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Parry like you’re Sekiro with this one weird trick that Shadow Of The Erdtree bosses hate

After you've beaten the massive flaming walking death basket, that is

Elden Ring: Shadow Of The Erdtree screenshot of the Tarnished wielding the Great Katana and charging it's Weapon Skill on a clifftop.
Image credit: Rock Paper Shotgun/Bandai Namco

Aside from its naturally satisfying rhythm and the cool audio dings of success that usually accompany it, I find something innately hilarious about parrying. Yes, yes, it’s a deeply skilled expression of martial prowess that turns your enemy’s aggression back at them. But it’s also a pleasingly low-effort method to make your opponent look very silly - the combat equivalent of waving your outstretched hand and shaking your head in unison. I assume so from videogames, anyway. In reality, I could not parry a nerf dart with a metal bin lid.

Anyway, if you’re having trouble with Shadow Of The Erdtree’s bosses, why not make the game temporarily more difficult for yourself, but then eventually easier, with a slightly obscure item that effectively turns Elden Ring into stabby stealth ‘em up Sekiro?

The Deflecting Hardtear is an item for your Physick flask. You’ll need to beat the first fire golem you encounter in the shadow lands, which you can more or less spot from the first site of grace. Mix it in, get it down you, and you’ll gain the following effects:

Damage negation and guard poise will be heightened in the moment immediately after assuming a guarding stance. Successfully executing a spontaneous guard will also strengthen guard counters.

To see this - surprisingly massive expansion of the combat to be hidden behind an optional item - in action, here’s someone using it to parry Melania’s infamous Waterfowl Dance i.e the boss move in the game voted most likely to have been ported over from an unreleased Sekiro DLC.

Parrying waterfowl with the dlc item
by u/Training_Shine118 in Eldenring

The effects last for five minutes, which should be more than enough to embarrass Melania's first phase at least. This isn’t the only crystal tear in the DLC of course, and you might want to have a peek at Ollie’s guide to boss locations if you want to track down the rest. You could just play Sekiro, of course. It's got massive chickens in it.

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