15 Elden Ring: Shadow Of The Erdtree Trailer Details You Might Have Missed

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A trio of images from the Elden Ring: Shadow of the Erdtree DLC trailer.

After years of rumors and questions over what it would contain, we finally got to see what the Elden Ring: Shadow of the Erdtree DLC will entail. The three-minute-long trailer showed off a mix of gameplay and cutscene content, but of course, most of it spawned even more questions. Elden Ring’s lore is notoriously dense, and the vague dialogue in the gameplay trailer doesn’t help make anything more clear.

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But don’t worry, I’m here to wade through the imagery, voice lines, and established lore to help you understand more of what the Elden Ring: Shadow of the Erdtree trailer tells us about the DLC. As game director Hidetaka Miyazaki told IGN, the DLC “technically occupies the same space as the Lands Between, the same universe. But due to something story related that we won’t reveal today, this has become physically disconnected, and you’ll travel to the Shadow of the Erdtree land.”

Some people believe that the upcoming DLC will take place in a time period before the events of Elden Ring’s base game, which could explain some of the imagery seen in the trailer.

Arise now, ye Tarnished. Let’s get into it. Check out the trailer below, and click through for all the details we spotted.

The hand of Miquella hangs out of a cocoon.

As we learned in Elden Ring’s base game, Miquella is the twin brother of Malenia, who was cursed with an inability to age. Miquella encased himself in a cocoon in order to grow alongside the Haligtree, which he created in an attempt to save Malenia from Scarlet Rot, but that cocoon was then stolen by Mohg, who you can fight in the base game.

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The trailer begins with the Tarnished standing in that same spot that you fought Mohg, before showing us a close-up of Miquella’s cocoon. As YouTuber Iron Pineapple correctly predicted in April 2022, Miquella’s cocoon (and his “withered arm” mentioned in the trailer by Melina) are the point of entry for the DLC. You gotta go and touch that icky thing to get into the Shadow of the Erdtree land.

The Tarnished rides a horse through a field of ghostly tombstones.

Miyazaki told IGN that the DLC map will be “comparable, if not larger, than the area of Limgrave,” which is the first location you explore in Elden Ring. This shot of the Tarnished riding Torrent through an open field lined with ghostly tombstones is a nice visual indication of just how large this DLC will be. I also can’t help but note that the tombstones remind me of the spectral jellyfish in the main game, which are the spirits of children trapped in a sort of purgatory. Rough.

The Erdtree with a shroud laying over it.

At first, I thought this was a shrouded Erdtree, but upon closer inspection I think it more closely resembles the Haligtree Miquella attempted to create as a refuge from the Erdtree, its teachings, and its followers. The veil, or shadow, hanging over it could imply a mirror or parallel world, but the golden sap leaking out of it doesn’t bode well for whatever this world is.

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The Haligtree didn’t provide Miquella or Malenia with what it was intended for, so perhaps this visual implies its failings.

A woman sits on a wooden throne.

Now, doesn’t this look a helluva lot like Rennala, Queen of the Full Moon, and one of the base game’s major bosses? Rennala, prior to the events of Elden Ring, led the mage academy Raya Lucaria and its Glintstone Knights. When Marika sent a champion named Radagon to fight Rennala and her Academy, the champion instead fell in love with her.

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The two married, uniting Marika’s house of the Erdtree and Rennala’s house of the Moon. Rennala and Radagon had three kids: Rykard (the snake dude boss), Radahn (the big guy on a little horse boss), and Ranni (mommy). Radagon then left Rennala to become the second husband of Marika, breaking the Queen’s heart and mind.

Is this Queen Rennala before the heartbreak? Before the fall of the Academy? It certainly looks like it.

The Tarnished rides through a smoky swamp.

We all know that Miyazaki loves his poison swamps, the sicko. When Eurogamer asked him if the DLC will include poison swamps, this was his response:

In a word, yes. But this was actually a point of introspection for me after creating the base game. It was only after creating it that I realised I really like to create poisoned swamps. And this was a little place of introspection and reflection for me. So maybe, when players reach the poisoned swamp in the DLC, they will feel a little bit of this retrospection.

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I don’t know about you, but that certainly looks like a poisoned swamp to me. I’m gonna hate this place!

A portrait of an old man and a woman.

Based on where this shot of the painting shows up in the trailer—right as the voice over says “the Erdtree Faithful”—I think these are two demigods or Marika loyalists. You’ll likely encounter or have to fight them, maybe even in a place similar to Volcano Manor, where several portraits of iconic characters reside.

A massive castle rests on a floating rock.

Crumbling Farum Azula is a late-game legacy dungeon populated by Beastmen enemies, dragons, and Maliketh, the Black Blade. In the base game, you wake up here after helping Melina light the Flame of Ruin to burn the Erdtree. It’s a floating city, entirely separate from the Lands Between, with a violently rotating tornado near it that will teleport you (possibly through time, it’s unclear) to a big boss fight with the Dragonlord Placidusax.

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We learn that Farum Azula was once the ruling place for Placidusax, who served as Elden Lord at one point in time. If this is, indeed, a pre-crumbled Farum Azula, intact and still connected to the Lands Between rather than floating above it, we may learn more of the Dragonlord’s story.

A massive, fire-filled boss made of what looks to be an iron cage.

Miyazaki confirmed to IGN that this horrific, flaming wastebasket was “a terrible weapon you used in a war that occurred in the Land of Shadow, basically.” This “gruesome weapon” is actually full of burning bodies, so I expect his boss battle to be a total nightmare. Yay!

A horrible, long-necked creature wraps its mouth around the Tarnished's head.

Every time I see a cursed new FromSoftware creature I genuinely wonder (and hope) that everyone working on this game sees a therapist. What in the name of Marika is this thing? Why is his neck so long? Why is he sucking on the Tarnished’s head like a damn Push Pop? I hate it, thanks!

A horned lion roars.

Though this initially looks like the Lion Guardian enemies you face in various places across the Lands Between, this beast is not identical to them—it has human feet, for one, whereas the Lion Guardians in the base game have paws. It’s also clearly a boss, which I don’t believe any Lion Guardians are in Elden Ring. Is this an Omen, perhaps? The cursed creatures are born with gnarled horns covering their bodies, and this ugly dude certainly has a lot of those.

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If it is an Omen, that puts it in the same category as Mohg (who stole Miquella) and Morgott, who plays a role in this DLC trailer, too.

The Tarnished kicks an enemy.

A clip of the Tarnished wearing a Bloodborne-ass fit and kicking the shit out of an enemy drew my attention. First, there’s a boss door behind him, but second, the Tarnished is kicking him! Is this a new Ash of War, or perhaps a new build that’s suited for hand-to-hand combat? I want to kick ugly things! Let me kick the worm neck guy!

A skeletal man pulls a sword out of his eye.

Mesmer wields a weapon.

Here we have the only new, named character confirmed in the DLC: Messmer the Impaler. Miyazaki tells IGN that he is a “key figure,” who is seen at the end of the trailer to be sitting in a “throne-like chair.” “People who’ve played the game may recognize this throne to be one of those from the boss room where you battle Morgott. And this represents the thrones at the base of the Erdtree.” Miyazaki says this symbolizes that Messmer is of equal power to other demigods and “children of Marika,” and since the character says “mother” in the trailer, we can assume he’s probably her kid.

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He’s also probably got a Rune Arc on him, the bastard.

The Tarnished wields a weapon while flying upwards with big, golden wings.

Like any good FromSoftware DLC, you’d expect there to be new armor, new weapons, and new abilities joining the game. The trailer shows off several of these, including a new crossbow, a massive throwable bomb, and this, which looks like the spell that only Crucible Knights can cast. Maybe, in the DLC, we’ll be able to cast it, too.

A glowing, golden, long-haired person stretches their hand out.

Just after the title card for Shadow of the Erdtree drops, we see a glowing, golden-haired figure, then a glimpse of the Haligtree. This is clearly Miquella, likely in the midst of creating that very tree.

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Were there any details in the Elden Ring: Shadow of the Erdtree trailer that we might have missed? Drop what you spotted in the comments below.

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