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Since its launch in early 2022, Elden Ring has achieved astonishing success both critically and commercially. FromSoftware’s open-world adventure has been described as everything from a ‘greatest hits’ of the Soulsborne dynasty, to a turning point for video games in general. However you feel about the game, one thing is indisputable: it’s full to the brim with things to do.
The Lands Between is virtually overrun with secrets to find, treasures to collect, places to see, and, of course, enemies to fight. Among all of this content, there are plenty of optional questlines throughout Elden Ring. Some of them are fairly simple to follow, while others are more cryptic or well concealed within Hidetaka Miyazaki’s dark fantasy.
These side missions offer some of the most enjoyable and memorable moments in all of FromSoftware’s history, but with so many available it’s hard to decide which ones are worth undertaking. So with that in mind, we have made a list of the top five questlines in Elden Ring. Starting with…
But before that, here’s the best place to farm Runes in Elden Ring:
Ranni is one of the most fascinating characters in all of Elden Ring. Intrinsically tied to the assassination that arguably kicked off the events our Tarnished finds themself in, this mysterious demigod first introduces herself as Renna. If you enter the Church of Elleh at nighttime, she’ll grant you the means to summon Spirit Ashes, but there’s so much more to her if you invest the time.
Without giving too much away, Ranni’s story will plunge you into dark depths, pit you against fierce bosses, reward you with excellent loot (including one iconic Soulsborne blade), and ultimately lead to an alternate ending to the game. For these reasons, it’s a questline you won’t want to miss.
Fia is first encountered in the Roundtable Hold, located in a bedroom offering to “hold” our Tarnished. While this cuddle session will sneakily reduce our health, doing it enough times will unlock a quest that once again involves a mysterious woman and underground secrets. In fact, it’s so similar to Ranni’s quest that you can complete it alongside the demigod’s, so you really have no excuse not to.
This bizarre-yet-beguiling substory sees you explore the very roots of the Erdtree (or what was there before it). This area is eerily enchanting, and comes equipped with excellent boss fights, and some seriously unsettling moments. To top it off, it even grants you passage to Leyndell without fighting that pesky Draconic Tree Sentinel.
Changing the pace a little, Varré gives you the opportunity to turn on your fellow Tarnished. I don’t mean NPCs btw, I mean other humans playing online. After this creepy fellow is finished calling you maidenless at the First Step, he can be found by Rose Church. Here, he’ll grant you the means to invade other games, with the goal of killing the host player.
Do this three times, and you’ll be able to move on to the next stage - which handily takes you within reach of the easy Rune-farming spot shown above. Not only do you get to take on a seriously fun boss, but you get an insight into the current status of Miquella, one of the game’s most interesting background characters. Runes and lore, what’s not to love?
Let’s head back to Ranni for a moment or, more specifically, her companion Seluvis. This large hat enthusiast is one of the creepier NPCs in the game. Within an instance of hearing him talk, you can just tell the vibes are off. Press on with his request, and you’ll see you’re right to find him unsettling.
Preceptor Seluvis has a penchant for puppetry, or more specifically turning people into his own personal marionettes. Not only is this a huge red flag, but dig deeper into his “scheme”, and you’ll see he has an even darker design in the works. You can choose to help him with his goal, but I will judge you. Your call.
Millicent is, without a shadow of a doubt, the best NPC in Elden Ring. This magnificent NPC is first found in the Church of the Plague, suffering from the Scarlet Rot that has so devastated Caelid. By locating Gowry, who is quite close by, you can treat Millicent’s illness and properly begin her story.
This substory plays out all over the Lands Between, through the Atlus Plateau to the Haligtree. You can even summon Millicent to fight alongside you against several bosses, so long as you keep checking off the relevant steps of her questline. Each time you see her on your journey, it’s like bumping into an old friend. It feels so much more meaningful than any other character interactions in the game, because of how spaced out and seemingly by chance they are.
All of this ultimately leads to one final choice, which I won’t spoil here, but essentially defines who your Tarnished really is. By completing Millicent’s questline you can even avoid the bad ending brought on by the Flame of Frenzy, depending on how you want to end things, that is. Oh, and did I mention that this questline involves you having to fight Malenia, the toughest boss in the game? That’s a good enough reason on its own to do this, right?
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