The Best Games To Play If You’ve Finished Elden Ring (Or You’ve Given Up)

The Best Games To Play If You’ve Finished Elden Ring (Or You’ve Given Up)
At Kotaku, we independently select and write about stuff we love and think you'll like too. We have affiliate and advertising partnerships, which means we may collect a share of sales or other compensation from the links on this page. BTW - prices are accurate and items in stock at the time of posting.

Let’s just face it, some of us are just bad at Elden Ring. Honestly, what did we expect from a game that was engineered from the minds of A Song of Ice and Fire author George R.R. Martin and Dark Souls mastermind Hidetaka Miyazaki?

If you’ve given up on beating Elden Ring, you might be wondering what to play next. Or if you’re one of the crazy few who’ve finished the game more than once, you might be hoping to find a new game that echoes the challenging and unruly world that Elden Ring takes place in.

We’ve compiled a list of games to add to your shame pile that is a combination of dark, difficult and expansive — which we feel are the most obvious draw points when we decided we had to play Elden Ring.

This article has been updated since its publication.

What is Elden Ring?

If you’ve been living in a cave on Mars, Elden Ring is a dark fantasy role-playing game by FromSoftware, who you might know as the creators of the ever-popular Souls series.

The story exists in a world known as The Lands Between and takes place following the destruction of the “Elden Ring”. The ring was broken into pieces, known as the Great Runes, and scattered throughout the realm.

The protagonist of the game is known as one of the Tarnished, an exile from The Lands Between who is summoned back to locate all of the Great Runes, restore the ring to its former glory and eventually become the Elden Lord.

Games that are just as difficult as Elden Ring

Bloodborne

Bloodborne
Image: FromSoftware

In this PlayStation 4 exclusive, you’ll explore the deliciously dark world of Yharnum, which strongly resembles a Gothic Victorian London. In Bloodborne, you’ll play as a monster hunter tasked with ridding the ancient city of a mysterious plague that’s spreading like wildfire. Instead of battling creatures straight out of a mythology textbook, Bloodborne’s monsters are a little more Lovecraftian in nature.

From the get-go, you’re plunged into a pit of nightmares. With a strong sense of horror elements in every cutscene, Bloodborne is not a game for the faint-hearted. Don’t expect any type of hand-holding, this is a FromSoftware game after all. If you’re familiar with some of the previous Souls games, you’ve probably found that the best way to get through any boss battle is by adopting a sword-and-shield combo. Unfortunately, Bloodborne exploits this weakness by forcing you to run through the entire game shield-less. Damn you, FromSoftware.

Here’s where you can buy Bloodborne: Amazon: ($49) | eBay: ($49) | MyDeal: ($39.99)

Demon’s Souls

prime day
Image: FromSoftware

We feel like it goes without saying that if you’re enjoying Elden Ring, then you might as well turn to Demon’s Souls if tearing your hair out in frustration is your kink.

While Demon’s Souls was originally released back in 2009 and gloriously remastered in 2020, the plot takes place in a grim, apocalyptic medieval kingdom. According to the game’s lore, the realm of Boletaria was once subjected to the terror of The Old One, thought to be the oldest demon in existence. When Boletaria’s power-hungry king makes a pact with The Old One, it plunges the whole realm into darkness. The demon’s insatiable hunger for souls causes the world to be consumed by an impenetrable fog and become plagued with monsters.

Following the kingdom’s fall, you’ll play as a figure dubbed The Slayer of Demons. When you awaken in the cursed realm, you’ll meet an entity called the Maiden in Black, who will guide you through the five regions of Boletaria to kill the most powerful demons, so you can absorb enough souls to become strong enough to challenge the king.

Where to buy Demon’s Souls: Amazon Australia: ($89) | eBay: ($115.95) | Dick Smith: ($99)

Games that are similar to Elden Ring but with varying difficulties

The Witcher 3: The Wild Hunt

The Witcher 3: The Wild Hunt
Image: CD Projekt Red

Hot on the news that the next instalment of the Witcher games is in production, now’s as good of a time as any to play The Witcher 3: The Wild Hunt. While the game was released all the way back in 2015, it got a much-needed bump after the premiere of Netflix’s The Witcher TV series, starring Henry Cavill.

Based on the books by Polish author, Andrej Sapkowski, The Witcher 3 follows the tale of Geralt of Rivia, a magically mutated mercenary who inhabits a medieval world plagued by monsters. The game begins in White Orchard, a bleak swamp-like area ruled by a drunk baron. From there, you’ll discover that your former ward, Ciri, who vanished years ago, has returned to The Continent and is being pursued by the Wild Hunt. They’re a group of spectral elven riders who want to exploit her rare bloodline to destroy the world.

As you traverse through the Witcher universe, you’ll become entangled with countless sorceresses, terrifying beasts and power-hungry mortals as you level up through the use of legendary armour, potions and silver swords. The Witcher 3 pairs the grim world of Elden Ring with an easier difficulty, stressful storyline decisions and memorable characters. Fair warning though, you may never look at a unicorn the same way again.

Where to buy The Witcher 3: The Wild Hunt

Ghost of Tsushima

ghost of tsushima
Image: Playstation

Ghost of Tsushima is a stunningly cinematic RPG that was loosely based on the Mongol Invasion of Japan. In the game, you’ll play as Jin Sakai, who will do anything it takes in order to rescue his beloved uncle who was captured by the Mongols. Along the way, you’ll get to make decisions that may or may not dishonour the samurai code.

While the game has varying degrees of difficulty (which is a welcome feature if you’re tired of the same fight, die, repeat), Ghost of Tsushima is less about monster slaying and more about stealth and subterfuge. And it’s a little bit about petting foxes and taking naked baths in hot springs. While the storyline doesn’t take the same dark tone that most of the other games in this piece have, we had to include it because it’s such a brilliantly executed, profound RPG that lets you alter your combat style to match your preference. If vast open worlds are among your favourite games to play, then this one is sure to delight.

Only problem is that you need to own a PlayStation if you want to play it. But we firmly put this game in the category of “console-exclusive games that you should 100% buy a new console for”.

Where to buy Ghost of Tsushima

Assassin’s Creed: Odyssey

Assassin's Creed Odyssey is a good pick if Elden Ring has inspired your love of open world RPGs
Image: Ubisoft

In this rendition of the popular Assassin’s Creed games, you’ll play as either Cassandra or Alexios, a Spartan mercenary tasked with eradicating a sinister cult taking over the Hellenic world and uncovering the secrets of your mysterious bloodline. In the present, you’ll take control of Layla, who is desperately searching through Cassandra/Alexios’ memories in order to locate an ancient artefact before it falls into the wrong hands.

True to all Assassin’s Creed games, the storyline puts a lot of emphasis on stealth, especially when sneaking into Athenian forts and catching cult leaders. There are some dark undertones where the protagonist is forced to make heavy, spur-of-the-moment decisions that can impact how your story ends. While there are some pivotal character deaths you cannot prevent (we’ll never forgive Ubisoft for that one historically accurate death). Meanwhile, the mythology fiends in the room will get a real kick out of facing legendary beasts from Greek legend.

As one of the top Assassin’s Creed games of all time, Elden Ring fans will enjoy its vast open world, filled with humorous, memorable characters and the ability to adjust its difficulty level at the start if you’re dealing with fight-die-repeat fatigue. Bonus points for jaw-dropping cliff dives from Greece’s stunning plethora of waterfalls.

Where to buy Assassin’s Creed: Odyssey

Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice

If you liked Elden Ring, you'll love Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice
Image: FromSoftware

Another FromSoftware masterpiece, because hey, we have a type. While most Souls games take place in a desolate medieval landscape, Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice takes us to feudal Japan.

Instead of playing a samurai like in Ghosts of Tsushima, you’ll play as Sekiro, also known as “Wolf”, who is a full-fledged shinobi (read: ninja badass). While Ghost of Tsushima lets you explore a stunningly realistic world devoid of the supernatural, Sekiro is a game that takes you into the shadows to combat all things dark and mystical.

It takes the DNA of FromSoftware’s Souls‘ games and puts heavy emphasis on stealth at a more forgiving capacity. Unlike most of the games in this list, you won’t have the option to pick and choose your own weapon. Instead, you’re stuck with the same katana from start to finish. However, there is an extensive skill tree that allows you to attribute experience points in any way you see fit. The Wolf also takes advantage of his epic prosthetic limb as a unique way to gain the upperhand in battle, or to escape a tough foe.

Where to buy Sekiro: Shadows Strike Twice

Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim

Skyrim is a classic game to play if you want something similar to Elden Ring
Image: Skyrim / Bethesda

Hey you, are you still awake? Elder Scrolls V, otherwise affectionately known as Skyrim, lives rent-free in our hearts and minds since our first playthrough years ago. It’s one of those games that sticks with you, whether it’s from those sweetrolls that always made your mouth water or that Daedric Prince who forced you on some messed up quest (that cannibal one always springs to mind for us).

In Skyrim, you’ll play as a character known as the Dragonborn, who possesses the power of the Shout, the ancient language of the dragons. Using this mysterious power, you’ll undertake a quest to stop the black dragon Alduin from destroying the world. Along the way, you’ll encounter dragon hunters, vampires, werewolves, thieves and assassins, who will all offer morally grey quests of their own.

The best thing about Skyrim is that you can play it over and over with a range of different builds and play styles. While most of us are guilty of playing as a warrior Nord on the first playthrough, you can always restart as a battlemage or sneaky archer.

If you’ve never played Skyrim before, it’s definitely one of those games you need to bump up to the top of your shame pile. You’re missing out on strangely endearing glitches, hours of gameplay and a beautiful open world. Sayings like “I, too, was an adventurer like you… until I took an arrow to the knee” and “Fus Ro Dah” are things that will make so much more sense if you jump onboard the Elder Scrolls bandwagon.

Here’s where you can buy Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim

Comments

  • In Sekiro, you most definitely do not play as Isshin Ashina. You play as Sekiro – also called Wolf.

    • Yup, that’s right.

      “Sekiro” loosely translates to “One-armed wolf”, and the protagonist of the game is, as you said, Sekiro, AKA Wolf.

      Isshin Ashina is an NPC in Sekiro.

    • Great game and much better coop than Elden Ring as you can drop in drop out at any time while still levelling your character and getting loot.

      Elden Ring multiplayer is just too clunky for me to enjoy.

  • yeah sorry but Withcer 3, GHosts, AC and Skyrim should not be anywhere near this list

    Instead what you should be on here is the following
    Remnant: From Ashes
    The Surge
    Nioh 1 and Nioh 2

Show more comments

Log in to comment on this story!