alternate world of sorts, the “shadow realm.” Not just that, but it’s the land “Marika first stepped foot in.” Based on this, it’s safe to say that this will be a journey to the past, but not the actual past, most likely a very distorted one. Does it ring any Old Hunters bells?

In the showcase, we see many indications of the “shadow realm” being set in the past. The mass graves could be a sign of a time before the death rune was removed and signify the era of conflicts and deaths. Similarly, Messmer’s dialogues regarding the succession of the throne also point to a past conflict. Not just that, we see stuff like what seems to be old Raya Lucaria, the Golden Order, etc. reinforcing the past setting.

All the references possibly point to past events
All the references possibly point to past events

However, I don’t think it’s a standard travel to the past thing either. The “shadow realm” is likely not a travel back in time, but an alternate, distorted depiction of the past that is stuck in that time. Since we take Miquella’s cocoon as the entry point and follow him, it’s likely for us and Miquella the setting would be the “present,” yet simultaneously we’ll be entering the “past events” in the shadow realm, most probably to right some past wrongs.

byu/Dalendry from discussion

Messmer And Miquella’s Role

Speaking of the story, we need to discuss the two key figures of this expansion, Messmer and Miquella. It was rumored long ago that the DLC would be about Miquella, and it is. But now, we have a new fascinating character in the midst, Messmer the Impaler. Who exactly is this guy? I’ll be honest with you, I’m also conflicted about his identity. There’s one thing for sure, he’s closely related to Marika and Miquella, and what happened in the past.

The new big bad, Messmer, is a fascinating mystery
The new big bad, Messmer, is a fascinating mystery

In my thoughts, Messmer will either be another one of Marika’s offsprings, as from the looks of things, he holds similar authority as the other demigods of Elden Ring and has salient features resembling them as well (the snakes could point to Rykard). There’s also another possibility, which is that Messmer is a sort of corrupted alter-self of Miquella. From the trailer, there’s a dialogue that describes a “kind” Miquella. There can also be an unkind one.

Messmer is Miquella’s shadow for sure
byu/HeadDragonfruit6086 inEldenring

Probably, the Miquella that accompanies us, the one with golden hair is a spectral entity and the “kind” one, while we aim to stop the advances of the corrupted Messmer. We’re most likely following a Miquella of the present like us, delving into a world stuck in the past, as another dialogue says “the losing side of the war.” Something dark happened here, and we have to fix it.

Tons Of New Additions To Your Arsenal

I think that’s enough of my “story analysis,” who knows what Miyazaki might pull with the lore. So, let’s look a little more at the gameplay aspects then. Another great piece of news the trailer presented is all the new weaponry we’ll be getting. I mean, just look at those new spells and Ashes of War, and tell me you’re not excited. The pink explosions-like magic is great, but nothing beats some good old-fashioned throwing hands.

byu/Turbostrider27 from discussion

The new Ash of War has you delivering a brutal spinning kick to the face, and I absolutely love it. I can’t wait to pummel these monstrosities with my bare hands. Next up are the new weapons, including what looks like a new repeating crossbow. Miyazaki has officially confirmed the DLC would feature 8 new weapon types. Not weapons, “weapon types.” Let the implications of that sink in.

Nothing is more satisfying than delivering a kick to the face
Nothing is more satisfying than delivering a kick to the face

FromSoftware’s DLC-Level Crazy Enemy Design Returns In Shadow Of The Erdtree

If there’s one thing you can blindly put your trust in, it’s FromSoftware putting down right crazy enemies in its DLCs. The trailer shows off a ton of enemy variety, each more ridiculous than the last. I mean, what even was that grotesque worm-like thing anyway? Classic FromSoftware weirdness right there. Not just that, the base game foes have all been upgraded.

Now that is one terrifyingly grotesque enemy. I love it
Now that is one terrifyingly grotesque enemy. I love it

Oh, and did you see how many new bosses can be spotted in the trailer? Before you say anything, yes, that boss of all Fire Giants has me scared for my life as well. From NPC-style bosses to absolute monstrosities, Shadow of the Erdtree has it all. There’s also a lion boss mixed in, which I can’t help but wonder, is that Hoarah Loux’s lion buddy, or something else entirely?

byu/chadbozeb2 from discussion


All in all, Shadow of the Erdtree made all that wait worth it by delivering a trailer that has me both hyped and inquisitive. One thing’s for sure, if everything checks out, it has the potential to be the best FromSoftware DLC, and I sincerely hope it is. Also, at the end of the day, this was all just my analysis and speculation, I might be wrong. What do you think? Let me know your thoughts to help me broaden my thoughts.

Elden Ring Shadow of the Erdtree is now available for pre-order, and releases on June 21, 2024.

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Hanzala is a dedicated writer who expresses his views as opinion pieces at eXputer. He's always been fascinated by gaming and has been an avid consumer of many different genres for over a decade. His passion for games has him eager to encounter the latest RPGs and actively look for new Soulslike to challenge. He puts forth his experience and knowledge of gaming into captivating opinion pieces.

Experience: 8+ months || Education: Bachelors in Chemistry.

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