Elden Ring’s Launch Performance Was A Disaster That Might Forever Stain The Games’ Score

Is Elden Ring the greatest game of all time? Is it any good even? Well, it all depends on whom you might ask. Elden Ring was officially released on February 25th. It has received historic praise from critics. One of the best critic scores available on OpenCritic and Metacritic. But things did not go so well with the audience score. With many pointing to Elden Ring's terrible performance across all the platforms it is available on as the main gripe.

If you want to brave the Lands Between despite of this, please make use of our article on how to remove Elden Ring PC stuttering issues and fix framerates. Or rather I should say “reduce”, as removing them might be impossible.

Poor PC Port? Or Poor Product Optimalization?

Elden Ring's performance problems aren't limited to PC gamers. However, desktop users seem to be suffering the most. Elden Ring sat at a mixed review score on Steam for a couple of days after the premiere. Now it is sitting at “79% positive reviews”. On Metacritic, the game scored 6.0 on user score. 3.0 points lower than Dark Souls III, which scored one whole point out of ten lower on average than Elden Ring. So what the hell happened?

This is far from what you would expect from a game many consider to be one of the all-time greats. Elden Ring doesn't run well on many systems, even top-of-the-line gaming builds. Which should be able to handle the FromSoftware title’s modest hardware requirements with ease. It is worth to note that FromSoftware has deployed a day one patch already to try to solve the problem. Which means, the 6/10 average is still the score of the much-improved version from before day one patch.

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Many jump to the conclusion of “typical From Soft PC port”. Because let's face it, Dark Souls, Bloodborne, Sekiro, and now Elden Ring are not really games made in mind the PC. Evident by the keyboard and mouse input method which just fucking sucks for this type of game.

Dark Souls 1 on PC had the infamous 10 FPS ride through Blighttown. Which was extra fun, because that was one of the harder zones from the game.

But here's the kicker. The game struggles and stutters on current-gen consoles too! PlayStation 5 user reviews average 7.7 in start contrast to the critics 97. With many citing framerate issues even in performance mode. Horrible popping in of grass and other objects. And other stability issues.

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Image Credit: From Software, Bandai Namco

Is The From Software Game Just Too Powerful For Our Hardware?

And to further drive this needle of frustration into your skull. The game doesn't even look like something that would seriously threaten the PS5 system.

Before anyone grabs their fork, let me explain. Elden Ring doesn't look as good as Horizon Forbidden West, Demon's Souls Remake, or hell, even God of War for the PS4. It doesn't need to. The art direction that From Software handcrafted for the Elden Ring carries the mediocre graphics on its barks.

But then, why are my PlayStation 5 and PC dropping frames? Why is the PVP experience an absolute fever dream? And the worst kind of fever dream. That one where you try your hardest to run away from something but no matter how fast you run… he still gets you with the phantom backstab.

These early snags won't have much of an impact on Elden Ring’s bid to win GOTY in the future… or will they? Nah, surely not. Unless? Well. The future is unclear says the 8-ball. But one thing is for sure, you only get one chance to make a good first impression.

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Here's the thing. I think Elden Ring is already a strong contender for a game of the year for its impact on the gaming landscape. But this bitter aftertaste of performance issues is not going anywhere anytime soon. How long is it going to take for the reviews on Steam and Metacritic to even out? Even when every performance issue is ironed out now, the negative reviews are not going to disappear. Because that review is for the product these customers were given at launch. Not 6 months, and 10 major patches later.

Oh Yeah, Elden Ring Is Still A Terrible PC Port By The Way

And then, on top of issues like lag, stutters, and in some cases, game-breaking crashes. You have the actual PC port. Which is a From Software PC port through and through.

Your FPS is locked to 60. Not that it will reach 60 most of the time anyway for god know what reason. But even if it does, it will never go beyond that. Because Elden Ring doesn't support more than 60 frames per second. Why? Okay, even better question. Why doesn't the game support ultrawide monitors? You can also forget about AMD Fidelity FX Super Resolution support. No Ray Tracing, obviously. Very barren graphics menu.

And so on and on. You get the idea. They might be “little things”, but they stack up. Well, in some cases not so little, since people spend an absurd amount of money on PC hardware. Imagine doing that, and then finding out you cannot use your very pricy equipment because FromSoft doesn't know what a PC is.

Elden Ring critic scores vs user scoresnbsp Created with GIMP
Image Credit: From Software, Bandai Namco

The “PC” Prompts…

You know what. I'm a PC player, I can look over support for Ultrawide monitors, FSR or Ray Tracing. Those are niches for the most hardcore gamers. Stuttering and lag is extremely hard to look past, naturally. But let us forget about that for a second. The game literally defaults to a god damn Xbox controller prompts in the main menu of the game! On a PC, in 2022!

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There has to be some kind of limit. And I think, hiding PC prompts in some menu. And displaying Xbox inputs, in a PC game, by default. Is the limit.

All the other issues are going to be fixed in like a day or two by modders. Because PC enthusiasts for some reason understand a PC port of the FromSoft game better than FromSoftware do themselves.

And what more can I say? The game is great. It is truly one of the greats of this generation already. Maybe one of the greatest ever. And I, like most reviewers, went with my heart of hearts and gave it a 10 in our Borderpolar review of Elden Ring.

After all, what can I do? Give the game different grades for each graphical preset? Or go to someone else's house and review the issues they had with their copy because mine miraculously was fine for the most part?

For more Elden Ring content check out our section on the game. While here you might as well check out our guides. They won't fix your framerate, but they might make the experience a little less frustrating. Peace!

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