From Software’s games have always had a somewhat niche audience, but with the release of Elden Ring, the size of that audience seems to have exploded. The Soulsborne formula works exceedingly well when applied to the template for open-world games, it turns out. In fact, you could argue that it’s exploring a strange and enormous world, rather than the usual Souls-style difficulty and mechanics, that makes Elden Ring so fun.
The open-world genre is pretty expansive, and as with major winners before it, like Ubisoft’s Assassin’s Creed games or Nintendo’s The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild, Elden Ring is sure to leave a mark on the field. The question is, what should the rest of the open-world genre learn from Elden Ring?