What happens if you take one of the best studios of recent years and combine it with one of the most recognized fantasy authors of today? An explosive reaction called Elden Ring and that turns into everything a mass phenomenon in the industry.
That the last work of Software come with the grain of sand George R.R. Martin caused tremendous anticipation. Two world-building geniuses like Hidetaka Miyazaki and Martin shaking hands for the most ambitious project of the Japanese studio. However, the passage of time has diluted the effect of the novelist, until it is little more than a diffuse memory.
The true contribution of George RR Martin has been called into question once we have put ourselves at the controls of Elden Ring. He obviously has made contributions, but the balloon that inflated with your presence has been punctured. However, we can still find traces of his imaginary in the world of the Middle Lands.
The limbo between author and work
In the first place, we must try to be clear what point George RR Martin had responsibility in the creation of Elden Ring. He obviously has not designed the creatures of the underworld that we find on the map, since his contribution has been of context, of world creation.
The relationship between the two arose naturally, with Miyazaki admiring Martin’s works such as Fevre Dream and Tuf’s Voyages. Plots related to vampires, blood, bewilderment and worlds that are anything but friendly. And despite the fact that the general idea that the Japanese creative indicated to the writer was very vague, there was enough material to shape it.
Elden Ring tells us the story of the Circle of Elden and how his power, through the Golden Tree, achieved the blessing of all the inhabitants of the Middle Lands. However, the theft of the Rune of Death caused corruption among the demigods, which perished, leading to the Shattering and the world losing virtually all of its light.
As Lightless, we must rise up to rebuild the Elden Circle by recovering its pieces and thus helping Queen Márika to recover her power. A simple look at what surrounds us, but got a lot more twisted as soon as From Software applied its own point of view:
“When Martin wrote these characters, and when he provided that mythical origin story for the world of the Elden Ring, these demigods were much closer to their original form, and perhaps closer to human form back then, before the Searing. , before it all started. So it was more up to us to interpret this and say, ‘How did they become such inhuman monsters? And how did the crazy taint of the broken shards of the Elden Circle and their power affect them?’ So our job was to take these great heroes and warp and distort them into something they weren’t.”
Miyazaki himself acknowledges that Martin is possibly “a little surprised” to the direction their ideas took. The writer was thinking “something a little more human, a little more traditional human drama and fantasy characters.” However, in the work team they understood that they had to take the characters to “break them and turn them into these deformed and grotesque monsters”.
The influence of Game of Thrones
It is obvious that this is the case. The clearest example of this is Godrick, which we can find in the Castle of Stormveil and that has ended up becoming a caricature of what it was in its day. His body has been twisted to the extreme, adding members of his enemies to his body and he has completely lost his mind in search of power.
Rennala is also a more conservative sample, but just as terrible. He has locked himself in the Academy of Raya Lucaria and he does not intend to leave there, keeping dozens of his students in his rooms, ignoring the destruction that lies beyond its walls. However, Rykard is an extremely important character and allows Elden Ring to be directly linked to the most famous work of George RR Martin.
It is one of the demigods of the Middle Lands and we can only access it if we join the cause of the recusants in the Volcano Mansion. A ruthless group, that only seeks to end those Lightless or anyone who pursues the grace of the Elden Circle. As the visible face of the group we have Lady Tanith, sitting in front of a painting of her leader and guarded by a huge knight.
I can’t help but think of an image that has been repeated so many times in Game of Thrones with Cersei Lannister and the Mountain. The ruthless daughter of Tywin Lannister who directs the plans of King’s Landing with an iron fist along with an unstoppable mass that she imposes just by looking at her. Coincidence or not Rykard is about George RR Martin’s favorite character in all of Elden Ring.
However, there is more. The importance of the narrative of Elden Ring is Miyazaki’s responsibility, but he has not lost the opportunity to follow the guidelines set by Martin. The hatred between factions, houses and characters who believe they still have some power to claim is present. Sir Gideon Ofnir is a kind of Stannis Baratheon, with a duty and sense of irreproachable justice. So unquestionable that nothing can make him change his mind and he will do everything possible to help you as long as you are on his side. Of course, change course the destiny of the Middle Lands and you will have to face his wrath.
Roderika shares similarities with Daenerys Targaryen, not because she summons dragons, but because she goes from having no purpose in her life to discovering that she possesses the power to attune spirits. You better not forget about her to have good allies on your way to the Elden Circle. Leyndell, the kingdom’s capital, is still lush despite his fall from grace. It leaves Anor Londo in its infancy and converges at a strategic point near the sea, just like a certain capital from Game of Thrones.
What to say about the Picos de los Esports Extrasntes, a place where if you get distracted you end up crushed by a colossal being or a dragon that spits ice. Ideal place to accommodate the White Walkers. And let’s not talk about characters like Kenneth in the Necrolimbo claiming land with no one to support him or Diallos and the search for his servant.
They are more earthly characters, not because of the noble distinctions they possess, but because of how they are much closer. They tell us what is going through their minds, help us or at least tell us what they know. They are not oblivious to what happens in the world and each one has goals to meet.
Martin’s World, Hidetaka’s Story
In the end, no matter how much George RR Martin has contributed or the similarities that we want to find with other works, it seems clear that the author’s contribution was really limited. Yes, it was a starting point, which is already a lot, but with his last blog, Martin once again shows signs that his grain of sand was really small.
“Of course, almost all credit must go to Hidetaka Miyazaki and his amazing team of game designers who have been working on this title for half a decade or more, determined to create the greatest video game of all time. I am honored to have them Knowing and working with them, and having played a part, no matter how small, in creating this fantastical world and making Elden Ring the mega-success story that it is.”
To make matters worse, the novelist stated last year that his contribution ended a long time ago. Therefore, From Software no longer required his help and only needed a Miyazaki focused on bringing the Soulsborne dynamic to Elden Ring. The director wrote the dialogues and deformed Malenia, Hweg or Enia to his liking. The imagination flew too muchor when thinking how two monsters from such different disciplines could collaborate, but it is no less true that we have been able to see the fruits of their work.