Elden Ring: Shadow of the Erdtree unlock times and release date

Elden Ring Shadow of the Erdtree screenshot
(Image credit: FromSoftware)

Update: Shadow of the Erdtree is live on PC now! 

While you're downloading the update from Steam, check out our Shadow of the Erdtree guide hub with links to all of our guides coverage of the massive expansion. Also check out our Shadow of the Erdtree tips for some general advice on getting your bearings in the Land of Shadow.

The Elden Ring DLC release date is nigh, so set your reminders for the Shadow of the Erdtree unlock times, tarnished ones. Down below is everything you need to know about exactly when you can start downloading and playing the giant new DLC area. I've even done my best impression of a FromSoft lore nerd and explained what it all means for you—who actually gets to play Erdtree first?

In case there was any doubt, it's an expansion worth diving into on day one. We've given it a very hefty 95% score in our Elden Ring: Shadow of the Erdtree review. Make sure you're totally ready for launch by catching our guide on how to unlock Shadow of the Erdtree with a refresher on which bosses you need to beat and where to enter its new area, the Land of Shadow.

Is there preloading for Shadow of the Erdtree?

There is no preloading on PC or Xbox for Shadow of the Erdtree. On the bright side, the expansion is nowhere near as chonky as the base game: it's only about a 15 gigabyte download. PlayStation players can begin preloading 48 hours ahead of launch.

(Image credit: FromSoftware (Twitter))

When does Shadow of the Erdtree launch?

For PC players, Elden Ring Shadow of the Erdtree launches at 3 pm PDT / 11 pm BST on Thursday, June 20. That's 7 am on June 21 in Japan, which is why you've seen FromSoftware focusing on that as the release date. Make no mistake though, Shadow of the Erdtree launches on Thursday evening for a lot of us.

Here's Shadow of the Erdtree's global launch time on PC in other time zones:

  • 3 pm PDT June 20 (Los Angeles)
  • 6 pm EDT (New York)
  • 11 pm BST (London)
  • 8 am AEST June 21 (Sydney)
  • 10 am NZST June 21 (Auckland)

Complicating matters further, Shadow of the Erdtree will have a rolling launch on console at midnight local time in most places. As you can see in FromSoft's infographic above, Shadow of the Erdtree for console players launches at midnight local time everywhere in the world except for the US. For us, console players will all be playing at 12 am Eastern, which is 9 pm Pacific on Thursday, June 20.

Who gets to play Shadow of the Erdtree first?

The very first players getting access to Shadow of the Erdtree will be console players in New Zealand at midnight local time on June 21 which will be 5 am PDT / 1 pm BST on June 20. That gives them about a 10 hour head start on PC players.

Basically, due to time zones and platforms, console players will be starting first in the eastern hemisphere, then PC players globally will jump in, and then console players in the western hemisphere will catch up with their midnight launches after that. Makes about as much sense as Elden Ring's main story.

Lauren Morton
Associate Editor

Lauren started writing for PC Gamer as a freelancer in 2017 while chasing the Dark Souls fashion police and accepted her role as Associate Editor in 2021, now serving as the self-appointed chief cozy games enjoyer. She originally started her career in game development and is still fascinated by how games tick in the modding and speedrunning scenes. She likes long books, longer RPGs, has strong feelings about farmlife sims, and can't stop playing co-op crafting games.