Oh right okay, just a tonne of Elden Ring hands-off previews arriving at once is it? Cool, just give me a moment to compose myself. Gah, that's not happening. Anyway, yes, while I continue to digest all this new information that's just come out, one thing that particularly stood out to me is that the game's summons won't actually make Elden Ring any easier, according to IGN, which is a marked departure from previous Souls games. Brilliant, that's me done for then.
We've known for a while that Elden Ring lets you turn your fallen enemies into summoned sidekicks. But according to an interview by IGN, developers FromSoftware have made it so there's a trade-off when calling on them for assistance.
It's up to the player in Elden Ring to "invest their stat points into the summons if they so choose", or "into their own character". This suggests that unless you sacrifice those all-important stat points on beefing up your ghostly friends, they aren't going to last long before they're sent back to the afterlife.
Even if FromSoftware say they're "not intended to lower the difficulty drastically", this won't stop me from using them as dragon fodder in those inevitable Elden Ring moments where I stop trying to beat the boss 'properly', then just tiredly call upon like five Pokémon I've collected and... still get destroyed.
Our friends over on Eurogamer were lucky enough to see some hands-off gameplay of Elden Ring and I've embedded their video above for your viewing pleasure. It's worth noting that you won't actually see any new footage, but you will get plenty of juicy new details through your ear holes at least.
Elden Ring is due to release on the 21st of January 2022.