Is Elden Ring Related to Dark Souls? Characters and Lore Similarities Explained

Is the influence of the First Flame found in the Lands Between?

by Marc Magrini
Image: FromSoftware

Elden Ring has gained a lot of popularity since its release. Thanks to its difficult foes, confusing lore, and mysterious characters, it also gained many comparisons to Dark Souls. The two share a very similar style of gameplay and storytelling, with some enemies and items from the Souls games showing up in Elden Ring. This has likely led many fans to wonder if Elden Ring and Dark Souls are related in story as well. Can players expect to make sense of these relations, or do the titles truly lack any connection?

How Elden Ring is Related to Dark Souls in Terms of Lore, Characters, and Gameplay

Elden Ring is a FromSoftware-made Action RPG set in a medieval fantasy world. In other words, it’s closer to Dark Souls than most games, including Bloodborne and Sekiro. Many Talismans in Elden Ring share effects with rings from Dark Souls, and many weapons had their attacks ported over and expanded in various ways. Gameplay-wise, Elden Ring is as close to a Dark Souls sequel as players will get… for now, at least.

When it comes to lore, however, Elden Ring and Dark Souls are entirely unrelated. Even with similar storytelling and gameplay styles, neither game has been officially stated — or even hinted — to share the same world. There is no evidence of Gwyn, the First Flame, or any events in the Souls series happening in Elden Ring.

Related: Who is Ranni? Backstory, Questlines, and Boss Battles

Image: FromSoftware

Despite the lack of lore connections, Elden Ring shares some important characters and items with Dark Souls. Patches returns with similar weapons from his appearance in previous FromSoftware titles. Additionally, the Moonlight Greatsword appears in a new form, imps use the same attacks as thralls from Dark Souls III, and even basilisks make a return in multiple locations throughout Elden Ring. The story of Souls titles might not be related to this game, but long-time fans can still expect plenty of callbacks and references to enjoy.

- This article was updated on February 21st, 2023