Critics provide verdict on stellar Elden Ring

Today: Call of Duty is taking a year off from its busy schedule — Killers make for great love interests in Dead By Daylight spin-off — 2K Games secures Lego license and announces Lego sports games

High praise in Elden Ring review round-up

Elden Ring gameplay teaser

Elden Ring is almost here, and the critics can finally deliver their verdict. The game will be out tomorrow for PC, PlayStation, and Xbox and brings FromSoftware's signature bone-hard dark fantasy into an open world.

What the critics say

  • Game Informer (Score 10/10) – ”Elden Ring challenged me, captivated me, and enchanted me, an unyielding deluge of discovery and artistic vision unbound…”
  • NME (Score 5/5) – ”FromSoftware’s most ambitious title yet, Elden Ring is a glowing spectacle of achievement…”
  • TheSixthAxis (Score 10/10) – ”Elden Ring is the game Souls fans have been waiting for…”
  • Destructoid (Score 10/10) – ”…as an experience, it’s one of the most wondrous and open-ended games I’ve played in years…”
  • WellPlayed (Score 10/10) – ”…Elden Ring is a masterclass in every facet that it brings to the table…”
  • Twinfinite (Score 5/5) – ”…takes things to a whole other level by pulling the best elements from their older games…
  • Windows Central (Score 5/5) – ”Elden Ring is a critically important RPG and one fans of the genre shouldn't miss…”
  • CGMagazine (Score 9.5/10) – ”…a beautifully designed open world, FromSoftware takes the Souls formula to new heights…”
  • PC Gamer (Score 90/100) – ”An open world action RPG from FromSoftware that reaches new heights, but spends too much time in the familiar.”
  • PlayStation Lifestyle (Score 9/10) – ”…feels like the game FromSoftware has been building up to ever since Demon’s Souls released in 2009…”

What did Sega call the unofficial age rating assigned to Eternal Champions: Challenge from the Dark Side?

a) Brutal Rapid
b) Deep Water
c) Bright Red
d) Oh Geez, That’s Pretty Violent, Annit?

The answer will be revealed at the bottom of today's issue. Join up with our community on Twitter and Facebook to discuss what the answer could be.

Call of Duty taking a year off in 2023

Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold War

Even giant gaming franchises on an annual release schedule need a holiday sometimes, and Call of Duty is taking a vacation in 2023, the first time in 17 years that there will not be a new Call of Duty game.

Infinity Ward's Modern Warfare sequel is coming out this year, but there will be no new Call of Duty in 2023, which means there is a lot riding on this year's installment.

Rotation: There has been a new Call of Duty game every year since Call of Duty 2 launched in 2005, developed by a group of studios including series creator Infinity Ward, Treyarch, Sledgehammer Games, and Raven Software.

Delayed: 2023 would have been Treyarch's slot in the rotation, but the release schedule has shifted to 2024. That means it is up to the new Modern Warfare and Warzone to present a strong front.

Date a killer in Dead by Daylight spin-off

potential dating candidates for the new dating sim in Dead by Daylight

Behaviour Interactive has just trademarked Hooked On You: A Dead By Daylight Dating Sim, a rather unexpected departure for a series about notorious fictional serial killers hunting and killing fleeing victims.

Be my Valentine: The trademark was filed on February 16th, and there are still no details about whether it's an actual game currently in development, some kind of marketing campaign or just an extremely elaborate April's Fool joke.

Tainted love: Parts of the Dead By Daylight fan community have been doing the usual fandom thing by shipping various characters from the series and creating romantic memes about them, so perhaps Behaviour Interactive is just preparing to capitalize on an established market.

Our next batch of IndieGala discounts

IndieGala store front

Our top picks today are Blacksad: Under the Skin at £6.99 (-80%), Syberia 3 Deluxe Edition at £4.64 (-85%), Indivisible for £8.74 (-75%) and Control Ultimate Edition at £8.74 (-75%).

Asterix & Obelix XXL 2 for £3.74 (-85%), WRC 8 FIA World Rally Championship at £3.74 (-85%), Underworld Ascendant at £4.99 (-80%) and 2Dark for just £1.89 (-90%).

What did Sega call the unofficial age rating assigned to Eternal Champions: Challenge from the Dark Side?

Midknight faces himself in a mirror match in Eternal Champions: Challenge from the Dark Side.

ANSWER: Deep Water!

The second game in the Eternal Champions series is arguably one of the better Sega CD games, and its extreme violence is still both shocking and funny even 25 years later. It was so violent that Sega added a new warning label to the game, marking it Deep Water. The rating was reserved for games with considerably more graphic content than Sega's usual fare.

The Deep Water warning didn't survive very long, though since the ESRB was founded and introduced a rating system that did not (officially at least) double as a marketing tool. Thus the Deep Water warning was retired, and Sega left the rating business to the pros.

That's some pretty impressive reviews scores for Elden Ring, could it be a Game of the Year contender? If you've preloaded and are ready to play this evening, do let us know your early impressions of it.

Today's issue of DailyBits was written by Gavin Herman, Erlend Grefsrud, Simon Priest, and Jamie Davey. If you have any feedback or news tips for the team, please email us!