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Things Only Adults Notice In Elden Ring

"Elden Ring" has taken the world by storm, with "Soulsborne" veterans and newcomers alike excitedly diving into the Lands Between. FromSoftware's games are known for being a bit obtuse when it comes to lore and storytelling, but there are some key bits of information that can be noticed — if you know what you are looking for. While adults tend to notice things that kids wouldn't in game like "Animal Crossing: New Horizons," something as dense as "Elden Ring" has plenty more that might go over their heads. 

Sure, less children are probably playing the gruesome game filled with horrible ways to die, but the ones that are might miss some specific and interesting references and connections. Combine that with the fact that it is a massive open-world game with what feels like an endless amount of things to discover, and there is plenty of information that pass right by younger players.

Beware of "Elden Ring" spoilers ahead.

The cause of Rogier's illness

The "Elden Ring" community quickly became fond of Rogier for a few reasons. He is the NPC you get to summon during the first major boss fight of the game, Margit the Fell Omen. He is also a wizard with a massive floppy hat, which is just endearing. However, as you progress through the game and story, you will notice that Rogier is not well, restricted to his chair in the Roundtable Hold. Rogier isn't very forthcoming with the details, but you can determine what happened to our wizard buddy with some detective work.

Underneath Stormveil Castle, players can find the massive face of Godwyn, believed to be the first demigod to die and become one with the earth. As posted by a user on Reddit, players can find a massive bloodstain in this area — but instead of belonging to another player, it belongs to Rogier. In "Elden Ring," bloodstains show how someone died and this one shows Rogier being lifted into the air by something and impaled. 

Another user in the comments said that the animation is the same as when you get killed by the Death Blight status effect and that Rogier seems to have thorns sticking out of his legs, indicating that this may have been the turning point that led to his horrific injuries.

All of the Miyazaki references

Something younger "Elden Ring" players might not notice is that the game takes inspiration from a few of Hayao Miyazaki's films in its character design. In a post on Reddit, one user pointed out that Malenia, one of the shard bearers who was in the marketing for the game, echoes back a bit to the design to Kushana from "Nausicaa of the Valley of the Wind." Both characters have knight's armor only on their legs and one arm, which isn't a common look.

One of the users in the comments pointed out that there are a few other bits that feel inspired by Studio Ghibli. Torrent (the spectral horse) looks similar to Yakkul from "Princess Monoke," the walking mausoleums seem inspired by "Howl's Moving Castle," and the sky temple section of the game seems inspired by "Castle in the Sky." While FromSoftware has not confirmed these inspirations, considering how influential Studio Ghibli is both internationally and in Japan — and considering how much inspo "Elden Ring" took from the manga and anime of "Berserk" — it could very well be true.

Marketing material left clues about one of the status inflictions

A Reddit user noticed that, before the game even released, some of the marketing material for the different classes showed characters with their left eye covered up. While that might not mean much at first, they suggested it was related to madness, a status effect in the game (and something that many NPCs are dealing with). Another user in the comments made the connection that madness is seemingly linked to fire in this wold, thanks to spells like the Fire Frenzy spell.

They also noticed that Melina, your trusty guide, has her left eye closed and burn marks on her, suggesting that she suffered from the fiery madness at one point. What these commenters didn't know at the time is that there is another status effect causing madness in "Elden Ring" — and that's Scarlet Rot. Scarlet Rot has caused multiple shard bearers to go mad, as well as damage their bodies. It seems as though these internet sleuths were ahead of their time, but they may have been onto something with the links to fire and all those closed eyes.

Scarlet Rot might be a metaphor for Gout

There is nothing more adult than dealing with a variety of aches and pains across your body, so it shouldn't be surprising that someone made a connection between the game's afflictions and real-life health problems. In a post discussing General Radahn's lack of feet, one user noted that Scarlet Rot might be a metaphor for gout, which sounds far-fetched at first. But, the more you think about it, the more it makes sense. Gout earned the reputation for being the disease of kings, because an above-average consumption of red meat and wine can increases the chances of developing it. The disease also aggressively attacks joints, starting with the toes.

While there is an entire region in the game where Scarlet Rot is rampant, the fact that several of the shard bearers have it seemingly shows that the "royalty" of that world has issues with it. Radahn was even said to be driven insane by the pain, which could have led to him removing his own feet. It's an interesting theory and it wouldn't be surprising to learn that FromSoftware mutated a painful disease into something that rots you from the inside out.

Fia's health debuff should be a little more obvious

It seems fitting that in the world of "Elden Ring" that the one character that just wants a hug is giving you a debuff. It seems as though every player eventually figures out what hugging Fia actually does, but players with a more keen eye probably noticed much sooner. One Reddit user pointed out that she says asks the player to "share with me some of your vigor," although others argued that they didn't think she meant it literally. If that doesn't make it obvious enough, one person pointed out that the opening cutscene should have scared players away from hugs.

The Reddit user explained that during the open cutscene, it is revealed that Fia is a "Deathbed Companion," which means that she sleeps in bed with people who are dying or already dead. That doesn't exactly seem like the type of person you would want holding you for an extended period of time. Although, if you are able to look past the loss of HP, Fia does have a quest line she will eventually give you — after many hugs of course.