Elden Ring Shadow of The Erdtree Brings An Underwhelming Conclusion To An Epic Saga

I was expecting a grand finale but was met with reused assets.

Important: This article features information regarding the final boss fight and includes spoilers for players who haven’t beaten the DLC yet, so proceed with caution.

                                                                           Story Highlights

  • FromSoftware has a legacy of ending their games on a high note with final DLC boss battles.
  • The DLC finales for DS3 and Bloodborne are so good that they carry the base game to new heights.
  • Shadow of the Erdtree’s final fight lacks that charm and is basically a fusion of reused assets.

Elden Ring Shadow of the Erdtree was one of the most hyped expansions for a game and it actually lived up to the hype by getting the highest critical score in 2024. However, as a veteran FromSoftware fan, I’m actually disappointed by the ending of Shadow of the Erdtree due to the final boss that is presented. I was expecting FromSoftware to cook up something grander than the end of the Dark Souls saga but the ending just left a bad taste in my mouth.

Author’s Note: Haris has not only played the review copy of Shadow of the Erdtree but he also has over 20 hours into the game on his main PSN account currently, while also boasting that shiny Elden Ring Platinum trophy. 

Bringing Back Radahn Was Not A Good Move

Promised Consort Radahn's Introduction In The Final Fight
Promised Consort Radahn’s Introduction In The Final Fight | Image Credit: eXputer

As is the tradition with FromSoftware’s previous DLCs for Souls games dating all the way back to Dark Souls 1, the final boss has always been mysterious and was never shown in trailers or used in marketing. It would be an entirely new enemy connecting to the lore of the base game that players would discover at the end of their journey in the DLC.

Something about the final boss of the dlc(WARNING:SPOILERS)
byu/Obvious-Future-2778 inEldenring

Slave Knight Gael in Dark Souls 3 The Ringed City and Orphan of Kos in Bloodborne The Old Hunters are perfect endings to the base games. In fact, Gael concludes the entire Dark Souls saga and is such a perfect boss in terms of his moveset, OST, lore, and originality. Shadow of the Erdtree just brings back a character that we already know from the base game and uses him as the final boss.

General Radahn was an amazing boss in the base game but getting to fight him again, especially at the end of one of the most hyped DLCs doesn’t seem right to me. I was waiting to get surprised when I passed through the fog wall in the final area but ended up getting disappointed when the cutscene showed me Radahn. The final boss should’ve been a completely new enemy, not a reskin of a base game boss fight.

Reusing Assets To Create The Final Battle

Radahn's Phase Transition And Miquella's Entrrance In The Fight
Radahn’s Phase Transition And Miquella’s Entrance In The Fight | Image Credit: eXputer

Alright, even if you say that reusing a boss is ok again, then at least the moveset and OST for the boss should be unique if it is getting used. Critically speaking, the only good thing about Promised Consort Radahn, the final boss of Shadow of the Erdtree, is its visual design in both phases. Other than that, his moveset is a mixture of the Radahn fight from the base game and his OST is a remix of the very same boss battle.

Most of Radahn’s moves in the DLC fight are like the base game fight with more or less delays in between combos. Some of his attacks are straight up copy-pasted from Godfrey like the ground slam that brings up rocks. He even uses a Bloodflame attack that we’ve already seen a lot in the base game against Morgott and Mohg. He even has attacks that are pulled straight out of Artorias’ moveset.

The second phase gets even weirder when Miquella joins in to support Radahn. The battle basically turns into another Twin Princes fight from Dark Souls 3 but with the difficulty tuned to the maximum. The difficulty level actually becomes unfair, at least the Twin Princes fight was more fun and fair. In conclusion, the entire idea behind the final boss fight wasn’t even original and the boss’ moveset is also an amalgamation of reused assets.

Ringed City And Old Hunters Reign Supreme

Slave Knight Gael's Epic Phase Transition In Dark Souls 3
Slave Knight Gael’s Epic Phase Transition In Dark Souls 3 | Image Credit: eXputer

Leaving aside other factors and only comparing the ending/final bosses, Ringed City, and Old Hunters easily dominate Shadow of the Erdtree. Even the DLCs of Dark Souls 1 and 2 come out on top in terms of originality. However, both Dark Souls 3 and Bloodborne’s endings are so perfect that these alone elevated the overall experience for me.

Slave Knight Gael is the best boss fight in any video game that I’ve played.
byu/munozkid indarksouls3

Slave Knight Gael boasts a completely new moveset and he’s difficult too, without being unfair. The build up to his fight was also insane and then his dialogues further elevated the boss battle. Orphan of Kos is such an original boss idea that I was stunned for a good few seconds after entering the arena. His fight is also brutal and tests all your skills, while giving you enough openings for punishes and healing. 

Promised Consort Radahn was a surprise sure, but one I was definitely not looking forward to especially for something that is supposed to end the legendary journey of Elden Ring. His character also feels like a complete shell being controlled by Miquella even though it is supposed to be “Prime” Radahn. With almost no build up, a reused moveset, and not nearly enough originality, Elden Ring Shadow of the Erdtree’s final boss left me with a feeling of disappointment.

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Haris Umer is a Guides Writer on eXputer who can be seen torturing himself by playing FromSoftware’s offering of Souls games. He speaks about games with overwhelming passion, which readers can spot in his guides. Haris has been avidly playing video games for 15+ years now. You can learn more about his gaming experience through his PSN and Steam profiles.

Experience: 3+ Years || Education: Bachelors In Medicine And Surgery.

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