The First Step in Elden Ring.
Screenshot by The Escapist.

Should You Start a New Character Before the Elden Ring Shadow of the Erdtree DLC?

You don't always need a fresh start.

Depending on where you’re at in Elden Ring, you may be wondering if it’s worth starting a new character before the Shadow of the Erdtree DLC, so here’s what we think.

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Should You Start a New Character for the Erdtree DLC in Elden Ring?

Image of the Royal Capital and character in Elden Ring.
Screenshot by The Escapist.

If you are on New Game+, you should make a new character for the Shadow of the Erdtree DLC. However, if you are early into the base game or you beat the main story, there is no reason to make a fresh character. The DLC will be based on power scaling for the Land of Shadow. So after you reach Mohg and his palace, you should be in a great spot for the base game run. Just don’t start a New Game+ if you decide to kill the Elden Beast ahead of time.

As for when you should get started on the DLC, I recommend reaching at least level 120 on your character. Although the Lands of Shadow will scale with your power to a degree, you should have enough levels to make a full build. Most players will be able to create a full build at level 120, but 150 is a better spot for PvE. Having around 150 levels will allow you to make use of any of the new weapons you find along the way.

Related: Best Bloodhound’s Fang Weapon Build in Elden Ring

Those of you who were about half way through the base game have nothing to worry about. Your main goal should be to reach Mohgwyn Palace so you can get started on the DLC. Most players won’t be able to reach this area without getting past level 120 regardless, which means leveling shouldn’t be an issue. Focus on getting the equipment you need more than anything else so that you have a decent build going into the Lands of Shadow.

Elden Ring is available now on PC, Xbox, and PlayStation.

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Dan Wenerowicz
Dan has been writing gaming guides, features and news for four years after graduating with a BA in writing. You can find him endlessly covering COD, Diablo 4, and any major releases. Otherwise he's cooking up another opinion piece.