There are plenty of gruesome and dumb ways to die in Elden Ring. You could be sliced to death by Malenia, crushed by Radahn's meteor attack, or decimated by exploding galaxies thrown at you by Astel. To add to that, the open world only adds to the many opportunities for accidental death, or getting sniped by a giant lobster. However, none of those are quite as gruesome as dying of Death Blight.
Once the Tarnished is afflicted by the Death Blight, it grows inside of them and violently bursts out like a baby Xenomorph. It doesn't stop there, the blight grows out so much that it reaches the ground and even lifts the Tarnished's mutilated body into the air. And yet, FromSoftware dataminer and lore master, Zullie the Witch has found something that makes this affliction even more nightmarish than we previously thought.
In a recently released video Zullie says that zooming into the blight on the player, Godwyn's corpse, and even Rogier's legs reveals that the white spikes are actually insect wings, giving rise to a blood-curdling theory.
"A swarm of these insects surround both Godwyn and Rogier, and even appear when the player is death blighted," explained Zullie. "And this carries an unsettling implication, that the insects aren't drawn to the death blight, they're a byproduct of it. Much of Elden Ring's cosmology is rooted in antiquated theories of science and mysticism, particularly alchemy.
"The Elden Ring itself resembles alchemical diagrams, many of which even feature their own overarching world tree. And the Death Blight insects may be inspired by one such obsolete belief, the theory of spontaneous generation. The philosopher Aristotle held that some creatures, like fleas and maggots could simply manifest from nonliving matter."
This belief was actually accepted as fact for a very long time. It was only with modern science that it was proven to be false. However, in the world of Elden Ring, these theories are fact, meaning that the Death Blight, insects, and worms that burst out of the Tarnished appear spontaneously.
It's certainly one of the worst ways to die in The Lands Between – bet you wouldn't mind Malenia's blade right about now.
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