Shadow Of The Erdtree DLC Has a Great Opportunity To Troll Fans


  • Killing merchants in Elden Ring should lead to unexpected consequences, potentially turning them into surprise boss fights in future content.
  • Introducing a morality system in Elden Ring could change the game’s dynamics and lead to new endings, making players more conscious of their actions.
  • The underused Absolution mechanic in Elden Ring has potential to play a bigger role if Shadow of the Erdtree were to add a morality system.

With Elden Ring’s upcoming DLC still quite a bit away, there’s still much that players don’t know about what all this DLC will bring to the game. Even with this in mind though, the upcoming Shadow of the Erdtree DLC for Elden Ring potentially has the chance to troll players who will instinctively participate in a habit developed within the game’s community.

Since the game launched, it has become an unwritten rule for Elden Ring that players to kill every merchant NPC they come across while exploring. This community trend developed after players realized that killing merchants would provide a small advantage without resulting in any negative consequences. Because this has become such a popular habit among Elden Ring’s community, introducing repercussions for this tradition could be a top-tier prank.


Elden Ring: Shadow of the Erdtree Is the Perfect Chance to Polish FromSoftware’s Most Lackluster Mechanic

Shadow of the Erdtree is expected to improve Elden Ring in many ways, and FromSoftware should take this chance to refine its least impressive system.

Elden Ring Can Surprise Players By Introducing Consequences For Killing Merchants

Because killing the merchants in Elden Ring provides players with a convenient benefit and no negative repercussions, it’s a justifiable tradition for players to kill these NPCs. Specifically, by killing them, players can collect each merchant’s Bell Bearing, and these can be given to the Twin Maiden Husks at the Roundtable Hold to access the merchant’s inventory. So, by collecting all of their Bell Bearings, players can consolidate every merchant’s inventory into one location instead of having to regularly track each merchant down across Elden Ring’s massive open world to purchase from them.

This tradition of killing merchants is ultimately in the same boat as Elden Ring’s Dragon Communion, where participating in either of these actions won’t bring players any negative consequences in their playthrough. With this in mind, future content for Elden Ring should consider revisiting elements like this to give players a more immersive and interactive experience with the game’s mythos.

One such way for Elden Ring to introduce repercussions for the tradition of killing the merchants is to make a surprise boss fight out of it. There are already trickster enemies like this in the game, such as the infamous Rune Bear enemy in Elden Ring that can be found in Southern Limgrave. At first glance, this particular enemy appears as a weak, common enemy, but after provoking it, it transforms into a much more challenging opponent. Introducing a merchant that puts up a proper fight is likely to catch players off guard, especially if it’s a mimic type of enemy that hides its true form until provoked.

A Morality System Could Be A Game-Changer For Elden Ring

Elden Ring Player Emoting Praying at Church of Vows Absolution Statue

While it wouldn’t be as much of a troll as a surprise boss fight, Elden Ring could also use this opportunity to flesh out a proper morality system. While there are inherent good and bad endings in Elden Ring, these are reached by completing specific NPC questlines that are admittedly quite linear. Consequently, a morality system could be a game-changer for Elden Ring to possibly lead to new endings, or otherwise make players more conscious of actions like killing merchants.

Elden Ring’s Absolution Feature Has A Wealth Of Potential

On a related note, a proper morality system could allow the Absolution mechanic to play a bigger role in the NPC questlines in Elden Ring. Consequently, this feature deserves a revisit in future DLCs for Elden Ring.

Elden Ring
, Absolution will allow players to regain a neutral relationship with NPCs that have become hostile from being attacked.

As it currently stands, Elden Ring’s Absolution mechanic is severely underutilized, which is a shame considering the possible implications of it. Given how many questlines involve players fighting against key NPCs, this kind of feature could have plenty of unique interactions in Elden Ring, yet it’s seemingly only useful for players who accidentally attack an NPC after mistaking them for an enemy. A morality system could be the key to Absolution finding far greater relevance.

elden ring cover

Elden Ring

Elden Ring is a fantasy action-RPG adventure set in a world co-created by Hidetaka Miyazaki, the creator of the influential Dark Souls video game series, and George R.R. Martin, the author of the best-selling fantasy series A Song of Ice and Fire. This collaboration between two renowned creators has resulted in FromSoftware’s largest game to date, filled with danger and discovery at every turn. Hidetaka Miyazaki, president and game director of FromSoftware, has a history of directing highly acclaimed games in franchises such as Armored Core and Dark Souls.

February 25, 2022

Online Co-Op , Online Multiplayer


M for Mature: Blood and Gore, Language, Suggestive Themes, Violence

How Long To Beat
58 Hours


Platforms That Support Crossplay
PS4 & PS5 and Xbox One & Xbox Series X|S

PS Plus Availability