• FromSoftware’s new Elden Ring DLC, Shadow of the Erdtree, offers a massive amount of content for players to explore and conquer.
  • Despite the challenging new bosses and interesting map design, the lack of Trophies or Achievements in this expansion is disappointing.
  • While previous FromSoftware DLCs have skipped Trophies, the overall quality of Shadow of the Erdtree makes up for this omission.

The long wait for Elden Ring: Shadow of the Erdtree is over. Developer FromSoftware has crafted its biggest-ever expansion, and it’s absolutely packed to the brim with things to do and secrets to find. There’s easily enough content for Shadow of the Erdtree to be its own standalone game, and FromSoftware should be commended for this. That being said, the lack of any Trophies or Achievements in Elden Ring‘s DLC feels like a missed opportunity, particularly in such a large expansion.

Trophies and Achievements have become a huge part of gaming. Every game has its own set of Trophies for players to unlock. Used to showcase players’ skills, they are often obtained for overcoming difficult challenges or bosses, and the Soulslike genre feels tailor-made for them. While DLC content doesn’t always come with new Trophies, it’s becoming more of a regular occurrence, with Cyberpunk 2077‘s DLC, Phantom Liberty, being a recent example of this. For Shadow of the Erdtree, however, there are none.


How Shadow of the Erdtree Levels the Playing Field for Elden Ring Veterans

Elden Ring’s Shadow of the Erdtree DLC promised to be more difficult than the base game to compensate for overpowered builds, and it succeeded.

Elden Ring: Shadow of the Erdtree Not Having Trophies Feels Like a Missed Opportunity

Shadow of the Erdtree takes place in its own sealed map, separate from the Lands Between. Despite this, it’s a huge area in its own right, and it makes use of verticality probably better than any other map that FromSoftware has created since Dark Souls. Everything that the player sees, whether high above them or way down below, can be traveled to and explored. With ten new main bosses for players to find, and various other sub-bosses scattered around the map, there’s no shortage of challenges.

Many of these, such as the imposing Messmer the Impaler, will push the player to their limit and are arguably even tougher than some of Elden Ring‘s late-game bosses. With so many challenges to overcome, trophies would’ve been the perfect way for players to show off their accomplishments. For whatever reason though, FromSoftware has decided to omit them completely, but a look back at the Japanese developer’s previous expansions sheds a little bit more light on this.

FromSoftware Has Dabbled With Trophies in DLC Before

Interestingly, Shadow of the Erdtree isn’t the only one of FromSoftware’s expansions that finds itself without trophies. Each of the acclaimed Dark Souls trilogy has its own DLC offering, sometimes more than one, but none of them have separate trophies. This is despite the fact that each DLC features some of the toughest encounters in their respective games, often dwarfing the challenges posed by the base game. On the other hand, Bloodborne‘s DLC, The Old Hunters, which is often cited as one of the best expansions ever, does have a separate trophy list. This means that legendary bosses such as the Orphan of Kos, and Ludwig the Accursed, have their own trophies for players to proudly collect after emerging victorious.

When it comes to DLC trophies, Bloodborne does seem to be the exception to the rule for Hidetaka Miyazaki and his team, but it’s unclear why this is. The decision not to include a trophy list is unlikely to be a technical one, or a time-saving move, as in theory, it should be a pretty easy thing to include, needing minimal time or effort. Thankfully, the omission is easily forgiven thanks to Elden Ring: Shadow of the Erdtree’s breathtaking quality and the overall volume of content included. FromSoftware has once again laid down a marker for developers, and it will be interesting to see what’s in store for Miyazaki and the team next.


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