Elden Ring: Shadow of the Erdtree will be FromSoftware's 'largest expansion to date in terms of overall volume'

A creepy man readies a bomb to hurl at an unwitting enemy in Elden Ring: Shadow of the Erdtree.
(Image credit: FromSoftware)

Earlier today, ahead of the release of the big Elden Ring: Shadow of the Erdtree reveal trailer, I told my PC Gamer pals that I really hoped it would be a small expansion because I seriously cannot dedicate another six months of my life to this thing. Alas, it seems that I am getting the opposite of my wish: In an interview with Eurogamer, game director Hidetaka Miyazaki said Shadow of the Erdtree will be FromSoft's biggest expansion ever.

Shadow of the Erdtree is "our largest expansion to date in terms of overall volume," Miyazaki said, adding that "in terms of pure surface area, you could think of something larger even than Limgrave in the base game."

The expansion will take place on an all-new map with open-world areas and dungeons of various sorts, but Shadow of the Erdtree will offer "a denser and richer level design," Miyazaki said, which will bring those elements of the game world together "a little more seamlessly."

"There of course will be large open areas, there of course will be legacy dungeons, but we've also experimented with something a little more in-between these as well to bring a more diverse gameplay experience."

Shadow of the Erdtree will naturally feature new bosses, weapons, equipment, and skills for players to dig into, and plenty of "challenging encounters and ... menacing threats" to take on, if that's what you're into. And Miyazaki confirmed that yes, there will be a poison swamp, because, well, there's always a poison swamp, isn't there? 

"It was only after creating [Elden Ring] that I realized I really like to create poisoned swamps," he said. "And this was a little place of introspection and reflection for me. So maybe, when players reach the poisoned swamp in the DLC, they will feel a little bit of this retrospection."

I know I certainly felt moments of retrospection whilst tromping around in Elden Ring's various toxic sludge pits—although I'm not sure that angrily wondering "how the hell did I end up in this mess" is quite what Miyazaki had in mind.

Elden Ring: Shadow of the Erdtree is set to arrive on June 21, and is available for pre-purchase now on Steam.

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Andy Chalk

Andy has been gaming on PCs from the very beginning, starting as a youngster with text adventures and primitive action games on a cassette-based TRS80. From there he graduated to the glory days of Sierra Online adventures and Microprose sims, ran a local BBS, learned how to build PCs, and developed a longstanding love of RPGs, immersive sims, and shooters. He began writing videogame news in 2007 for The Escapist and somehow managed to avoid getting fired until 2014, when he joined the storied ranks of PC Gamer. He covers all aspects of the industry, from new game announcements and patch notes to legal disputes, Twitch beefs, esports, and Henry Cavill. Lots of Henry Cavill.