Shadow of The Erdtree Size: How Big Is the Elden Ring DLC?

Elden Ring: Shadow of the Erdtree's size makes it closer to Elden Ring 2 than a traditional piece of DLC.

Shadow of the Erdtree
Photo: Bandai Namco

So far it’s been difficult to talk about the size of Elden Ring: Shadow of the Erdtree without coming to two conclusions. One is….well, phrasing, and the other is how much we simply still didn’t know about the game. FromSoftware has a history of deceiving players when asked such questions about their games. Call them modest or illusive, but the studio tends to undersell the scope of their projects.

Well, now that multiple people have gotten the chance to play a few hours of the upcoming DLC, we can safely say that Shadow of the Erdtree is a massive DLC release that is closer to being Elden Ring 2 than many people thought.

The earliest estimates suggest that Shadow of the Erdtree can be in 25-35 hours depending on skill level and build optimization. Please note, though, that is both a very early estimate based on incomplete data and the minimum expected playthrough time. In other words, that is how long Shadow of the Erdtree may take to beat if you do nothing but focus on the main quest progression.

Not only is that a big “if” for most players, but Elden Ring director Hidetaka Miyazaki previously said the base game would take about 30 hours to beat. However, most players have reported that their first Elden Ring journey took closer to 60 hours on average. So, it’s not unreasonable to expect Shadow of the Erdtree to take about as long to beat.

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That figure is supported by other reports regarding the game’s size. Shadow of the Erdtree‘s map is reportedly almost as large as the map in Elden Ring if not slightly larger. The variance between those estimates accounts for the things we still don’t know about the game and the depth of Shadow of the Erdtree‘s environments. Even if the DLC doesn’t offer as much raw digital real estate, it does emphasize exploration more than its predecessor did. So if you’re trying to see and do almost everything (or even occasionally veer from the main path), you’re going to be playing for a while.

Furthermore, Shadow of the Erdtree reportedly has 10 major new bosses (and a host of minor bosses) as well as at least a few new Legacy Dungeons. There again, we see that the raw numbers suggest that Shadow of the Erdtree will likely be slightly smaller than Elden Ring from a sheer content volume perspective. However, the increased depth of the game (mechanically and exploration-wise) brings us back to the idea that the DLC will take you about as long as the main game through a more “organic” playthrough.

There’s one other factor we haven’t discussed yet: Shadow of the Erdtree‘s difficulty. Shadow of the Erdtree is significantly more difficult than the base Elden Ring game. At least that’s the popular conclusion that those who have played the DLC have arrived at thus far. That’s hardly a surprise based on FromSoftware’s DLC history, but it does complicate this discussion somewhat. Even if Shadow of the Erdtree is slightly smaller than Elden Ring, the fact it is more difficult than the base game will undoubtedly expand its total playtime at least somewhat. Hey, nothing prolongs a FromSoftware game like dying again and again.

While there’s still too much we don’t know about Shadow of the Erdtree to be able to confidently answer every question about its size, you can rest easy knowing that it will be one of the most substantial pieces of DLC in modern gaming history.