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The Elden Ring DLC will take us to the land of shadows. A long-forgotten demigod will also stand in our way. Our expert has taken a close look at the trailer

The big addon to Elden Ring will be released on June 21, 2024, a new trailer for Shadow of the Erdtree reveals. But that’s not all! You’ll be amazed at what we can glean from the three minutes – because of course the teaser is overflowing with lore, information about the setting and more.

On the one hand, the trailer proves that the blonde figure in the teaser image released a year ago is indeed Miquella. On the other hand, it serves up a new character we’ve never heard of before

Our Elden Ring lore expert has taken a close look at the trailer for you and summarizes the most important details:

  • The Land of Shadows
  • The new enemies
  • Who is the mysterious Messmer?

If you haven’t seen the trailer for the addon yet, you can catch up quickly. Otherwise, we’ll get straight to the most exciting details!

A land cleansed in an unsung battle

The Land of Shadows was once part of the Interlands. The creative mind behind Elden Ring, Hidetaka Miyazaki, has revealed in an interview for our American colleagues at IGN that the Shadowlands were physically separated from the Interlands by a previously unknown event

According to Miyazaki, this land is enveloped by the shadow of the Earth Tree, just as the Earth Tree does in the rest of the Interlands. We can even see how the shadow veils the land. Everything in this land is to be hidden from the world.

(The black tree is the shadow of the earth tree. The veil emanates from it and raptures this land from the interlands.
(The black tree is the shadow of the earth tree. The veil emanates from it and raptures this land from the interlands.

And it is in this land of shadows that we search for the last demigod we know about but have not yet heard of. The eternally young Miquella is said to have vanished in this land of shadows and we set off on his trail

In doing so, we literally follow in his footsteps. As Miyazaki reveals, Miquella’s footsteps will replace the places of mercy in the main game and show us the way through the Land of Shadows. Unfortunately, we haven’t been able to see any of this in the trailer yet

However, the statement suggests that Miquella could take on the role of a leader for us, as Melina once did in the main game. But what was Miquella looking for in the Shadow Realm?

What we can already say about the new opponents

Friend or foe, there’s no shortage of new creatures in the upcoming DLC and in its three-minute running time, the trailer has revealed a lot with short, crisp cuts

Once again, the Japanese development studio manages to trigger horror and astonishment in equal measure with its abnormal enemy designs. Nevertheless, the creatures of the shadow realm cannot be denied a certain dignity. Well, most of them at least …

Let’s take a closer look at a few of them!

The Egelmen

These nasty worm-like creatures have eight eyes and an elongated, almost inhuman body. But only almost. A chest and humanoid muscles on the torso and arms are clearly recognizable

The leech people simply suck in their opponent and have four pairs of eyes. (At minute 1:17 in the trailer)

We know next to nothing about them, but Miyazaki hints that their fate is closely interwoven with the myth of the Shadowlands. So the lack of information is intentional. Moreover, this fact itself says a lot. These Egelmen are therefore representative of the events of the Land of Shadows.

At first glance, they bear a certain resemblance to the worm faces from the main game, but on closer inspection, the eponymous worms are missing from the new enemies and the worm faces of the Interlands have no eyes.

The fire cage

This enormous construct is a war machine that was created to burn corpses and is probably also powered by their life force.

The fire cage is adorned with a sun-shaped mask that immediately brings to mind the Dung Eater’s medallion. Not only that: the rays of the mask seem to consist of twisted paint horns, thus indicating an additional connection to the Dung Eater.

The Dung Eater is obsessed with cursing the whole world with the stain so that everyone is born with stained horns. Could we finally learn more about its origins in the DLC?

The Lion Dancer

Certainly one of the biggest eye-catchers in the trailer was the lion dancer. A strange boss, whose lion’s head is directly reminiscent of the first Elden Lord Godfrey. But appearances are deceptive

This boss consists of several humanoids that acrobatically stand on top of each other and perform a kind of dance. Miyazaki calls this opponent the “Lion Dancer “ This name immediately makes us think of the Chinese dragon dance and on closer inspection that’s not so wrong. Even though there is definitely more at play here than just a simple festive disguise, this boss is practically a dancing bunch of acrobats with deadly intent.

It is said to depict the descendants of the indigenous people of this land and thus represents a portrait of the land before the Earth Tree.

The Hipporhino

These creatures appear extremely aggressive, charging at the player with their jaws open and unleashing thorns from their bodies. We already know thorns from the death plague in the main game, of course, but there they are made of insects and worms, whereas here they actually look plant-like

Surprisingly, the Hipporhino also has the pale eyes of the death-spreading frogs from the main game. In addition, the player can apparently also be “infected” with these thorns.

Thorns will then sprout from their body when the new status effect is triggered. This could even be a new spell that our tainted one can trigger himself.

There are a few more new creatures, but we still know little or nothing about them. But you can still marvel at them in all their glory:

Messmer, the ostracized son of the golden queen

Finally, let’s talk about the elephant in the room: The title character of the DLC.
The red-haired demigod Messmer, whose face is almost painfully reminiscent of Malenia. We can find out a lot about this tough guy from Miyazaki’s rather open interviews and the trailer

This is how the creator of Elden Ring describes Messmer as a demigod who was never mentioned in the main game for good reason. We are then supposed to find out why he has never been mentioned in the addon itself. Of course, this leaves plenty of room for speculation: Are Miquella and Messmer perhaps even one and the same person? GameStar editor Petra is pursuing this theory: After all, Malenia’s brother has been slumbering in a cocoon in the main game for ages – if that doesn’t call for transformation!

We already know: Messmer is a demigod, as his cover art tells us. There he sits on one of the thrones of the demigods, dispelling even the last doubt: this man is definitely a son of Marika. Miyazaki gives us no direct clue as to his erasure from history and his exile in a land removed from the world … for better or worse, we’ll have to wait until June.

However, we can finally spot the missing demigod in Messmer, to whom the smouldering butterflies probably belong. A mystery that has plagued players since the first day of Elden Ring. There are three types of divine butterflies in the game:

The butterflies of decay associated with Malenia, the growing butterflies associated with Miquella and the smoldering butterflies, which have so far been assigned to Melina due to a lack of suspects, but have probably found a much more suitable counterpart in Messmer.

Well, we’ve cleared up the butterflies. But what about the snakes? For Lore enthusiasts, Messmer actually solves an age-old mystery to which there are numerous clues, but for which a clear solution has never been found.

(Messmer against the untitled stain. That would be a worthy final match for Elden Ring.)
(Messmer against the untitled stain. That would be a worthy final match for Elden Ring.)

“Who embodied the serpent and its flame long before Praetor Rykard?”
In the battle arenas of the Interlands, the victory of the Earth Tree over the Serpent was celebrated long ago. This took the form of ritual gladiatorial battles. In these, the mighty Crucible Knights fought against serpent gladiators to delight the masses. 

The battle between serpent and earth tree. This tradition has not existed since the days of the second Elden Lord Radagon. For two years now, we have been plagued by the question of what event these ritual battles were modeled on. Now we finally have the answer:

Messmer is the lord of fire and snakes. Two things that are directly opposed to the Earth Tree. This makes him an absolute threat to the golden order and the perfect final boss for Elden Ring. The golden champion against the fiery god of serpents. So could the final boss of the add-on be Messmer instead of Miquella?

For the time being, that’s what it should be. Miyazaki reveals that no further DLCs are planned for Elden Ring, but also that nothing is set in stone. You can read more about the addon, Miquella and all the new features of Shadow of the Erdtree in Petra’s exclusive interview.

How did you like the trailer? What other details did you spot that we didn’t talk about? Let us know in the comments! We’d love to hear your opinions, ideas and theories!