George R. R. Martin‘s involvement in FromSoftware‘s newly-announced Elden Ring has created a lot of excitement, as well as questions about his contributions to what promises to be a highly-anticiapted, open world action RPG from the famed developer of Dark Souls, Bloodborne, Sekiro, and more. Now some of those questions are answered in an interview with Hidetaka Miyazaki, who reveals he’s been a fan of GRRM’s work going back to Fevre Dream and Tuf Voyaging.
Asked about Martin’s involvement in the project, Miyazaki notes that it involved several things: first an opportunity to meet and talk with him which then led to an active colabboration:
The actual collaboration itself begun with Mr. Martin ever so politely confirming what sorts of themes, ideas as well as many game-related aspects I had envisioned for the game.
This allowed us to have many free and creative conversations regarding the game, in which Mr. Martin later used as a base to write the overarching mythos for the game world itself.
This mythos proved to be full of interesting characters and drama along with a plethora of mystical and mysterious elements as well. It was a wonderful source of stimulus for me and the development staff.
It seems GRRM’s involvement takes a step back from that point, with Miyazaki indicating that the developers used that initial document to construct and inspire the game’s world. Initial rumors claimed that the setting is inspired by Norse mythology, but that has yet to be confirmed. FromSoftware is famous for its 3rd person action games, but those have relatively narrow worlds. The interview reveals that while this game will still feature the melee-combat action that they’re best known for, there’s more of a focus on RPG elements this time around. How does this distinguish it from Dark Souls? We’re guessing that besides more varied character creation and progression, that there’ll be a great increase in both the number of NPCs one can interact with and side quests and associated stories one can become involved in. While Dark Souls had optional quests, at least in the initial game they were rather limited in scope.
Bandai Namco’s press release also features a quote from Martin:
“Building the world of Elden Ring with Miyazaki-san and his team was a treat!” Martin added. “The graphics, mythos, and action-RPG gameplay will deliver an unforgettable experience. I can’t wait for people to see what Elden Ring has in store for them.”
The game has no release date as of yet, but it has been in development alongside the recently-released Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice and we wouldn’t be surprised if it sees a late 2020 or early 2021 release.