FromSoftware's games have always had a stellar script, packed to the brim with enticing dialogue that colors the world and the characters in it, and Elden Ring is no different. Even its initial trailer became a rallying cry for the community, its scant details and tantalizing dialogue being all there was to latch onto for years.
But now, the game is out, and players have had plenty of time to digest its world, and it is stupendous. From characters with names like the Loathsome Dung-Eater to the variety of accents and wordplay, Elden Ring's world is filled with memorable quotes from its lovable, if a little strange, characters.
10 "Oh, Elden Ring" – Narrator
Every release of FromSoftware is a major event, and the reveal of Elden Ring was really quite a big one. For years, until gameplay was finally revealed, that first trailer was all players had to go on. Just about every line from it is iconic now, that quavering voice rattling off phrases, though none as beloved as "Oh, Elden Ring!".
Their voice is booming, almost beckoning the return of the eponymous Elden Ring. It resonated with the community with such intensity, a character with a yearning as extreme as their own. The line and even the character themselves are nowhere to be found in the game itself, but such a quote can't go unmentioned.
9 "I'll Soon Birth Thee Anew" – Rennala
There's a certain brand of boss fight that FromSoftware has been quite keen on recreating. That creepy atmosphere, an otherwordly feel, and environmental hints to figure out the rules of the fight. The Fool's Idol of Demon's Souls, Crystal Sages of Dark Souls. And Rennala has that same vibe.
There's a sorrow to her horror. She just wants to create life in absence of her beloved husband, but is doomed to failure. Every cry from her is a wish to create life, but it is fraught with horror. "I'll soon birth thee anew" is as much a prayer as it is a threat. She doesn't hate you, she just wants to care for you.
8 "I Command Thee, Kneel!" – Godrick
Another line that became iconic through Elden Ring's trailers, Godrick himself is packed with many splendid lines. But though the trailers portray him as a menacing lord of Stormveil, he is naught but a frail demi-god clinging to vestiges of gold, hoping his grafting will give him back the guidance of grace.
Yet he refuses to falter. He is a weakling, drawing his strength and sovereignty from his lineage, a bygone age of power. He views himself as a lord without peer. "I command thee, kneel!" he demands, more out of hope and fear, rather than any true power he holds. The single line sums up his whole character.
7 "Join The Serpent King, As Family" – Rykard
Rykard is another type of boss perhaps familiar to players of previous Souls games. A great, monumental being that needs a special weapon to slay. A being of legend, very much like reality. The Storm King, Yhorm, and now Rykard. Though Rykard has something of a twist, revealing himself to still be somewhat in control.
He wanted to burn the Erdtree, and accepted the help of a Serpent King to do so. It was consensual, with no trickery. A loss of self to achieve a greater goal. And he still believes it too. "Join the Serpent King, as family" he asks in his second phase. Not a desperate plea, a genuine ask. Even defiled, he believes in his own mission still – and also his voice is funny.
6 "Who Is To Say That The Cardinal Sin Must Be Cardinal Forever?" – Enia
Much of Elden Ring has a rather detailed history to it, plentiful named characters and their impact on the world, lands beyond, and a chronicled history. Yet when the time comes to burn the Erdtree, history turns a new page. No longer a grand lineage upheld by a religious order, but a vision of defiance.
The Finger Readers are messengers of a kind, communicating for the Two Fingers. Yet in the face of untold blasphemy? The Finger Reader of the Roundtable Hold, Enia, hits you with this line. Perhaps even she realizes at this point that a world that's reached the point of blasphemy is well past a need for rules.
5 "…You Are Maidenless" – Varré
If there's one thing FromSoftware can guarantee in their games, without a doubt, it is the presence of some maiden figure to guide you. The Firekeepers, the Doll, the Maiden-In-Black. But here you are, indeed, maidenless. Of course, you can argue that Melina plays the role of maiden, as she herself says, but it's different from a lore standpoint.
There's a perfect intersection of reality and game with Elden Ring's community, and Varre's snide way of claiming you are maidenless almost feels like a jeer, one that has easily transcended the game to become something of direct reference to being without guidance this time, and fending for yourself.
4 "Someone Must Extinguish Thy Flame" – Margit
Fire is an incredibly common motif in mythos and folklore, a sign of the light of betterment, but also of a destructive force. It can be a force of good when well-maintained. Dark Souls twisted this in a way, making flame more a symbol of power and desperation, and that darkness could be welcome.
Elden Ring also features fire, though as a means of defiance. Against the supposed "natural" order of things. Be it the flame of the Giants, of the Flame of Frenzy, it is undoubtedly a flame of ambition. One that Margit (and by extension, Morgott) finds repulsive. They are your roadblock to defiance, and they have no qualms extinguishing it.
3 "Now Cometh The Age Of Stars" – Ranni
Ranni is a character that is truly exceptional. Unlike most, she is intrinsically tied to the nature of the world. Not a boss, a character with a quest all of her own. You need not even assist her, but she will always be relevant to the world. She represents something else, a world without a lord or god to rule.
Like the darkness of Dark Souls, Ranni wishes to bring about an Age of Stars. To remove the influence of the Greater Will and give the people of the Lands Between their own future, even if it is one entirely unprecedented. It is scary, with no guaranteed success. But isn't a short life lived free better than a long life imprisoned?
2 "You Will Witness True Horror" – Malenia
An aspect of Malenia, Blade of Miquella that the lore tries to make explicitly clear is that she is undefeated. She is a fearsome warrior with no peer. Bolstered by scarlet rot, she is far past a simple warrior, and even a demigod. She is an empyrean with immense power, though little of it is hers anymore.
As such, she can be quite the challenge in-game. She moves at incredible speed, healing with every hit and being nigh impossible to dodge. And when you achieve victory, she assures you otherwise. Her second phase has her accept the rot completely. "You will witness true horror" she claims, before bombarding you with rot. And witness true horror you shall.
1 "….." – Goldmask
Goldmask. The Ever Brillant Goldmask. You may remember him from the opening, or perhaps not. But after a time, Brother Corhyn shall announce his departure from the Roundtable Hold to seek him out, and find him you shall, and on their journey of discovery shall they go. Goldmask, truly, is essential to the lore.
Goldmask, despite having a voice actor, does not speak a single word, even in death. He stands, T-posing until he understands the true nature of the world, and perfects it. "…." he says when you first greet him. "….." he once again exclaims when you reveal world-changing revelations to him. And by the Erdtree, does he succeed in his mission. The Ever Brilliant Goldmask.
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