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Forums - Sony Discussion - Am I alone in liking HFW more than Elden Ring?

 

Which did you prefer?

HFW 14 35.90%
 
ER 19 48.72%
 
Neither 3 7.69%
 
Both equally for different reasons 3 7.69%
 
Total:39

I love From games. I loved Bloodborne and played it multiple times, even got the platinum for it. I played DS3 and loved it. At the PS5 launch I launch I bought Demon Souls and absolutely loved it. 

I was looking forward to Elden Ring and pre-ordered it. I took time off from work and put over a hundred hours into. I skipped HFW on purpose knowing I need my time with Elden Ring and it will be the better of the two games. Reviewers certainly thought so.

what happened?

this is the first time I've played a From game where I got tired of it before it had finished. The game started to drag and I stopped caring about side quests and dungeons, all I wanted to do was to finish it. 

did it start well?

yes it did. I loved every moment of it. I was in awe seeing the game open up and the tree in the distance. The first time coming across a convoy, my journey to the underground or being whisked away to Caelid. The Melania quest and the legacy dungeons were amazing. 

where did it go wrong for me

i think i hit a fatigue point after the capital city. I don't think it was one single thing but a combination of things:

1) copy and paste feeling dungeons

- let's be real, this is the most copy and paste we've ever come across in a From game, from enemies, bosses, dungeons and collectible bosses (that's what I'm calling the dragons). Usually every from game has had purposely created everything and everything felt fresh and new as you progressed or had a reason for being there. This at times felt it was there for the sake of padding the world.

The Bloodborne chalice dungeons worked as they were outside of the main story and were optional, but here they were part of the main game.

These small dungeons all started to feel the same and had similar traps and puzzles, with repeating bosses and NPC's. 

2) copy and paste bosses

- Whether it is the dragons, the dungeon bosses or the Ever whatever it is, you never felt like you were fighting unique bosses by the time you had done a few. You kinda accepted it is padding.

 

3) cookie clutter weapons, spells, spirits, ashes

- Bloodborne I think had the best weapon set. Switching weapons, using the tricks, all of it was amazing. I never felt that in ER. Tina of weapons, spells, sorcery, etc but most of it just put aside as as they weren't worth it. Even Nioh does a better job here, but When ring again in these areas felt more like clutter for the sake of padding. 

 

4) diminishing returns on leveling up

-Again, if this was not an open world game, it would be fine, but here you are completing tasks and doing things and you got a wall where leveling up does nothing. You already have pointless weapons, spells, sorcery, spirits, ashes and then your levelling up starts to mean nothing. Maybe this is another reason why I stopped caring about doing more and just wanting to rush through the game.

 

5) difficulty spike when you hit the last quarter of the game.

Easy peasy, and then you hit the last quarter / third of the game and the difficulty jumps for NPC's and bosses. Fuck the fire giant and Melania. The Haligtree journey to the bottom was a piss take with the trumpet enemies (not difficult, but a piss take) and in the end I just ran through it. A lot of the final third / quarter of the game I treated this way including the snow area. 

There is more to discuss, but I can't be asked typing, but let's move into Horizon.

1) graphically it is better in every way

- yes, from games are but about graphics, but that don't stop horizon being a thing of beauty. Holy shit does this game look good. It's not just how it looks but the level of detail on machines and moving parts. Simply climbing vents when your body weight tugs then down a bit when you latch on. Simply stunning.

2) the sound is amazing. Not saying ER is bad, but the different insect noises, animal noises, types of water noises, machinery noises, enemy sounds, DS sounds for actions and interactions.

3) DS use is God tier. I will argue it's better than Astrobot. You can feel the rumbling boulders, the ridges of rope you zipline on, the explosions, the tightening of the bow, and the list goes on. Effort was made here for immersion for the gamer and it pays off massively.

4) weapons have a sense of purpose and use. Weapons, not just one or two weapons, but weapons. The same goes for armour. Machines and humans both go hand in hand with a range of weapons and strategies and it makes both with while exploring and using. The game does a good job of making it easy to swap out and change, as well as encourage the player to use different strategies and load outs.

5) combat is way better. It has levels and allows creativity. You can plan ahead, rush in, user stealth, user different weapon strategies. It feels like Monster Hunter in many ways and the best parts of monster Hunter, with a hint of from and some card game where you build your deck for best chances against the enemy. 

6) the platforming is better. Yes it's barely existent in ER, but there are parts where you kind of platform, but here it just feels GG made the effort to invest time into it and make it better and more fun 

7) the dungeons are better. They are varied, have better puzzles, have great atmosphere and have rewards which are worth it. You actually get something for putting the time in.

8) in terms of story they both do well in their own way as they both have their own style, but I think HFW learnt from GOW 2018 and From, and learnt to tie in side quests to the main story, as well as flesh out the world and what's going on in it.



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I didn't put this before, but I'm not saying ER is a bad game, I'm just saying that where HFW is a 10, Elden Ring is a solid 7.

Bloodborne for me is still the best From has created, filled by Demon Souls.



I haven't quite yet finished Elden Ring, and I also haven't even played Forbidden West, so I can't exactly compare the two, but I'll say something anyway. Up to now, my all-time favourite open world game is Horizon Zero Dawn, and I imagine when I do get around to playing Forbidden West I will love it as well. However, I also think that when I'm done with Elden Ring it will take that spot from Zero Dawn for itself. I'm still easily putting in several hours each day into the game, and I'm over 110 hours in at the moment. It's not a perfect game, the Haligtree section you mentioned is an unbalanced an annoying mess for example.

For most of the other stuff you mentioned, however, I never minded any of it. The small dungeons and repeated bosses didn't really bother me (for the most part, there were a few awful ones), but in my opinion they are fairly easy to ignore if you don't like them. There are still things I can't talk about because I just haven't done them in the game yet, but as things stand right now, Elden Ring will probably end up being one my favourite games ever.



I never played the Horizon games because they don't look too interesting for me. But I will say I did enjoy Nioh 2, Dark Souls 3 more than Elden Ring.

Bloodborne I would put, but that would be a lie. Considering I finished that game quite quickly and it wasn't anything special. I did however enjoy combat much more in Bloodborne compared with Elden Ring. But too clarify why I think Elden Ring is better is because the first 50 hours of Elden Ring was better than the ~20 hours of Bloodborne. I can't fault the last 50 hours of Elden Ring too much when the beginning of the game was great fun.



The game just stopped engaging me after a while. It's not like Horizon has got padding or repetitive quests such as outposts, battle arenas, and grinding sections, but the gameplay loop is just more rewarding and fun.

I thinki enjoy From games more when they have the interconnected areas with their staple level design as supposed to the diluted open world where the intricate level design is only reserved for legacy dungeons.



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Souls is my 2nd favorite franchise and I think elden is average.

Major complaints in order:

1) majority of bosses are really uninspired and frankly lame.

2) far too many repeat bosses. Especially with dragons.

3) difficultly is wildly uneven

4) catacombs and dungeons are uninspired and lazy.

5) graphics are just bad.  

In the souls series, Elden is the weakest.  Souls 2 is better.  With blood, demon, souls 1 and souls 3 being leagues better.  

I beat elden at 102 hours, beat all optional bosses other than malenia.  Just didn't like that battle.  The HP recover is cheap. 

Last edited by Chrkeller - on 08 May 2022

I know this is gona sound blasphemous to some here but I still have sekiro at the top of fromsoft games. The fluidity of the combat is just on another level to any game. I felt like elden ring just regressed to the ps3 gen when it comes to combat and it really disapointed me. Hinestly I'm not even at halfway of the game but I did notice the repetitivenes of the game already.

I will also put horizon avove elden ring. For the main reason that coming from zero dawn I felt this game improved in every way I wanted it to and that got me exited as i played. While from elden ring I felt a bad regression and I keep thinking about it as I still play it.



It takes genuine talent to see greatness in yourself despite your absence of genuine talent.

Fei-Hung said:

- let's be real, this is the most copy and paste we've ever come across in a From game, from enemies, bosses, dungeons and collectible bosses (that's what I'm calling the dragons). Usually every from game has had purposely created everything and everything felt fresh and new as you progressed or had a reason for being there. This at times felt it was there for the sake of padding the world.

The Bloodborne chalice dungeons worked as they were outside of the main story and were optional, but here they were part of the main game.

Could you tell me which non-optional main story bosses in Elden Ring you're referring to, and how you feel they were similar?

Because Elden Ring has few bosses you need to fight.

Spoiler!
Rhadan (Or two Demi gods of your choice)
Godfrey (Shade)
Morgott
Fire Giant
GodskinDuo
Maliketh
Gideon
Godfrey/Hoarah Loux
Radagon
Elden Beast


And I'd say only one of those are similar to another, and only during phase 1. After that it's a completely different boss.

Regarding non-optional bosses that are repeated or similar, I feel like there was a purpose for them on top of the fact that the developers can't reasonably be expected to design unique bosses every time for this massive game that's much larger than any other From Soft game, and that was to measure the distance I've gone since I last faced them.

The Tree Sentinel for example kicked my ass many times at the start of the game.
When I ran into the Draconic Tree Sentinel again guarding the capital 65 hours later, he had dragon powers which let him use shoot fire, cause a thunderstorm, imbue his weapon with dragon electricity, his main weapon was a hammer instead of a spear which caused an aoe blast whenever he swung it on the ground, a thunderstorm, imbuing his weapon with dragon electricity, etc. 

All the timings I had practiced against the original Tree Sentinel were now essentially completely different, but in spite of that I was able to adapt much quicker than the first time around, and beat him with relative ease.

It was a nice reminder of how far I've come since the beginning, as I now have an established playstyle and specific build.

But when it comes to the dragons, I found there to be too many similar ones. Though some of the unique ones are really really cool.

Fei-Hung said:

3) cookie clutter weapons, spells, spirits, ashes

- Bloodborne I think had the best weapon set. Switching weapons, using the tricks, all of it was amazing. I never felt that in ER. Tina of weapons, spells, sorcery, etc but most of it just put aside as as they weren't worth it. Even Nioh does a better job here, but When ring again in these areas felt more like clutter for the sake of padding. 

This is an interesting statement to me, because this is something I think Elden Ring does better than any game I've played.
NiOh is not even in the conversation for me.

This is because of

1.) The insane amount of items, gear, spells and skills they let you access right from the start.
2.) The many unique Ashes of War attached to that gear, or the ways you can customize them.
3.) From Soft bringing magic into the center of the gameplay.
4.) And the fact that after 120 hours, I'm still hunting down those unique items, and I'm highly motivated to do so.

That has never happened to me in any other game.

It's especially the magical abilities that have the most visually appealing animations to me, which is why I've primarily focused on those. And 120h in and I have barely scratched the surface of the things I want to do and try.
People are coming up with new crazy builds every day that turns a previously rarely used piece of gear into something potentially game breaking, or a previously popular and powerful item even better (and many of them have been patched since.)

Here's are a few examples.

The Dark Moon Greatsword is a popular From Soft weapon making a return in Elden Ring, but not until 2 months after the game's release did people discover it could do this kind of damage.

Infinitely. Because that skill costs zero AP.
And that is indeed a jellyfish shield.

And here's one spell vs a dragon.


Here's Kamehameha one shotting a boss:



(You can one shot them by yourself too, but that looks more flashy.)

Here's the current weapon I'm loving at the moment, Wing of Astel, and it's Nebula skill:




It doesn't just do huge damage and looks pretty, but it tends to stagger bosses in 2 hits.
It also lets you shoot two different styles of mid-range projectiles for 0 FP cost.




I find new amazing weapons and skills like this every time I play, literally. And it amazes me just how much of these worthwhile things to do From Soft has packed into this game. I'm 120 hours in, and next time I play I'm going to get the necessary items for a very cool Frost + Bleed build I saw.

So when you talk about weapons/skills and mention NiOh and Bloodborne, it's like we played different games.
And I'm not saying that as a jab. That's actually a thing with Elden Ring. Because when people talk to others who have played the game, they tend to describe a very different experience.

This is because unlike other From Soft games, if you encounter something that you're having trouble with, you can just go do something else to have fun, or fight any of the other 60+ bosses you have access to, because bosses in this game are rarely roadblocks until late/end game.
So an area that one person didn't discover until the end of their game, another person got to at the very start of it.
It's a make-your-own-adventure.

This includes weapons and gear you'll come across. If someone opts for a sword and shield, they're probably going to have an extremely different experience with weapons than I did. Both mechanically and visually.

Fei-Hung said:

4) diminishing returns on leveling up

-Again, if this was not an open world game, it would be fine, but here you are completing tasks and doing things and you got a wall where leveling up does nothing. You already have pointless weapons, spells, sorcery, spirits, ashes and then your levelling up starts to mean nothing. Maybe this is another reason why I stopped caring about doing more and just wanting to rush through the game.

Again, very different experience. And I've spent a good amount of time farming EXP/runes.
I only hit the last soft cap on one single stat (INT) about 70 hours into the game (and you need to be at least level 80 for that), and I still haven't reached even the second soft cap on any other stat. Let alone the hard cap.

I'm level 160 for reference. And every time I level up my Vigor, my HP bar grows noticeably. It recently passed the first soft cap, which is 40.
Before 40, each level up raised my HP by 26. After 40 it increased it by 13.

That's still a valuable increase, and that's after level 80+40 (120)
The rest of my stats aren't even near their first soft cap.

So I'm not seeing diminishing returns on any stat except for INT and to a lesser degree HP.
And obviously I won't be leveling my INT any more, so just HP then.

At 120 hours, and 160 levels in.

And for reference, the hard caps in Bloodborne for each stat were at 50.
In Elden Ring it's lv 99.
And there was only one softcopy in Bloodborne, while each stat has 3-4 softcaps in Elden Ring.

Fei-Hung said:

5) difficulty spike when you hit the last quarter of the game.

Easy peasy, and then you hit the last quarter / third of the game and the difficulty jumps for NPC's and bosses. Fuck the fire giant and Melania. The Haligtree journey to the bottom was a piss take with the trumpet enemies (not difficult, but a piss take) and in the end I just ran through it. A lot of the final third / quarter of the game I treated this way including the snow area. 

Many people have said this, and I agree: Elden Ring is as difficult or easy as you want it to be.

There are so many ways to absolutely trivialize every enemy in the game. If you want to.
Although generally, Melania is always going to be a very tough opponent. But she's optional.

Anyway, I can't speak to Horizon as I haven't played it. Though I do own the game as we got it for free from Sony a while ago.
But people's enjoyment is always going to be very subjective.

I didn't enjoy the other From Soft games much (though I haven't tried Sekiro, which I may like), while I do enjoy Souls-like games such as NiOh and Code Vein.
One big factor there was that those games don't make you farm HP potions after you die.

While Elden Ring has been one of the best gaming experiences I've ever had, along with Chrono Trigger, Metal Gear Solid, Ocarina of Time, Resident Evil 4, Nier: Automata, etc.

When I'm not playing it, I'm often talking about it with others, thinking about playing it, or watching people play it on Youtube.
It's been an absolute blast these first 120 hours, and I feel like I need another 50 hours to finish it the way I want to.

Last edited by Hiku - on 08 May 2022

Haven't played either as of yet, Horizon 2 because I want to play it on PS5 instead of PS4 and won't be buying a PS5 until a Slim model is released mid-gen, Elden Ring because I need to wait on like a $20 price tag or Gamepass release before I'm willing to take a risk on a game that may be too hard for me to beat (the only other FromSoft Souls like I have played, Sekiro, was unbeatably hard for me). Considering how much I dislike ultra hard games I will probably like Horizon 2 more, but Elden Ring seems like it might be the better game for me if it had an easy mode, but that will never happen sadly.



shikamaru317 said:

Haven't played either as of yet, Horizon 2 because I want to play it on PS5 instead of PS4 and won't be buying a PS5 until a Slim mode is released, Elden Ring because I need to wait on like a $20 price tag or Gamepass release before I'm willing to take a risk on a game that may be too hard for me to beat. Considering how much I dislike ultra hard games I will probably like Horizon 2 more, but Elden Ring seems like it might be the better game for me if it had an easy mode, but that will never happen sadly.

I went over this in a thread before: From Software finally added an Easy Mode to their game (vgchartz.com)

But they did kind of put an easy mode in Elden Ring. It's just not a menu to toggle, but the ability to overpower yourself if you want to, and to go do something else to have fun, because even story bosses are not mandatory in this game until late/end game.
Even end game bosses can be trivialized if you want to go that route, and you'll get there while still playing the game as normal. (So I'm not talking about grinding levels, although you can do that as well.)

The game is as difficult or easy as you want it to be.

Last edited by Hiku - on 08 May 2022